Someone who is interested in books and in people who will find satisfaction in bringing the two together.
That was the plea of the Board of Trustees in the local newspaper on January 28, 1921. They were seeking a librarian to manage the new library space on the second floor of the Lake Drive School from 2:30 to 5:00 pm daily, and one evening per week.
This, however, was not the first chapter in the story of the Mountain Lakes Public Library – a beloved fixture of the community for 100 years.
Tour Our Craven Miniature Rooms
They say good things come in small packages and that’s especially true at the Mountain Lakes Library, where an exhibit of six miniature rooms by the late artist Edgar Craven is on permanent display. Created in 1940-41 and refurbished in 2017, these intricate treasures are a sight to behold and have been featured in Miniature Collector magazine. The exhibit was made possible by many volunteers who helped clean and refurbish the rooms in their original location, and then moved and reassembled them in the library, and by a donation from the Town Club of Mountain Lakes.
Medals of Honor
The library is proud to display the actual medals of honor awarded to Mountain Lakes residents Brigadier General Frederick Castle and Rear Admiral Miles Browning. The exhibit was prepared and made possible by the Mountain Lakes Landmarks Committee and the Mountain Lakes Historic Preservation Committee.
General Castle – Congressional Medal of Honor
Formerly of 38 Lake Drive, General Castle commanded a strike mission of
2,032 B-17 “Flying Fortresses” and 800 fighters in the Battle of the Bulge in Western Europe. His airplane fatally damaged, he ordered his crew to bail out while he remained at the controls, making their exit possible. He went down with the craft and lost his life in the crash. He was posthumously awarded the Congressional Medal of Honor, the nation’s highest award.
Admiral Browning – Distinguished Service Medal
Admiral Browning, who after he retired lived at 178 Boulevard, was a senior naval officer in World War II responsible for Operations and War Plans in the Pacific. Later, he was Chief of Staff and Aide to Admiral (later Fleet Admiral) William F. Halsey, Jr., who at the time commanded the entire South Pacific operations. Admiral Browning developed the battle plan that led to the defeat of the Japanese Pacific Fleet in the Battle of Midway, a pivotal battle in the war in the Pacific. For his efforts, Admiral Browning was awarded the Distinguished Service Medal.
The library is fortunate to house the artwork of noted artists Robert Bowen, Russ Conn, Edgar Craven, Paul King, and Ken Johnston.