Green Lake Library

May 13, 2014 10:12pm

Courtesy MOHAI, PEMCO Webster & Stevens Collection

Photo Courtesy MOHAI, PEMCO Webster & Stevens Collection

Few things look the same around Green Lake as they did in 1910 — except the Green Lake Library.
The 8,000+ square-foot branch opened in 1910 and is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

According to the Seattle Public Library, Green Lake library service began in 1905 in a small, one-room structure on the eastern side of the lake. Specifically, according to The Green Lake branch’s website:

“The structure was built on a wooden platform. A board sidewalk led from the street and the streetcar tracks to the library. In rainy weather, the tiny building was surrounded by mud and water and young boys begged the librarian for twine so they could fish over the railing.
In 1908, wealthy philanthropist Andrew Carnegie agreed to donate $35,000 to build a replacement branch. Local residents rallied to the cause and raised $3,000 to buy the current branch site; the city contributed another $1,000.”

In July 1910 the Green Lake branch opened with tall ceilings and much more space for patrons to peruse the books.

Since then the building has been remodeled several times, with its most recent remodel in 2004.

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  • John

    Oh! Where’d that top picture come from?

    • seattlegreenlaker

      Hi John, thanks for the question – it reminded us that we forgot to post the attribution! The photo is used with permission from MOHAI. See full credit above. Thanks for visiting.

  • Marty Hendley

    Yay for the library! I’m the Teen Services Librarian here at Green Lake and am very happy to see a new Green Lake blog! I’ll be sending info on upcoming events so you can help get the word out to the neighborhood!