The reference desk is located to the right as you enter the lobby and it is our job to try to answer all your questions.  We can assist you in using our public computers,  troubleshoot downloading e-books, place items you request on hold, and direct you to the spot in the library where the items you are looking for are located.  In the Reading Room you will find encyclopedias, directories, almanacs and handbooks on a wide variety of subjects.  Our on-line databases provide extensive access to newspaper and magazine articles and are available to use both in the library and at home.  You can contact us by phone, at 508-830-4250, ext. 205, or email at

When visiting the library, how do I find things in the catalog?

Computers dedicated to searching the Old Colony Library Network catalog are located:

  • 1 in the Reading Room behind the reference desk to the right (on the street side of the building)
  • 1 in the Children’s Room to the right of the entrance, opposite the self-check machine
  • 2 on the second floor at the beginning of the Fiction section on a table by the opening looking down into the Reading Room

You do not need to have a library card to conduct a search, although if you wish to access your account you will need your library card number and PIN to do so.  If all of the Catalog computers are busy or if you need assistance, please ask the staff to help you.

How do I request items from other libraries?

If the item you are looking for is available from another library within the Old Colony Library network, you can place a hold following the steps described here.

If no one in the Old Colony Library network owns the item you are seeking, you can widen your search by clicking on the link to the Virtual Catalog in middle of the top navigation bar on the main catalog search page.  The Virtual Catalog has access to a wide range of public and academic libraries in the state of Massachusedtts. To find an item you will be directed to the Virtual Catalog log-in page, where you  must enter your library card number and choose Plymouth Public Library from the drop-down menu of participating libraries.  You will also need to specify that you want an item sent to the main library or to the Manomet branch when making a request.

If no one in the Virtual Catalog owns the item you are seeking, our Interlibrary Loan program can assist in locating, borrowing, and delivering books and periodical articles from throughout the country.  Interlibrary loan requests may be submitted at the reference desk at the main library or at the Manomet branch.  Requests are usually filled within a few weeks.  However, if the requested title is unusual, out of print, difficult to verify, very new, or in high demand, it can take considerably longer for a request to be filled, so please plan accordingly.  Books borrowed through interlibrary loan circulate for two weeks and cannot be renewed.   Failure to return these items in a timely manner can seriously affect yours and the library’s borrowing privileges.

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Where are the newspapers and magazines?

Our newspaper subscriptions include the Boston Globe, Boston Herald, Patriot Ledger, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, and USA Today, as well as the Old Colony Memorial and the Duxbury Clipper.  We hold the most current editions of these newspapers at the Reference Desk.  The current newspapers are available by request, one paper at a time, to read anywhere in the library.  Older newspapers are kept near the magazines, in the Periodicals section of the library which is located beyond the Tech Etch Technology room on the first floor.  Sunday newspapers of the current week are displayed in a wooden display stand.  To the right of the newspaper display stand is the Newspaper Room, where we store copies of newspapers from the current and previous two months.

The Periodicals section is where you fill find copies of magazines.  The current edition of each magazine is on display for use in the library.  If you lift up the display shelf, you will find copies of issues from the past year, which can be checked out.  We subscribe to a wide variety of publications, including such titles as Cooks Illustrated, Consumer Reports, Forbes Magazine, People, and Shape.  The Periodicals section has a reading area with some comfortable easy chairs and low tables so that you settle in and relax while you look through your selections.

 Where are the quiet study areas?

For individual study:  on the first floor at the back of the building there are a dozen private study carrels with windows looking out into the garden.  Each of the desks is equipped with an electrical outlet.  For group study: also on the first floor, along the side of the building adjacent to Nook Road, are a series of bays holding tables which can accomodate between two and four people at a time.  We do not have any private study rooms.

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Where to find and how to post community flyers, brochures, forms?

There are two large bulletin boards to each side of the reference desk where flyers and posters about upcoming local events are on view.  Postings about jobs, rentals, business cards and so on are displayed on another large board close to the circulation desk.  Please do not put postings up without permission.  Please give anything you wish to be posted to the staff at the Reference Desk – we will make sure it gets displayed in the appropriate place.  

In the Periodicals section (near the reading area) you will find brochures, informational pamphlets, and free monthly publications (such as the Pet Gazette).

Where do I get tax forms?

Taxes2During tax season only (from January 2 to April 15), tax forms are available at the Main Library; they can be found in a wire display rack in the lobby (opposite the elevator); the Manomet Branch also has copies of the same forms.   Forms and instructions are made available as we receive them.  For more general details on tax information, click here.



Where do I find movies and music?

The Audiovisual department of the library is on the left hand side of the main lobby located behind the circulation desk.

  • Movies and television shows are organized by title (for example, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone will be under the letter “H”).
  • The music CDs are grouped by genre (such as classical, pop, jazz) and are organized by the first letter of the last name of the artist (for example, cds featuring Bruce Springsteen will be under the letter “S” in the rock section).

Where are the audiobooks (“books on tape”)?

  • Fiction audiobooks  (novels and stories on CD) can be found in the front of the library next to the shelves where the books on hold are kept.  The audiobooks in this section are organized by author (for example, books by Nicholas Sparks will be under the letter “S”.
  • Nonfiction audiobooks (such as biographies, histories, true crime stories) are located with the books in the nonfiction section of the library on the first floor towards the back of the building.

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