History

The Mary L. Cook Public Library has been serving the Waynesville community for 100 years!  Dr. Mary L. Cook founded the Waynesville Library in 1917.  In 1961, the library was renamed in her honor.  Mary Leah Cook, descended from South Carolina Quakers, was born September 25, 1869, in a log house northeast of Waynesville, Ohio.  As a child she moved to Harveysburg, Ohio, where Dr. Maria Romine encouraged her medical career.  Mary was one of three girls in the first Harveysburg High School graduating class in 1887.  She later earned her teacher's degree from Earlham College, Richmond, Indiana.  Mary taught briefly at Harmony Grove Country School at Waynesville.  Dr. Cook received her medical degree from the University of Chicago in 1908.  The kindly horse and buggy doctor practiced medicine in Waynesville for over 50 years.  She passed peacefully into local history March 7, 1965.