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History of the Temple Public Library

  • 1900: The Temple Public Library opened to the public in the Temple Post Office, only to be later moved to the Harvey and Lucas Bookstore in October of that year.
  • 1901: Andrew Carnegie donated $10,000 to the City of Temple for the construction of a permanent library building.
  • 1904: The Library officially opened in the Carnegie building.
  • 1918: The Carnegie building and Temple Public Library burned to the ground.
    • The Library remained closed for 6 years. Afterwards, it bounced around various buildings in the downtown district of Temple.
  • 1953: The Library became a City Department.
  • 1963: The City held a bond election for $100,000 to renovate the Old Post Office in order to move the Library there.
  • 1964: The Carnegie Library Association contributed additional funds to renovate the Old Post Office, and the Library was relocated.
  • 1965: The Friends of the Temple Public Library formed with 265 members.
  • 1993: The Temple Public Library Foundation acquired a spacious building and renovation funds from the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.
  • 1995: The City entered into a lease contract with the Foundation of Temple Public Library to provide a space for the Library at the Leona B. Carpenter Foundation.
  • 1997: The Library acquired more and more space within the building at 100 W. Adams Ave. and today oversees three floors for Library use and one floor of rental office spaces.
  • 1998: The Library received a bookmobile, which is still in use to this day.
  • 1998: The City and the Foundation amended the contract for the Library in order to make arrangements for sharing the cost of constructing an acrylic skylight to serve as an atrium.
  • 2000: The City and the Foundation amended the contract for the Library in order to share costs for ADA/TABA improvements throughout the building.
  • 2010: The Library interior was remodeled thanks to a generous $100,000 donation from the Friends of the Library.
  • 2016: Library Atrium roofing remodeled.
  • 2018: New flooring installed throughout the building, including basement flooring, McLane Room carpet, and 2nd floor carpet.
  • 2020: The Library elevators were remodeled and modernized.

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