Germantown has a library thanks to three brothers – Ray, Jack and Paul Bergmann – who had a love of reading and a soft spot for children. Ray, the oldest, died in 1977. When Jack fell ill with cancer, he set up a trust fund and told his brother Paul that he wanted to build a library in Germantown. Jack passed away in 1992 and the community was stunned to learn he had set aside over $400,000 for a library.
Establishment of the library was overwhelmingly supported by voters, with 78% of the votes cast positively for The Germantown Public Library District in a referendum on April 20, 1993. With a portion of the trust fund and a grant from the State of Illinois, construction began. The library opened in January 1995 with 3,300 books and residents standing in line to get their library cards.