Good year! This year, our original 1912 building will celebrate its 110th anniversary in the Rochelle Community. The original building has stood the test of time.
It is a solid brick building with a beautiful terracotta tiled roof. The shelves inside, the bay windows and the fireplace are timeless. We were lucky enough to keep a lot of furniture from 1912.
When the library turned 100 years old in 2012, I started investigating all the current events that would have taken place during that year. When we toured, we talked about what adults would have read in the news throughout that time. We discovered that the Rochelle community may have read about the Titanic disaster, discovered DeKalb Ag, a new farming venture, and eaten Life Savers and Oreo cookies.
Oreo Cookies – “Oreos, a sandwich cookie consisting of two chocolate wafers with a sweet cream filling in between, have been a delight around the world for over 100 years. Here’s a fun fact: Oreo has become the best-selling cookie of the 20th century since its introduction in 1912 (as the Oreo Biscuit) with over 491 billion Oreo cookies sold worldwide to date. The United States, China, Venezuela, Canada and Indonesia are the top five countries in terms of sales. » (https://www.biscuitpeople.com/magazine/post/the-short-history-of-oreo-cookies)
Life Savers – “In 1912, chocolate maker Clarence Crane of Cleveland, Ohio invented Life Savers. They were designed as a “summer candy” that was more heat resistant than chocolate. miniature life jackets, Crane called them Life Savers.(https://www.thinkco.com/history-of-life-savers-candy-4076664).
DeKalb Ag-“According to the historical marker, DeKalb’s roots date back to 1912 when a group of farmers and bankers formed the DeKalb County Soil Improvement Association. In 1917, the DeKalb County Agricultural Association was formed. DeKalb’s original headquarters were located on Fifth Street in DeKalb. (https://www.shawlocal.com/2018/09/11/dekalb-ag-historical-marker-unveiled/agp5buv/#:~:text=According%20to%20the%20historical%20marker,on%20Fifth%20Street% 20in%20DeKalb).
Titanic – “The RMS Titanic, a luxury steamship, sank in the early hours of April 15, 1912, off Newfoundland in the North Atlantic after striking an iceberg on her maiden voyage. Of the 2,240 passengers and crew on board, more than 1,500 lost their lives in the disaster.https://www.history.com/topics/early-20th-century-us/titanic).
Think about what was happening in La Rochelle 110 years ago. A lot of things were changing and a new library was being built. We were a lucky community to have been chosen for this great honour. We look forward to our 110th anniversary and a great 2022. Happy New Year to you and yours!
Sarah Flanagan is the director of Flagg-Rochelle. Public library area.