In an article in The Jersey Journal, dated July 29, 1971, then-Library Director William J. Roehrenbeck presented plans for a satellite library, in the vicinity of West Side and Mallory Avenues, to the City Council. In requesting $10,000 for set up, Director Roehrenbeck emphasized that the library’s budget could not accommodate this satellite library, which would be a direct extension of the Miller Branch.
“Morris Pesin, Jersey City West Side councilman, said ‘I think it is deplorable that thousands of our children are being denied an essential part of their educational life. I feel confident that I shall be able to secure the aid of my fellow councilmen in financing this project, which is a mere pittance compared to the millions of dollars that our city is spending.’ It was Pesin who first brought the need for additional library facilities to Roehrenbeck’s attention.”
The West Bergen Lending Service set up operation at 503 West Side Avenue. Its hours were Tuesday through Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 12 noon, and from 1 to 5 p.m. Besides using books from the Miller Branch Library, the West Bergen Lending Service contracted with the McNaughton Co. and rented books for patron lending. The Journal article explained, “Under this plan, the most popular books are rented each month and returned at the end of the month in exchange for new ones.”
Within four years, the West Bergen Lending Service demonstrated its need. A report entitled, Jersey City Public Library Achievement and Progress 1971-1975, gave the satellite library high marks: “….The Library’s service potential was significantly increased with the establishment of the West Bergen Lending Service in a storefront on West Side Avenue in September 1971.”
By 1980, the West Bergen Lending Service grew into a full-fledged library. The West Bergen Branch Library opened daily for library patrons.
In 1990, the West Bergen Branch moved to its current location at 476 West Side Avenue.