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Free and Adaptive: Libraries for the People

Stella Betts

Free and Adaptive: Libraries for the People
By Stella Betts -

“The history of libraries has been a story of constant change and adaptation”.1


There are many definitions and uses of the word free.
What in the public realm is free? The answer is... not much, especially these days. In the U.S. where I live and work with my partner David Leven, we have a right to free air and, for the most part, free water. And in theory, we are guaranteed that this air and water is safe to breathe and drink through the Clean Air Act (1963) and the Clean Water Act (1972), although sadly, we have seen that in different parts of the country air and water are not always free nor are they always protected by these acts of Congress as they should be.

Natural light is free and a codified right. In New York City for example, the residential building code mandates legal light and air. In other words, you have a right to light.

Primary and secondary education are free in the U.S.
Every citizen can send their child to public school from kindergarten to grade 12. Although education is free, it is important to note that – like water and air – it is not always equal. The quality of education often differs depending on where you live and who you are. And many school districts suffer deficits in educational support for spaces such as libraries.

Public space is free. A large majority of public space is outdoors in public parks, recreational facilities, civic space and open urban spaces. Civic buildings are free for public use such as the post office, the courthouse, city hall and other government buildings. And then, of course, there is the free library. Somehow, in the midst of our contemporary commercialized culture, the library remains a free space to sit, read, check out a book and have access to free Wi-Fi and information – a place to learn. Moreover, the public library often functions as a supplemental education space to schools and universities. 

Centre Pompidou, Renzo Piano e Richard Rogers, Parigi, Francia, 1971 © PD-US, Wikimedia Commons


Politics of Space

My interest lies in free civic space and the politics of these spaces. This discussion aims to go beyond the simple distinction between public v. private to include a deeper awareness of embedded hierarchies, as well as formal and informal definitions of space. Where are these public spaces located? Who are they serving? How are these spaces designed to be welcoming and hospitable in order to promote equality, diversity and accessibility – a more open inclusive civic environment? 

We need to recognize that as architects, we are responsible for the politics inherent in the spaces that we create. How a building is organized, positioned, structured and designed has the power to change how people relate to one another, to challenge embedded social norms and conventions, and to promote more open and democratic modes of social interaction. Moreover, the materials that we choose to build with, whether we build new or adapt an existing structure; all of these have implications for the future of our culture and environment. Hence, our spatial and material choices are political.

Biblioteca di Brooklyn Heights, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © Gregg Richards



Adaptation [noun] 
the action or process of changing something, or of being changed, to suit a new purpose or situation

The transformation of libraries today includes many complex issues that demand concerted adaptive architectural strategies. As demands and requirements change, the architecture of the library needs to adapt programmatically and tectonically at multiple scales, of the city, the building, the book and the body. This essay focuses on the architecture of the free library as part of a larger campaign for public education, access to information and positions the library as an urban public building that not only houses collections of free books but also hosts a large range of varied public programs that are vital to the health of communities. 

The question for us, as architects and designers, is – what is next for the public library? Perhaps, part of the answer is in understanding the history of the emergence of the public library as a civic institution. 

Biblioteca di Brooklyn Heights, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © Gregg Richards


History and Transformation of the Library

“Most of the types of libraries that exist today have their roots in the ancient world: the idea of the encyclopaedic library (which aimed to collect all the books in the world); the academic library; the administrative archive; the private library; and the public library all began in the Middle East”.2

James W. P. Campbell writes extensively on the history of libraries in his book The Library: A World History. He notes that “the Romans may have been the first to have entertained the notion of creating libraries for public usage, even if the idea of what constituted ‘public’ was probably still limited to some extent. The first public library in Rome that we know of was founded by Asinius Pollio in 39 B.C. From written sources we know that emperors continued to build public libraries and that at their height there were twenty-eight or twenty-nine in Rome alone. Vitruvius writes that every town of any size should have one”.3

The transformation and adaptation of the library necessarily includes the history of the book (made from clay and stone tablets, wood boards, papyrus and finally paper) as well as the storage and display of these books. In turn, the books and the associated systems of storage had significant impact on the architectural tectonics of the library. One such ancient example, the library that hosts the Tripitaka Koreana, located in South Korea and built in 1251, offers an excellent precedent of a building that combines the architecture of the building with the very architecture of the book and its storage system incorporating passive building strategies. Campbell describes the 13th century ingenuity with which books (wood block books that is) and building systems were handled in order to preserve both knowledge and shelter far into the future, offering an instructive counter argument to modernity and its confidence in technologized systems.

The building houses wood blocks, “originally assumed to be birch. Every block is engraved on both sides. After the engraving was completed, the blocks were coated in thick, grey, poisonous lacquer to protect them from insects. The survival of the wooden blocks for nearly 800 years can largely be attributed to the exceptionally clever design of the buildings that house them. 

The structure consists of stout timber posts sitting on stone pads to protect them from damp. The floor itself is made from layers of charcoal, mud, sand, salt and limestone. The building is surrounded by a shallow trough that quickly carries the rain away when it falls off the projecting eaves of the tilted roof, protecting the walls from damp. The walls are plastered to provide protection from the elements, and have two levels of openings with timber louvres, which are carefully positioned to provide plenty of ventilation while protecting the contents from the driving rain and snow. In the winter the temperature outside drops to -20° Celsius (-4° Fahrenheit) while in the summer it can get as hot as 35° Celsius (95° Fahrenheit). There is no heating of any kind in these buildings, yet they have preserved their precious contents intact through countless seasons.

Ventilation is key to the success of the building. The air moves freely throughout the space. In winter, the combination of the cold and the poisonous lacquer that coats the blocks kills any insects. In summer, the stack effect helps drive the air through the blocks to counter any humidity, which the altitude and orientation help lessen. 

In 1971, the authorities decided that the blocks should be moved to better, modern, climate-controlled buildings where they could be monitored. Concrete bunkers were constructed to house them in 1972 and some of the blocks were moved, but they quickly began to deteriorate so the plan was abandoned and the blocks were returned to the original buildings”.4 

During the 15th and 16th centuries, the development of paper and the printing press – and the mass production of books – changed the scale and design of libraries as well as the furniture and bookshelves to house the expanding collections. The adaptation and evolution of the library continued throughout the 17th and 18th centuries that saw transformations to the library building type such as domed and round libraries with integrated bookshelf wall systems. During this period, libraries were as much about housing books as impressing the visitor with elaborate styles and decoration catering to royal libraries and those of elite classes. This period also saw many church libraries housed in monasteries. 

In the 19th century in many parts of the world, the popularization of book publishing as well as the birth of large secular and national libraries changed libraries. Books were no longer produced in limited quantities for an elite readership and aristocratic collections were no longer the norm. The ability to print large volumes of books changed the spatial organization, opened up direct access to the collection and established the role of the library as a public amenity. In addition, the public face of the library changed as did its adjacent urban spaces.

One of the very first libraries to resemble the modern public library was Henri Labrouste’s Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève in Paris, France (1850). It provided access to a wide range of publications for a broader population of people that historically did not have access to private book collections. This was not only due to the increase in book publishing, but also to the advent of gas lamps which allowed the library to stay open in the evening hours, giving university students and the working class public access to books and a quiet reading space. “Because of its location in Paris’s Latin Quarter, it was designated to serve students rather than more advanced researchers”.5

Spatially and tectonically, this library was equally remarkable in its use of iron – a departure from traditional masonry structures. This allowed for not only a more fire resistant interior but also allowed the interior space of the reading room to expand vertically. 

But as Campbell points out, “Labrouste’s use of iron was neither his idea nor the first use of the material in a library building. Nor was this the first library building to be lit by gas, nor was it the first to have bookstacks... The library’s originality lies in the way that Labrouste combined these existing elements and expressed them, rather than concealing them in traditional forms”.6

In this way, the Bibliothèque Sainte-Geneviève was radical in its informality, both in terms of it being open to more visitors as well as its approach to the architecture itself.

Biblioteca di East Flatbush, LevenBetts, New York City, USA - Edificio prima dell’intervento di LevenBetts, 1988 © LevenBetts


U.S. Free Libraries 

Only three decades after Sainte-Geneviève, beginning in the 1880s, Scottish-American philanthropist Andrew Carnegie began his campaign of free libraries throughout the U.S. as well as the U.K., Ireland, Canada and many other parts of the world. In some ways, not dissimilar from the Romans before him 1600 years earlier, he located these libraries in small urban centers and underserved neighborhoods as well as in large cities. 

In the U.S., this campaign transformed the library in many ways, but perhaps most notably by making them accessible to the general public (and the working class), thereby transforming them from what was previously accessible only to the elite class. Moreover, Carnegie “pioneered a pattern of philanthropic behavior modeled on the corporation, [this] shift affected the forms of the library buildings endowed with Carnegie money”.7

Abigail Van Slyck provides an excellent history of the Carnegie Libraries in her book Free to All: Carnegie Libraries & American Culture 1890 – 1920. Much of the discussion below comes from her in depth study. 

“The main consideration should be to help those who will help themselves; to provide part of the means by which those who desire to improve may do so; to give those who desire to rise the aids by which they may rise; to assist, but rarely or never to do all”. Andrew Carnegie “Wealth” (1889).8

Over the course of approximately three decades, the Carnegie Corporation built 1,946 libraries in the U.S. In order to accomplish this extensive undertaking, Carnegie approached his philanthropic ambitions as a business model. 

This had several implications for the public library. First, it changed the library from complex and decorated structures built from private funds to ones that were relatively simple and partially financed through partnerships with local governments and communities. By approaching his philanthropy like a business in partnership with the public funds and building many libraries across the country at the same time, it became necessary to be fiscally responsible and efficient and to set standards and systems for organizing and building the libraries. 

“Carnegie instituted clearly defined procedures that gave his dealings with individual towns the formality of a contractual agreement... [He] embraced the corporation as the driving metaphor for the entire philanthropic enterprise”.9

The Carnegie Corporation set up partnerships, worked with local architects and created advisory committees to assist in this process. This resulted in a more modest library that was also often smaller in scale with a more open and informal plan. Changes to the traditional plan of the library also created less hierarchies within the plan and organization of the building itself. In earlier models, a greater separation was created between users, whereas these updated libraries created a more casual and informal experience. 

In addition, the location of the community libraries became an important consideration and had an impact on urban planning. By the early 1900s, Carnegie put greater emphasis on funding branch libraries and less on central libraries. Instead, he “focused on building branch libraries that brought books ‘close to the homes of the people’. The Carnegie Corporation encouraged the sort of institutional decentralization favored by Progressive librarians and municipal officials who drew their support from newly arrived immigrant populations”.10 This de-centralization of the library away from urban centers to outer neighborhoods had the greatest impact on women, children, minorities and labor/workers who historically had little to no access to libraries.11 “In the last quarter of the 19th century, the public library became an increasingly common fixture in the urban landscape of larger American cities. Along with picturesque parks, museums, auditoriums and even department stores, libraries were a part of an explosion in the number of urban settings designed to soften the sharper edges of daily life. Taken as a whole, these institutions transformed the face of American cities by providing public (and semipublic) spaces”.12

In addition to opening up the library by making them more available, Carnegie also made the stacks themselves open and accessible to the library visitors. Up and until this point, visitors would typically reference the catalogue, and then make a request to the librarian to locate a book from the collection. With this new approach to the library stacks, patrons could go directly to fetch their book from the shelves. Like his contemporary F. W. Woolworth who changed the American shopping experience forever by making his merchandise accessible out on the store floor for customers to browse, Carnegie similarly allowed library visitors to browse the book collection. With nearly 2,000 libraries built over the course of nearly 50 years, Carnegie created a “chain store” version of the public library where previously there were far fewer libraries located predominantly in major cities. 

It is important to note that during the period of segregation in the U.S. where African Americans were denied entrance to public libraries, Carnegie circumvented the law and financed separate libraries for the African American population. “Louisville, Kentucky, was the first community to have a separate Negro branch library in 1908”.13

As evident from this period, the new model of the public library – particularly the branch library – was adapted from earlier models in both its form and built structure, its siting in smaller local communities, its open and informal space and its public access to the stacks. 

Foto storica, 1952 © Brooklyn Public Library


Carnegie Libraries in NYC

In 1899, “Carnegie gifted over five million dollars to New York City specifically to build sixty-six branch libraries to supplement the work of the central library”.14 In addition to siting the libraries closer to home, “reading rooms were located near enough to the sidewalk to allow passers-by to look as it were into a shop window and see the readers” and inviting them in to the library creating a more accessible and welcoming façade.15

Since this time, the portfolio of libraries in New York City has expanded significantly. Today, there are 92 libraries in Manhattan and Staten Island, 60 in Brooklyn and 62 in Queens. Each Borough has a Central Main Library and the rest are branch libraries that serve a smaller community.


20th Century Library 

In the 20th century, public libraries were mostly containers housing a continually expanding book collection with large reading rooms and public spaces. One significant exception to this was Piano and Rogers’ Centre Pompidou in Paris, France (1977). The building and its program was a radical departure from the traditional library. It was conceived as a multi-programmed building that included a new free library, a center for contemporary art as well as a music research center. Moreover, the “inside out” design created a new image of a civic building with a large public plaza in front. Paradigmatically, the layering of the building with its public space bundles ancient concepts of the relationship of civic architecture to its city with modern ideas of urban fluidity. 

At the very beginning of the 21st century, another example of a new library model emerged. One of the most notable of these buildings is Toyo Ito’s Sendai Mediatheque, Japan (2001). In 1989, the city of Sendai initiated a study to create an open competition to build a new library concept dedicated to culture, complete with a library, cinema, café and art gallery. The library as an institution was no longer only for the book, but rather a center for information and community gathering. Ito’s design concept was a “fluid, barrier-free”
environment – both in its function and its structure. Like the Centre Pompidou, the project combined the library with a civic art gallery and audiovisual media center for people with visual and hearing disabilities. The radical design concept was to create a non-hierarchical public space – an open civic space that blurred the boundaries between the city and the building and married traditional library programs with other community spaces. It was another catalytic project that reflected the ambitions of a 21st century library by combining diverse programs into large open public spaces and offering flexibility for future change. In 2004, only a few years later, OMA completed the Seattle Public Library in Seattle, Washington. Since then, the architecture of the library has never been the same. 

Biblioteca di East Flatbush, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © LevenBetts


Five New York City Branch Libraries

Our practice, LevenBetts, is currently working on our fifth public library – four for Brooklyn Public Library and one for Queens Public Library. They are all branch libraries serving unique communities with particular needs and requirements. Unlike central libraries, they are typically smaller in scale which often requires them to function more informally with shared programming and overlapping spaces in order to fulfill a broader and diverse set of community-based activities. Each one of our libraries is an adaptation of an existing building. In some cases the adaptation is radical, demanding a significant change to the function and organization of the library. In other cases, the alteration is more subtle entailing a new public face or new fenestration. And in all cases, natural light is paramount as are reconsiderations of the buildings’ material and construction systems required to upgrade performance (with low embodied strategies) and mitigate the buildings’ carbon footprint.

Biblioteca di East Flatbush, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © Naho Kubota


Brooklyn Public Library History

“Brooklyn Public Library’s founding dates to an 1892 act of the state legislature ‘to establish and to maintain a public library and reading room’ in the independent city of Brooklyn. Library construction boomed in Brooklyn in the early 20th century thanks to a
$1.6 million investment from industrialist Andrew Carnegie. His legacy is visible today in neighborhoods throughout the borough, as 18 of Brooklyn’s 21 original Carnegie libraries remain in service. 

Library service expanded in the middle of the 20th century with the construction of branches to serve both new and underserved neighborhoods. Many of the new libraries were constructed during the administration of Mayor John Lindsay and are identifiable by their functional, no-frills design and open floorplans.

Today, Brooklyn Public Library is one of the nation’s largest library systems, with 61 locations serving a borough of 2.7 million people. The Library is one of New York City’s pre-eminent civic, cultural and educational institutions, with a collection of four million materials and annual attendance approaching nine million. With a branch library within a half-mile of the majority of Brooklyn’s residents, BPL is a recognized leader in cultural offerings, literacy, out-of-school-time services, workforce development programs, and digital literacy. In a borough of wide economic disparity, where the costs of basic necessities often take priority over spending on cultural enrichment opportunities, BPL provides a democratic space where patrons of all economic standings can avail themselves and their children of cultural and educational programs in a broad range of disciplines”.16


1. Brooklyn Heights Interim Library, Brooklyn

In 2018, as part of a larger renovation project of their branch library in Brooklyn Heights, our office was asked to design an interim library located within the existing Church of Our Lady of Lebanon in Brooklyn. This location would serve as the temporary library while the permanent one was being constructed.
The challenge was to create a library within a church and provide both communities a sense of identity and place. In addition, the scope included the reinforcement of both structure and building infrastructural systems. 

The design strategy is simple: to maximize the openness of the existing space while providing for private spaces for the library staff and community meeting room. The solution is a single translucent wall – a BookWorm that bellies out at the ends to create the private spaces with access to light and fresh air and bellies in at the middle to create a large shared open space for reading, studying and browsing books.

The BookWorm wall includes a poem by Walt Whitman from 1856 about this neighborhood in Brooklyn called Crossing Brooklyn Ferry making a connection to the history of the place. 

Biblioteca di East Flatbush, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © Naho Kubota


2. East Flatbush Library, Brooklyn

“Ten years of community advocacy, beginning in 1935, led to the opening of East Flatbush Library. Making a case for a branch located between Brownsville and Rugby, the community welcomed its new branch in 1945 at a storefront on Linden Boulevard.

The storefront building soon proved inadequate for a rapidly growing community. On October 30, 1952, a 3,200-square-foot (300 sq. m) library opened in a new building at the present location. The new East Flatbush branch soon boasted some of the highest circulation numbers in the system. In 1961, the building was enlarged to 6,400 square feet (600 sq. m), but this was still not large enough for the growing community. In November 1988, the branch was closed and the building demolished except for one wall and a portion of the roof. Under the direction of New York City’s Department of General Services, a new building was constructed and outfitted with new fixtures and furniture.

Today, the branch is home to a large and loyal patronship, with children and young adults forming approximately 70% of the library’s users”.17

The latest adaptation of the library began several years ago when our office was hired by the City of New York and Brooklyn Public Library to do a full renovation of the entire exterior façade and roof as well as the interior. The project began with a series of listening sessions with the librarians and meetings with the local community of East Flatbush to understand the specific needs of this neighborhood. This new and improved library required more meeting spaces for adults, teens and families and well as more robust spaces for children and toddler reading programs.

The existing library building had an unwelcoming façade that was closed off from visual access to the street and when inside, there was no natural light. Our approach was three-fold. First, we wanted to create a more open and inviting façade that would make a direct connection to the street/community and allow passersby to see in to the reading room. Second, we wanted to bring in as much natural light as possible. As a single story library with low rise neighboring buildings, we were able to renovate the existing roof and cut six large north-facing skylights that provide natural light and views of the sky throughout the central reading room. Third, this central space, in turn, organizes the rest of the plan where all other programs (both public meeting rooms and staff and librarian offices) orbit around this central naturally-lit reading room. All rooms have either direct or shared light from this central space providing for an equity of light throughout the library where all rooms – like people – are created equal and having a right to light and views. 

Biblioteca di Red Hook, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © LevenBetts


3. Red Hook Library, Brooklyn

The original Red Hook Library building was one of the original Carnegie libraries built in 1915. However, in “1946 after suffering extensive damage from a fire, the library was forced to close and the building was demolished soon after”.18 In 1975, a new library was built on the existing site. Then, on October 22, 2012, Hurricane Sandy caused extensive damage to the library. From a fire to a flood, the Red Hook branch library has had a troubled history. Located at a significant intersection in the Red Hook neighborhood of Brooklyn, our current adaptation and renovation of this library focuses on many of the same issues as described in the two previous library designs. Once again, the façade is transformed from closed and forbidding to one that is open on all sides providing a connection to the surrounding street and neighborhood. However, this project has an added challenge. Located in a FEMA Flood Zone, the building renovation integrates flood mitigation strategies in both the architecture and landscape design. As part of this strategy, the building floor is raised to elevate it from the flood level and the existing roof is lifted to accommodate the interior height of the library. In addition, the library is designed for Net Zero energy use by incorporating solar panels on the roof as well as extensive building envelope efficiency making it the first built Net Zero Library in the Brooklyn Public Library’s portfolio of buildings.

The newly adapted library includes a children’s outdoor reading garden as well as a façade composed of light grey brick in a basket-weave pattern with open perforated screens of alternating brick. The public face of the library provides a new civic identity to the community of Red Hook.
The Red Hook Library is currently under construction with a scheduled completion date in 2024.

Biblioteca di Borough Park, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © LevenBetts

4. Borough Park Library, Brooklyn

Originally built in 1955, the Borough Park Library has one of the highest circulation rates in Brooklyn. The building consists of two floors as well as a lower level. The adaptation strategy with this library was to provide more programming space for adults, teens, children and toddlers. In addition, similar to the Red Hook Library, this library incorporates a public reading garden. The renovation maintains the existing structure and floor slabs, lower-level structure and roof. The new façade is clad in GFRC panels with large expanses of shaded glass at the lower level facing the street and garden opening up the library to the street.

Biblioteca comunitaria di Baisley Park, LevenBetts, New York City, USA © LevenBetts


5. Baisley Park Community Library, Queens

The last of the five libraries is the Baisley Park Community Library located in South Jamaica, Queens. This library is part of the Queens Public Library system which includes 62 libraries disbursed throughout the Borough. In 1992 the U.S. Department of Census declared Queens as the most ethnically diverse county in the United States. 

The Baisley Library is a single-story building originally constructed in 1970. Like many of the libraries built at this time when NYC was plagued by economic and social disparity, the existing architecture is a defensive, inward-looking space that turns away from the city and the street. Enclosed on three sides by solid brick walls, the existing design is separated from the South Jamaica community it seeks to serve.

The new adapted library relocates the entry to the corner creating a more open and welcoming façade with a series of round windows. In addition, the existing empty and abandoned side yard will be activated as a garden entry with outdoor seating providing public space to the neighborhood both inside and outside of the library. On the interior a series of skylights bring light in to the central reading area and children’s storytime space.


What is Next for the Free Library?

As we can see, the mission and scope of public libraries today extends well beyond traditional large open reading rooms and book stacks. Libraries are constantly incorporating more social programs, maker spaces, vocational education, literacy classes, arts and crafts and children’s after school programs. These additional programs are changing the architecture of the library and its role as a civic space in the


What is at stake for the future of the public library today? New social, ecological and technological changes present opportunities to rethink the architecture of the free library. The library – and especially the branch library – can be a true urban building, not only serving its community programmatically but coupling integrated design and low embodied materiality with urban natural interfaces where civic space operates across the indoor-outdoor boundary. These buildings need to be organized to promote transparency and consciousness of diversity across space while also providing needed privacy and focus. Adapted libraries can be structured with a deep consciousness of the existing structure while maximizing the expressive opportunities and engineered to the highest operational standards while diminishing embodied carbon in the new added systems. In contexts – like that which we find ourselves in New York City – where the physical structures of previous library building initiatives have exceeded their serviceable lifespans, the public face of this public architecture has to reflect the design aspirations of the present and project into the future.

These ambitions demand from us, as architects and designers, to take action. We have the expertise and the responsibility to apply these adaptations to our buildings. Free libraries are even more important than ever before as examples of equitable, accessible, open, welcoming and free spaces for everyone to learn and be part of their community. 

As one of the last real free civic spaces, we need to support our public libraries – especially our branch libraries that continue to serve local communities by providing a free space, free books and free access to information for those who wish to learn and interact.



This essay is an expansion of an advanced studio I taught at Yale University School of Architecture in the Spring of 2020 and subsequent publication in a book Reimagining the Civic (New York: Actar, 2022).

I would like to thank my partner, David Leven, and my brother, Paul Betts, for their editorial assistance.


1 James W. P. Campbell, The Library: A World History (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2013), 15.
2 Ibid., 37.
3 Ibid., 47, 55, 57.
4 Ibid., 65.
5 Neil Levine, “The Public Library at the Dawn of the New Library Science: Henri Labrouste’s Two Major Works and Their Typological Underpinnings”, Corrine Belier, Barry Bergdoll, Marc Le Coeur, Henri Labrouste: Structure Brought to Light (New York: Museum of Modern Art, 2013), 166.
6 Campbell, The Library, 228.
7 Abigail A. Van Slyck, Free to All: Carnegie Libraries & American Culture 1890 – 1920 (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1995), xxv.
8 Ibid., 10.
9 Ibid., 22, 23.
10 Ibid., 79.
11 Ibid., 76.
12 Ibid., 66.
13 George S. Bobinski, Carnegie Libraries: Their History and Impact on American Public Library Development (Chicago: American Library Association, 1969), 80.
14 Van Slyck, Free to All, 102.
15 Ibid., 117.
16 Brooklyn Public Library website
17 Ibid.
18 Ibid.



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