History of the Library

1877 - The Medina Circulating Library Society was formed.

1899 - The Medina Circulating Library Society became Medina Library Association. A small building on the north side of the Public Square was purchased.

1904 - Franklin Sylvester a Medina County businessman, gave $10,000 to be used for a library. Mr. Sylvester and his wife, who had no heirs, decided to build a library in Medina to keep his name alive.

1905 - The corner of Washington and Broadway Streets was chosen as the site for the library.

1907 - The Franklin Sylvester Library opened in September with 2,000 volumes. Unfortunately, Mr. Sylvester died before his library was completed.

1933 - The Franklin Sylvester Library voted to extend the borrowing privileges to all Medina County residents, excluding Wadsworth, which already had a library.

1947 - In December, the County Budget Commission approved $9,300 for the purchase of a bookmobile to serve the county’s rural areas.

1948 - The bookmobile was debuted at the County Fair and began servicing outlying areas. After the first year of operation staff registered over 4,000 borrowers and circulated 45,364 items.

Bookmobile service began at Brunswick elementary schools, the Lodi school and the Lodi town square, Valley City and at the Liverpool School.

1950 - Local organizations in Lodi started working on a campaign to have their own library.

The Bookmobile started making stops in Seville.

1958 - A second bookmobile was acquired. One had adult materials for community stops and the other carried materials for schools.

The Friends of the Lodi Library committee was formed.

An addition to the Medina Library was completed providing more stacks and a reading room.

1960 - The Friends of the Brunswick Library was incorporated and raised money to open a small library on Pearl Road.

The first Lodi Library opened in a room in the Lodi Advertiser. The Rotary Club purchased lumber for shelves; City Hardware and Western Auto donated paint; and volunteers donated time to put it all together.

1961 - The Seville Community Library was established. The Friends of the Seville Library, the Seville Lions, and Dandy Lions were instrumental in making the library a reality, but it was a total community effort.

1962 - The 1948 bookmobile was replaced.

1964 - The Friends of the Hinckley Library formed to start a library-building fund.

1965 - The Brunswick Library moved to the Brunswick Shopping Center under the bowling alley.

A room in the town hall opened as the first Hinckley library with 4000 books.

The American Legion Post 523 offered to rent part of their building to the Lodi Library. The Lodi Library moved into its new quarters in April of 1966.

1966 - The 1958 bookmobile was retired.

1970s - The Library Board of Trustees and the city of Brunswick agreed to construct a library.

1972 - A 5-year levy passed by Medina residents allowed for expansion of the Medina library.

1974 - The Friends of the Hinckley Library leased the Stouffer homestead on the corner of Routes 3 and 303. Community businesses and organizations renovated the home and supplied materials and labor. The Hinckley Library opened in 1975.

1975 - Work on the addition to the Medina Library began and was completed in August of 1976.

1976 - The former Elliott Funeral Home was purchased by the Friends of the Lodi Library and the Medina Library Board. The Lodi Community Library moved to its new facility in 1977.

1979 - Land on Center Road was donated and voters approved a bond issue to finance construction of a new Brunswick Library.

1980 - The 20,500-square foot Brunswick Library opened in December, with 70,000 volumes.

1982 - The library board voted to change its service area from a school district library to a county system and the library became the Medina County District Library.

Bookmobile service was suspended as it became too expensive to make repairs and improvements to school libraries made the school stops less necessary.

1985 - Irene Welday bequeathed $100,000 to build an addition on the Seville Library.

1986 - The Irene Welday wing of the Seville Library was opened.

1987 - Voters in Medina County passed an operating levy. It allowed for operating expenses, the purchase of a new bookmobile and the purchase of the building adjacent to the Medina library for Administrative offices.

1988 - The Lodi Library building was remodeled in with money from the Mary Still Trust and donations form the Friends of the Lodi Library.

1991 - A new 28-foot Bluebird bus took to the roads. After fourteen years of service this Bookmobile was retired in September of 2005.

1992 - An operating levy passed and allowed for expanded hours of operation, increased staffing, expanded services, enlarging the collections and renovations at all locations.

1996 - The library debuted its first website on 47 new personal computers offering full Internet access to its patrons. This service was met with both an overwhelming positive response and opposition from area residents who objected to the open access Internet Policy.

1997 - An Intellectual Freedom challenge ended with a victory at the polls when MCDL’s 10 year levy was renewed.

2003 - The MCDL bond issue passed allowing for construction and expansion of libraries in Medina County. The Buckeye school area was earmarked for a new library due to the success of Bookmobile service there. The Steingass-Riggs family donated land for the construction of the new library.

The Buckeye Library was the first new branch of MCDL opened in more than 20 years. The building houses the public library, the system’s Maintenance and Delivery departments and Outreach Services and MCDL’s Bookmobile and delivery vehicles.

The Hinckley Library, Stouffer homestead location closed due to deteriorating conditions. The Bookmobile provided library service through stops at the Hinckley, Sharon and Granger town halls.

2004 - The Hinckley Library opened in a new location at 1315 Ridge Road.

2005 - The current Bookmobile hit the road. It holds 4,000-5,000 items including books, magazines, audio books, CDs, and DVDs.

The Buckeye Library opened in December.

2006 - The Lodi Library moved its current location at 635 Wooster Street in February.

2007 - The expanded and renovated Brunswick Library opened in September.

The renovated Seville Library opened in September.

2008 - The renovated and expanded Medina Library was opened in January.

The new Highland Library opened in March.

2009 - State of Ohio reduced funding to all public libraries in Ohio. MCDL instituted layoffs and cutbacks in hours and services to accommodate the reduction in funding. Fees were instituted for some services.

2011 - In November it was discovered that the new Lodi Library had major structural issues causing MCDL to temporarily close down the branch and re-assign staff. The branch reopened in their meeting room in 2012, while the investigation continued to discover the cause of the structural deficiencies.

2013 – The Lodi Library moved temporarily into the Lodi Outlet location while reconstruction began on the permanent location.

2014 - The Lodi library moves back into the “new” repaired building.

2015 – Repurposing of library spaces commences in all branches.

2016 – The library is notified that they are the recipients of the Virginia Wheeler Martin genealogy collection and the funds to build a new genealogy room.

2017 – The Operating Levy from 2007 expires. The Library goes to the public in May for a renewal levy and a small .25 mill increase.

2018 - A manager is hired to oversee the construction of the Virginia Wheeler Martin collection and the Family History & Learning Center. Meanwhile, Medina Library's exterior tile is reinstalled for safety.

2019 – Renovation begins to incorporate the Virginia Wheeler Martin Family History & Learning Center on the second floor of the Medina Library. The Center opens in December, featuring digitization and makerspace equipment as well as the local history and genealogy collections

2020 – In response to the COVID pandemic, MCDL closes its doors on March 14.  The doors remain shut for three months, opening on June 15 with limited hours and anti-COVID protocols in place. Meeting rooms are shuttered, half the computers are removed to maintain six feet social distance, and masks are required to enter a MCDL building.  The library has to shut its doors again in December for two weeks in response to Medina County reaching "purple" status, the highest level of COVID infection in Ohio's Public Health Status Advisory system.

2021 – As vaccination programs get underway, MCDL opens for more hours while still maintaining protocols.
A new bookmobile debuts in August, capable of rolling book carts down a lift for easy browsing at senior living and community events.