Davis Memorial Library is housed in a beautiful, one story, one room brick structure designed by John Calvin Stevens. It was built in 1912 by Walter G. Davis as a memorial to his father William G. Davis, who was a Limington native. The Library is located at the corner of Routes 11(Sokokis Ave) and 117(Cape Rd), is listed with the National Register of Historic Places and is part of the Limington Historic Village.
Limington had a library before the Davis Memorial Library, in a small building that was once a harness shop located just down the road from the current library. This building was donated to the Limington Historical Society in 1999 and is located at their site across from Mill Pond.
Mrs. Sarah Small was the first librarian and was paid 50 cents per week to open the library on Saturday afternoons, heat it and pay the electric bill. People using the library during these early years, starting in 1887, paid 10 cents per month or one dollar per year . All books were donated.
In 1894 the Limington Literary Library Association was incorporated during a get-together with Misses Ellen and Georgia Hyde. Twenty-five people were present and each gave $2 to the new association. Books were also donated at this time . Later on, Mrs Edith Davis Files, sister to Walter Davis, gave the Association $1,000, with the interest to be used to buy magazines.
On May 4, 1901 the Association voted to accept a town offer of $25 and make the library free to everyone.
In 1912, when Walter Davis finished the current building he offered it to the Association who suggested he give it to the town . The town accepted ownership and started managment by 5 Trustees, one of whom is elected each year at Town Meeting.In July 1913 it was voted to expand library hours to include Tuesday and Friday evenings.
Beginning in 1923 a separate appropriation for running expenses and book purchases was implemented . This started with $150 for books, and $50 for expenses. The librarian's salary was $100.
In 1961 the library recieved its first generous bequest from the Richardson Estate, followed by bequests from the Gove Trust in 1968 and Davis Estate in 1970. For the first time since becoming a free public library the treasury was self sufficient without help from the town, remaining so for 15 years until the mid-1980's. By 1990 town appropriations had risen to $3,000 per year.
Annual reports of the treasurer recorded in the Town Annual Report started in the 1920’s and the librarian's report started in 1962. These reports include: a new furnace installed in 1962, new shelves, carpeting and drapes added during the 1970’s, original wiring (from the 1920’s) redone in 1981, attic insulated for the first time in 1989, painting inside and out 1991-92.
In 1975 the "hide and seek" cannon known as "Old Boynton", scarred in the famous naval battle during the War of 1812 between the British ship, the Boxer, and the American ship, the Enterprise, was given to the town by the Emery family and mounted on the library lawn facing Limington's Veterans Memorial. The old cannon is a favorite of Limington's children.
In 1997, a stone bench was placed near the cannon in memory of late librarian, Althea Sawyer.
The library houses an important genealogical collection, including original research papers of the local historian and author, Robert Taylor. This collection attracts people from all over the country.
Librarians from 1887-1942
Librarians since 1942
J P Cory 1961-1962
Louise Haley 1963-1969
Virginia Smith 1970-1983
Gemma Huntress 1983-1986
Tammy Pike 1987-1989
Althea Sawyer 1989-1996
Lea Sutton 1996-2005
Kay Deal 2005-2012
Mariah Machado 2012-