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(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved.
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The Tilton Library in South Deerfield, Massachusetts, was built in 1916. In the late 19th century, many New England towns formed library associations to promote free public libraries. This was a contrast to earlier models of libraries, which tended to be privately owned groups, available for subscribers only. In South Deerfield, a Village Library Association was formed in 1871. Finding funds for a building was always a challenge, and this group was only able to after a large donation was made some forty years later. A similar process happened in other nearby towns, whose town libraries carry similar names: the Jones Library of Amherst, or the Forbes Library of Northampton, for example.


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