Jay County Public Library 
315 N. Ship Street, Portland, IN  47371 
(260) 726-7890 or fax (260) 726-7317
Monday-Friday 8 to 8   Saturday 8 to 5


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Library Hours
Monday through Friday  
8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.
8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Closed Sundays
Also closed on the following holidays:
Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day, Thanksgiving Day, Christmas, and New Year's Day

Location:  315 N. Ship Street, Portland, Indiana
Two blocks west of Meridian Street (U.S. 27, the main north-south street in Portland) and three blocks south of Votaw Street (U.S.67 and Indiana 26 entering Portland from the west).

About JCPL

Governance and Funding:  
The library is governed by a seven-member board, with members appointed by the Jay County Council, Jay County Commission, or Jay School Corporation. Members are appointed for four-year terms, serve without pay, and meet at least monthly. While the library is primarily funded by county property tax, money is also received from the county option income tax, financial institution tax, excise tax, fines, fees and copy machine receipts.

Board meetings and members

Long Range Plan

The renewal of the library’s long range plan began in December 2008, when consultants Dan and Sharon Wiseman met with two citizen focus groups and members of the board and staff. Strengths and challenges were identified, and suggestions and complaints recorded. The process continued in April 2009 when the consultants returned for a day-long retreat with a group of board members, employees and citizens. The results of the December sessions were discussed, and visioning began. The day resulted in a flurry of notes and enthusiasm. About that time, JCPL committed to joining the Evergreen Indiana Consortium and was assigned an early October 2009 migration date. Before concentrating efforts on preparing the collection and JCPL’s unique circulation system for a smooth migration, a brochure distilling the thoughts of the retreat group was published. The hoopla of the migration, the crush of a record-setting circulation for 2009, and the continuing high circulation in 2010 delayed the writing of the formal plan until 2010, although it was often stated “We are living the plan.”


Brief History of the Jay County Public Library
In 1902 a grant of $15,000 from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation was used to construct the Portland City Library on East Walnut Street.  The building was expanded in 1973.  In 1976 the library taxing district was enlarged to include several townships in the county and the name was changed to Jay County Public Library.

The present 24,000 square foot facility, constructed in 1996, was funded by a general obligation bond issue; donations from local organizations and individuals; and state and federal grants.  The library serves a population of 17,500.  With more than 100,000 items available for use, circulation for 2000 was in excess of 306,000.

More detailed history of the library.

Centennial Celebration Features



Built in 1996, the library building was designed to meet the standards of the Americans with Disabilities Act. A wheelchair is available for patron use in the building. A wheelchair-height online catalog computer is located in the adult area.  Accessible rest rooms are available in the entry foyer and a companion-assisted rest room is near the Story Corner in the children’s wing. 

Large print books and books on CD and cassette are displayed in the adult area.  The children's collection includes many book and tape or CD sets as well.

Book Drop:  
Two outside drops are available for after-hours returns; one is for books, the other for audio visual materials. Materials placed in the drops are considered overdue if returned after closing of the day they are due.

Classes: From time to time library staff members teach classes on such topics as basic library usage, genealogy research techniques, and using the Internet.  Dates are posted at the library and announced in the library's newsletter and local newspaper.

Public computers and Internet Access:  Seven computers are available for public use for Internet and word processing.  Four  additional "Express Internet" stations allow limited time use for quick checks of email or information.  Two Internet stations limited to kid-friendly sites are available near the children's video collection.  An additional station with no Internet connection is available in the Indiana Room for word processing tasks. 

Free wireless Internet access is available throughout the library building for use with your laptop computer or other wireless device. 


Endowment: In 1993 the library established an endowment in the Portland Foundation. Donations are invited in memory of people or in honor of events and should be made directly to the Foundation. The interest income is an annual source of support for programming and capital expenditures.  

Learn more about making gifts to the library of material in honor or in memory of someone special.

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Jay County Public Library  Portland, Indiana