In 1902, there were very few libraries open to the public. In Seaford, a group of women formed the Acorn Club as a vehicle through which they could improve their community. Their goal was to establish a public library. The first meeting of the Acorn Club was in a rented room to which each member brought a chair, a book, and a cup and saucer. They voted to start a library with books from their own homes as well as material borrowed from the traveling library available through the State Library in Dover. Each member served as librarian for a month until a part-time librarian was hired for $1 a week. And by 1909, there were 404 books in the library’s collection.
Service to Seaford’s surrounding rural community was met by one of the State’s first bookmobiles in 1912. Seaford Librarian Mary Hopkins purchased a touring car, stacked books on the car seats, and visited nearby farms loaning books and magazines.
The Seaford District Library continued to grow and was moved several times. The first move was from the room over Milligan’s store at the corner of King and Pine Street to the Acorn Club House on Hall Street in 1939. The library moved again to the old Henry White brick building on Pine Street until the completion of the present North Porter Street building in 1963. An addition to the building in 1987 almost doubled its size, adding more room for book shelves and offering a large meeting room for community use.
In 2003, the library boasted a collection of over 59,000 books, videos, tapes and magazines. Library services include outreach programs to local schools, daycares, nursing homes, and children’s organizations. In-house presentations and programs include story times, an annual children’s summer reading series, plus various children’s and adult’s programs. The library provides free word-processing capabilities, meeting space, and Internet accessibility to library members.
In December 2009, the library relocated to the current location of 600 N. Market St. Ext. doubling in size. The new facility has a computer training room, an exhibit/conference room, and a community multi-purpose room. A teen area was added and a children’s program room. The new building was named Seaford Library and Cultural Center. The library, however, remains incorporated as Seaford District Library, Inc.
The Trustees of the Seaford District Library are appointed by the Resident Judge of the Superior Court of Sussex County. They are appointed to oversee the library as representatives of the community. They determine and adopt policies to govern the operation and program of the library; develop and oversee the budget; employ a Director; and actively support library legislation. The Board of Commissioners meet about ten times annually and these meetings are open to the public.President: Janet Messick