How We Started

Pat Whitney

Pat Whitney

The Friends’ desire to open and staff a year-round bookstore dates back many years. The plan began to take shape when the Friends received a generous grant from the estate of Patricia Whitney, who died in 1999. The goal that the funds be used to start a bookstore in her honor was kept alive by her sister, Leah Leonard. For logistical reasons, the Board wanted the store to be as close to the central library as possible.

In the early winter of 2002, the Board president, Ed Reilly, and his wife, Jean, were turning around the corner from Clinton onto Union Street, just a few yards from the library parking lot, when Jean exclaimed “Ed, the antique store on the corner is gone!” They hurried home, Ed looked up the owner of 600 Union St. on the Web, and called him to ask if he was receptive to having a new tenant. He was.

And the rest is history!

(Taken from “Friends of the Schenectady County Public Library – 40 Years of Excellence”).