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Local History Department - Photo of the Month



Main Reading Room of Carnegie Library Building, ca. 1913

Things sure have changed! Interior view of the reading room in the old Carnegie building, part of Plainfield Public Library.

By the early 1900s, the Library’s collection had increased to over 40,000 volumes with nearly 75,000 people visiting each year, and was in need of a larger building. In 1909, knowing that such a project would be a huge undertaking, the Library Board contacted wealthy industrialist Andrew Carnegie to see if he would consider Plainfield in addition to the other communities he was helping at that time. In 1911, Mr. Carnegie agreed to donate $50,000 for a new building. The Carnegie Building was completed in 1912 and included a large and airy, light-filled Reading Room with a 22-foot high ceiling.

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