Webb-Hunt Branch/The Friends of Muncie Public Library

Thomas Park Avondale

Webb-Hunt Branch/The Friends of Muncie Public Library

Muncie, Indiana 47303, United States

Created By: Ball State University


Location: 1110 W. Memorial Drive

Year Built/Established: 1960/1974

Current Use: The Friends of Muncie Public Library

The Webb-Hunt branch of the Muncie Public Library was named after Webb Hunt, who was the principal of nearby Lincoln School from 1906 until his retirement in 1941.[1] He would later become president of the Muncie Public Library Board.[2] During his time as principal, Hunt converted the basement of the school into the Lincoln Branch of the library and when it ran out of space in 1960, city officials opened the Webb-Hunt branch to house the collection.[3] The Webb-Hunt branch operated until 1997.[4]

Currently, the Webb-Hunt building houses the offices of The Friends of Muncie Public Library (FMPL). The FMPL was established in 1974 with the help of the American Association of University Women, a group founded in 1881 and dedicated to furthering equal opportunities for women.[5] The FMPL was founded to help finance programs and initiatives of the Muncie Public Library.[6] To pursue this mission, they have maintained a bi-annual book sale of decommissioned library books to both clear shelf space and raise funds.[7] With these funds they have been able to hold community events such as author visits, discussion groups, and even an international film festival.[8]

[1] Ted Shideler, “The last days of Lincoln School,” Ted Shideler, Decent local history- Cheap! September 10, 2023, https://tedshideler.com/2023/09/10/the-last-days-of-lincoln-school/.

[2] “Legal Notice,” The Post Democrat, December 1, 1950.

[3] Shideler.

[4] Robin Gibson, Seth Slabaugh, and Douglas Walker, ”A look back at 20 years of news in The Star Press,” The Star Press, May 20, 2016, https://www.thestarpress.com/story/news/local/2016/05/19/look-back-20-years-news-star-press/84549742/.

[5] “Muncie Public Library History,” Muncie Public Library, https://www.munciepubliclibrary.org/history; “About AAUW,” AAUW, https://www.aauw.org/about/.

[6] Betty Johnson, “Friends’ goal is helping library,” The Star Press, January 12, 1977.

[7] Ann Votaw, “Book sale offers readers variety,” Ball State University Newspaper, October 19, 1995.

[8] “Author of best-selling slave book comes to Muncie June 18,” The Muncie Times, June 17, 1999; Friends of the Muncie Public Library, 1976, MSS-365, Box 125, Folder 59, The Star Press newspaper reference files, Stoeckel Archives, Ball State University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections; “Author of best-selling slave book comes to Muncie June 18,” The Muncie Times, June 17, 1999; Robert Lopez, “Foreign films come to Muncie,” Ball State Daily News, Jan. 12, 2001.

This point of interest is part of the tour: Thomas Park Avondale


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