The German "Volksbibliothek" in the 19th century was a kind of philanthropic institution like a food-supply station for the poor people. Norrenberg, who was influenced by the American library movement, tried to change Volksbibliotheken into "public libraries" for the whole population of the community. Johannes Tews, secretary of Gesellschaft fur Verbreitung von Volksbildung, was a leader of the movement to increase the Volksbibliotheken for the people of the lower classes. He had a tendency toward the social democracy, was active to reform the education of the lower classes, was critical about the German two-line-school system of Volksschule and Gymnasium. He accepted later the concept of public library for the whole population of the community and the idea of Bucherhalle with reading room, rejected the control of the library by the public government in order to keep the political neutrality of library, In the center of his image of the whole population, however, were always the people of the lower classes, and this decided the characteristics of his idea of Volksbibliothek.
To re-examine the concept of library, a view point of human activity system developed in the soft systems methodology (SSM), was adopted. Then, currently accepted definitions of various kinds of library were analysed from this point of view. It was identified that a common aspect among library definitions was "transformation process" that is, activity to supply documents or information to its proper customers. A macro description (a root definition in SSM) of a library as a human activity system was constructed. It describes that a library have its owner and the role imposed by it and share a common transformation process with other libraries. Based on the consideration that transformation process is essential for the concept of library, a framework that assume library activity as logistics was proposed. Library activity is to manage and implement the effective flows and storage of informative materials such as books, to supply them to its proper customers. The current concept of logistics is defined for bussiness and millitary activities and it dose not deal with information. So it is not applicable directly to library activity. Further studies are needed to develop the extended concept of logistics applicable to library activity.