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About the Library Director

Meet Kim Manning, our library director.

Kim Bell, Director since 2007.My name is Kim Manning.  I have been the library director since 2007.  I firmly believe that the library should be a friendly place where the citizens of Hampton and Franklin County can go to get the latest books, and information.  The Library also provide children's programming, which is very important because these children are the readers, leaders and library users of tomorrow. A Library should not be confused with a museum, because the collection of items is to be used and the collection is constantly changing, which requires funding.  The Hampton Public Library adds over 2,000 new books and eBooks each year. The library's main focus is to add informational as well as popular items to our collection and make them accessible to everyone.  The staff and myself are the connection between you, the user of the library, and the materials you need and in the format you want it in.

If you are the parent of a child or teenager, the Library has so much to offer.  In the children's department, the Library now has 3 Ipads that are downloaded with applications from Iowa Public Television.  These apps provide engaging ways for parents to help their child learn math and literacy concepts. The Library also has two AWE computers that are not only bilingual but offer more educational programs for children ages 2-8 and their families.  These Early Literacy Stations are a dynamic all-in-one digital learning system that offers 60 educational software programs spanning seven curricular areas.

The Hampton Public Library is fortunate to have Esmeralda Ramirez on staff.  Esmeralda, who is bilingual,  is a great addition to the Library's staff. The Library also has magazines and books that are either bilingual or in Spanish.

After all, eons before Amazon and the Kindle, centuries before Barnes & Noble, mankind conceived of a place where a large number of books could be gathered together for the enjoyment and edification of an enlightened citizenry.

Back in 2006 the citizens of Hampton voted to approve a tax levy to further support the Hampton Public Library.  I think that can be viewed as a referendum on the very idea that it does still matter that the Library continues to collect a bunch of books under one roof in the age of the supposed Internet domination.

How else do they matter?  I think in Hampton and Franklin County there are still a significant number of us who love to read.  Deeply.  Thanks to the American insistence on education, and the very belief that every citizen ought to be literate.  So far we are a pretty good nation of readers.  But we need to keep fighting along side our schools to keep children reading at grade level!  Especially those children who are living in homes that have incomes below the poverty guidelines or where English is the second language.  The HPL is presently partnering with our teachers to help these students become literate in English.

Another reason libraries matter is because they are good places to be.  A library is a very calming place with no commerce taking place except for the t-shirts and book bags the Friends of the Library are selling.  Great libraries, large and small, wrap you in silence, offer you something good to read, and tuck you into a comfortable chair where no one will bother you till closing time. You may not get to the library more than once every five years, but you want it to be there.  It's an insurance policy.

Libraries also matter because of Librarians.  Unlike far too many government employees, public librarians step up and ask what can we do for you.  And then if at all possible, we do it.

Libraries matter because they provide Internet connectivity 24 hours a day.  The Wifi provided to the patrons of the Library must obey copyright laws. 
this means that it is illegal to download copyrighted material such as a movie using the Library's Wifi.   As the Director, I am a registered agent of the Copyright Agency, a division of the Federal Government. The Hampton-Dumont students are loaned a small laptop for the school year.  Some of these students live in homes where the Internet is not affordable.  So the students come to the Library.

Libraries still matter because of their webpages.  On the HPL's webpage, you can find a language program of over 90 languages, downloadable audio books and eBooks.  Also downloadable music that you can keep as long as you want.  The webpage also has Learning Express, a database on which the citizens of Hampton can take practice test for their high school equivalency.  Elementary students can read and take a test to improve their reading comprehension.  And older citizens can learn how to use the Internet and email.

Our Carnegie library building is part of the historical downtown and on the Historic Register.  It is located on Highway 3, where many people passing through stop to see the historical building. Our new parking lot and courtyard are a beautiful addition to this Carnegie building.  The new entrance to the children's department is more user friendly for the handicapped as well as parents with young children.  Thanks to the Citizens of Hampton, Donna Mae Burmester, the City of Hampton, the Foundation of the Hampton Public Library, the Board of Trustees of the Library, and the Foster and Evelyn Barkema Charitable Trust, the Library has been restored and improved upon. Engineering: Short Elliott Hendrickson  General Contractor: Adams Concrete & Construction.


Kim Manning, Director






This resource is supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by State Library of Iowa.