The mission of the Amsterdam Free Library is to offer the community access to and assistance in the use of the broadest possible selection of recorded knowledge. It is to assist patrons with informational, business, professional, and recreational needs in a diverse number of formats.
The Amsterdam Free Library stands at the comer of Church Street and Rt. 5. The building was opened to the public on November 3, 1903. It was built by Masonic craftsmen with funds provided by philanthropist Andrew Carnegie. The wing at the rear of the library was added in the year 1980.
The Library began as a literary society back in the early 1800's. It became incorporated in the year 1891 and was named the Amsterdam Library Association. Its first president was Dr. William Robb. The first treasurer was David Cady. Those men, along with Andrew Carnegie, are memorialized by valuable plaques placed in the vestibule a few months after the building was opened. After Robb's death in 1898, S.H. French was elected as his replacement, and it was his letter to Andrew Carnegie that was truly the beginning of the Amsterdam Free Library as we know it today.