Hamburg librarian wants to connect with the people

Veronica Barreto-Rosa
Hamburg Reporter

A native of Sidney is the new librarian in Hamburg, but she’s hardly a new name to Hamburg residents. Through her work over the past years, the new librarian has gotten to know Fremont County.

Mary Ellen Longman said she has wanted to be a librarian since she was in high school. She attended library school in Iowa City before coming back to Sidney to help her parents in 1978.

Ellen was supposed to stay in Sidney for only two years. But life took a turn and she stayed. 

Her plan to be a librarian went on hiatus, and she spent 43 years continuing her parents' business, the Sidney Argus Herald.

Last February, Longman  announced that the weekly newspaper would be no more. Her decision ended one of southwest Iowa's longest-running publications.

When the Argus closed, another opportunity opened at the Hamburg Library.

In comparing her work at the paper with her work at the library, Longman said both jobs offer an opportunity to help others.

“You meet a lot of people, and sometimes you can help them,” she said about the jobs. 

Her new experience in Hamburg began on June 16. Ellen says she has been busy figuring out what to do to improve the library.

Ellen’s first task was to apply for a grant—which was approved. Through the State Library, the Federal Government awarded the Hamburg Library a $5,000 grant. 

Longman’s adjustment to the Hamburg Library has been positive.

“Everybody has been so friendly, and kind, and helpful,” said Longman. 

Longman thanked the Library Board for its help. 

Ellen also extended an invitation for residents to buy books at the library, which can be purchased for as little as 25 cents. The sale is ongoing until August.

Mary Ellen Longman is the new librarian at the Hamburg Library.