Source: The Bergen Evening Record, Monday, May 23, 1927 -- Column entitled "All the News of Teaneck" by Carl R. Peck.

CORNER STONE OF LIBRARY BUILDING 
LAID IN TEANECK

Praise Given Those Who Labored To Carry the Institution from Its Small Beginnings to Present Time.

GREAT FUTURE USEFULNESS

The laying of the cornerstone of the Teaneck Free Public Library building on Saturday afternoon drew a very select audience at the hour appointed.

Miss Matte S. Scott was the master of ceremonies, and carried off the honor with great success. You would have said that such exercises were daily occurrences with her, judging by her calm and efficient handling of the business in hand.

A platform was built over the foundations, and on this the guests stood as well as on the ground surrounding.

Into the copper box that went into the stone was put a bible measuring but 1 1/2 by 1 by 1 inches. The print was so fine that a magnifying glass was needed to read the print. It was a wonderful example of the bookmakers art.

The constitution and by-laws of the Woman's Club of Teaneck was presented by Mrs. Minna Lippman, the president, and a coin of real age, a silver fifty cent piece of 1826, was placed in the receptacle. Pictures of the first library of Teaneck, which was housed in the old building that served as a slave quarters before the Civil War, and of the members who have worked so hard to make Saturday's fact a realization, and the pen with which the agreements were signed were put in the copper box.

It will be many years before these objects see the light of day, and when they do the fine work done by the small group of women of the association will be a source of wonder to those seeing the small beginning.

Silver Trowel Used.

William H. Bodine presented a silver trowel to Miss Scott to be used in spreading the cement that bound the stone into the complete mass that will be the library. This trowel will be suitably engraved and put in a frame in the library when it is complete.

The exercises were started by the singing of "America the Beautiful," led by a strong male voice.

Rev. William K. Russell, of Christ church, West Englewood, offered the invocation of the favor of Almighty God on the future of the library of Teaneck, and asked that the light of his face be present on all occasions.

Miss Scott then spoke of the real significance of the occasion.  Starting with nothing, the ladies of the association have come through with flying colors, and she said were glad to present to Teaneck of the present and future the building that would house the books of the present and future collectors.

The ground work of the was said by Miss Scott to be the thought of Mrs. Archibald N. Jordan, who was unable to be present by reason of the illness of her son Conrad.

Mrs. Jordan has carried the burden and fought for the success of the plans for many months, and therefore deserved great credit, Miss Scott said.

Library's Object.

Miss Scott spoke of what the fireside meant in the homes of America in its early history, and begged that the times might return when the home fireside might mean again what it had in the past, for the welfare of the country. The library will serve as center of gatherings of those who love to know the best, and will stand out as a beacon in the years to come for the coming citizens of Teaneck. Miss Scott spoke in the highest terms of the great help accorded the ladies by the members of the Township Committee in helping to bring the realization of the present to fruition.

She said that the thanks of the ladies was due William II. Bodine, chairman of the committee, for his untiring help in all matters relating to the building of the library. The library is a free will gift to the citizens of Teaneck by the members of the library women.

In his address Mr. Bodine said he knew of "no event in the past 20 years in Teaneck that had the far reaching effect that the future library would have and the credit for the building was wholly on the backs of the ladies of the committee." Mr. Bodine said that the remarks of Miss Scott in relation to the part played by Mrs. Jordan but half told the story.

A Swimming Pool.

The real sensation of his talk was the stating that he favored a municipal swimming pool located in the western part of the seven acres of the township grounds. Mr. Bodine stated that it could be put in for not more than $40,000, which would be spread over a period of twenty-five years, and the future citizens of Teaneck would carry the burdens as they would derive most of the benefits. This is something that will be well worth thinking over, as no action can be taken without the backing of the citizens and voters of the municipality.

Mrs. Ella Schuman, who has always been a right hand when matters of importance in raising money for the old library committee was to be done, was selected as the actual layer of the cornerstone. With the silver trowel she spread the cement under and around the stone, and the stone that will support the southeast corner of the building was in place.

Frederick T. Warner, the architect of the building, was given his just share of the credit for the plans he drew for the new building, and then Fred G. Melchior, of Montclair, made the speech of the afternoon.  He is a vice-president of the New York Public library, and told of the great increase of the use of books by all classes. The fact of the movies and such inventions are not lessening the desire of the public for good reading, he said.

Mr. Melcher said the churches of the land were increasing in good by the more general use of books of the higher order, and the reading of such books helps the churches in all branches.

"The roads in books lead to the outside vistas of beauty," he said.

William H. Beardslee, of the Windsor construction Company, was given his mead of praise for the co-operation the firm had shown in the work of building the future history.

Music was interspersed through the exercises and lent its touch of sweetness in the bright sunlight.

The exercises were concluded by a benediction given by Rev. Schnable of St. Paul's Lutheran church of West Englewood.

Back to The Library History Home Page

Back to Township History Main Page