The Becket Athenaeum is the shared community library for Becket and Washington. Located on Route 8 in nearby North Becket, the Athenaeum is an independent nonprofit library established in 1888. (The library is not a municipal department of either town.) The Athenaeum’s Board of Trustees includes a mix of Becket and Washington residents in order to represent both towns well.

The Athenaeum functions as a traditional lending library, as well as organizing many public workshops, community events, and educational programs. All programming at the Athenaeum is fully-funded by grants and is, therefore, free to the community. Sign up for a library card, access the catalog, and learn about upcoming events on their website. Be sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram. The library’s guest WiFi network is available 24/7 from the library grounds and parking lot.

In addition to officially designating the Athenaeum as our public library, the Town of Washington appropriates a modest contribution toward the library’s operating expenses annually to meet the Massachusetts State Library Commissioners’ (MBLC) requirement enabling the Athenaeum to receive the town’s share of the State Aid for Public Libraries each fiscal year.