The new library opened June of 2001. The new site
is adjacent to Lion’s Park and the swimming pool. The library will continue
to be a busy place for information, recreation, meeting room space and reference
The on-site collection at the library includes 24,000 adult and children’s
books. Periodical subscriptions include 75 magazines and 5 newspapers. Audio
recordings for adults and children are available and a small collection of video
titles. Various electronic resources provide easy access to telephone
numbers, zip-codes and criss-cross information. Internet access is provided
for the public. Harvard newspapers from the late 1800’s to 1986 are
available for viewing on microfilm. The microfilm/microfiche reader as well as photocopier, laminating machine, typewriter and word-processing computer may
be used at any time during public hours. The library owns a small collection
of artwork for loan and also an unusual collection of butterflies.
Audio-visual equipment may be borrowed from the library.
The library is a charter member of the northern Illinois Library System
established in 1965. This system (NILS) now includes 151 libraries in twelve
counties. As a NILS member, the library is part of the ILLINET resource network.
Materials for interlibrary loan are picked up and delivered six days a week. The
library is on-line with nine other automated NILS libraries and the collections
of all these libraries can be viewed in the same database. This database is now
available both from the libraries and from outside computers via the Internet.
Patrons can access their own record of checked out materials, requests as well
as fines by accessing this database with their PIN number. A patron’s library
card can be used at the other libraries as well.
This library is a municipal library and tax money for its support is
collected only on that property within the city limits of Harvard. Because of
this support, residents within the city may obtain a card at no additional fee.
Persons living outside the city limits, in non-taxed areas, may purchase
non-resident library membership. The non-resident fee is set by the NILS Board
of Trustees and allows non-resident library cards purchased in Harvard to be
used at other NILS public libraries. In addition to city tax support, the
library is supported by the Delos F. Diggins Library Trust which first
established the library in 1908. This trust continues to raise funds to meet
many of the capital needs of the library.
A variety of programs are offered at the library. Classes from local schools
make regular visits. Several sessions of pre-school Story Hour are offered
during the school year. Reading incentives and activities are part of the Summer
Reading Program. The library is a contact point for the Library of Congress
Talking Books Program and an adult literacy program. Home delivery of
materials is offered to patrons who are unable to come to the library.
Tele-course videotapes from McHenry County College may be viewed at the
library. A public meeting room is available for use by organizations.
The library welcomes new patrons. Proof of address is required for
registration. Suggestions for materials to be purchased are appreciated and
volunteer helpers are often needed. The library is responsible to and exists for