What's a Carnegie Library?

November 2018

Did you know that Toronto has seven Carnegie libraries still in use as actual libraries?!

Wait a minute. Maybe I should start at the beginning and let you know what a Carnegie library is.

Andrew Carnegie was a businessperson who made a lot of money in the steel industry in the late 1800s. In fact, he made so much money that he was known as the richest man in the world for a number of years. Mr. Carnegie then decided to use his money to help charities, universities, and even to help build libraries.

In 1903, he promised to give the Toronto Public Library $350,000 to build four new libraries. And in later years money from his foundation helped the Toronto Public Library build six more libraries. (I know that's ten libraries in total - but only seven are still being used as libraries today.)

What I find so cool about Carnegie libraries is that:

  1. the buildings in Toronto are older and have an interesting look to them.
  2. they were built so well that they're still standing today!
  3. there are Carnegie libraries in many other parts of the world!!

If you want to learn more about Andrew Carnegie check out these books.

Posted by TomsGarden in "Library Stuff"

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