The Rule of One

Come check out one of our newest books.The Rule of One

The Rule of One is a dystopian novel about the United States over 75 years into the future. The country is dealing with a climate crisis and greatly limited natural resources. The government uses fear as it’s weapon to take away the rights of its citizens. A one child policy is put in place and strictly enforced.

Into this scenario, identical twins Ava & Mira are born. Because more than one child is illegal, the twins must be concealed. This is done successfully for eighteen years. Ava & Mira take turns going to school. In the evenings they debrief each other on the day’s happenings. That is until one day their ruse is discovered, and they are forced to flee to save their lives. They have to avoid mandatory scanning devices, drones, heat sensors, wild animals, and outlaws as they try to make their way to Canada.

This is a fun read that is geared toward young adults, but can easily be enjoyed by adults as well. The tension and excitement last until the very end.

The Beginnings of Our Library Part 2

In part one of this series we learned a little about how the idea of a library in Sargent was conceived in the year 1919. The plan was to get a Carnegie grant. Unfortunately the town found out that the Carnegie Foundation was not building any libraries at that time.  Still undeterred, the community learned that the law provided that a township could vote a tax levy for the purpose of raising money for a library. The citizens of Sargent precinct approved the tax, and so began the accumulation of a fund for a library. Different organizations around town also contributed to this fund.

In January of 1927, the library fund totaled $8977.00, and the library board was advised “to invest the fund as fast as possible in outstanding precinct warrants that drew 7% interest.”  By February, 1928, they had accumulated $10,500.00, and the library board purchased a house from Mr. & Mrs. Harold Perrin for $3700.00.  The plan was to “fix up the lower part of the building for library uses until such a time enough funds were available for the erection of a better building and one designed especially for the purpose.“

One month later, the library board met with Miss Nellie Williams, the state librarian. She was very excited about how our library was progressing. In fact, she encouraged the board to keep the temporary house purchased and remodel it so that it could be used as a permanent library for many years to come. The board hired someone to build book shelves on the main floor, and enlarged the basement to include a coal room. It was decided that the upper story of the building would be used to house the librarian. The new librarian would be Mrs. Bert Melchar.

The library officially opened on July 7, 1928. There were 300 volumes of fiction and 100 volumes of non-fiction. Residents of Sargent were so hungry for reading materials that within one and a half weeks, there were over 100 borrowers on file and 225 books were loaned out. Pictured below are some of the books listed in the new library.

First Library Books

Popular books in Sargent’s Library in 1928

Small Town Power Struggles and Tragedy

Zoo Nebraska is a remarkable, true story about small town dreams and tragedy.  Carson Vaughan tells the story of how one man’s childhood dream of working with primates in Rwanda turned instead into building a zoo in Royal, Nebraska.  Soon the whole town of Royal was involved in promoting and maintaining this zoo. This was a great tourist attraction and a boon for Royal’s economy. Unfortunately the logistics, labor and cost of maintaining this zoo turned into a nightmare, and the nightmare eventually turned into a tragedy. The author interviewed each person involved and tells the story from different perspectives. Sargent residents will be able to relate to the small town power struggles and how this tragedy could have easily happened in any similar small town.

Carson Vaughan is from Broken Bow, Nebraska.  So come check out a local author.

The Beginnings of Our Library – or – The Politics of Sargent in 1919

1918 Sargent Main Street


The year was 1919, and the citizens of Sargent were desperately wanting a library for the town. The first mention of this in the newspaper was February 20, 1919 when the Reverend Paul Moser wrote a letter to the editor. He proposed building a town hall. This would include a restroom for the farmer’s wives, a public drinking fountain, a room for a public library, and a big hall where business and socials could be held. He acknowledged that this would be expensive, but stated “What is there that is worthwhile, that is not expensive?”

By March 11 the Sargent Township had the “most remarkable meeting ever heard in Sargent precinct.” One hundred fifty people were present. The Sargent Women’s Club had decided that this city ought to have a library. They planned to take advantage of the Carnegie Corporation’s offer to provide the money “to build and furnish a building to any town or precinct that will provide a site for the building and make a levy for the raising of money for the maintenance of such building.“

Some people were against this idea because they had heard that the Carnegie Corporation would only furnish the books, and that the town would have to build the building. A State Library Commission representative was present to help explain the proposition to the voters. John Wall of Arcadia was also present to tell about his experience working with the Carnegie Corporation to build a library in Arcadia.

After hearing all of the wonderful things about what a library would mean to the town, many people changed their mind in favor of a new library with hearty applause. The result of the ballot was 106 for and 31 against. The plan was to levy 3 mills for the library each year for library maintenance. “All in all it was one of the best meetings of the kind ever held in Sargent.”

An editorial in the March 13, 1919 newspaper stated: “When the hospital buildings and the library buildings have actually materialized, Sargent will have something to be proud of. Taken with our fine Electric Light System, our municipal water works plant, our up to date public school building, our churches, and many fine residences, we will be in a position to invite people to make their homes here without having to blush when the invitation is given. We will certainly be able to offer many advantages that a number of larger towns cannot boast of having.”

Such excitement! Things were looking up for our little town.  However, a library didn’t materialize in our town until the year 1928. Why did it take so long? What problems did they encounter?  . . . To be continued.

Come To The Library’s Book Sale

The Sargent Library is cleaning out our storage of discarded books to have a fundraiser during Junk Jaunt. Bookworms, crafters, homeschoolers, and all ages will have a great time looking through 1000+ books. This will be held at the Sargent Community Center (314 W. Main St.) Sept. 27-29 from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. daily. All proceeds will go to the Friends of the Sargent Township Library.

Book Sale Flyer

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