The Ho-Ho-Kus Free Public Library Association was formed in 1924 by members of the Women's Club. It was housed in a small unused room in Borough Hall containing a jail cell for “female malefactors.” The Library was municipalized in 1928 and a Board of Trustees was appointed by the Mayor. After outgrowing its cell in 1930, the Borough purchased an unoccupied real estate office on Franklin Turnpike for the library. The property underwent several renovations between the 1930s and 1950s and is presently an architect's office.
In the 1980s, the library moved to its current location at 91 Warren Avenue. This building was originally a residential house and was bequeathed to the Borough by Caroline Mildreth Worth Pinkham to be used as the public library. Her donation was made in honor of her parents and husband, which is why we are the called Worth-Pinkham Memorial Library.
The current library building was donated to the Borough of Ho-Ho-Kus for use as a public library by Caroline Mildreth Worth Pinkham upon her death in 1984. Mildreth, as she preferred to be called, was an established scholar and writer, known for her interest in comparative religion and love of travel. A graduate of Columbia University, she received her Ph.D. in 1941 in the history and comparative study of religion - the first woman to achieve this milestone.
Books authored by Mildreth include A Bungalow in India; The Status of Woman as Reflected in the Puranas, the Mahabharata, and the Ramayana; The Common Heritage; and Confucius Says: Woman and the Family in World Scriptures, along with many articles. An archive of her papers exists at Columbia University.
Our library is in the process of cataloging and digitizing the collection of documents, photos, and items left to us by Mildreth.
Did you know Ho-Ho-Kus used to be home to a racetrack?
The track, built in the late 1860's, was home to various types of racing over the years before a deadly accident forced its closure in 1938. Learn more. This area is now residential.
Few photographs exist of the track during its use, but the library is home to one album. The creator's identity remains a mystery, although it is thought to be associated with the Duff family.
Cheelcroft is a residential area of Ho-Ho-Kus, developed by engineer and realtor Harold W. Cheel from the late 1920s to the early 1950s. It is located in the northwest section of the borough and reaches just over 100 acres.
Each house was uniquely selected to fit its lot and many feature English, French, or Colonial architectural styles. Homes won awards for design, floorplans, and landscaping, and were featured in a variety of journals and magazines, including McCall's Magazine in May 1936 and House Beautiful Magazine in March 1939. This picturesque neighborhood continues to be a highlight in our small community.