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History: The Carnegie Chapter

The Early Years | The Carnegie Chapter | Present and Future  | People, Places and Things(PDF)

Andrew Carnegie is widely known and appreciated for his contributions to the development of public libraries in the United States. Between 1893 and 1919 he and his corporation provided over $41 million to build 1,689 public libraries in the United States. By 1919, the year that the last grant was made, Carnegie had, in fact, built more than one half of all the public libraries in this country. What is less well known is that he also funded academic library buildings.

The University of Maine's library building was one of 108 U.S. academic libraries built with funding from Andrew Carnegie and the Carnegie Corporation. As was the case with public libraries, by1910 Carnegie had funded the construction of over one half of the total number of the college libraries ever built in the U.S. Carnegie Hall on the University of Maine campus is one of Maine's five academic and 18 public "Carnegie libraries."

  Carnegie Library
Carnegie Library in the 1950s
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