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Library History

Sections

1882 - Santa Barbara Free Public Library established.

1892 - First Santa Barbara Public Library opens at 14 E. Carrillo St.; designed by Peter J. Barber.

1910 - SBPL Library Director, Frances Burns Linn, establishes California’s first County Branch Library System.

1911 - Montecito Library established.

1914 - Santa Barbara receives $50,000 Carnegie Grant for new Central Library on the corner of Anacapa & Anapamu.

1916 - Central Library ground-breaking ceremony, September 25.

1917 - Central Library opens to the public, August 27.

1924 - Wood-carved tympanum installed over Main Entrance; designed by Carleton Winslow.

1925 - Santa Barbara Earthquake, June 29.

1930 - Faulkner Memorial Art Gallery opens, October 15; designed by Myron Hunt.

1952 - Friends of the Santa Barbara Public Library established.

1973 - Eastside Library opens.

1980 - Major building remodel; designed by Jerry Zimmer. Old Main Entrance closed.

2012 - Central Library designated Historic Landmark.

2012 - Santa Barbara Public Library Foundation established.

2015 - New Children's Library opens.

2022 - Groundbreaking for Michael Towbes Library Plaza.