Special women who helped create Dayton library

Hilde Peabody died Oct. 3, 1999. Lora Stern and Trina Jacobson have also passed away during the past few years.

The passing of each of these very special and talented women brings fond recollections of a small group of individuals who, through hard work and dedication, overcame every obstacle and brought their dream to reality. As this group dwindles, area residents should be aware of how these relative newcomers decided to make a positive difference in their community

Though unknown to each other until they arrived in Dayton, a common love of books and reading became their bond, uniting them in a singular cause - the creation of a branch library in Dayton. The new Dayton Valley Library is a direct result of these early efforts.

Dayton had no library until these dynamic, persistent ladies, with the assistance of their husbands, established the first one in a small, dilapidated room at the Dayton Community Center in the late 1980s. They collected books from everyone and everywhere.

Trina Jacobson became the representative to the county Library Board of Trustees. Along with Trina, Judy Harris, a retired professional librarian, Fran Walton and husband Floyd, Leona and Al Monroe, Hilde and Lora formed the original Dayton Friends of the Library, putting Dayton into the Lyon County Branch Library system.

Realizing larger quarters were needed, and unable at that time to afford a new facility, the library was moved to Sutro Square, next to the former video store. This was a little roomier, but with a leaky roof and the increasing needs of a growing population, it was becoming obvious a new library was needed.

In 1992 Trina put together a fundraising committee of Chairman Bill Rogers, Lyon County district attorney at that time; Bill Higgins, Dayton High School vice principal; Marv Worthen, Dayton Elementary principal, Rev. Jerry Peterson, of the Dayton Calvary Baptist Church; Dean Haymore, a bishop of Dayton Branch of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints; Steve Chance, Lynx Golf Plant manager; and Katie Silva.

The fundraising committee, beginning with only $5,000 in the bank, set a goal of raising $400,000. Assisted by Nevada State Library Federal Title II matching funds and a commitment of $125,000 from the county, the committee set out on a campaign to meet their goal.

Overcoming objections from some county commissioners and Library Board members as to the location of the new facility (through a concerted effort by a growing number of members of the Friends of the Library and a large segment of the community), it was decided it would be built at the preferred site on Old Dayton Valley Road, across from the schools and next to the Senior Center.

It took another fight to keep a majority of the commissioners convinced to follow through with the county's previous commitment of $125,000 in matching funding.

Following an endless series of bake sales, pot lucks, yard sales, and other fundraisers by the library volunteers and generous donations from the community, the dream was fulfilled. The grand opening of the Dayton Valley County Branch Library was held on Feb. 1, 1997.

While many took part in the fund raising and have continued to stay involved since the library's early beginnings, this community should never forget the gratitude owed to those six "newcomers." They showed what can be accomplished when one has a sense of commitment, dedication and a positive dream for their community. And Judy and Leona have not stopped yet. (Fran moved out of the community several years ago, but still keeps in touch.)

In my 23 years as a resident of Dayton, I have never observed another circumstance that brought this community together as the library building project did.

Trina, Hilde, Lora, Judy, Fran and Leona set an example all should follow.

Dayton is a community - made up of natives, long time residents and increasing numbers of newcomers. How many have taken the time to see what they can do to make their community a better place to live? How many have sat back and simply complained about what is not available and wonder why government has not provided it for you?

The Dayton football team is reaching heights never before achieved. It has

been a long struggle to find success in this sport, but it appears a new level of accomplishment has finally been attained. New standards of performance are being set for future athletes to aim for.

I don't know if this team will make the playoffs for the first time in school history, but the opportunity is still there. That has never before been a possibility this late in the season. I wish the team all the best ... and will be rooting for a big win tonight. A win against Yerington would not only be a first, it would be an accomplishment worthy of wiping out years of frustration for all every former DHS football player.

Think about it.


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