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COMMUNITY VOICES

How Forest Home Library is important to YOU!

We want to know how Forest Home Library is important to YOU. Use the form below to share your photographs, memories, and thoughts about Forest Home Library’s future. We will be updating this page regularly to include as many of your voices as possible! You can also email your thoughts and photos to saveforesthomelibrary@gmail.com OR find us on Facebook

Thanks for submitting!

Juan R:

“I grew up on the South side of Milwaukee. In summer, if I didn't go to Mexico to visit family, I was either swimming or at this library. I read A LOT of books there. I had allergies and being in the library reading didn't bother me. Honestly, it helped me learn english better, just from all the reading, and I was fascinated by all the different books there. Even after school, I would bike there or on my way home stop there to do homework and read. That library, Forest Home Library, was my home away from home all through grade school and my freshman year in High School. I'll never forget that.”

K. Kenealy:

“I was five years old when the Forest Home Library opened. I remember the excitement leading up to the grand opening of the new building. You see – it wasn’t often there was a brand-new building that opened in my south side neighborhood.

The anticipation of opening day was palpable. My mom said we were going to the grand opening. I remember walking up to the building, it looked new, it smelled new inside, and everyone there was excited to finally be able to use the new branch library. All the usual dignitaries were there to “open” the new facility.

Inside was beautiful. Light and airy. It was so spacious and bright, and it smelled new! I remember picking out my stack of books and heading up to the desk to check them out. Then I went back a couple of days later for another stack. 

I remember participating in summer reading programs. One summer I was hooked on “Encyclopedia Brown – Boy Detective” books. I read every one that the library had. I used that library from the time I was in grade school (using the kids’ section – with the smaller furniture) through my junior high years – when I met friends for study groups (and let’s face it – to hang out). We were self-important – sitting at tables in the adult section of the library. 

Eventually I grew up and moved out of the neighborhood. I remember feeling sad when I heard that the Forest Home branch was closing. That building was a big part of my youth. In my mind, it will always be light and airy, spacious and bright, and it will always smell new.”

Denise K:

"I’m a professional writer. That place (Forest Home Library) saved my life, made me who I am. I loved that place. Lived there. Just magical. It gave books context, dignity and gravitas."

Krisann R.

"I just love the Forest Home Library. I think it’s like if Frank Lloyd Wright and Mies van de Rohe had a baby, that’s how I would describe the Forest Home Library. It’s so great. 

And it’s not necessarily a famous building by a famous architect from Milwaukee. It’s not a corporate headquarters or a museum on the lakefront or something that we all recognize immediately as iconic. I mean it’s the architect of the Kohl’s grocery stores! But people in Milwaukee really do identify with that more populist image. Von Grossmann, the architect, also designed the Kohl’s grocery store where my dad worked for most of his career. I mean my parents met at a Kohl’s grocery store so it has a really deep, personal meaning for me...and for a lot of other people in Milwaukee I think.”

 

F. Ornelas


"This was my neighborhood Library as young man growing up Milwaukee’s near south side. I went to five different MPS schools during grade school until my father was able to buy a home, then went to nearby Kosciusko Middle School and then Milwaukee Tech High School and this was the place I spent many hours studying and leveling the playing field for myself by getting educated! I loved this building and was one of the buildings that inspired me to get into the Architectural profession!"

B. Tanzilo
 

"When I moved to Milwaukee, the Forest Home Library was my neighborhood branch for about seven years, during which time I was there all the time to feed my passion for reading. I hope this landmark Midcentury Modern building will live on as a beacon in its neighborhood."

A. Meyer
 

"I spent many days here with my children reading and snuggling. The space is beautiful. it's open and inviting. The natural light that enters was clearly intentional. You can't spend time here and not fall in love with this building."