Throughout the history of Office Specialists, the Galesburg Public Library has been one of our longest customers. We spoke with Noelle Thompson, the Library Director, to learn about their partnership with OSI, their history, their new and improved location, and the importance of libraries to a local community.
The Library’s Partnership with OSI
Galesburg Public Library. Source: galesburglibrary.org
One of our favorite things about the library is that it is only two blocks away, so outfitting their office locally is not only in their best interest, but also exceptionally easy. If they ever have any questions, our representatives will happily walk over, drop off samples, offer guidance specific to their organization, and help get them what they need while being respectful of the quiet that a library requires. We make sure our clients get what they need and want while being considerate of their core values.
Galesburg Public Library purchases everything from consumable office supplies, like copy paper, to janitorial supplies, like hand soap, to permanent installments, like workstations and furniture, from OSI. We have been working together since shortly after OSI opened. Buying your office supplies locally not only helps the companies involved, but also stimulates the local economy, supports community engagement and empowerment, and supports sustainability efforts.
Galesburg Public Library’s History
The Young Men’s Literary and Library Association opened a reading room over a bank on Main Street in 1858. This small room was the first incarnation of the Galesburg Public Library, which was established as a free public library in 1874. Over the next 122 years, they moved to another location, suffered a fire, rebuilt, and expanded their spaces to comprise the building seen on Simmons Street today.
Now, after eight years of waiting, the Galesburg Public Library has been awarded funding to create their new library spaces.
The New Galesburg Public Library
Downtown Galesburg, IL. Source: Wikimedia Commons
The new library, which will be more than 80% larger than the current space, is scheduled to open in early 2024 at 264 W. Main Street. It will stand at the western entrance to downtown Galesburg, a fitting indicator of the values of Galesburg — Knowledge, Community, Democracy.
The new building will contain a large community room for performances, celebrations, and other events. Conference rooms will support small in-person and virtual meetings, and study rooms will provide quiet spaces for students and remote workers.
The Library as a Community Space
In the new library space, enhanced areas for children and teens will invite families and individuals of all ages to make the library their play space and homework center. A tech lab and skills lab will introduce new skills, tools, and equipment to the lifelong learners in our community. The quiet reading room, reading balcony, fireplace alcove, and inviting seating areas throughout will make the library the community’s living room and gathering place.
Noelle believes that a new library with high-quality programming and state of the art technology will bring visitors to Galesburg and encourage families to make Galesburg their home.