Statistics come from George S. Bobinski's Carnegie Libraries.
14 Alabama Carnegie buildings were built. 4 were demolished before 1969.
Built in 1905 after a 1903 grant. Card by Tichnor Quality Views; published by Knoxville Engraving.
Carnegie grant: 1905. Wing added, 1984. Major renovation and
Subsequent to then, water damage due to a leaky roof closed the main branch in May, 2009; a librarian's worst nightmare.
The card is from E.C. Kropp.
1901 Carnegie grant.
Per the E.C. Kropp card reverse:
This building was erected in 1904. It was made possible by a gift of $50,000.00 from Andrew Carnegie. It is a free library and is used daily by hundreds of citizens. It contains thousands of valuable books and maintains a reading room well equipped with current magazines.
Hardly lyrical, but it gets the facts across.
This particular card bears the number 28 and the notation:
Chamber of Commerce/Montgomery, Ala./Aug. 10, 1940.
Not the biggest section of my collection.
The righthand card is older than the lefthand card.
(L) Although it's a Curt Teich 'C.T. American Art' postcard, it seems undateable. (R) Note the xeroscaping on the older card. This is a Detroit Publishing Co. card.
The Tucson-Pima Public Library site states only that the current building dates from 1989. The Carnegie roots are never mentioned. Glenn A. Walsh's web site gives a grant date of 1899, as does Bobisnki. As Arizona was not admitted as a state until 1912, this demonstrates that grants were extended into U.S. territories.
1902 grant. Replaced in 1953. Various duties since then, now serving as the Carnegie Center: the home for the Library Development Division staff of the Arizona State Library.
Red building that might have a low shallow dome. It's hard to tell on these card and on the Carnegie Center site's picture.
This is a Neuner Calitype Process card, whatever that was, distributed by the Benham Indian Trading Company of Los Angeles.
Arkansas ranked 36th among the states in successful grant monies.
1906 Carnegie grant. Still in use, but looking a little the worse for wear.
Curt Teich card, mailed in 1917. It's retouched in such a way that you think the whole building is stone, but according to the web site's picture, the main floor is brick.
1906 Carnegie grant. Replaced in 1970.
Greatest reuse ever:
KFSM - TV. It has been painted white, however.
S.H. Kress card, probably produced by Curt Teich. Never mailed.
1906 Carnegie grant.
Card by Tichnor Quality Views; published by A. Karcher Candy Co. of Little Rock. Notice the two pickup trucks on the right side of the building. Today one doesn't really think of Little Rock as rural.
2000 magazine article on the Florida Carnegie library movement. 11 Carnegie libraries were built; 7 remain.
1915 grant: engulfed in the current facility.
Very late building that began to show Deco influence. The card was published by the Hartman Card Company of Pinelllas Park.
1910 grant: rehabbed into city offices in 1999. West Tampa's Carnegie library is still in use as a library.
Roy A. Bagby postcard. Did you notice the streetcard to the left of the building?
A whole lot of history goin' on here. This is the third building: the second went up in flames in the Great Fire of 1901. Carnegie came to the rescue with a grant in 1902. Finally, the building was built in 1905. It was replaced in 1965 by the Haydon Burns Building. That took only 40 years to become outmoded, and was replaced in 2005. The Carnegie Building was rehabbed into offices in the 1980s, and is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Nice litho card by Raphael Tuck & Sons. (RaphoType) that
bears a Red Cross stamping 'Canteen Service (cross) Jacksonville,
Fla Chapter' on its entire back.
Really, what good would an entire back postcard be to a client, without space for any sort of message?
1907 grant. Demolished in 1968.
Commercialchrome card displays the lovely Spanish style building to its best advantage.
If you look closely at the windows on the right side, they are opened from the top. I didn't
know an arched window could do that.
The card was mailed in 1934.
All three cards are of the same branch, illustrating how different postcard manufacturers recolor their
1915 building, recently restored and still in use.
10 Carnegie libraries in this Southern state.
1898 grant, built in 1900. Demolished in 1977, before its replacement in 1980.
I have to give the
Atlanta-Fulton Public Library Systems props for its candor. The Central building was segregated, and their pages
own up to it. The African-American community was served by the Auburn Avenue branch, also a Carnegie building.
Desegregation happened in 1959.
Atlanta had the Southern Library School associated with the library until it moved to Emory University. It closed in 1988.
Mistakenly named 'Newman' on the Black & White brand card.
A late 1901 grant makes this the oldest Carnegie library in Georgia. Built in 1904, it was replaced in 1987 and beautifully renovated in 2009. Weirdly, it served another purpose in the interim, and according to its web site, is a public library once more. Actually, it's a reading room. The city calls it 'library type services.'
Like 'light beer'?
The full service library is the Newnan-Coweta Public Library.
Opened in 1911. Max Meyerhardt, a prominent Jewish citizen of Rome,
took the lead in obtaining the Carnegie grant.
Replaced in 1988 by the Sara Hightower Regional Library, and is now used as offices.
The Municpal Auditorium takes top billing on this Tichnor Quality View. The Classical Revival Type A building languishes a ways down the dirt street.
Established in 1903. 1910 grant. The African-American branch was built in 1913. The library's brief history page is not very clear on the facts, but it looks as if the 1910 grant went to the segregated branch first, before the second, 1916 grant, went to the main branch.
Segregation ended in 1963.
The more detailed page glosses over the segregation part, but adds that the main library received a 1936 WPA-built addition.
(L) Curt Teich American Art card with retouched trees.
(R) E.C. Kropp linen finish card, mailed in 1938.
Once again, the library plays second fiddle on this Artvue postcard.
1912 grant. Since 1967, serves as the Valdosta-Lowndes County Museum.
10 Carnegie libraries in this Western state.
Pleasant Beaux-Arts building opened in 1905. Replaced in 1973.
Placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1974, and now serves as law offices.
1904 grant. Subsequently modified, and now serves as the library's history room.
I think the last style I would expect for Moscow's Carnegie building is Mission. Well, it's mission with fanlights in the arched windows, and a foundation.
The card claims to have been published by the Spokane Post Card Co., but we in the know know it's really a Curt Teich printing job.
The Carnegie building remains standing with an addition about 4 times its size.
Now known as the Marshall Public Library.
Isn't this a charming Curt Teich C.T. American Art Colored card?
1914 grant. 1916 building. Replaced in 1968.
On the National Register of Historic Places for Kentucky.
The Curt Teich postcard shows a standard plan library. It was sent by a traveling showman to Maryland.
Likely, he traveled on the Dixie Highway, US 25 in Corbin; and may have eaten at Col. Sander's original fried chicken restaurant.
The library became part of the Kenton County system.
The Carnegie building has a lively second career as a visual and performing arts center.
This spectacular card shows two sides of the Classical building, and was mailed in 1910.
1912 grant. Built in 1914. Currently being renovated into a multipurpose building which extols Kentucky's architects.
The E.C. Kropp postcard shows a standard plan library, tinted rose instead of the actual ochre. Despite having never been mailed, it had been taped onto something, which makes it rather undesireable.
The Library was established in 1795. It, and the Transylvania Seminary collection, united in the Carnegie building, built from a 1902 grant. According to the NPS site, it was replaced in the 1980s, and serves as the Carnegie Center for Literacy and Learning.
This is an early Curt Teich 'C.T. Photochrom' card.
1908 building, one of eight funded by Carnegie. FYI, the Western and Eastern branches were segregated, an unpleasantry not unique to this city. At least Louisville snapped to moderate enlightenment, and opened the first Carnegie-funded African-American branch.
(L) The early chrome card was by Valentine-Souvenir.
(R) Delightfuly tinted Hugh C. Leighton postcard.
1903 Carnegie grant. Card mailed 1922.
1901 grant. Destroyed by fire sometime around 1963.
(L) Card just cries out for some retouching work.
(R) Oh, so pretty, Mr. Kropp.
Early 1903 grant. Still in use as part of the Paris-Bourbon County system, but looking lonely on the library page without its landscaping.
Exceedingly common Curt Teich 'C.T. Photo-Finish' postcard.
Only four--or maybe six--grants, funding 9 buildings.
Multiple Carnegie grants, beginning in late 1902. It appears as if the Cita Dennis Hubbell Branch and the Napoleon Street Children's Resource Center are two of the Carnegie buildings.
Wikipedia details the damage wrought by Katrina, but does not give the fate of all the Carnegie buildings.
The card is attributed to C.B. Mason of New Orleans, but printed in Germany. Most likely, it was published in 1907.
1904 Carnegie grant(s).
At one point there were 17 Carnegie libraries in the state.
The dome inspired Jughead's hat.
The 1903 Carnegie building was replaced in 1967, and has been demolished.
Photo by Heyn's Elite Studio: card published by Chas E. Morris of Chinook, Mont. Neat trademark!
Now the Livingston-Park County Library.
Built in 1904 and still in use, with 1978 and 2005 expansions.
(L) German postcard offers a glimpse of surrounding buildings.
(R) Owens Bros. card offers an idealized view, but on the right, a peek of another building was left behind.
Established in 1902 after a 1901 grant. The library's site shows significant exterior alterations.
Extremely similar to the Stoughton (WI) Public Library. 'Made exp. for the Montana Souvenir Co.//Photo By McKay'. Divided back.
In use merely from 1904 to 1930. Fate unknown.
The Washoe County Library's web site has to have the greatest bookmobile photo ever. Use your browser back button to return.
Edward H. Mitchell postcards are amazing. In addition to the tiny, pink Carnegie building are a street car, a horsedrawn delivery wagon, and the Masonic Temple.
1902 grant. Built in 1904, and proudly still in use.
1901 grant. Card also features the First Baptist Church.
1903 grant. Opened in 1906. Replaced in 1953. Sold to the Catholic Diocese of North Carolina in 1954.
Did you know the library's 350,000th book was the Gutenberg Bible?
S.H. Kress postcard, probably an E.C. Kropp product.
1914 grant: current use unknown.
1903 grant: current use unknown.
Poor Kennedy: I can't find a thing about who he--or she--was.
Rare winter scene: I imagine that the Wisconsin firm E.C. Kropp was taken with the odd Southern scene. The building's architecture is quite unusual, with Romanesque, Mission, and Italianate touches.
1900 red brick building with Gothic touches.
Battered E.C. Kropp postcard.
Replaced sometime before 1999.
First Carnegie grant: 1901.
Two views of one of the 10 Carnegie libraries in the state.
(L) Charming Tuck's postcard.
(R) Early (undivided back) E.C. Kropp postcard.
Card probably dates from the 1950s.
Tuck Series No. 2222.
From card back:
Public Library. The Norfolk Public Library is located in the industrial part of the city, on the corner of Freemason and Thomas Streets. It was opened to the public on November 21, 1904, the work having been started June 24th, 1903. Mr. Andrew Carnegie gave $50,000 toward the cost.
(L) Canegie Library, Washington, D.C. So the A.C. Bosselman Company of New York calls this impressive building on a divided-back card.
PUBLIC LIBRARY, WASHINGTON, D.C.
The Public Library is in the Mt. Vernon Square, at the intersection of Massachusetts and New York Avenues and 8th Street. It is built entirely of white marble. The Building was given by Andrew Carnegie.
Quote from the B.S. Reynolds Co. of Washington, D.C.
I'm not going to give their street address, although it's prominently
displayed on the card.
In use as a library from 1903 to 1972: converted to the City Museum in 2001. I don't know if it was a slow process or the bureaucracy was that byzantine.
There are 3 public Carnegie libraries, and a single college Carnegie library.
1901 grant. Replaced in 1980. Currently serves as Huntington Junior College.
The problem with summer photography is illustrated by this German Wheelock postcard.
1905 building, replaced in the mid-1970s. Became a bookstore in 1985.
E. Brown glossy card from 1907.
Not sure if it's a Carnegie public library? Visit my postcards of unusual and large public libraries.
Drop that mouse and visit your public library.
(Or, if you're viewing this in the library,
set the mouse down carefully.) All the following resources were found at a local
Bial, Raymond and Linda LaPuma. 1991. The Carnegie Library in Illinois.
(With Photography by Raymond Bial.)
Bobinski, George S. 1969. Carnegie Libraries: Their History and Impact on American Public Library Development.
Dickson, Paul. 1986. The Library in America: A Celebration in Words and Pictures.
Frye, Lonn. 1992. Carnegie Libraries: Restoration and Expansion.
Krass, Peter. 2002. Carnegie.
Van Slyck, Abigail. 1995. Free to All: Carnegie Libraries and the American Culture, 1890-1920.
© 2003 - 2013 Judy Aulik
Updated 02 January 2013.