Some have tried smoking rooms, had boy’s club rooms and games, and many have tried simply to make the rooms homelike and cheery, and all of their experience is valuable to us.– “The Library as Social Centre“, the opening address of the Minnesota Library Association, October 12, 1905, by Miss Gratia Alta Countryman
Read the whole thing because it is awesome, but here’s another pull-out:
The whole building at all times should be managed in the broadest spirit of hospitality; the atmosphere should be as gracious, kindly and sympathetic as one’s own home. Then do away with all unnecessary restrictions, take down all the bars, and try to put face to face our friends the books and our friends the people.
Gratia Alta Countryman was city librarian until 1935.