The evolution of the local library has been something to behold. Time was libraries were buildings which contained books and not much else. You went in, quietly, and chose from fiction, non-fiction, biography and reference. Those reference books, encyclopedias and such, were not to be taken out.
In those days you learned the Dewey Decimal System and how to use the card catalog, which contained index cards for every book in the library and where to find it. So if you knew the alphabet and your numbers you were good to go.
Once you had your book, you went to the desk where the librarian would stamp a card which was placed in an envelope inside the front of the book, which told you when to return it. Understand, that all of this was done quietly, because libraries were places of silence
As time progressed, libraries formed partnerships such as the Suburban Library System, which made it possible to get materials from other libraries.
Nowadays, the buildings might still be called libraries, but they are havens of enjoyment for those curious about any number of subjects and pursuits. You can still get your fill of the written word, but libraries offer educational programs, maker spaces, production studios and more to broaden the spectrum of learning and enjoyment.
In places where once people were told to whisper, they can now hear lectures and videos and pictures of faraway places.
Oh, yes, you can still take out a book at the library and I encourage you to do so. Take a field trip to our local libraries and take advantage of the many offerings which they have for all ages.