Little Free Libraries

As an avid reader, I wanted to take a moment to recognize that we have two excellent Little Free Libraries in our neighborhood. Over 30 million adults in the United States read at a third grade level, so encouraging literacy is a necessary and worthwhile neighborhood pursuit.

Little Free Libraries work on the honor system and anyone can contribute books as well as borrow anything they like from the little library. There’s no time limit on borrowing, and everyone is encouraged to swap out a book to replace the one they borrowed, ensuring the library is always full for the whole community.

3600 Block Yorkshire Rd

A cute little library with real shingles and a full set of books!

How did Little Free Libraries start?

In 2009, Todd Bol of Hudson, Wisconsin, built a model of a one room schoolhouse. It was a tribute to his mother; she was a teacher who loved to read. He filled it with books and put it on a post in his front yard. His neighbors and friends loved it, so he built several more and gave them away.

By 2020 more than 100,000 Little Free Library book-sharing boxes have been installed worldwide. Read the full history here.

“I really believe in a Little Free Library on every block and a book in every hand. I believe people can fix their neighborhoods, fix their communities, develop systems of sharing, learn from each other, and see that they have a better place on this planet to live.” 

Todd Boll, creator of Little Free Libraries, who sadly passed away in October 2018 of complications from pancreatic cancer

400 Block Oneida Dr.

A gnome themed blue & pink little library just on the west side of Eaton Wash, en route to Eaton Blanche Park.

How do I support Little Libraries?

Little Libraries depend on community support, so remember to grab a book (or three) that you want to share with the community and drop it off on an early morning walk. You can donate books you’ve read but haven’t touched in years, gifted books you’ve never finished, or old children’s books your kids are too old for. Or buy a box of books from a rummage or library sale to add to the variety.

Not only are Little Libraries a great way to reuse books and save on paper waste (good for the environment!), but also a great way to find books and save money. They can also help your kids discover and enjoy books they may not have come across on their own, and encourages sharing in the process.

Let us know if any more Little Libraries pop up in the neighborhood and happy reading!