Local History Room Policy


The Margaret H. “Peg” Perry Local History Room (hereafter referred to as the Local History Room) houses the local history collection of the Canton Public Library. The Library has a responsibility to collect, preserve, and make available to the public materials documenting the history of the Canton Public Library, the Town of Canton, and its environs.

The Canton Public Library works in cooperation with, but is not directly affiliated with, the Canton Historical Society/Canton Historical Museum.


The focus of the Local History Room collection will be materials about the history of Canton, and, to a lesser extent, its environs, including the Farmington Valley and eastern Litchfield County. Selected materials more generally about the State of Connecticut will be included provided that they help set Canton within a historical context. Genealogies and family histories will be collected only for families with a substantial connection to Canton.

The Local History Room also houses the archives of several town organizations. Any organization wishing to utilize the Local History Room in this way should consult with the Library Director, the Town Historian, and/or the Library Board of Trustees.


The Canton Public Library welcomes donations to the Local History Room. The Library reserves the right to turn down any donation that is not relevant or does not fit the scope of the collection; is a duplicate of material already in the collection; is too large to house; or is in a condition that would be an undue conservation burden. Donors may not impose any restrictions on any donated materials, and monetary or other gifts will be accepted only if given unconditionally. Once an item has been accepted by the Library, it becomes a part of the Library’s collection and the Library shall be its sole owner. The Library will not appraise any materials; should a donor want an appraisal for tax purposes, he or she will be responsible for this. If a potential donation is deemed unfit for the collection, the Library will attempt to refer the donor to other organizations which may have an interest in or need for the item.

Materials in the collection will consist of books, photographs, slides, pamphlets, newspapers, census records, periodicals, yearbooks, maps, atlases, directories, genealogies, diaries, ledgers, and select audiovisual materials when proper storage and playback ability are available. Three-dimensional objects will generally not be considered due to space constraints.

The Local History Room contains copies of the Annual Reports of the Town of Canton but does not otherwise serve as a repository for government records such as meeting minutes and agendas, budgets, or day-to-day business records.


The Library may remove items from the collection due to poor condition, duplication, or irrelevance to the scope of the collection. All decisions to deaccession materials from the Local History Room will be made by the Library Director in consultation with the Town Historian and, when appropriate, the Canton Historical Society/Museum. The Library Director is empowered to deaccession items of modest value in consultation with the Town Historian; the final decision on deaccessioning items of high value or extreme rarity will be made by the Library Board of Trustees on the recommendation of the Library Director. Items deaccessioned from the collection may be sold, returned to the donor if feasible, given to another organization, or discarded. The Canton Historical Society/Museum shall have the right of first refusal for any items deaccessioned from the Local History Room.


Materials in the Local History Room may be used by members of the public; however, in order to maintain the safety and integrity of the collection, collection materials may only be accessed under the supervision of a library staff member. Certain individuals may be granted unsupervised access to the room, including the Town Historian; the President, Librarian, and Curator of the Canton Historical Society/Museum; volunteers (once properly trained by library staff); and others at the discretion of the Library Director. Members of organizations which house their archives in the Local History Room may freely access their organization’s materials. All Local History Room materials must be used within the library; the Library Director may, in rare instances, permit overnight borrowing of certain items.

Special care should be taken when handling Local History Room materials, particularly those that are especially fragile.

Food and drink (including water) are not permitted in the Local History Room under any circumstances. Large bags, backpacks, and briefcases will not be allowed in the Local History Room and should be checked in with a staff member at the Information or Circulation Desk. Patrons using the Local History Room must use pencil (no pens) and loose paper for notetaking; laptops, tablets, and other mobile devices will also be permitted. Photocopying of materials will be allowed at the discretion of a library staff member.

With prior arrangement, the Local History Room may be used by small groups for meetings. These must be approved in advance by the Library Director.

Approved by the Canton Public Library Board of Trustees May 11, 2016

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Canton Public Library • 40 Dyer Avenue • Canton, CT 06019 • 860-693-5800 • Fax 860-693-5804