The public library in Sandusky can trace its roots back to 1825 (only seven years after Sandusky was founded), when a subscription library was created, called the Portland Library. F.D. Parish, one of the city's first lawyers, was the first librarian, with about 300 books under his care. This organization was succeeded around 1840 by the Sandusky Lyceum, a literary study society; the Lyceum was in turn replaced by the Philomathesian Society in 1845. In 1855, the Young Men's Library Association took over the role of public library for Sandusky, until 1870, when the Library Association of Sandusky was founded. This organization was commonly known as the "Ladies' Library Association," because the membership of its board was composed entirely of women of the community. In 1886 the Library Building Fund Association was created to raise funds for the construction of a library building. In 1895, the Library was incorporated and became the first free public library in the community. (Membership fees were no longer charged.) Originally located in the High School, the library operated in the Masonic Temple
from 1896 until 1901, when what is now the Carnegie wing of the present library was opened. Today's Sandusky Library has served the community at its present location for over 100 years, with expanded facilities for the 21st century.