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Share your Queens Public Library story online to enter our sweepstakes!

For our 125th anniversary, we are collecting your memories of Queens Public Library. Send us your photos and notes in English, 中文, বাংলা, or Español, and we’ll add them to our map of Queens Libraries over the years. Submit your QPL story online today! 

View Sweepstakes Rules.

Each month, a lucky contributor will win a prize package of QPL swag and signed copies of the following books.

QPL 125 Stories Sweepstakes Winners

January winner
Janet Robinson

Three years ago I went to a library near my church to use the computer and I was passing printed pages down the line to the person on my left - who just kept printing and printing, one page at a time. Eventually, I turned over a page - which I suppose is like reading someone else’s mail - and recognized it as choral music. So I commented to the person, “You must be very musical,” which caused us to start talking. Turns out, we had several close friends in common, and she introduced me to an historical style of religious singing, called “Sacred Harp.” We are both pretty conservative, we are women of faith, we both love multiple genres of music, now we sing in the same church choir and we eat supper together 2 or 3 nights a week. Just because one day I went to a different library.

December winner
Edwin Wong

My name is Edwin Wong and I have been going to Queens Libraries (Sunnyside and Maspeth) since I was a child with my late mother and 2 brothers, to the present day when I bring my own kids to the Forest Hills Branch, where we live. I even wrote a poem about it and am submitting. I missed the deadline earlier this year for the poem submission as I ran for City Council and missed the deadline unfortunately. So thank you again and I look forward to donating to the QPL Foundation as I know one of the Board members.

In 2015, I established the Forest Hills Asian Association and from our inception we have partnered with Queens Library Forest Hills Branch and extraordinary Branch Manager Hwai-min Wood. We have had a about 10 events over the years and greatly appreciate the QPL partnership with the branch and also with Queens Memory and also the New Americans program. Best wishes to QPL for next 125 years.

Some of the events with Flyers uploaded:
2016 – Feb 6 – Queens Memory - Lunar New Year celebration at FH library
2016 – May 28 - APA heritage month celebration with Queens Memory
2016 – October 29 – Reunification film –
2018 – May 26th – APA Heritage month – Queens Memory - Memories of Migration
2018 - Oct 26 – End go Life planning , Queens Memory
2018 – Nov 3 – Diwali – New Americans Program

Special thank you to Hwai-min Wood, Forest Hills Branch Manager.

New York City born and raised,
Writing this poem to give QPL praise.
Visited different locations since I was a child,
Forest Hills, Maspeth, LIC and Sunnyside.

Early memories of my late mother with 3 boys in tow,
To recent visit with my son pulling down books and me whispering no!
From events with the Forest Hills Asian Association,
To going to vote for Asian American representation.

Even learning how to run for City Council,
For all of these experiences I am profoundly grateful.
Congratulations to QPL on turning 125,
Thank you for the memories thus far in my life.

November winner
Anna Thomas

Queens Public Library is the first English-language public library I've been able to use in 11 years! I'm a U.S. citizen living abroad and while I finally know I can also get another library card from my hometown in person if I pay a similar fee, I haven't been able to make it back to the U.S. since COVID started.

I am *a s t o n i s h e d* at what has happened to U.S. libraries and what services are now available. Buying all English books and audiobooks out of pocket was the only option available to me before, and I would never have been able to afford the material I check out from Queens Public Library.

The audiobooks help me get to sleep, make household chores easier to tolerate, and give me something interesting to listen to during walks. I can even watch the Great British Baking Show and Vera! Being a library member has improved my quality of life so, so much.

October winner
Laura Polito

I am 67 years old and all my life have depended on the public library for help with school projects, as well as a place to go to read and find other worlds through books. I found peaceful times there even when my school mates were there just using the encyclopedia copying information for school reports and making a racket and the librarian shooshing them to be quiet! In the 50s and 60s not many people had encyclopedias in their homes, so everyone came to the library to read up on all subjects that our teachers gave us to look into. I would take a few books home to read and since I was already an avid reader at a young age would generally bring the books back before the deadline. I always found comfort there reading away until my grandmother literally came and had to pull me out to go home.

As I grew older, the library is still a source of learning, peaceful time and other things. You can rent a movie, use the computers and attend all the free courses/programs that the library has to offer. Before the pandemic, I would attend the senior arts and crafts classes offered there and was happy and satisfied with the results. I also had my income tax done there for free.

I have always loved the peace of the library, all the knowledge I have gained by reading the many books which introduced me to new worlds and friends in the books. I hope that the library will last forever, even though books are slowly becoming a thing of the past. Thank you

September winner
Joan Curcio

August winner
Mary Madden

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South Hollis Library
Queens Public Library
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Queens Borough Public Library, Central Branch
Queens Public Library
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Bellerose Library
Queens Public Library

Jane Jacobs Oral History

Hwai-Min Wood Interview

Manny Figueroa Interview

You can also record your Queens Public Library memories by phone at 855-QNS-LOVE.

Have more to share?
If you want to join our team recording oral history interviews about our libraries, please follow these simple instructions.

Anyone can create an interview like this one with QPL Hip Hop Coordinator, Ralph McDaniels.

Now is the perfect time to tell us about a staff member or program that made a difference in your life!