Tech-Savvy Library Features Online Perks

LOOK at yearbooks and LISTEN to free music downloads through Hennepin County Library's website.

The library is no longer just a place full of dusty books. Not in the 21st century. And certainly not in Maple Grove. Hennepin County Library is now offering a couple high-tech perks, and you don’t even have to step foot inside the building—although the new 40,000 square-foot facility that opened last May at 8001 Main St. N. is always worth the trip.

Simply visit the Hennepin County Library website, where you can now view 50 of the oldest high school yearbooks via Hennepin County Library’s Minneapolis Central’s James K. Hosmer Special Collections and get free music downloads via Freegal, a new online music database offered by Hennepin County Library.

The yearbook collection includes both Minneapolis-area private and public schools, dating from 1890 to 1922. The yearbooks were digitized due to their immense popularity, as well as the fragile state of the original books. If you have yearbooks to contribute to the collection, contact Special Collections at 612-543-8200 or

Three free Sony music downloads are only clicks away via Freegal, which can be accessed by all those with a Minnesota library card registered at Hennepin County Library. The music, formatted as MP3, is compatable with Macs and PCs, and can be loaded on iPods and iTunes.