Library cards are free to all citizens residing within the city limits of Seward, Nebraska and to all non-residents who own property within the city limits. Courtesy cards are available to patrons 65 and over. Citizens living outside of the Seward city limits may purchase a library membership for $25 per year or $15 for six months. The card is valid from the date of payment. For more complete information please see the Policies page.
- Most library materials are loaned out for a four-week period.
- Games, cake pans, and books with long waiting lists are loaned out for a two-week period.
- Regular library patrons may check out up to 50 items on their library card. NebrasKard patrons may check out up to 25 items on their account.
- Items may be renewed up to three times if no one else has placed a hold to reserve them.
- You may renew items in person or over the phone.
- The due date will be stamped on the back of the item.
Library newsletters are posted to the website around the 25th of each month.
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The Seward Memorial Library Annual Report is presented to the City Council in February of each year.
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The Seward Public Library was first organized as a reading room in 1888. In 1913, despite a tornado which tore through the town, the reading room was reorganized as a city library and was housed in a new building made possible through local donations and a grant from Andrew Carnegie. Major renovations took place in the late 1960s and in the mid 1980s. In 1990 the Seward Library Foundation was formed to raise money for a new library building and on September 2, 2003, the new Seward Memorial Library opened its doors to the public.
September 2020 marked 17 years in the “new” library building, but as the pandemic surged in our community, we were thankful that a bank-style window in the north alley was included in our building plans. The library can lend materials without opening the doors; protecting staff and patrons with a contactless option for library services. When we added the lower level we knew that there would be many additional aisles of shelving, but we did not realize that our collection would expand beyond printed and bound materials.
As our collection continues to grow, we lend out cake pans, games, puzzles, equipment, and the Fit4Seward collection. The paperless readers are enjoying our digital materials of ebooks, audiobooks, and magazines on their devices. The library in 2021 has something for everyone and is changing to meet the needs and interests of its patrons.