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Public Libraries

Public libraries are community hubs available to residents of all ages. They provide access to information, cultural, educational and recreational programs and services and employment resources. In addition to accessing books, newspapers, magazines and other media, there are opportunities to listen to music, watch movies, take classes, attend lectures or other programs. Libraries also provide access to the Internet with public computers and free WiFi.

In addition to local public libraries, the Connecticut State Library provides access to materials and includes the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped (LBPH) which provides access to books and magazines in recorded formats along with the necessary playback equipment, and materials in braille, for free, to any Connecticut adult or child who is unable to read regular print due to a visual or physical disability.

Eligibility Criteria

Libraries are free, open to the public, available to people of all ages and abilities.

Individuals can apply for a library card to borrow materials from their local library. Applicants must be a resident of that community and show proof of residency. Children may be able to get their own library card, typically with a parent or guardian's permission.

To obtain a card from the Connecticut State Library, individuals must be 18 years or older and a resident of Connecticut to be eligible. They must also provide valid forms of identification such as:

  • CT Driver's license
  • Passport
  • State Employee ID or
  • Student ID

Children under the age of 18 must have approval from a parent or guardian to sign the application form.

Applying for a library card can be done at the Connecticut State Library or from home by mailing:

Collection Services
Connecticut State Library
231 Capitol Avenue
Hartford, CT 06106

Once approved, a library card will be mailed to the applicant.

Get an application for the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped here. 

Services and Fees

Specific services may vary by community, but all libraries allow visitors to:

  • Borrow books, e-books, magazines, audio books, music, movies/television shows, games and more
  • Access public computers
  • Access some public library databases from home
  • Attend programs and events

Learn More: You can download and print out a library card application form here for the Connecticut State Library.

Public libraries may also offer numerous educational, recreational and social services for individuals of all ages at no cost. These may include:

  • Health and nutrition information
  • Technology classes
  • Job search assistance
  • Arts and crafts activities
  • Museum or art gallery trips and
  • Children's activities

Financial Options for Public Libraries

Find in Your Area

Find public libraries near you or to search for a book, e-book, or author you are interested in.

Individuals with visual or physical disabilities can visit the CT State Library for the Blind and Disabled for additional services. The library provides free mail loan of books and magazines in braille or recorded format. Playback equipment is also provided at no additional cost. Check eligibility to see if you qualify.


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