Frequently Asked Questions
1. How do I get a library card?
Free Ocean State Library cards are issued to Rhode Islanders upon presentation of photo identification and proof of current address. Parents or legal guardians must sign applications for children under the age of 17.
2. Can I get a library card online?
Adults (18 years or older) may download and fill out an OSL Registration Form. You then need to print out the form and bring it, along with photo ID and proof of current address into the library in order to receive a library card.
If you need to place a hold on materials, you may register online for a temporary card and that will allow you to place holds. In order to pick up any materials, you must come to the library in person, with a photo ID and proof of current address, and fill out an application form (or bring in the form mentioned above).
Important Things to know about your library card:
- All library card holders must accept responsibility for the materials borrowed and any fines or fees that may be incurred.
- Library cards are not transferable. Do not loan your card to anyone else, and do not take out materials on anyone else’s card.
- For your own protection, please report a lost card immediately.
3. How can I replace a lost library card?
Replacement of lost library cards requires identification and proof of current address. There is a $1.00 fee for replacement cards. Please let us know if your library card has been stolen.
4. What kinds of materials can I borrow and how long do I get to check them out?
The library offers a variety of print and digital resources. Print items available for checkout include books and magazines; museum passes and coupons are also available at the circulation desk.
The library’s electronic collection includes videos (DVDs, Blu-Ray discs, and streaming media), ebooks, audiobooks (CDs, MP3 CDs, Playaways, as well as files that you can download to your mobile device), and music CDs. Ebooks and audiobooks borrowed from one of our digital platforms automatically expire at the end of their lending periods; they will disappear from your device and you will not accrue late fees.
5. How do I return library materials?
Simply bring the materials into the library during open hours, or drop them in the book drops (at either the Spring Street or Parking Lot entrances) if the library is closed.
6. Can I return Newport Public Library materials to another library?
Newport Public Library materials may be returned to other public libraries in Rhode Island with the exception of non-Ocean State Libraries interlibrary loans which must be picked up at and returned to the Newport Public Library. Also, museum passes must be returned to the Newport Public Library.
7. Can I return DVDs and other non-print materials to another library?
The Newport Public Library allows its non-print materials to be returned to other Ocean State Libraries. Not all Ocean State Libraries allow this. You will need to check with the library that owns the materials you have borrowed.
8. Can I return DVDs and other non-print materials through the book drop?
Yes, but please use the specially designed AV book drops located at both entrances to the library.
9. How do I renew a book?
Newport Public Library materials may be renewed, if they have not been requested by another library patron. Exceptions are Star books, feature film DVDs, and museum passes. Materials may be renewed in person, by calling the Circulation Desk (401-847-8720, x201), or by visiting the online catalog and logging in to your account.
10. How do I request (place a hold on) a book?
You may request materials not currently on the shelf at the Newport Public Library but owned by another Ocean State Library. There is no fee for this service.
- Users with cards in good standing may make a request themselves using the Ocean State Libraries online catalog from any computer with an internet connection.
- You may telephone the library at 401-847-8720 x208 and have a staff member place the request for you.
- If you are in the library, staff would also be happy to place a request for you in person.
11. What if the Ocean State Library system does not own the book I am looking for?
The Newport Public Library participates in an interlibrary loan service with academic, special, and out-of-state libraries. Call the Reference Department (401-847-8720, x208) for assistance.
For more information, please call the Circulation Department (401-847-8720, x201) or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.