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Art. 12. Every member may detain each book or set, delivered aforesaid, if it be a folio, four weeks ; a quarto, three weeks; an octavo, two weeks; a book or set of duodecimo, or volume of less size, or a pamphlet, one week.
Art. 13. Any member who shall detain a book or. set, longer than the time above limited, respectively, shall forfeit and pay to the Librarian, for every day a volume is so detained, if it be a folio, four cents; a quarto, three cents; an octavo, two cents; if it be a duodecimo or smaller volume, or a pamphlet, one cent; provided, always, if a whole set be taken out and a part of it detained longer than the time above limited, the fine shall be exacted for each book not returned, and if such book be detained one week beyond the time above limited, the forfeiture shall be doubled.
Art. 14. The holders of all books, not returned at the time specified by the Board of Direction, previous to the annual examination, shall be liable, at the discretion of the Board, to have their names exposed at the annual meeting, as defaulters.
Art. 15. If any member lose or injure a book, he shall make the same good to the Librarian ; and if the book lost or injured, be one of a set, he shall pay to the Librarian, for the use of the Association, the full value of said set, and may thereupon receive the remaining volumes as his property.
Art. 16. No member shall be permitted to receive a book from the Library until he shall have paid all sums due from him to the Association, and made good all damages and losses which he may have occasioned.
Art. 17. No member shall lend a book belonging to this Association, to any person out of the dwelling-house or counting-room of said member.
Art. 18. Each member shall have the privilege 'if reading in the Library Room, any volume, though at the same time in possession of a book belonging to the Association; yet it will be considered an invariable rule, that such book must be resigned to any member drawing it from the Library Room.
Art. 19. No periodical work shall be taken from the room, until one month shall have elapsed, from . the time of its being received.
Art. 20. The books marked in the catalogue with an asterisk, and such others as may from time to time be specially designated by the Board, shall upon no account be taken from the Library Room, any rule or regulation to the contrary notwithstanding.
Art. 21. The Librarian shall enter upon a slate all books drawn to be read in the Library Room, and when returned to him, after due examination, shall erase the entry.
Art. 22. No person shall be permitted to smoke in the Library Room, spit on the floor, derange or injure the furniture thereof, conduct in any way inconsistent with decorum, or hold conversation otherwise than in a whisper.
Art. 23. Any member wishing to withdraw from the Association must inform the Librarian of it; see that his resignation is registered, and pay up his dues and fees; else he will be considered as continuing a member, and charged accordingly.
Note.—It is earnestly recommended, that members (whose convenience it may suit) take such booksKas they may draw from the Library, (o their respective dwellings for perusal.
OFFICERS FOR 1820.
S. Caldwell Cleveland, J. C. Dinnies, Jr.
J. L. Frame, Geo. W. Root.
TO THE MEMBERS.
• The salutary influence of well directed literary pursuits on the mind and heart of man, and more especially of youth, is too well attested by the experience of the past, to require any comment in favor of its importance. Institutions founded by a discriminating zeal for mental improvement, have, in every age. received the encouragement of the thinking and virtuous classes of the community, and been productive of solid advantages to society. But particularly when they emanate from the ardour of youthful ambition in this praise-worthy cause, they reflect transcendent honour on their authors, and prefer the most forcible appeals to public patronage. In the incipient stages of their existence, the incredulous and the wary may perhaps question the ability of young men to organize, upon efficient principles, an institution which is to boast of any useful results, or lay claim to any permanency of character. But the lapse of time, in removing doubts and suspicions of this nature, insures success, and affords the strongest and most incontroverti ble evidence of their present and future usefulness
Appreciating these remarks, as a fair exposition of public opinion, the Directors of the New-York Mercantile Library enjoy the most gratifying sensations of pride and hope, in now presenting to their fellow members a summary view of the flourishing condition, and future prospects of their Association. Years have passed by since its first establishment, and have successively witnessed its numbers augmenting, and its prosperity increasing. To us and to those clerks, whom a due consideration of the subject will hereafter enrol among our number, it presents privileges of inestimable value. When our daily business is concluded, the youthful mind, fatigued by the toilsome labours of the counting-house, naturally seeks relaxation in the variety of its pursuits; for inactive repose affords no relief to its irrepressible energies. Pleasures and amusements, which at best but beguile the passing hour, and oftentimes allure to more dangerous indulgences, then present themselves under the most seductive forms. In yielding to their fascinations, evil habits, are contracted, which the monitions of our own hearts are unavailing to check, nor the wisdom of more matured experience to reform.
The original object of the New-York Mercantile Library was, to substitute, in lieu of such pleasures, enjoyments of a more useful and exalted character. The zeal with which this object has been pursued, and the success which has rewarded it, redound to the credit of every member of the institution. Our library is now enriched by the possession of upwards of two thousand volumes, comprising not only the productions of the most eminent authors on the arts, sciences, and the various branches of solid learning, but also the most approved works of fancy and polite literature. To this valuable treasury of intellectual wealth, daily additions, are made from the funds of the society, and by generous donations.
Since our annual meeting, held in December last, the public attention has been more particularly directed towards this institution. During the short period intervening, upwards of 700 volumes have been added to its shelves, in different departments of literature, and more than 150 clerks .have become members of this Association.
Our indebtedness to many respectable and commercial gentlemen, who have yielded to us their countenance and sustained us by their liberality, is cheerfully acknowledged, and repaid with heart-felt gratitude; and a sanguine anticipation is indulged in, that the location of our Library will shortly be altered by n removal to some public building in a more business p;irt of the city. Such a situation would not only add dignity and increased reputation to this institution, but would also supply to merchants and foreigners an important accommodation in the many emergencies occurring in business transactions, where an immediate reference to works on mercantile law, maps, charts, or miscellaneous subjects, becomes desirable. All periodical publications of value are subscribed for, and laid on the table of our Reading Room, which is at all times open and accessible to members and visiters.
These views cannot be deemed visionary, if our fellow members be actuated by a proper spirit. But for such purposes, it is necessary that we should duly estimate the commercial honour of our city, and dearly cherish the professional character which we are preparing to assume. It is essential that we should not content ourselves merely with profiting by the advantages to be derived from this society, but that we should also seek, with an enterprising zeal, to extend its invaluable privileges to others.
To such benevolent offices the benign spirit of philanthropy prompts us; and if we are unmindful of her injunctions, we do not discharge the duties which, as citizens, we owe our country. To her mercantile opulence, and her brilliant commercial reputation, the sinews of her strength and the resources of her prosperity, that country is indebted for the perpetuity of