In 1997, Mead Public Library celebrated its 100th anniversary as the library of the City of Sheboygan. The library has grown from several hundred books to more than 330,000 items, including books, DVDs, CDs, audio-books, and downloads.
Approximately 900,000 visits are recorded annually with an average of 254 items checked out every hour the library is open.
The Centennial Building Project increased the size of the 1974 building from 60,000 to 80,000 square feet and new features were added: more seating, quick access to popular materials, space for current and future computer technology, self-service capabilities, privacy at checkout, quiet study areas, and compliance with ADA requirements.
Approximately $2.4 million of the $4.9 million initial project cost was donated privately. The City of Sheboygan has funded the project through general obligation bonds.
The noteworthy generosity of private donors and the sustained support from City of Sheboygan taxpayers has assured Mead Public Library's position as an important element of the educational and cultural resources of the area.
The First Floor
New books, fiction books, large print books, CDs, videos and audio-books may be found in the new Popular Materials Center. The BookStore, a sales area managed from the Friends of Mead Public Library, also is on the first floor.
Customer Service offers return slots and a checkout area for all library materials. Visitors may apply here for a free Mead Library card.
Jerry Black's is a vending cafe/seating area on the first floor.
Many library programs are held in the Josephine A. Rocca Meeting Room. It also is available for use by others in the community.
The Second Floor
Information Services librarians offer reference and research services in person and by telephone. They provide information using a wide variety of print and electronic sources. Many specialized reference materials, such as microfilm and an online magazine index, are available for public use.
In addition to nonfiction books, this floor contains the Hansen Teen Library Center where teen fiction is located, local history materials, maps, magazines and newspapers, and public-use computers.
The Quiet Study Room is furnished with 1904 library tables and 1929 Phoenix Chair Company chairs. Mounted on the ceiling are the newly-restored 1910 Edgar Cameron murals, the first monumental works of art in Sheboygan.
The Third Floor
For infants on up, the Landwehr Children's Library Center contains a large variety of books, videos, DVDs, CDs, computers, magazines, and toys.
At the service desk, specially trained staff members help children research homework assignments and find materials. A quiet study area is offered for older children.
Programs for children and families are held in the Story Garden. These include storytimes, educational and entertaining guest performers, and a summer reading program.
Some years after the initial third floor addition was completed, The Maas Teen Learning Center opened with funding provided by a bequest from Dr. Jerome Maas. It offers computer access and space for gaming and movie events.
Also on the third floor is The Loft, an area for adult library programs.