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Westport Library Association

Libraries, Archives, and Special Collections
Dan Van Olpen

The land now occupied by the library was deeded by Freeborn and Anne Page to the Westport Library Association for the sum of $900.00. The land included the site of Person's Hotel which had burned. The deed stated that a building was to be erected for the use of a library and that the remainder of the land was to be maintained by the Westport Library Association as a park for the use of the people of Westport. If these provisions were not carried out, the land was to revert to the Page family.

The library building was designed by the architectural firm of Andrews and Jacques of Boston and subsequently constructed by David A. Clark.

The building was dedicated on July 26, 1888.

In 1907, through the efforts of Miss Alice Lee and others, funds were raised for an addition which would provide an entertainment hall and rooms for the Town of Westport offices.

Brigadier General John Tyler Cutting, who had been born in Westport, was persuaded by Miss Lee to help finance the new addition. General Cutting, a Civil War veteran, had moved to California (where he was an Oldsmobile dealer and was involved in that state's politics), but he nevertheless contributed about $5,000 and requested that the hall be known as the John Tyler Cutting Memorial Hall.

The John Tyler Cutting Memorial Hall was dedicated in 1908, the same year that Mrs. Robert C. Black had the clock tower erected and the clock installed. For many years the Cutting Hall was Westport's social center. A variety of events were held there. There was also an annual Grand Summer Ball to benefit the library. This event was attended almost exclusively by the summer residents and prominent citizens of Westport, all wearing evening attire.

In 1920 another addition was built in which moving-pictures were shown regularly, and during the days of the silent movies, a local lady would play the piano to accompany the films. In those days, many residents of the Adirondacks had to travel many miles to enjoy a motion picture theater, so this was a great treat for the people of Westport.

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Located in the heart of the hamlet of Westport, New York, the Westport Library Association has served the community and its visitors since 1884.

Envisioned as a library that would provide local residents with quality services, to this day it continues to do just that. With its lofty ceilings, high windows, wooden beams, and a welcoming open fire during the winter months, residents and visitors alike continue to delight in its perennial charm.

Don't Miss This When Visiting

  • During the winter a crackling fire can be enjoyed while perusing our collection.

  • In the summer don't miss our Annual Book Sale on or around Fourth of July Weekend.

  • A tour of the historic building is always worthwhile.

Identify And Describe The Management Organization

The Westport Library is a nonprofit organization that is governed by a board of trustees. The current board members and officers are:

Janne Abreo
Betty Band
Allan Beal
Cynthia Ford- Johnston | Vice President
Heidi Sweet | Secretary
Greg Moore
Nancy Pribble
Nancy Page | Treasurer
Cheryl Raywood
Cynthia Schira | President
Juliann Sherman

Board meetings are held at the library on the third Wednesday of each month at 5:00 pm. The public is welcome to attend.


Season And Hours Open

Open year round Tues and Thurs. 10-6, Sat. 9-1. Also open Fri. 10-6 in July and August only.