Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get a library card?


You can get a adult library card by bringing in identification such as a driver’s license, Massachusetts ID, utility bill, or checkbook, tax bill, or lease agreement. Parents and guardians of minors can get a library card for children up to grade 6 without the child having an ID. Please remember that you must have your library card to check out material.

The fee for an out-of-State resident to obtain a library card is $25.

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How long can I borrow items and what are overdue fines?


LOAN PERIODS
Fiction, Non-Fiction, Audio Books, Paperbacks, & Art Videos: 28 days (if no one else is waiting for them, you can renew these items for an additional 14 days)
New Fiction: 14 days (if no one else is waiting for them, you can renew these items for an additional 14 days)
DVDs, Videos, CDs, Magazines: 7 days
Museum Passes: 1 day

OVERDUE FINES
Adult and Young Adult Material: 20¢ per day
Children’s Material: 10¢ per day
DVDs/Videos: $1.00 per day
Museum Passes: $6.00 per day

All fines are used to support the library!

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How do I request books, movies, and audiobooks from another library?


The Gloucester Lyceum & Sawyer Free Library belongs to the North of Boston Library Exchange (NOBLE), and you can request material from other libraries simply by placing a request from the library catalog using your 14-digit library card number and PIN. You can also place requests in-person or by calling us at (978) 281-9763 during our hours of operation.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for in the NOBLE catalog, you can search for and request material from the Massachusetts Virtual Catalog. The Virtual Catalog gives you access to over 7 million items at over 300 libraries across Massachusetts. Your requests will be delivered to the Sawyer Free Library, and we will call or email you when they’re ready for pickup.

If you can’t find what you’re looking for in either the NOBLE catalog or Virtual Catalog, please call the library’s Reference Department at (978) 281-9763 or fill out a contact form.

Can I renew my books?

If your library items are renewable and no one is waiting for them, you can login to your account and request a renewal. Or, if we’re open, we’d be happy to renew your items over the phone at 978-281-9763.

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I lost my library card. Can I get a replacement?


Library cards can be replaced at the main desk with a driver’s license, Massachusetts ID, utility bill, or checkbook, tax bill, or lease agreement. The replacement cost is $2.00. Your card must be free of overdue material and fees before replacement.

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What's a PIN and how do I get one?


Your PIN is the last 4 digits of your 14-digit library barcode, and it gives you access to your library account online. Online allows you to view checked-out items; renew items; view fines; add an email address to receive notifications; and place, view, or cancel holds.

If you have forgotten your PIN and need it reset, please come to the library and we’ll be happy to help you.

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Can I get help downloading a free library eBook or audiobook?


Yes! Book a 1-on-1 session with a staff member for help with your device here

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Can I volunteer at the library?


Yes! For more information and to apply, click here.

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How do I request a meeting room?


You can request a meeting room ONLINE. Please note that you must first agree to our meeting room policy. Requests may be made up to 60 days in advance.

If you have specific questions about our meeting room, please contact Freyja Sanger, Assistant Director, at (978) 281-9763 ext.12.

How do I donate books?

The Sawyer Free Library accepts donations during open library hours. Please call ahead if you’d like to donate a substantial number of items. Our material donation guidelines are as follows:

  • Material must be current, generally published in the last five years.
  • Material must be in good condition: not yellowed, musty-smelling, or dog-eared.
  • Thank you but we do not accept textbooks, academic-level material, dated encyclopedias, materials marked or torn, condensed books, or VHS cassettes. The Library reserves the right to review and refuse any donation.
  • Most items not placed in the collection will be put in a book sale. Any special collection of materials that a donor wishes to be placed in the Library collection will be reviewed and cannot be guaranteed to be accepted.
  • The Library will give a receipt only stating the type and number of materials. The Library will not assign any monetary value to the donation.

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I'm having trouble using a magazine or newspaper database!

If the library is open, please call the Information Desk at 978-281-9763 ext.21 for assistance. Please let us know which database you can’t access and your 14-digit library barcode.

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Can I make a comment or suggestion?


Yes! We’d love to hear from you. For a staff directory click here or fill out a contact form.