Bangor Public Library
|Bangor Public Library|
|Access and use|
Bangor Public Library
|Location:||Harlow, Center, Park, State, York, and Central Streets
|Area:||24 acres (9.7 ha)|
|Architect:||Peabody and Stearns|
|Architectural style:||Late 19th And Early 20th Century American Movements, Renaissance|
|Part of:||Great Fire of 1911 Historic District|
|Added to NRHP:||June 14, 1984|
The Bangor Public Library is the public library serving Bangor, Maine. The library was first founded in 1830 as the Bangor Mechanic Association's private library. In 1873, several other associations' libraries combined with it to form the Bangor Mechanic Association Public Library. In 1883, former U.S. Congressman and lumber baron Samuel F. Hersey left the City of Bangor a $100,000 bequest, which the City used to form a municipally-owned public library. The Mechanic Association's 20,000 books formed the core collection. In 1905 the small membership fee was abolished and the library became truly open to all.
1911 Great Fire
By 1911, the library's collection had grown to 70,000 books, yet all but 29 were burned in a great fire that destroyed most of the Bangor Business District. The library reopened in May 1911 with the handful of saved books and the 1300 others which had been on loan. The library is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as part of the Great Fire of 1911 Historic District.
The present library building, designed by the Boston architectural firm Peabody and Stearns, opened its doors in 1913. Unlike the previous building, which was located in the center of the business district, this one was located by the new high school.
The library was significantly renovated and expanded with the addition of a new wing in 1997, thanks to a donation from Stephen and Tabitha King. The Bangor Public Library shares the URSUS online cataloging system with the University of Maine and other Maine libraries.
In popular culture
- "National Register Information System". National Register of Historic Places. National Park Service. 2009-03-13.
- The American library annual, p. 327
- Maine library bulletin, Volumes 1-6, p. 2
- Report of the Public Library 1917, p. 16
- Stephen J. Spignesi, The Essential Stephen King (2003), p. 127
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