The Acton Public Library was incorporated on September 25, 1920 under the leadership of the following Officers and Trustees:
Blaine Grant, President
Clarence Butler, Vice President
Jennie Butler, Secretary
Irl Hurd, Treasurer
Annie Sanborn, Eva Sanborn, Edith Fenner.
One Hundred Years Later....
The Acton Public Library is still going strong, under the leadership of the current Officers and Trustees:
Carolyn Roy-Bornstein, President
Estelle Gore, Vice President
Jennifer Toussaint, Treasurer
Sue Purkis, Secretary
Katie Nolan-Denham, Rosanne Shontz, Joan Nass, Lauren Norwood and Mary Ellen Maguire
In 1920, the Library existed as branches in individual homes, then housed at the Franklin School until 1957 when the town voted permission to use half of the old Acton Corner School House. The other half was used by the town hall. The split was right down the middle, length-wise. In fact, the concrete slab which held the town's vault is still under the schoolroom and you can feel the hump in the library floor where it is. In 1986 Clifford Holdsworth donated a large sum of money to the library. As the town hall moved into its new building, Holdworth's donation was used to upgrade the windows, walls and insulation for the library to fill the entire 900 square foot schoolroom. Since then, more indoor renovations and upgrades were possible due to grants and memorial donations.
Today, grown students from the old schoolroom recognize the portrait of George Washington which is hung behind the circulation desk. The library is also home to the Boston Post Cane, awarded to the oldest resident living in Acton and a large 1857 map of York County.
Meet The Team
One of the first things I did upon retiring to Acton was to explore opportunities to volunteer at our town library. I was very excited to find an opening on the Board! I have always been a reader and a writer. I've written essays for the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Boston Globe and participate in writing groups here at the library (Come join us!) and in my hometown in Massachusetts. I volunteer as the Writer-in-Residence at the Lawrence Family Medicine Residency program in Lawrence, Massachusetts leading doctors-in-training in close reading of literary works followed by reflective writing exercises. I've been married for forty years, have four children and three grandchildren. I am deeply grateful for this opportunity to share my love of words with this amazing community!
I joined the Board in 2015, the year I brought several of my grandchildren to the Summer Reading Program. My own love of reading began when I participated in my library's Summer Reading Program, devouring every Nancy Drew book I could find. Since then, I've expanded my curiosities and enjoy many genres but my favorite books are historical fiction. My other interests include gardening, cooking and sewing. There is no greater love than having a child ask you to read to them.
I have always enjoyed reading and when I retired and moved to Acton during the pandemic in 2020, I had lots of time to read. I was drawn to the Acton Public Library. As I learned more, I wanted to be actively involved. Most Thursday afternoons you can find me in a nice comfy chair at the library interacting with all the patrons that come in. I enjoy hearing about what types of books they are reading and sharing recommendations. Expanding on my activity with the library, I became the secretary of the board in 2023. Outside of the library, I am active in the Acton Congregational Church and Cat Mom to Alex and Kayla.
Although I am retired now, I spent many years in the financial industry. Later, after having children I decided I wanted a job that was more flexible so I worked in my husband's law office doing the real estate closings and later for a small accounting firm. I have always had a love for books and took my children to the library regularly. It has been so nice to join the trustees at the Acton library and to continue my support of the library.
Mary Ellen Maguire
I joined the Acton Public Library Board in 2022 after retiring to Maine. I look forward to being part of the Acton community. When my children were young, I volunteered at their school libraries for many years. I worked for 15 years as a teacher assistant and I currently volunteer at the Acton Elementary School. My favorite books are murder mysteries.
I first began my experience at the Acton Public Library with my children and our weekly visits checking out lots of books and attending the summer reading programs. In 2005, Doris Wentworth, the library director at the time, invited me to join the Board of Trustees. Four years later, I became the treasurer. Having nine years' experience “behind the scenes”, when the director position opened in early 2014, I applied. I have always enjoyed reading to or with young readers. It is exciting to see children learning to read and loving to engage in books. I love a good non-fiction like Devil in the White City by Erik Larson, a historical fiction like Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate or a good twisty-turny fiction like Sarah Waters’ Fingersmith.
I moved to Acton in 2018 and immediately felt at home. I lived most of my life in Massachusetts, working as a Civil Engineer and then as a 7th grade Math Teacher. As a mom of two daughters, I fostered their love of reading and spent countless hours either at the library or the local bookstore. For them, being amongst books was like being in a candy store! As a young reader myself, I loved the Nancy Drew books. Now I enjoy historical fiction, local historical texts, and psychological thrillers. With my husband and I being retired, I have more time to read a good book when I am sitting by the lake or to read books to our two grandsons.
I started bringing our little girl to storytime with Ms. Elise when we moved to Acton in 2016. As our family grew, so did Ms. Elise's wonderful storytime! I began subbing at the library in 2017, along with the help of my book-loving children, on occasion. In my spare time, I enjoy reading, being outdoors and riding horses. Some of my favorite genres include historical fiction, suspense, and nonfiction parenting and self care books.
I’ve been working at the library for 2 to 3 years now. My love of books was what started me thinking about working in the library. My favorite genres to read are fantasy and historical fiction, although I do like to read in other genres on occasion.
I started at the Acton Public Library in the summer of 2019. Volunteering at the Library's annual book sale sparked my interest! I enjoy mysteries, loving the adventure and solving problems, the power of the mind to work out complex situations.
I’m a professional cleaner and married mom of two. We’ve lived in Acton for almost 13 years now and love it. Reading was my passion growing up, and I love volunteering so the APL board was a perfect fit. I started as a friend of the library a few years ago and joined the board this past year. My taste in books is varied, but my favorites are usually historical fiction of the 1800’s.
I am a passionate bibliophile who has been on the Acton Public Library Board of Trustees since 2009. I love books of all genres! My favorite book is "Meg and the Ghost of Hidden Springs" by Holly Beth Walker because it is the book that secured my love of reading. You can still find a copy of this well-loved book in my home library. When my face isn't buried in a book you may find me spending time with my grandsons, hiking with my hubby, cooking up a feast, or taking pictures of people and places.