April 14, 2010
Today, Wednesday April 14 is the first ever National Bookmobile Day during National Library Week. To coincide with this, Marathon County Bookmobile history is on display at MCPL Wausau throughout April.
The first bookmobile arrived in Marathon County in December 1949, as a result of much petitioning and urging by rural school teachers and Kay Biwer, the head of Marathon County Library, located in the courthouse, serving the rural areas of Marathon County. Marathon County’s bookmobile became the 4thbookmobile in Wisconsin.
Bookmobile service began in Marathon County as way to provide additional books to children in the rural schools, later branching out to stops in communities and rural areas, wherever people gathered: stores, farm yards, churches, taverns, town garages, mobile home parks, and county crossroads. The bookmobile “stopped” in the communities of Little Chicago, Glandon, Halder, Milan, Bevent, Dancy, Fenwood, Halder, Harrison, Norrie, Poniatowski, Hewitt Texas, Holton, Easton, Ringle, and many others. The bookmobile was a hit with young and old alike, in particular the children, who often asked staff where, and if, they slept on “the bus”.
On May 31, 2005, the Marathon County Public Library bookmobile made its last stop in Hatley when the new branch library opened there in 2005, ending 55 years of bookmobile library service to residents in Marathon County.
See other photos in the State of Wisconsin Digital Collections; Libraries and Schools in Marathon and Lincoln Counties.