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New Online Library Catalog Coming Mid-April: How You Can Prepare



Over the weekend of April 14-16, the McHenry Public Library and the other 24 libraries in our consortium will be migrating to a new online catalog/patron account system. You’ll see a new look as you search for library materials, and will be introduced to new features to improve your library experience.

Before April 14

Save Your Reading Lists and Checkout History

Unfortunately, neither your reading lists nor your checkout history will migrate to the new system, but we’ve made it possible for you to save both before the system goes down at 9 p.m. on Friday, April 13 (this only applies if you have created lists and checked the “Record my checkout history” box in your account preferences).

Email/Print Your Reading Lists     

You can email or print your current reading lists before April 13:

  1. Log in to your library account and click on My Lists.
  2. Select a list on the left-hand side, then use the check box next to the “Select an Action” drop down to select all items in the list. Click on the blue “Select an Action” arrow, then choose either email or print.

Export Your Checkout History

  • To export your checkout history, use this link to log in to your account. Enter your library card number, your password IN ALL CAPS and email address to have your history emailed to you as a spreadsheet. Note: your current holds or current checked out items will not be included in your checkout history.

Note: If you have selected “Record my checkout history” in our current system, that setting will transfer to the new system -- you will not need to opt in again.  If you never opted in for this feature, you can do so in the new system in your account preferences. You’ll be able to create new lists in the new system as well.


April 14-16

  • The system will go down starting at 9 p.m. Friday, April 13, and the new system should be up and running on Tuesday, April 17
  • You can still check out items during the downtime, but you'll need your valid library card with you -- staff won't be able to look you up in the system. 
  • During the downtime, you (nor library staff) will not have access to your account to renew items, place holds or pay fines, so we recommend you renew/return items before then, or hold onto them until the new system is up (we will be extending due dates). 
  • Items returned to the library April 14-16 will not be checked in until after the new system is live, so they’ll remain on your card, but you will not incur late fees. 
  • The catalog may not be up to date during the downtime, so feel free to call us about item availability. You can also visit other area libraries to see if they have the item you’re looking for. 


After April 17: Features of the New Catalog

  • A better, faster browsing experience. The new catalog is optimized for smart phones and tablets, making it great for on-the-go browsing. If you have our catalog bookmarked in your browser, be sure to update the web address.

  • You can create an easy-to-remember user name to log in to the new system (rather than trying to remember your 14-digit barcode each time.)

  • You can now select to be notified about holds and overdues by text message in addition to email or phone.

  • Your items will automatically renew 3 days before your due date, up to 2 times, if there are no holds on them. (This excludes non-renewable items.) You’ll also receive a courtesy reminder when your materials can no longer be automatically renewed.

  • You can pick up your holds at any of the 25 partner libraries in the consortium, not just your home library.

  • Your library account password will be the same in the new system, except it must be entered in ALL CAPS. For example, if your password is currently lovebooks1, it will be LOVEBOOKS1 in the new catalog.

  • Keep track of what you want to read and watch with the My Lists feature, or opt-in to save your checkout history to revisit old favorites.

  • The Map It feature shows other libraries in the area that have the item you’re looking for if our copy is checked out.
  • When you have overdue items, you can get an estimate on how much you owe with the fine estimator.

  • Change the catalog to another language to make searching easier for non-English users.


New Self-Checkouts/Automated Returns

Another project we’re working on to improve service is a new item identification system that will make checking out and returning items easier.

  • Our new self-check stations will allow you to pay fines with a credit/debit card and check out items easier!

  • A new state-of-the-art return system at our drive-up window will allow items to be taken off your account instantly – just load them one at a time! Watch for this in the spring, too.

Please feel free to call the library at (815) 385-0036 or stop by if you have any questions about the new catalog/account system, or click here to read more details about it in our spring newsletter. We hope you like its new features!



Earn Your High School Diploma -- Career Online High Schoolcareer online high school

McHenry Public Library District, in partnership with the Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS) and Gale, part of Cengage Learning, offers District residents 21 and older* the opportunity to earn an accredited high school diploma and career certificate online through Career Online High School. 

The library has purchased five scholarships for qualified adult learners who are looking to expand their career opportunities, prepare for workforce entry, and continue their education.

To be considered for the program, applicants need to successfully complete an online self-assessment and an in-person interview with the library's enrollment team.

If you are selected for the program, you will have the opportunity to: 

  • Take classes online
  • Have the flexibility to access classwork 24/7.
  • Be supported by certified instructors and an academic coach.
  • Earn an accredited high school diploma while preparing for a career in one of 8 high-demand, high-growth fields.
  • Graduate with the tools to advance in your profession or take the next step in your education.

Once enrolled in the program, Career Online High School pairs each student with an online academic coach, who provides the student with an individual career path, offers ongoing guidance, evaluates performance and connects the student with the resources needed to master the courses. Students will be given up to 18 months to complete the program, but many complete it sooner, depending on how many previous credits they can have transferred.

Learn More

Call 815-385-0036 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and a member of our enrollment team will contact you. Or visit the Career Online High School website for more information. Here are some frequently asked questions. *Applicant must have a valid MPLD library card in good standing.

How to Save Searches

You can now receive e-mail notifications when new items are added to the catalog, such as new DVDs, new romance books, new audiobooks, etc., using our new “Saved Search” feature.

  • First, log into My Account with your library card number/username and password.

For New Items by Format 
(such as DVDs, music, audiobooks, graphic novels, etc.)

  1. Next to “Limit By,” choose your preferred format.
  2. An asterisk will appear in the box next to “Quick Library Search.” Leave the asterisk in the box and click “Go.”
  3. Click on the blue box that says "Save Search" on the left side of the screen.
  4. Create a name for the search by entering it into the box next to "Search name".
  5. In the box next to "Notes," you can enter a brief phrase to help you remember details of your search. For instance, "Remember to place these items on hold."
  6. You can then choose the e-mail format (HTML or plain text).
  7. Then, choose the frequency with which you would like to receive the e-mail notifications, either weekly or monthly.
  8. If you want to receive an e-mail even if no new items are added to the catalog, leave box checked next to "Email if no results.”
  9. You will now receive e-mails alerting you when these new items are added to the library's catalog!

For New Items by Subject (such as romance or history), Title, or Author

  1. Enter the subject, title or author in the box next to "Quick Library Search."
  2. Next to "Limit by:" choose "Book" (or your preferred format). Then, click "Go".
  3. On the next screen, next to "Search by:" change it from "Any field" to "Subject" or “Title” or “Author” and hit "Go!" again.
  4. Follow steps 3-9 from above.

Individuos pueden obtener una tarjeta gratis de la biblioteca si proveeria identificación actual. 

Los niños menores de 18 años tambien pueden obtener una tarjeta, pero los padres necesitan estar presente para firmar y proveer identificación.


Se necesite dos formas de identificación:

1. Uno con su foto

  Aceptamos las siguentes formas de identificación:

    · Licencia de Conducir
    · Identificación del Sec. del Estado
    · Pasaporte
    · Tarjeta verde 
    · Matrícula Consular de Alta Seguridad (MCAS) 


2. Otro que prueba su residencia aquí en nuestro distrito de la biblioteca

Algo que tiene su nombre y su domicilio actual

Aceptamos las siguientes:

    · Chequera
    · Factura de la electricidad
    · Factura del gas
    · Factura del teléfono
    · Contrato de arrendamiento/Contrato de hipoteca
    · Tarjeta de seguro médico o auto


    Es una tasa de reemplazo de $2.00 si Ud. pierde su tarjeta.