Information on:

Arbutus Branch Library

855 Sulphur Spring Road


Arbutus Library began in 1948 when local residents such as George Klein, Beatrice Williams and Elsie Ijams, discussed starting a local library with members of the Kiwanis Club and local business people. A library was created in the basement of the Arbutus Hardware store at 5417 East Drive. The Kiwanis gave $300; and a new floor was donated. A large table and 10 chairs were also acquired. Alberta Klein, George's wife, obtained more than 400 books from friends and local residents. Mrs. Williams and Mrs. Ijams would drive around picking up the donations. Each book was officially stamped by George and Alberta. Frances Herrmann, one of their 14 children, recalled "I remember Mother and Dad, late at night, stamping the book pages. I believe they stamped each book on page 17 and another page that I don't remember." This was done for sentimental reasons, as seventeen was the age that her mother married her father. On February 16, 1948, there were about 1500 books with more than 400 new children's books. 150 library cards were originally issued. Mrs. Williams and Mrs. Ijams devoted much time and energy to this project. They could always be found in the library greeting people and helping them to select a book.

The Arbutus-Halethorpe Free Library was such a great success that in the early 1950's it needed to move into larger quarters over the A&P supermarket, when it became a part of the Baltimore County Public Library system. Gloria Grikit, who retired as clerical supervisor in 1989, fondly recalled days over the A&P when she and the librarian found time to make slipcovers right in the library. In 1962 the library moved into a more modern building on Sulphur Spring Road, where it remained for 30 years.

As the community grew and changed so did the library and in 1992 it moved yet again into the Arbutus Business Center. This new building added space and made the library completely handicapped accessible. Throughout all these changes the Arbutus branch has remained a library with a small-town, friendly atmosphere.


Joy Shipley

Wednesday, Jan. 31, 2018
Nice and peaceful. Friendly staff. Nice kid's area where you can take your little ones to play and read awhile. Very nice ambience all the way around.

Angel K

Sunday, Nov. 5, 2017
Easy to find the books you need and easy to reserve books as well, I find that it is a great way to finish homework or study

Danielle Dubyoski

Sunday, Sep. 17, 2017
Great librarians who are always willing to help you find what you need and do research. Also very efficient passport services

Krishna Sharma

Sunday, March 26, 2017
It's a organized library with lots of space to study, well equipped with lots of computers and friendly staff. I love their quiet Room area with a fireplace. They also have meeting rooms that you can reserve. I love to watch kids section where children come to play games and read with their parents. It's a complete community library.

David Grimm

Saturday, Feb. 11, 2017
Came for passports for my family on a Saturday afternoon. Everyone was super friendly and great with the kids. Fast too. And library is great, especially the kids section.

Arbutus Branch Library is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media