Saba’s Queen Wilhelmina Library celebrated its 100th anniversary with an open house on Thursday. Commissioner of Culture, Sports and Education Eviton Heyliger said in his address that the library stands as a testament to the island’s enduring love for knowledge.
“Today we not only celebrate Queen Wilhelmina Library’s rich history, but also its resilience and adaptability and unwavering commitment to foster the love for learning within our community,” said Heyliger. He said the library had recently embraced the digital age, completing a transition to computerisation sometime after 2010. All library members now carry digital membership cards.
Heyliger also told library staff that they are not just keepers of books, but guardians of an entity that shapes minds and connects hearts.
Queen Wilhelmina Library Director Tiffany Zagers said a collection of ebooks has arrived to attract more young readers, and that digitalisation activities are being planned for older persons.
At the library’s open house on Thursday, new registrants only paid US $1 for a library card. This was a one-day opportunity for the library’s 100th anniversary.
Long-time patrons who attended the open house shared testimonies and praised former staff members, such as the recently retired Joanna Simmons, who dedicated 33 years of her life to Queen Wilhelmina Library.
The public libraries in Saba, St. Eustatius and St. Maarten all opened their doors on November 23, 1923. Saba’s library was named in honour of Queen Wilhelmina of the Netherlands during her silver jubilee celebration. The library, which was first housed in the government’s guest house, journeyed around the island several times before ending up in its current location in Carmen Simmons Cultural Complex in The Bottom.
The Daily Herald.