AMES FREE LIBRARY
Where the Community Connects
The Ames Free Library/Easton’s Public Library provides materials and services to help the residents of Easton obtain information to meet their personal, educational, professional, and recreational needs. Emphasis is placed upon supporting students of all ages, particularly stimulating younger children’s interest and appreciation for reading and learning. The library serves as a learning and educational center for all residents of the community.
|Books, Audiobooks, Music CDs||21 days, *1 renewal|
|DVDs||7 days, *1 renewal|
|Video Games||21 Days, no renewals|
|*1 renewal as long as no other patron is waiting|
|Books||10 cents/day (**5 cents Juvenile)|
|Audiobooks and CDs||10 cents/day|
|DVDs||$1.00 / day|
|Video Games||$1.00 / day|
|**5 cents/day if checked out on juvenile card, otherwise 10 cents/day|
|30 Adult||10 Juvenile|
|7 maximum overdues for both adult and juvenile items. If you owe a total of $10.00 in fines, or have 7 or more overdue items, the system will not let you request or check out any additional items.|
Adults may apply for a library card with a valid I.D. showing their current address (driver's license preferred).
Children may apply for a card if the child is able to legibly write or print his or her own name on the card. The staff person on duty reserves the right to determine whether the child's handwriting is legible enough to be issued a card.
A card must be present for checkout of all library materials including museum passes. (We can place holds without the card and we can also renew without the card.) A driver's license may be used for I.D. in place of a library card only once. The card must be replaced if it cannot be located a second time. The fee for card replacement is one dollar.
The Ames Free Library/Easton’s Public Library provides materials and services to help the residents of Easton obtain information to meet their personal, educational, professional, and recreational needs. Emphasis is placed upon supporting students of all ages, particularly stimulating younger children’s interest and appreciation for reading and learning. The Library serves as a learning and educational center for all residents of the community.
Philosophy of Selection
To uphold the principles of the American Library Association’s Library Bill of Rights and Freedom to Read Statement and further support the Library’s mission, selected materials represent diverse viewpoints, experiences, and interests.
Scope of the Collection
The primary responsibility of the Ames Free Library is to serve the citizens and employees of Easton by providing a broad choice of materials to meet their informational, educational, cultural, and recreational needs.
The Library is a member of the SAILS Library Network, a group of over 72 libraries and branches throughout 40 communities in southeastern Massachusetts established to promote resource sharing. Ames Free Library patrons may use their library card at any SAILS network library. In addition, the Library is able to request materials not available in its own collection, from other libraries in the network, or other libraries statewide (through the Commonwealth Catalog) and nationwide. Budget and space limitations, as well as local needs, preclude the Library from duplicating the specialized and comprehensive collections that exist elsewhere in the SAILS system.
Responsibility for Selection
In order to facilitate material selection, the Library Director assigns this responsibility to the Library’s Adult and Youth department heads. These staff members regularly evaluate materials based on the selection criteria outlined below. All Library staff members and patrons are encouraged to submit material suggestions for consideration.
The following criteria are considered when evaluating materials for selection. These criteria apply to all purchased or donated materials for all age groups served by the Library.
Contemporary significance or permanent value
Currency of information
Local emphasis and/or local authors
Treatment of the subject for the age of the intended audience
Creative, literary, or technical quality
Critical assessments in a variety of journals
Format and ease of use
Circulation as monitored through the automated system
Cost and availability
Relationship to existing materials in collection
Relationship to materials in other libraries within the SAILS library consortium
Recommendations for Purchase
Patron recommendations further the Ames Free Library’s mission to be “a learning and educational center for all residents” by aiding Library staff in developing a collection that meets the needs and interests of the community. Patrons are advised to use the Library’s Purchase Request Form to submit their recommendations. These materials are subject to the selection criteria listed above and the library does not guarantee a recommended item will be added to the collection.
Limitations and Priorities
The Library recognizes that some patrons may find certain materials controversial or offensive. Material selection is undertaken following the principles of this policy and does not take into account anticipated approval or disapproval of a given item. The Library assumes that ultimate responsibility for the use of children’s materials rests with a child’s parent or legal guardian. Material selection will not be restricted due to the possibility that children may view or come into possession of a given item.
Request for Reconsideration
Residents of Easton wishing to suggest the removal of an item from the Library’s collection may submit a written request of reconsideration to the Library at email@example.com. The request must contain the necessary information to identify the item (title, author, edition, etc.), what brought the item to your attention, if you have read/viewed/listened to the item, your specific concerns about why the item should be excluded from the Library’s collection, citing passages from the item and the relevant sections of the Ames Free Library’s Collection Development Policy that including the item in the collection violates.
The Library Director and Assistant Director, in conjunction with additional staff members as needed, will review the request. The Library Director will respond to the request once the review is complete. The item in question will remain accessible in the collection during the review.
Policies by Format and Special Collections
Fiction and nonfiction audiobooks are available from the Library in both compact disc (CD) and downloadable formats. Selection criteria for these titles is the same as above, with preference given to unabridged editions. To access audiobooks in downloadable formats, patrons may use their own devices or borrow equipment available through the Library of Things.
The selection of fiction and nonfiction books for adults, young adults, and children follows the same criteria as noted above.
DVDs and Blu-ray Discs
The selection of feature films, TV series, and nonfiction DVDs or Blu-ray discs follows the same criteria as noted above.
Access to research databases is made available through the SAILS Library Network and the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC). The Ames Free Library also purchases access to electronic resources not available from SAILS and the MBLC.
Considerations for Electronic Formats:
Ease of use
Availability of multiple users simultaneously
Enhancement of the print equivalent in terms of speed, flexibility, combinations of search terms, and full text
Privacy of patron information
Access to retrospective information
Reduction of space requirements over print products
Availability of the information in electronic and other formats
Downloadable ebooks, audiobooks, comics, music, TV series, and movies are available to Ames Free Library cardholders through hoopla. Patrons can sign up for a free account with hoopla to access the collection. It should be noted that the Library is not responsible for material selection within the hoopla collection.
Library of Things Collection
The Ames Free Library strives to make special equipment and modern technology available to Easton residents. The collection is available for use within the Main Library and Queset House, and some materials are available to borrow. The collection includes a variety of items such as laptops, tablets, video games and consoles, knitting equipment, sewing machines, and more.
Local History Collection
Materials relating to the history of Easton, the Ames family, H.H. Richardson, and F.L. Olmstead are available for use within the Library (non-circulating). Materials include, but are not limited to, books, videos, town reports and lists of residents, and Oliver Ames High School yearbooks.
Local Author Collection
The Library welcomes the increased opportunity for self-expression that self-publishing technologies afford. The Library maintains a “local author” collection for recent works by authors with ties to Easton or the surrounding area. Authors wishing to contribute books to this section must meet the following criteria:
Contributed books must include the full title, date of publication, summary, place of publication, and number of pages to ensure acceptable cataloging.
Books become the property of the Library and cannot be returned.
The collection will be maintained as any other collection in the Library and books will be discarded if they don’t meet the Collection Maintenance criteria detailed below.
As with all materials submitted for consideration, the Library reserves the right to decide not to add an item to the collection.
Magazines and Newspapers
The Ames Free Library maintains a collection of magazines and newspapers. Magazine titles are selected to reflect current issues and popular interests. Subscriptions are reviewed annually. In addition to the physical collection, a number of magazines are also available electronically to Ames Free Library patrons via Overdrive/Libby. This collection is maintained by the SAILS consortium. A variety of local daily and weekly newspapers are available at the Library. Select newspaper articles are also available through subscription databases which are accessible via the Library website.
Patrons can access and download music online through the Library's subscription to Hoopla Digital. To do this, patrons may use their own devices or borrow equipment available through the Library of Things. The Library purchases compact discs (CDs) by request only, due to low demand and the increasingly limited availability of music players accepting the compact disc format.
Downloadable ebooks and audiobooks are available to Ames Free Library patrons through Overdrive. Development of the Overdrive catalog is facilitated by the SAILS Library Network. In addition to the titles purchased by SAILS, the Library can purchase additional copies of popular titles, or of requested titles not purchased by SAILS through an Overdrive Advantage subscription. Patrons can suggest ebooks and audiobooks for the Library to purchase by completing the Purchase Request Form.
The Library’s reference collection includes telephone books, local, state, national, and world atlases, dictionaries, encyclopedias, and guides necessary for research. These materials are non-circulating.
The Ames Free Library is grateful for gifts from members of the community. The selection criteria noted above also apply to all donated materials. Donated materials are subject to the following limitations:
The donated items become property of the Library
The Library reserves the right to decide how donated items will be used
The Library reserves the right to set conditions of shelving and access to donated items
Monetary donations may also be made to support the Library’s collection development efforts. The Library reserves the right to determine how such donations will be used.
Duplication of Material
The Library will purchase multiple copies of items when the need arises. The need for additional copies may include patron demand via holds and anticipated popularity. Typically the ratio used for popular fiction titles is one copy for every four holds. This ratio serves as a guideline and the purchasing of multiple copies may not be feasible for all titles.
Library staff will regularly evaluate materials to ensure the Library is offering a usable and appealing collection. Items that are outdated, damaged, or that have not circulated in recent years will be removed from the collection.
Items removed from the collection may be given to the Friends of the Ames Free Library book sale room or donated to one of the Library’s charitable partners. Items in poor condition will be recycled.
Revision of Policy
This policy will be reviewed and updated as needed.
Approved by the Board of Directors, May 2022
The Ames Free Library's community bulletin board is open to organizations engaged in educational, cultural, intellectual, or charitable activities to share information on upcoming events and services. Due to space restrictions, priority is given to notices that align with the mission of the Ames Free Library.
All submissions will be reviewed and dated by the Ames Free Library before being posted.
The library does not advocate or endorse the viewpoints or contents of the material displayed.
The library does not censor or remove a flyer because some members of the community may disagree with its contents. Those who object to the content of a flyer may submit their complaints, which will be judged according to the policies established by the library.
The suggested size of a poster is no larger than 8.5"x11". Larger posters can be put up with the understanding that they will be the first to be removed if the bulletin board space begins to get crowded.
Notices may be removed after two weeks, when they are no longer timely, or when space is required for more current items.
Members of the public are not permitted to post or remove notices. Only authorized library personnel or volunteers may post or remove notices on the library bulletin boards. Notices posted without authorization will be removed.
Ames Free Library, 53 Main Street, North Easton, MA 02356 * 508-238-2000 * www.amesfreelibrary.org
The Ames Free Library, in support of our mission and core values, provides free and open access to the internet by providing computer stations for public use as well as a public WiFi network. Additionally, the library does have several WiFi capable devices available for check out and use by our patrons. All use of the Ames Free Library's technology including but not limited to: desktop computers, laptops, kindles, Chromebooks and other mobile technologies, internet access both wired and Wifi, is subject to the below use policies and any and all use is subject to revocation at the discretion of the Ames Free Library Staff.
- All patrons wishing to use a computer must login at a destop screen with their Ames Free Library card. Computers may be used for a maximum of 180 minutes each per day per person.
- If you do not have an Ames Free Library card you may ask the reference librarian on duty for a guest pass. You are limited to 1 session of up to 60 minutes per day with a guest pass. (Or you may sign up for a library card to gain additional computer access)
- PLEASE SAVE YOUR WORK to a flash drive or cloud storage. If your computer times out, work is lost and not recoverable.
- Drinks must have a cover to prevent spillage.
- Do not shut down computers when you are finished.
- Commercial use or political lobbying is inappropriate.
- Transmitting threatening or harassing material is illegal.
- Viewing websites with explicitly sexual or otherwise inappropriate content is not allowed.
- Copying or downloading copyrighted material is illegal.
- Knowingly transmitting computer viruses is illegal.
Library staff reserves the right to end a patron's internet session, suspend computer use privileges and/or library privileges at their discretion for anyone who has been found to have violated the Library's computer use policy, used the Library's internet connection for illegal or inappropriate activities, or has accrued Library fines in excess of $15.00.
The Ames Free Library is grateful for gifts from members of the community. Monetary donations and gifts help support the Library’s collection, services, programs, the historic H.H. Richardson building & Queset House, and Garden. All gifts are accepted at the discretion of the Library’s Executive Director or Board of Directors and will be utilized in support of the Library’s mission, priorities, and goals. The Executive Director and Board of Directors reserve the right to determine how such donations will be used.
The Ames Free Library is a tax-exempt charitable organization under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. The mission of the Ames Free Library is to provide materials and services to help the residents of Easton obtain information to meet their personal, educational, professional, and recreational needs. Emphasis is placed upon supporting students of all ages, particularly stimulating younger children’s interest and appreciation for reading and learning. The library serves as a learning and educational center for all residents of the community.
Books and Other Media
Books and other materials will be accepted by the Library as long as they align with the Library’s Collection Development Policy, are in good physical condition, and are deemed to be of educational or cultural relevance by the Library.
The donated items become property of the Library.
The Library reserves the right to decide how donated items will be used, and to set conditions of shelving and access to donated items.
The donated items will be treated as any other item in the Library’s collection, and will be removed from the collection if and when necessary, as laid out in the Collection Development Policy.
Books and other materials can also be donated to the Friends of the Ames Free Library, a non-profit organization that supports the Library. Items donated to the Friends will be sold at their book sale room in the rear of Queset House, or disposed of at their discretion.
Furniture and Equipment
Donations of furnishings and equipment require approval from the Executive Director or Board of Directors. Criteria for inclusion is based upon the condition of the items, needs of the Library, available space, impact on staff, cost and frequency of maintenance, and alignment with the existing aesthetic of the Library.
The Executive Director will provide a letter of acknowledgement to the donor of furnishings and equipment accepted by the Library, but will not appraise the value of donated items.
All accepted furnishings and equipment become the property of the Library, and will be used and/or located as determined by the Library.
The Library reserves the right to sell or dispose of items at any point, and without providing notification to the donor.
Monetary gifts will be incorporated into the Library’s general operating budget and will be used to purchase materials or equipment, support programs or services, or maintain Library property.
Endowments and trusts will be maintained by the Board of Directors, or parties designated by the Board of Directors, and will be used to support the operation of the Library by contributing to the Library’s capital budget.
Restricted gifts require approval from the Board of Directors before they will be accepted. To be accepted any restrictions must align with the Library’s mission, policies, and long range plan, and must not dictate the Library’s priorities.
A letter of acknowledgment will be provided by the Library, unless the donor requests anonymity.
Naming rights are granted by the Board of Directors. If approved, naming rights will not extend beyond the normal life of the collection or area, but may be modified by the Board of Directors.
The Library welcomes sponsorship of specific events, programs, and projects from individuals, local organizations, and businesses.
Potential sponsors must align with the mission and goals of the Library to be accepted as sponsors by the Executive Director.
A sponsor will receive public recognition of their support through the placement of their name and/or logo on promotional materials for the sponsored program or service, and a verbal announcement at the start or conclusion of a sponsored event. When appropriate, a notice of sponsorship may also be included on the Library’s website, within a Library newsletter, or shared with local media outlets.
Approved by the Board of Directors, January 2023
The Ames Free Library provides an inviting environment to read, study, use computers, and find a wide variety of materials selected for all age groups. To help facilitate the Library’s mission of serving as a learning and educational center for all residents of the community and to ensure that all visitors feel welcome and comfortable, we ask that all Library users adhere to the following guidelines while on the Ames Free Library campus.
Appropriate activities in the Library include:
Quiet conversation with friends.
Visitors to the Library should be courteous to the staff and to other patrons. The Library should only be used for its intended purposes; therefore the following behaviors are not acceptable:
Physical contact including hitting, rough-housing, and physical display of affection.
Disruptive noise, including loud conversations in person or over a phone, and playing music on a personal device or Library equipment.
Soliciting or distributing materials.
Please be respectful of others’ privacy; including when using media and taking photographs and videos.
Smoking, including e-cigarettes and other forms of tobacco are not allowed in any part of the premises at any time.
Improper use of library furniture, computers, books, and other materials.
Destructive, threatening, and/or inappropriate behavior.
Harassment, disorderly conduct, vandalism, and theft are illegal and instances of such behavior will be reported to the Easton Police Department.
Anyone exhibiting any of the above behaviors will be asked to leave the Library immediately. Repeat incidents may result in the loss of library privileges.
The Ames Free Library encourages children of all ages to visit the library and hopes they will find it a warm, inviting place to be. Programs and resources are offered to make the library enticing to children, to help children enjoy their visits, and to develop a love of books, reading and libraries.
The happiness and safety of children left alone at the library can be of serious concern. Young children left on their own in the library often become frightened or anxious. Children may be able to occupy their time for a short while, but when left unattended for any length of time when no library programs are being offered, they become bored, restless, and disruptive. Young children are not safe when left unattended in the library. The staff cannot know if the children are leaving the building with parents or with strangers. It is not the library's intention to seek out unattended children, but rather to have a reasoned response prepared when a problem presents itself. For the protection and well being of children who visit our library, the following policy has been established.
Unattended Child When the Library is Open
Children under 6
Children under the age of 6 may not be left unattended by an adult in any part of the Library. If children under the age of 6 are found without an adult, staff will attempt to locate the parent or other caregiver.
Programs - During story times or other programs, adults who do not attend the program with the child must remain in the building and must be visible when the program is over.
Children 6-8 must have a parent or caregiver in the building with them at all times during the library visit. If children 6-8 are found without an adult, staff will attempt to locate the parent or other caregiver.
These children are welcome to use the library unattended but should not be left alone for extended periods of time. No public place, including the library, can guarantee the safety of children. Parents are responsible for their behavior. If a child becomes anxious or disruptive the staff will attempt to find the parent or caregiver in the library. If they are not available the staff will call the child's home. It is the responsibility of the parent or caregiver to be accessible to pick up the child at any time.
Children 13 years and older
Children 13 and over are old enough to use the library responsibly. If problems arise, they may be asked to leave or parents may be contacted. It is the responsibility of the parent or caregiver to be accessible to pick up the child at any time. THE CHILD MUST HAVE A WAY FOR THE STAFF TO CONTACT THE PARENT OR CAREGIVER AT ALL TIMES WHEN THEY ARE LEFT UNATTENDED IN THE LIBRARY.
No Child 16 years or younger may be unattended in the library one half hour before library closing.
Unattended Youth During Emergency Closings
The Ames Free Library will close due to emergencies because of inclement weather, power outages, etc. If the Easton Schools close because of inclement weather the Library may also close. No child may be sent to the library if the schools close early due to emergencies.
When the library closes because of inclement weather or an emergency and school is still in session the schools will be notified and an announcement will be made.
If a parent or caregiver cannot be reached after trying for 15 minutes the police department will be asked if they can assist the staff in helping to get the child home safely.
STAFF WILL NOT DRIVE CHILDREN HOME.
STAFF WILL MAKE A WRITTEN REPORT CONCERNING THE INCIDENT.
For our children's safety we ask that adults refrain from using the children's room for personal use.
Approved by the Library Board of Directors.
revised August 2023
Definition of social media
For the purposes of this Policy, “social media” includes any online platform or application that is designed to facilitate social interaction, information and media sharing amongst its members. Social media includes, but is not limited to, platforms such as Facebook, Flickr, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube.
Purpose of using social media
The Ames Free Library mission is to “[provide] materials and services to help the residents of Easton obtain information to meet their personal, educational, professional, and recreational needs.” We recognize that Web 2.0 technologies and social media have made it possible to extend Library resources to members of our community, at many points of need, and wherever community members happen to be. The Ames Free Library is pleased to include social media interaction as one of the many ways that we provide useful, quality information for our community; while also fostering a positive social interchange and building relationships between the Library and our patrons.
Content of posts
Library social media postings will:
Inform the Easton/local/greater Library community about library materials, services, community connections, and events.
Encourage patron engagement.
Be respectful to all groups and individuals. As an institution committed to inclusion, all posts will stay away from political, religious and personal advocacy.
Only include identifiable images of patrons if we have their media release on file or are under crowd release forms.
Feature our own images or images from sites that have content released under Creative Commons (please read disclaimer on their main page), or Wikimedia Commons.
Public posts by third parties do not reflect the positions of the Library, its employees, or the Town of Easton. The Ames Free Library reserves the right to remove any posts from its social media accounts that contain violations of the Library’s Computer and Internet Use Policy:
Inappropriate commercial use or political lobbying
Transmission of threatening or harassing material
Posting explicitly sexual or otherwise inappropriate content
Copying or downloading copyrighted material
Knowingly transmitting computer viruses
Approved by the Board of Directors, May 2019