Other Libraries Available to South Berwick Residents
Berwick Public Library and D. A. Hurd Library in North Berwick, are also part of MILS, the Maine Infonet Library System and you may request items through MILS from those libraries any time. The Rollinsford Public Library, the William Fogg Library in Eliot and the South Berwick Public Library have borrowing agreements in place that allows residents to get a free membership at these libraries. Students attending Marshwood Public Schools who live in Eliot and Rollinsford are eligible for memberships. Bring personal identification and something that verifies a residence to sign up for a membership at the other libraries, or if you are a student, a transcript or report card that verifies where you attend our school.
The Portland Public Library
Residents of York and Cumberland County are eligible for free memberships at the Portland Public Library. The South Berwick Public Library can issue cards to residents who show photo identification and proof of residency. Cards take up to two weeks to become active and then they may be used for all services of the Portland Public Library including on-line services such as Chilton’s, Hoopla (free downloads of movies, music and audiobooks) , Mango Languages, business research tools and much more.
Borrowing from Other Libraries
Members of the South Berwick Public Library may request items through MILS Interlibrary Loan which gives access to nearly 100 libraries and over 4.5 million unique titles. You can often get an item delivered to your home library within two weeks. If no library in Maine can lend the Item you wish to request we can try to get it from other libraries in the country. Library staff will search out a location from which to borrow for you. It is not possible to borrow titles that are less than a year old. AV materials can be more difficult to borrow. Click here for How to Request Items From Other Libraries.
Maine Reciprocal Borrowing Program
The Maine Reciprocal Borrowing Program allows anyone with a valid library card from one of 68 participating libraries to visit any of the other participating libraries and check out materials in person. It’s referred to as “walk-in” borrowing because it essentially turns your local library card into a “statewide” library card!
The South Berwick Public Library is part of the Maine Infonet Library System (MILS). We have joined other small Maine libraries to give you access to direct requesting from the larger library community in Maine.
Using MILS, you can place requests on-line yourself for items from other libraries in the system.
We will notify you when items are ready, and you pick them up from your home library. No more waiting for the library to open to call and request. Notifications are by email but we can call you or you can enable text notifications if you prefer.
How to Search the Catalog and Make a Request for an Item
- The search box on each page of the library web site is already set to search by “keyword” in the South Berwick Public Library collection. You can use the drop down menus to change these options in order to search by options like title or author.
- When the search results come up you can browse through the results list. If you see what you want, click the blue title of the item and the format (book, movie or audiobook) that you are interested in.
- Click on the request button if you decide to put it on hold.
- The next screen will ask you to enter your name and 14 digit library card number. Your full name is not needed – you can use just your first or last name if you want.
- A confirmation page will open telling you the request has been successful and the item will be sent to the South Berwick Public Library as soon as it’s available. When your item arrives, you will receive a notification that it is ready to be picked up
Your account is set up for you to receive notifications via email which are sent our automatically through Maine Infonet Library System. (Phone notifications are available upon request.)
You should receive messages when:
- Items you are waiting for are ready for you
- Items are almost due
- Items are overdue (1st courtesy notice)
- Items are overdue (2nd courtesy notice)
- Items are billed for replacement costs (overdue 3 weeks)
Quirks & Troubleshooting Tips
There is a persistent system-wide problem with the email notification system in that messages are frequently not received. People often get a bill before receiving any courtesy notices. You might find them in your junk or spam folder. We apologize that this handy service is not very reliable.
Here are some suggestions for work-arounds:
- “Whitelist” these two email addresses by going into your spam folder, clicking one of the notifications and choosing to “never block sender and/or sender’s domain.”
- Enable text messages by going into your account on the MILS catalog via our website and signing up for SMS Alerts.
- Check your on-line account which will show due dates, items ready for you, late fees and renewal status for all your transactions.
- Keep your checkout receipt handy and put dates on your calendar.
Library staff are ready to show you how to use MILS anytime you visit the library or we can walk you through the process on the phone.
If no library in Maine has the item available to borrow, contact the South Berwick Public Library staff and we can see if we can borrow for you outside of the state system. Movies, audios and books that are published within the past year are not requestable outside of Maine.