Library News
April, 2020

Escape with a good book this April, and travel with us digitally.

The OverDrive catalog and Libby app are your paths to a wide selection of digital media. 
No library card? No problem! 
Instant digital library cards are now available through CW MARS - simply click on the  link below to access a world of e-books, e-audio, e-magazines and videos.

The Jacob Edwards Library has recently added many e-books and e-audio selections to the catalog, in order to meet the increased demand for digital items.  Check out all the new offerings in the OverDrive digital catalog today!


New Genealogy Resource now Available

The Jacob Edwards Library now provides access to the web-based genealogy tool HeritageQuest® Online, powered by, via the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners.

HeritageQuest® Online is a comprehensive treasury of American genealogical sources-rich in unique primary sources, local and family histories, and finding aids.
18th Century or 20th Century. European or Native American. Farm or Factory. East Coast or West Coast. Where does your American past begin?
Discover the amazing history of you with HeritageQuest Online. It delivers an essential collection of genealogical and historical sources-with coverage dating back to the 1700s-that can help people find their ancestors and discover a place's past.

via Internet Archive

To address the unprecedented global and immediate need for access to reading and research materials, as of March 24, 2020, the Internet Archive will suspend waitlists for the 1.4 million (and growing) books in their lending library by creating a National Emergency Library to serve the nation's displaced learners. This suspension will run through June 30, 2020, or the end of the US national emergency, whichever is later. 

Welcome to our New Staff Member!

The Library welcomes Ashley Stevens as the newest member of the team. Ashley is the new Library Assistant in Circulation, and comes to Southbridge from the Charlton Public Library.  Ashley's favorite book is The Cancer Ward by Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn.  We look forward to our patrons meeting Ashley on their next visit to the library.

Community Resources Recap - 

Town of Southbridge Emergency Alert Program: 

Receive alerts about emergencies and other important community news by signing up for the Town's Emergency Alert Program. This system enables us to provide you with critical information quickly in a variety of situations, such as severe weather, unexpected road closures, missing persons and evacuations of buildings or neighborhoods.

You will receive time-sensitive messages wherever you specify, such as your home, mobile or business phones, email address, text messages and more. You pick where, you pick how.


Holly Christo, Executive Director: 508-909-6589 or for tutor support and information.

Andrea Cignarella, Program Assistant: 774-230-6468 or new students and online classes,
March Recap
April is National Poetry Month

April is designated as the month to celebrate poetry and prose, and we here at the Jacob Edwards Library join in the festivities to support this celebration of words and creativity.  The following list contains resources where patrons of all ages can learn more about this ancient artform. 

April is Jazz Appreciation Month

Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM) was established in 2001 at the National Museum of American History " to recognize and celebrate the extraordinary heritage and history of jazz for the entire month of April."

"JAM is intended to stimulate and encourage people of all ages to participate in jazz - to study the music, attend concerts, listen to jazz on radio and recordings, read books about jazz, and more."  The Jacob Edwards Library has created a list of resources related to this dynamic celebration - click here to see the offerings!

April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month

The National Sexual Violence Resource Center (NSVRC) has provided the following resources for Sexual Assault Awareness Month 2020.  

New Hope, Inc., headquartered in Attleboro, MA, also provides sexual assault services. There is a satellite office in Southbridge, MA, available by appointment at 
1-800-323-HOPE (4673). Additional information can be found here.

April's Art Exhibit - Stephanie Cyr: Fine Lettered Poetry

Join the Jacob Edwards Library as we celebrate National Poetry Month this April.  This month's art display will feature works in calligraphy by local artisan Stephanie Cyr, who provides her own interpretation on poems and writings from the Biblical times to the 19th century. 

There is always something going on or something to do at the library! Feel free to drop in anytime!

Please read on for all of this month's news.

All events are POSTPONED until further notice, due to the current pandemic.

Ongoing Events: Book Club & Knitting:
POSTPONED until further notice

 Teen Events
Children's Corner:

Library Hours & Holiday Closings:

The Jacob Edwards Library is closed to the public as of Tuesday, March 17, 2020, until further notice, due to the current pandemic.

Staff will be available 
Monday through Thursday,
from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm to answer any patron inquiries and to provide assistance.

Please call 508-764-5426 or email

Monday: 9:00 am - 8:00 pm
Tuesday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Wednesday: 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
Thursday: 9:00 am - 8:00 pm

April's JEL Staff Picks

Looking for a good book? Here are some that JEL staff have recently enjoyed! Clicking on the title will take you right to  the library's catalog, where you can check to see if it's available, and put a hold on popular titles.

Aimless Love by Billy Collins:
Laetitia Rodd and the Case of the Wandering Scholar by Kate Saunders
Red at the Bone by Jacqueline Woodson:

Lots more to discover!
April's Exhibition

Fine Lettered Poetry: Calligraphy by Stephanie Cyr

The Jacob Edwards Library is pleased to host the work of local artisan Stephanie Cyr for the month of April. 

This exhibition, displayed in celebration of National Poetry Month, is a collection of poems and writings by authors from Biblical times to the 19th century, executed in a variety of calligraphic fonts.  Produced by local artisan and librarian Stephanie Cyr, the selected pieces all have a significant personal meaning to her. Also included are several 19th-century examples of items that have been inscribed by their former owners, providing a glimpse into the value placed on books and other printed items during that time.  

This exhibition will be available in digital format at the Library's Facebook page.

Stephanie Cyr (neé Lewis) was born and raised in Southbridge, MA.  She came up through the Southbridge School system, and studied art under the tutelage of Donna Silverberg and Kathleen Sterzcala (formerly Simonelli).  Through the support and mentorship of her art teachers, Stephanie was encouraged to delve into the craft of hand-lettering, and was soon producing awards for senior class members at Southbridge High School, wedding invitation stationery and gifts of calligraphed poetry within the following months.  She has been creating hand-lettered items ever since. 

The exposure to calligraphy, manuscripts and medieval art in high school inspired her to choose a profession centered around "the book."  She earned a B.A. in Art History from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst in 2003, and took a particular interest in Medieval art and architecture while studying there.  A strong love of medieval illumination led to a graduate degree in Library and Information Science from Simmons College (now University) in Boston, MA in 2005. Stephanie was fortunate enough to have worked at the Rare Books and Manuscripts Department at the Boston Public Library, the Massachusetts Historical Society, Norman B. Leventhal Map and Education Center and the Library at the Worcester Art Museum, where she had the privilege of caring for rare materials of all kinds. Today, she is proudly serving as the Adult Services Librarian at the Jacob Edwards Library, in her hometown of Southbridge, MA. 

This exhibit is dedicated to Stephanie's beloved Mum, the late Anne Marie (Wetherbee) Lewis, who was the recipient of the very first hand-lettered piece Stephanie ever gifted. 

boxoffice Film Screening - The Taming of the Shrew
Thursday, April 9 at 5:45 pm


The scheduled filming of The Taming of the Shrew, starring Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton, for Thursday, April 9, 2020 at 5:45 pm has been POSTPONED.

LIbrary Box Office Film Series is
Sponsored by Friends of the Jacob Edwards Library.
Thursday, April 16 at 6:30 pm




Sponsored by The Southbridge Cultural Council. The Southbridge Cultural Council is a local agency funded by Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

Light refreshments provided by the Friends of the Jacob Edwards Library.
Ongoing Events

Book Club 
Monday, April 2
6:30 pm

April's Book Club selection is 
This is a no-commitment book club, attend as many or as few meetings as you like! The group meets on the first Monday of every month. 

E-book copies of May's discussion book 
are available through the OverDrive catalog.
Knitting with Sonya
Every Tuesday, 
10:30 am - 12:30 pm

Stop by and join our knitting circle in the Reading Room every Tuesday! 

All handcrafters (not just knitters!) are welcome to join, whatever your level experience. Stuck on your current project or wanting to learn a new technique? Chances are one of the group will be able to lend a hand!  Drop by for a few minutes or stay for the full two hours. 
We hope to see you there!

Teen Corner
April's Activity: Springtime Poetry

In honor of National Poetry Month, the young adult/teen/tween department is reviewing William Wordsworth's 1798 piece "Lines Written in Early Spring."  Using Wordsworth's poem as inspiration, we will be creating our own verses about the beginning of the spring season, by writing our poem outside in nature.  Write your own poem about the changing seasons with us! Include photos from recycled magazines, or objects from nature to frame your work - let creativity be your guide, and enjoy the spring air!


childrensWelcome to the Children's Corner!
Cuddle up with a great book! 

Ms. Liz is offering a digital Story Time. Stay in touch 


Some fun at home resources for kids and families while staying home!

Saturday April 4,2020
10:30 am 
All welcome!
Come explore the "Magic of your Imagination"
with a fun and engaging magic show!

 Maggie the Clown and the premiere of
 "Oscar" the Super Puppy
 Thursday April 23, 2020 1:00pm

Watch Oscar perform some magic tricks with Maggie!

"Monday Night STEAM"
Mondays, 6:30pm-7:30pm
Botley the Coding Robot, try our "Hack" Computer ,Kinetic Sand, Snap Circuits, Picasso Tiles, Play Dough  and much more!!   Each Monday will feature one fun activity, every week will be different.  

Tinkering Thursdays
Thursdays, 4:00-5:00pm
STEM-related hands on activity using everyday and recycled items to design your own creations.

Toddler Story Time
Wednesdays at 10:30 am
Stories & Songs  for preschoolers, stay for story and create a craft.

Story Time
Fridays 10:30 am
S ongs, story and playtime for the
 little ones 3 and under.

Crafty Wednesday
Every Wednesday

Stop by the Children's Room any time on Wednesdays to make a special craft. This is a drop-in program that runs all day. Simply stop by the Children's Room desk to get your craft supplies, and take home a masterpiece! 

Construction Club
Tuesdays,  3:00pm - 4:30pm
Saturdays, 10:30am-12:00pm

We'll bring the LEGO bricks, you bring the ideas! This is a drop-in program, so there is no need to register. Best for children over 5.

Completed Lego projects go on display in the Children's Room for a whole week. If you are in the library, stop by the Children's Room to see different Lego projects on display. 

librarynewsLibrary News

Discounted and Free Admission to Museums & Attractions

Did you know? The library offers passes to a variety of area museums and attractions! 
Locations include:
Old Sturbridge Village
Eric Carle Museum
Magic Wings
Mystic Aquarium
Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame
Roger Williams Park Zoo
Tower Hill Botanic Gardens
Worcester Art Museum
Salem Witch Museum 
USS Constitution Museum
Massachusetts Parks Pass
See  our website for details.
Thank you to the Friends of the Jacob Edwards Library for sponsoring this program!
Stargaze with our Telescope!

The library has a telescope which can be checked out and taken home - just like a book. Use it to spend a night stargazing in your own back yard! Who knows what you will see?

Instructions and tips on what to look for are included. Must be checked out by an adult 18 or older. 
Please ask at the desk for more details!

Library eBooks

Looking for free eBooks? Look no further than the library! You can download FREE ebooks to your computer or device, as well as digital audiobooks.

To browse our collection, click here. Or on your mobile device or eReader, download the Overdrive app to get started. All you need is your library card number!

If you have questions or are having trouble, please ask us! Drop by, call, or email!

New bags available!

The Friends of the Library now have these fantastic new book bags available for sale! You can purchase bags at the Information Desk.

All proceeds support FOJEL, who provide funding for library events and programs (including, but not limited to, Summer Reading & Museum Passes).

Only $5 each, available in black, navy and maroon, 
they are perfect for carrying your library materials home!


The Annual Friends Book Sale scheduled for March 26-28 was postponed.


bookBook a Librarian!

You can now 
"Book a Librarian!" 

Contact us to schedule a personalized 
20-30 minute session.

Possible topics include:
-Help downloading eBooks
-Using your new mobile device or tablet
-Book recommendations
-Using the library catalog
-Placing holds & using your online account
-Setting up an email account
-Getting started on your research paper
-Formatting a Word document

Call 508-764-5426  
to schedule an  appointment.

Jacob Edwards Library

Upcoming Meetings

The Friends of the Library will hold their annual meeting
Monday, April 27, 2020
at 6:00 pm.
The Friends extend an invitation to all library patrons to join their group. To learn more, please visit  FOJEL's page on our website.

The  Board of Trustees  of the Jacob Edwards Library will meet on 
Tuesday, April 28, 2020  at Noon 
in the Mills Room.
All meetings are open to the public.

We hope you enjoy the multitude of digital offerings available to you via our website and catalog! Tell us what you are reading on our Facebook page. Be well, and we hope to see you again soon!


The Jacob Edwards Library Staff

Programs at Jacob Edwards Library may be recorded for Southbridge Public Access TV 
and/or photographed for promotional purposes.

Copyright © 2020. All Rights Reserved.