Himes, Charles F.

Hamilton Library Association

Photo of the Hamilton Library Building with group of men in front. Building decorated with bunting for the 1909 Old Home Week.

James Hamilton, Jr., founder of the Hamilton Library and Historical Association, was born in Carlisle, Pennsylvania on October 16, 1793, the only son of Judge James Hamilton (born 1752 in Belfast, Ireland, died February 13, 1819) and his wife Sarah Thomson, daughter of Rev. William and Susanna Ross Thomson.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1900

At the meeting of the Hamilton Library Association, Tuesday evening Jan. 15th, 1901, the reports of the executive officers were quite encouraging, and we here give them in full.


According to a provision of the bylaws the following “statement of the affairs of the association’’ Is made in behalf of the Board of Directors at this the regular annual meeting of the association.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1902

The first business at the annual meeting of the Association, has according to custom, been the reading of the reports of the officers of the Association,

As president I beg to report as follows on behalf of the board of directors. In view of the, unusual number of new members that have been enrolled during the past year, it seems not out of place to recall very briefly, some of the leading facts in the history of the association.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1903

According to custom, I beg to report as follows, the general operations of the Association for the year 1903 and its present condition.

In the report of last year, on account of the large number of new members elected during that year, it was thought advisable to present a brief statement of the origin and work of the association. The interest manifested in that account would almost seem to justify the preparation for publication at an early date, of a fuller historical sketch, as furnished by the minutes of the board of directors, and the proceedings of the Association.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1905

The report of last year was brief and made verbally, and consequently not printed, so that the present report may include matters belonging to the previous year without calling especial attention to that fact.


 The membership has continued about the same in numbers, the accessions of new members about making up the losses from usual causes. This stationary condition is due to the fact that the accessions in the previous year had been unusually large. It is especially desirable that citizens of the County should connect themselves with this Association, officially recognized as the Historical Society of Cumberland County, and take part in its work by participating in its meetings by their presence, or, what is almost equally desirable, by communications to be read. Programs of meetings and annual reports will be sent to members, and they will have not only the privilege of attendance, with their friends, upon all the historical meetings of the Association, but also have the privilege of -consulting the library under the regulations adopted.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1906

In making the annual report of the work of the Association for the year 1906, and of its present condition there are many reasons for gratification.

The work along the varied lines of activity has been prose­cuted with a measure of success fully proportionate to the means at its command, and with many encouraging manifestations of increased interest on the part of the public. Much of this may be attributed to the careful consideration of the business of the Association by the Directors at their monthly meetings held with regularity and with good attendance.

Hamilton Library Association: Annual Report for 1907

The usual work of the  Association has been carried on during the year, and the interest in all lines has been fully maintained.


The regular monthly meetings of the Association, to which the public is invited, at which papers on local historical subjects are read and discussed, have been punctually held, beginning in the Fall, according to a printed program mailed to each member. The increasing interest manifested in these meetings by the public at large indicates that they are accomplishing a work of their own in creating greater interest in our local history, and in promoting its investigation and preservation. Many of the papers read contain interesting and valuable information, and  authentic original data in regard to our local history, the result of painstaking research, involving much time and labor, and frequently expense in their preparation. The work of “elucidation and preservation of the history” of the County, set forth as one of the objects of this Association, is promoted by encouraging the preparation of such papers, and by giving them permanence and wider circulation, by publication. The value of these would be greatly enhanced, in many cases, by the addition of diagrams and maps, or other suitable illustrations, as far as the limited means of the Association may permit. Frequently very valuable papers are not complete for publication at the time of their presentation at the meeting of the Association. Every encouragement is given for as early completion of such papers as may be convenient to the authors. Many other papers of more distinctly popular character, upon local subjects, although of great interest and value, can not be published by the Association by reason of its limited resources, without curtailing expenditures in other important directions. As editions of the papers published are necessarily limited, copies are not supplied to members, as they might not be desired by every one in all cases; but a nominal price is placed upon the several publications, after reserving a sufficient number for exchanges. On this plan it is believed the publications will go into the hands of those especially interested in them, and will be more likely to be preserved. The number published of any particular paper is conditioned somewhat upon the probable demand for it, dependent, in each case to great extent, upon the subject and the treatment of it.