Friends of the Ann Arbor District Library

FAADL, or the Friends of the Ann Arbor District Library, have been supporting the library since 1953 when the library was still known as the Ann Arbor Public Library. The Friends became incorporated on May 22, 1953, and was officially recognized as an independent non-profit organization. One of our first sales was in 1954 and raised $348 for the library. That amount has continued to rise over the history of the Friends and thanks to all of the wonderful people who support the Friends and the AADL, we now raise $100,000 annually for the library!

Friends used to house all of the donations at their houses, which occasionally happens from time to time if we get an incredible amount of donations. However, in 1977 the library was able to give us dedicated space in the basement, which has lovingly been referred to as “The Dungeon” by volunteers since then.

The Friends now include approximately 250 members who annually support the Friends with their donations and time as volunteers. There are about 125 volunteers that actively work in the book shop or The Dungeon. These volunteers regularly put in around 1,000 hours each month sorting books, working in the shop selling them, and preparing for the 4-5 major weekend sales each year. Most of the volunteers have been working for many, many years with the Friends, and quite a few of them retired from either the AADL or the Public School system.

For over 65 years FAADL has stuck beside the library, supporting them and their mission of providing literacy services to the public of Ann Arbor and beyond.

A Brief History of the Friends, taken from A History of the Friends of the Ann Arbor Public Library copyright 1988 Friends of the AAPL, and conversations with current volunteers.

–Melanie Baldwin
Friends of the Ann Arbor District Library Book Shop Director, 2016-2018