This institution was kept up until a satisfactory school of the kind originally intended was no longer possible, owing to the excellent public schools which had been opened. Feeling that the property should still be used for educational purposes, the Society decided upon a free library and reading-room. In 1892 the city of Woodbury was made trustee of the building and $5,000 realized from the sale of the land which was to be invested for the use of the library. The articles' of trust provided that a free library, reading-room and museum be opened on the first floor of the building. A course of free lectures were also to be given each year. The city was to provide a librarian and keep the building comfortable and in repair.
In November, 1894, the library was opened, a large proportion of the books having been given by the Woodbury Library Company. Since that time the library has been steadily growing, and a new reading and reference-room has been opened. An effort is being made to serve the interests of the people by placing before them the best literature and leading the children to an appreciation of the standard writers." (Public Library Commission of New Jersey)
The Institute's first Librarian was Mary L. Whitall (of Revolutionary family fame). She served as librarian from 1894 to 1897. She left to become Cataloguer for the Free Library of Philadelphia.
American Library Association, PAPERS AND PROCEEDINGS OF THE NINETEENTH GENERAL MEETING OF THE AMERICAN LIBRARY ASSOCIATION HELD AT PHILADELPHIA, PA. June 21-25 1897. (1900).
Public Library Commission of New Jersey, Hand-book of the Public Library Commission of New Jersey: Libraries and Library Laws of the State (p. 90). (1901). Trenton: MacCrellish & Quigley.