What’s better than a tiny town in Oregon with stunning views, lovely people, and gorgeous sunsets? Not much. Especially a town that has been around since 1862 with a rich history. With a population of around 1,880 people, including Cove plus the surrounding areas, it's tucked between the Wallowa Mountains and its adjacent ridges. Cove is home to a K-12 charter school, corner market and fueling station, fire department, styling salon, steakhouse, and the Cove Drive-In. Also in Cove is a historic town staple – the public library.
The Cove Library has been there since 1895 – in a beautiful building surrounded by trees. However, the Cove Library has had a rocky past. In 1909, a major fire destroyed the library and all books, except the ones out on loan. After that, the library moved to Cove City Hall, which was unfortunately also destroyed by fire again in 1921. Finally, two years later after fundraising and community support, the current building was completed in 1923.
Even with a past rooted in struggles, the Cove Public Library is a staple in the community and with help and generosity, they’ve been able to continue to be a part of the community even after two devastating fires. The public library is owned and operated by the volunteer run Cove Library Improvement Club. Members of the club volunteer their time and efforts to run the library and keep it well maintained. The Cove Library Improvement Club was formed in 1912, after the first fire, to help build back up the library and its functions. It has continued until today and is a pillar in the community. Not only do they operate the library, but they are people in the community pushing for the success of the area in general.
The library has many aspects that are beneficial to community members. From a plethora of books from the Pioneer Library System (the ability to borrow from over 70 libraries in Eastern Oregon), to wireless internet access, audio books and visual materials, a bigger remodeled library space for additional books and guests, it even features the Cove History Center located in the back of the library.
If you get a chance to experience the lovely little gem that is Cove, Oregon, don’t forget to stop by the library and see the charm that is awaiting you there.