Cleveland Public Library celebrates 150 years of history with massive celebration, no more late fees

The Cleveland Public Library is celebrating its 150 year history with a year long set of events

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Our Cleveland Public Library, commonly referred to as CPL, has reached a historic milestone: it’s 150 years old and going strong.

There are 27 locations throughout the city, at least one in every Cleveland neighborhood. CPL, thought to be one of the best library systems in the country, has proved its worth.

It provides Cleveland residents and anyone else with a CPL card to use its facilities for research of all sorts, including its extensive genealogy database.

One major move by the CPL is that it’s going to no longer charge late fees, saying it dissuades people -- especially people of color and the needy -- from using the library system as much as they might want too.

The Cleveland Public Library holds classes to teach people how to read, use computers and helps them with their job searches. Many thought the digital age would spell doom for the brick-and-mortar buildings, but that’s not the case.

“Actually, technology has enhanced the library. In a city like Cleveland, where 40% of our community doesn’t have access to the internet, the public library has become busier than ever because we do provide internet access for many, many folks in the community. Last year, we had over a million computer sessions in our library, about 40% of them were job-related,” said CPL Director Felton Thomas.

The Cleveland Public Library is planning a massive community event in July, where it will close all branches -- except the main one downtown -- and invite thousands of people to come down and enjoy the amenities and resources of the 150-year-old institution.

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