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Local History

Discover the beautiful towns of Westerly, RI and Stonington, CT.

Friends of the Library

The Friends of Westerly Library and Wilcox Park have been the fundraising and volunteering champions since 1972. They sponsor special programs on art, history, music, and readings by renowned authors. In 2005, they established the Friends Endowment Fund with the interest going towards the operating costs of the Library and Park.

350X Around the Park

New Year’s Day 2019 marks the beginning of the 350th anniversary of Westerly, and many exciting events are being planned. On January 1 there will be a Unity Bell Ringing as 30 bells throughout our town will peal from noon to 12:01. Be sure to take a moment to enjoy the joyous sounds either at home or with a happy crowd at one of  the many locations throughout Westerly ( All are invited to bring their favorite bell to add to the merry din.

Also at that time, the Friends of Westerly Library and Wilcox Park will be at the esplanade (directly across from Town Hall) to launch 350x Around the Park, an invitation for people and their dogs to walk around the park. Recording sheets and special collectible buttons will be distributed. Forms to print are available here. If you print out your own, be sure to stop by at the library and sign up to register in the white binder on the Circulation counter.

Each time a person walks around the park, he records the date on a line. If four laps are completed that day, four lines will be filled. Each form has 50 lines. Completed forms will be handed in at the Circulation Desk at the Library. New forms will be available in a white binder found there. A poster hanging in the library will track the progress walkers are making.

How far is it around the park? One lap around the main path is less than a half mile, but if one goes around the far side of the pond, the distance is one-half mile. Either a short lap or a long lap counts as one time around the park. The park is open from dawn to 9pm every day. 

A study published in 2014 (Environment and Behavior) has shown that looking at trees can significantly reduce stress levels, and it is common knowledge that seeing a smiling face and exchanging greetings brightens even the grayest wintery day.  Join in the fun and walk with your friends.

Email with any questions. 

Ellie Coffey, President of the Friends, says, “See you around---350 times!”


Book Sale

The Friends of Westerly Library and Wilcox Park are best known for the book sales they hold to benefit the library.  Currently they are held in the summer and winter. All proceeds from the sales go towards the purchase of new materials for the Library. Donated books are accepted at any time; please drop off donations at the Circulation Desk. If you would like to volunteer to help at our book sales, please leave your name and phone number at the Circulation Desk.

Wondering when the next Book Fair will be? 

It will begin Tuesday afternoon at 3:30,  July 9th for Friends and will be open to everyone on the 10th through Saturday, July 13th. Looking forward to seeing you there!

For questions about the Friends, or to Volunteer, contact Maria, Membership Chair, at

To join the Friends of the Library, please use the attached form.

Thank you for your Support!



 The Friends of the Westerly Memorial Library and Wilcox Park periodically post below donated books for sale. We list books of local interest, rare books and unique books. All purchases requiring shipping will be sent media mail. Please contact us about with any questions regarding the books themselves or shipping and handling costs: Debra Howson: or Margy Long:



Updated 8-16-2018

Rare Books:

29. Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam, The Astronomer-Poet of Persia, Macmillan & Co., London, 1929. No d.j. Blue cloth boards with gilt letterin on spine and gilt medallion on front cover. Volume shows mild wear, heel of spine bumped and foxing inside front and back cover. 4 x 6 1/4” 111 pgs.      $18


35. The Half-Hearted, by John Buchan. Pub. The Riverside Press, Cambridge and Houghton Mifflin, 1928.Very good condition. $17


1. The Life of Lord Fisher of Kilverstone, 2 vols., Admiral Bacon, Doubleday, Doran & Co., NY, 1929, Red cloth boards. Both volumes clean, in good condition. $15

 2. Elsie Dinsmore, Martha Finley, Howard C. Christy, illustrator, Dodd, Mead & Co., NY, 1896, 342 pgs. Tweed cloth cover with gilt and green lettering & decoration. Spine bumped, contents clean and tight.   $15

4.Rules and Instructions for the Maintenance of the Way and Structures, printed by The New York, New Haven and Hartford Railroad Company, effective September 1st, 1916. Small, 3 7/8 x 6 1/2”, red clothbound, 349 pgs. Index  and supplementary data including drawings, tables and misc. information. FOR THE RAILROAD BUFF. $20 

5.The Luck of Roaring Camp, and other Sketches, Francis Bret Harte, Fields, Osgood, & Co., Boston, 1870. Red, hardcover 256 pgs., 4 1/2 x7”. Spine and corners bumped, gold embossed title on spine faded. Otherwise good copy. $18

7. Camp and Trail Methods, E. Kreps, A.R.Harding, Columbus, OH. 1910, 1st ed., 273 pgs., 5 x 6 3/4”. Lose binding, discolored dark green cover. Interesting mainly because of historical approach to camping and 7 pages of advertising in back.   $18

11. Folk-Dances from Old Homelands, Elizabeth Burchenal, G. Schirmer, Inc., NY, 1922. 85 pgs., some foxing, hard-cover, 9 1/4 12”. $12

12. Trees  Worth Knowing, Julia Ellen Rogers, Doubleday, Page, NY, 1927. Little Nature Library. Black and red boards, gold gilt lettering on bumped spine. 48 illustrations, 16 in color. 291 pgs., indexed. $12

13.  Lectures on Legal History and Miscellaneous Legal Essays, James Barr Ames, Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA 1913. Black cloth boards, secure binding, no dust jacket. Gilt identification on spine. Table of cases, table of other authorities cited, and index. 553 pages. $18

14. Legends of Charlemagne, Thomas Bulfinch, illustrated by NC Wyeth, 1924. Ex-library book, publisher’s page missing. Four color inlay to front cover slightly scuffed. Book hard cover, no d.j., shows wear. Although the boards are firmly in poace there is some separation at the hinges and a split along the junction at the hinge. Eight full page color illustrations and end papers by the illustrator.   $30

16. Imperial Germany, A Critical Study of Fact and Character, Sidney Whitman, Bernhard Tauchnitz, publisher, Liepzig, Germany, 1891. Maroon boards with gold embossing, no d.j., many pages uncut.  Good condition.  $15

20. Farm-Rhymes with Country Pictures, James Whitcomb Riley, Will Vawyer, illust., Bowen-Merrill Co., Indianapolis, 1901. 187 pgs., no d.j., hard cover dk tan boards with gilt embossing cover and spine. Near fine copy.  $10

 21.  Love-Lyrics with Life Pictures, James Whitcomb Riley, Wm.B. Dyer, illust., Bowen-Merrill Co., Indianapolis, 1899. 190 pgs., had cover with dark tan boards and gilt embossing cover and boards. Good copy.         $10

25. Enrico Caruso, A Biography, Pierre V.R. Key, Little Brown & Co., Boston, 1922. First edition bound in red cloth boards with very faded gold decorations and lettering. Numerous b&w photographs. Appendices include: A. list of decorations tendered to E.C. B. List of Operas in the repertoire of E.C. C. list of all appearances from 1894 to 1921 including date,  opera or concert, opera house and location.   $15

26. A Quaker Girl of Nantucket, Margy Catherine Lee, illustrations by Kleber Hall, Houghton Mifflin Co., Boston, 1925. Grey hard cover with profile of “quaker girl” on cover. First published in 1889 this printing is 320 pages in length with illustrated etchings by Kleber Hall. Front piece beginning to crack from spine.     $15

31. The Lone Star, Eugene P. Lyle Jr., Doubleday, NY, 1907. First Edition. Green cloth boards with 4-color illustration. Corners and spine show slight wear.  Some slight foxing on inside front and back cover. 4 four color plates inside. 8 x 5/14” 431 pgs.  $12   

33. Travels in France and Italy During the Years 1787, 1788 and 1789, by Arthur Young. Published by J.M. Dent & Sons and EP Hutton. This is an ex-library book with bumping on the spine and minor foxing on the inside cover. There is no date of publication inside, but research shows that the first date of publication is 1892 and books were published until at least 1904.    $15

41. Ich denke Dein, a beautifully illustrated book of poems in German. Embossed cover.Gold leaf. Pub. Verlag von Greiner & Pfeiffer. Stuttgart. No publishing date given, but research shows it was 1900. Good-Very good condition. The binding is a little loose. There is some foxing and yellowing of pages. $15



42. The Americanization of Edward Bok: The Autobiography of a Dutch Boy Fifty Years Later. Pub. Charles Scribner & Sons. 1922

Signed by author. 461 pages. Pulitzer prize-winning author. Dutch-born American editor of Ladies’ Home Journal for 30 years. Coined the term “living room” to replace “drawing room” and “parlor”. Fair condition. Binding is damaged. Wear and tear on cover. $15.



47. The Great Cattle Trail, Forest and Prairie Series - No. 1, Edward S. Ellis, Henry T.Coates & Co., Philadelphia PA 1894. Original 1st edition in worn condition. Blue-green boards, gilt title on spine. Foxed with some pages in the front lose. 313 pgs.    $20

48.  Northern Italy, including Leghorn, Florence, Ravenna and Routes though France, Switzerland, and Austria. Handbook For Travellers, Karl Baedeker, Baedeker Publisher, Leipzig, Germany, 1913. 30 maps, many fold-out. Red cloth cover, gilt title on spine and cover. General wear.      $20

49.  United States History, By the Brace System. John Trainer, A.Flanagan, Chicage, IL 1888. Title page states also, A study of the history of the United States for the use of teacher and pupil. 12th edition. No d.j. Brown boards with gilt title on both spine and front of book. For those interested in old texts.       $15

Local Interest:

46. Ellison Tarzan Brown, Michael Ward, McFarland & Co., Jefferson, NC, 2006. New copy paperback, 433 pgs with b&w photos, index, bibliography and notes.      $10

8. Veterans War Stories 1933-1993, Charlestown, Stonington, North Stonington, and Hopkinton Rhode Island, The Westerly Historical Society, The Utter Co., Westerly, RI., 1993. Good condition, no d.j., 235 pgs.     $175

9. The Register of Wooden Boats 2005-2006, WoodenBoat pub., Torrington CT, sturdy paperback with some slight bump on top of spine. 8 3/4 x 7 1/4”, 696 pgs. Contains photo index, index by designer and boat type, and index by former name.   $30

36. Riot of the Century: The NYC Draft Riots of July 1863, by Peter Megargee Brown. This 49-page book relates those riots and contains many photos. Published by Benchmark Press and Trustees of the Riot Relief Fund. Excellent condition. $15


40. My Hartford of the Nineteenth Century, by Helen Post Chapman.

Pub. Edward Valentine Mitchell, 1928. Reminiscences of the City of Hartford.

Very good condition inside. Printed yellow paper on frontboard and spine. Some wear and tear on the spine and discoloration at the top of the frontboard. $30


43.  Yale Twenty-fifth Yearbook, Class of 1943, Yale Univ. Press, New Haven, CT, 1968. Hardcover copy with blue boards and gilt lettering. This book lists your classmates from ‘43 and what they have done in the last 25 years. No d.j. 6 1/4 by 9 1/2” tall, 415 pages. A rare copy in good shape.      $35

44.  Noank, The Ethereal Years, Stephen Jones, signed by the author, Noank Historical Society, Noank, CT, 1988. Soft cover, 8x9” tall, 64 pgs., tight and clean inside.   $30

45. Aboard An American Classic, Across the Atlantic with BRILLIANT, George Moffett, Mystic Seaport, Mystic, CT, 2002. First edition trade paperback. Like new with 4-color and b&w photos. Appendix includes: Tall Ships Racing Vessels Classes, Tall Ships 2000 Participants, Race Results, A Brilliant Biography, Winds and Sails, and Glossary.   $20

50Rhode Island Ocean Sites & City Lights, by Stephanie Izzo. 120 pages. Pub. Meridian Printing 2009. Book is still in original shrink wrap. This is a collection of fifty photographs of Rhode Island. It showcases everything from the beaches and lighthouses of Narragansett Bay to the architecture of Providence. We have about 5 copies, all in the original shrink wrap.    $20

 51. A Taste of History; 19th Century Foods of Mystic Seaport, Enjoying Last Century’s Foodways, Recipes, Menus, Social History. No statement of printing. 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 “ tall, unpaginated (16 pgs), soft cover. Circled mark of “D” on cover. Contains the following recipes with their place of serving; Plum Duff from the Charles W. Morgan; Brambles from the Thomas Greenman House; Mrs. Child’s Fricasseed Chicken from the Buckingham House; and Kedgeree fro the L.A.Dunton.  $18


Gems & Collectibles:

6.   Tilop’s Mahamudra Upadesha, Sangye Nyenpa, Sharnbhala pub., US, 2014. New book in fine condition with pristine dust jacket. An explanation of the Indian Mahasiddha Tilopa’s renowned Gangama Mahamudra meditation instructions, given in a traditional Tibetan context by one of its most accomplished contemporary masters. In English. 239 pgs., 6 1/8 x 8 1/4”.  $22


15. The Real Log Cabin, Chilson D. Aldrich The MacMillan Co., NY, 1942.  Pebbled dk green boards with gold embossing. Spine bumped and some foxing, otherwise fine. Dedication reads: “ to The Beloved Man of History, ABRAHAM LINCOLN, who has enshrined  the log cabin in the hearts of his people.”   $22

 17. The Divine Art, J.D. Townsend, Abingdon Press, NY, 1931. Hardcover, suede cloth with gilt lettering. Inscribed by owner in fronts piece.  A tight, good copy.    $12

 18. The Story Road, Gertrude Hildebrandt. Pub. 1952 John C. Winston. 169 pp. This is a beautifully illustrated children’s educational book containing 13 stories. It is in fair condition, with the name of the former student owner taped inside. $13.


19. Eisenhower: Soldier and President, by Stephen E. Ambrose                                                                                          American Political Biographer Press. 2007. 635 pp. This book is still in shrink-wrap. $40.00

22. The Goldfinch Garden, Seven Tales by Barbara Leonie Picard, Illustrated by Anne Linton, Criterion Books, NY, 1965. The author is sometimes called the new Hans Christian Anderson. Hard cover boards, 7 3/4 x 6”, 122 pgs., d.j. has slight tears on spine and corners.            $12

23. A Farm for Juliana, Maud Ester Dillard, Albert Orbaan, illust., Dutton & Co., NY, 1951. First edition. 189 pgs., hard cover, d.j. shows tears.            $28

24. Arthur Rackham, A Bibliography, Sarah Briggs Latimore and Grace Clark Haskell, Sutton House, Los Angeles, CA, 1936. Decorated pink boards with cloth spine, titled in gilt on spine. Approximately 200 entries. Attempts to record all of Rackham’s published work. In addition to a bibliography of books illustrated solely by Rackham, includes 12 pgs on magazine appearances, a list of dustwrappers by Rackham short sections on commercial and theatrical work. Some slight pencil check marks inside.    $22

28.Signals, Systems, and Transforms, series in electrical engineering, Leland B. Jackson, Addison-Wesley Publ. Co., 1991. 482 page soft cover text, of limited quantity. No underlining.   $24

30. Earl Cunningham’s America, Wendell Garrett, Virginia M. Mecklenbury and Carolyn Weekley, editors. Smithsonian Books 2007. Hardcover book in very good condition with dust jacket. (below picture) Binding is tight, sturdy and square. Illustrations throughout, b&w, many four color. Large - 10x12” volume, 143 pages.    $18

32. Aristophanes The Birds and The Frogs. This is an elegant leatherbound collector’s edition published by The Easton Press. It is in like-new condition. $20.



34. The Kirk in Scotland 1560-1929, by John Buchan and George Adam Smith. Pub. Hodder & Stoughton, date unknown. 244 pages. Very good condition inside. The spine, however, is very worn. $18

37. How the Sow Became a Goddess, by Jim Heynen. This is a small soft-cover chapbook of poems published in 1977 by Confluence Press of Idaho. It is one of just 300 published. It is in fair condition with some wear and tear on the spine. $15


38. SET OF 4

Your Son and Ten Fighting Generals; Your Son and Six Fighting Admirals; Fat Girl; and Captain Rickenbacker’s Story. By Donald Wilhelm.

These 4 slim hardcover books were published (privately printed) in 1943 and 1944 by the American Brake Shoe Company, New York. First edition. (New editions are currently being published in softcover) These are contemporaneous accounts of important events and an overview of the command of the American troops overseas. The pink form photographed above is attached inside Admirals and is a form for ranking officers on their fitness. Generals begins, “The fate of your boy, mine, and millions of others, is directly in the hands of ten men-General Marshall and the nine other generals in command of our war theatres and armies…” The spines are very worn. There is yellowing inside the boards and around the pages. The books are about 20-30 pages. $10 each or $30 for the set.



52. M & M Karolik Collection of American Watercolors & Drawings 1800-1875 by Karolik and Museum of Fine Arts Boston Pub. MFA Boston 1962. Very good condition. Slipcase included. Slight wear and tear at top of binding. Beautiful plates. $30. 


53.  The Art of Richard Diebenkorn, by Jane Livingston Pub. Whitney Museum of American Art and Univ. of California Press 1997. This is a biography of Richard Diebenkorn (1922-1993) who was recognized as a major American (Californian) artist in the postwar period. Softcover. Very good condition. $35

54. The Art of Botanical Illustration, by Wilfred Blunt and William T. Stearn Pub. Antique Collectors Club in Association with Royal Botanical Gardens, Kew 1994. This beautifully illustrated book is a survey of botanical illustration, mostly flowers. It was first published in 1950 and is still considered a classic. Excellent condition. $15


55. Dog Painting: 1840-1940. A Social History, by William Secord Pub. Antique Collector’s Club 1992.  Depictions of the dog in art, from Greek and Roman Times through the European 18th and 19th centuries and on to modern times. Excellent condition. $20

56. Mark Catesby’s Natural History of America Pub. Merrell Holberton London 1997.  Attention Anglophiles! This is a collection of photographs of watercolors from the Royal Library at Windsor Castle. It is the life work of English naturalist and artist Mark Catesby (1682-1749). He is reputed to be the most important precursor of Audobon. Excellent condition. $20

57. Chihuly Gardens & Glass, by Barbara Rose Pub. Portland Press 2002. This postcard book contains photographs of natural light playing on the colors and unique shapes of Chihuly's work. This survey his memorable outdoor installations around the globe. Images from his exhibition at the historic Garfield Park Conservatory in Chicago. The book is in its original shrink-wrap. $20

58. Our Town Images and Stories from the Museum of the City of New York, Pub. Harry N. Abrams 1997.  Our Town was published to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the Museum of the City of New York and the centennial of the consolidation of the city's five boroughs. Its illustrations, many of which were never published, reproduce paintings, etchings, lithographs, and photographs by such artists as Rembrandt Peale, Edward Moran, and Reginald Marsh, as well as clothing, theatrical costumes, and decorative objects. Dust jacket included. Excellent condition. $15


59. Le Florilège de Nassau Par Johann Walter 1604-1677.  Editions Anthèse / Bibliothèque Nationale 1993 reliure toile verte , grand format avec jaquette 95 pages nombreuses gravures en couleurs de l'artiste et quelques unes en noir et blanc infimes salissures à la jaquette sinon très bon état port en plus Botanique‎. Dust jacket included. IN FRENCH. $20

60. The Fire Within Salt Lake 2002 Official commemorative edition of the 2002 Winter Olympics held at Salt Lake City. Sealed in shrink-wrap. $25

61. The NYSE Another Century by James Buck Pub. Greenwich Publishing Group 1999 Lyme, CT. An examination of the NYSE by the author of The New York Stock Exchange: The First 200 Years. Excellent condition. In slipcase. $15

62. The National Gem Collection, by Jeffrey Post. Pub. Smithsonian Institution. New. In shrink-wrap. $35




39. The Wonderworld of Science, Books One and Two.

Colorfully illustrated elementary-level schoolbooks. Pub. Charles Scribner & Sons 1946. Good condition. Ex-library book from Arizona Public School system. Pages yellowed. Writing on front cover from owner, Some bumping on spine and corners. $12 each or both for $20



3. The Jingle Book, Carolyn Wells, Macmillan Co., N.Y., 1899. A charming book of children’s poems, well loved, i.e. a worn copy. B&W line illustrations by Oliver Herford, many in the style of the Gibson Girl. Worn cloth hard cover, 124 pgs.   $30

27. “Scat, Scat,” Sally R Francis, illustrated by Elizabeth E. Collison, Platt & Munk, 1929. Dk red boards, 6 x 7 1/2”. Charming 4 color illustrations.   $14