An organized library in Oconto dates back to March 13, 1878, when a group of book lovers met to organize the Oconto Library Association. Books were gathered and circulated from a member’s home. A few years later the association rented a room in the Runkel Jewelry Store on Main Street which served the public as its library. By 1886 there were 1,120 books in the collection. The popularity of the library was sufficient to warrant a committee asking the city to maintain a free city library.

George W. Farnsworth, Sr., President of the Oconto Lumber Company, came to Oconto in 1856 at the age of 31. He had little formal education, but was well-read and was mainly self-taught. Mr. Farnsworth wanted to give something back to the area and decided a free public library would be of great benefit to his community.

​In December 1901, he made a proposal to the Oconto City Council offering to build the city a library, if they would agree to maintain it. On March 11, 1902, the City formally accepted Farnsworth’s gift with the provision that they would make an annual appropriation to support the library’s maintenance. Oconto’s free public library was dedicated on June 27, 1903. From its early days, it served not only local residents but also served as the center of a traveling library system for other areas of Oconto County. In 1993, an addition to the building was completed, with four floors open to the public.


Meetings are held in the Library’s Bond Meeting Room at 6:00 pm on the fourth Tuesday of every month.

Board of Trustees

Kitty Werner, President
Ron Rauscher, Vice President
Mary Grace Murphy
Debi Schroeder
Mike Werner
Bonnie Wusterbarth
Patricia Bake
Kevin Huggett

Finance Committee

Mike Werner
Bonnie Wusterbarth
Kevin Huggett
Email the trustees at:​ fpltrustees@gmail.com

​Administrative/Personnel Committee

Mary Grace Murphy
Debi Schroeder
Kitty Werner

Building & Grounds Committee

Ron Rauscher
Patricia Bake

Contact the Library Board of Trustees:

Library Board of Trustees
c/o Farnsworth Public Library
715 Main Street, Oconto, WI 54153

Email the trustees at:​ fpltrustees@gmail.com

Farnsworth Public Library is a municipal library, governed by the above Board of Trustees.
We attend Oconto County Library Services Board meetings but are not a County Library.
Click to view the O.C.L.S.B. Agendas & Minutes
Click to view the Board of Trustees Agenda & Minutes

The Friends of Farnsworth Public Library

You can never have too many Friends!

​The Friends of Farnsworth is a non-profit organization established in March 1990 to provide support services to the library. The goals of the group include funding library programs and special library needs, helping with special activities, and informing others of library services and resources.

Fundraising activities every year include the biannual book sales, the December Cookie & Candy Sale, regular brat fries, and the ongoing sale of candy bars in the Library.

Friends Officers

Caroline Young, President
Dianne Stewart, Vice President
Karl Ballestad, Treasurer
Mary Heiser, Secretary

Please consider joining this wonderful group of Library supporters! For as little as $5 (single membership) or $10 (family membership) every year, you can consider yourself a Friend of Farnsworth Public Library. Simply drop off the application form and cash or check (payable to The Friends of Farnsworth Library) at the Library. You can also find application forms at the Library’s circulation and reference desks.

Meeting attendance is not required to be a Friend, but we would love to see you there!
​Meetings are held at the Library at 7:00 pm on the third Wednesday of March, April, May, September, October, and November.

Contact The Friends of the Library:

Friends of Farnsworth
c/o Farnsworth Public Library
715 Main Street, Oconto, WI 54153

Contact By E-Mail:
Send an e-mail with “Friends of Farnsworth” in the subject line to oco@ocontolibrary.org.

Policies of Farnsworth Public Library:

Click on a link below to view and print the respective document.

Code of Conduct
Donation of Items Policy, FAQs, & Receipt
Internet Use Policy
Policy for Children
Material Reconsideration Policy
Meeting Room Policy & Contract

If you are interested in our policies on other topics such as Circulation, Collection Development, Public Postings, and more, please click here to contact us.


Farnsworth Public Library is FINE-FREE for almost everything that we lend!
Exceptions are DVDs and video games ($0.50 per day, per item) and hotspots ($5.00 per day).
You may be billed at full cost for items that are never returned, lost, or returned to us damaged or dirty. We may also charge processing or cleaning fees for items that need to be replaced, repaired, or cleaned. We may employ a collections agency to recover outstanding items and bills. Patron accounts that are sent to collections are billed an additional $10.00 to cover the administrative costs involved.

​Remember to stop in, give us a call, or log in to your account at www.infosoup.info to renew your items before they become overdue!