Services & Collections

Below are some of the wide range of services and collections we offer to the community. Everything is free unless noted otherwise. If you can't find what you're looking for, please let us know!

Library Director Janet Moulding

Library Director Janet Moulding

  • An extensive collection of books and media in all formats are available to borrow. We offer books, current periodicals, newspapers, videos, DVDs, audiobooks on cassette, CD and MP3, music CDs, sheet music/scores, as well as downloadable e-books, audiobooks and video.
  • The Library sponsors a range of programs and events, including poetry series, concerts, films, lectures, book discussion groups, classes, Children's and Young Adult activities.
  • The Hosmer Art Gallery, on the second floor, hosts new exhibits monthly featuring works by Pioneer Valley artists.
  • Two Meeting Rooms and a Study Room are available to groups by appointment.
  • Display space is available to local organizations.
  • Reserves and Interlibrary Loan can be requested at any service desk or online.
  • Outreach services are available to homebound patrons in the City of Northampton.
  • We have a selection of Museum Passes that allow free admission to area museums and may be borrowed for 2 days.
  • Reference service and research assistance are available in person, by telephone, or email
  • Wi-Fi and wired Internet and word processing work stations
  • Free access to subscription databases, many available from your home or office
  • Special collections include the Hampshire Room for local history and genealogy, extensive photograph and image collections of Northampton and surrounding towns, and the Calvin Coolidge Presidential Library and Museum. Research assistance in these collections is available during specified hours or by appointment.
  • Forbes is a member of C/WMARS (Central/Western Massachusetts Automated Resource Sharing), a consortium of over 140 libraries which provides access to extended resources and materials beyond our local collections.

Children's and Young Adult Services

Paco, official Forbes Library fish

Paco, official Forbes Library fish

The Anna Gertrude Brewster Children's Room is located on the ground level and can be reached by a separate side entrance or through the main library.

Programs for preschool and school age children are offered throughout the year.

In addition to the extensive children's book collection, children's videos, parenting books and videos are available. Toys and board games are on hand whenever the library is open.

A separate Young Adult area is located in the children's department, with a large collection of books, audiobooks, and DVDs. We offer a variety of teen activities such as book groups and writing clubs.

The Children's & Young Adult staff are available to help find materials and ideas for every interest, whether for homework or for fun. Two computer stations and a color printer can be used for researching school projects.