Saturday, October 27, 2012

McMinnville, Oregon

  images photo courtesy of Yamhill County Historical Society.

Designed by German-American architect Ernst Kroner and built at 225 NW Adams Street in 1912 with a $10,000 grant by Andrew Carnegie.  I visited July 27, 2010.  The library underwent major remodeling in the 1980’s. 

From the front there is very little evidence that this Carnegie Library dates back 100 years. DSCN0742

When I walked around to the back there it was--the 1912 library! Quite a contrast from the rather plain front entrance to the rear where the library still has original brick and windows. DSCN0731

Original windows and brickwork. DSCN0725

I’m wondering if the present-day rear door may have originally been the front door. DSCN0727

Original stained glass windows over both the front and rear doors. I got a much more clear photo from inside the library than the one I took outside.  Wish I’d done that on the front door! DSCN0735

It’s possible that the front door of the new addition was designed around this old window. DSCN0739

After I took pictures outside I went in to see what remained of the old library and didn’t find much. The librarian told me that this original upstairs fireplace upstairs had been hidden and discovered when they removed drywall during a recent renovation. DSCN0734

If you ever travel to McMinnville, Oregon to visit the old Carnegie, you may also wish to take in another “little” attraction:  Howard Hughes’ HUGE Spruce Goose at the Evergreen Aviation and Space Museum. The museum was built to house the Spruce Goose but includes everything from a Wright Brothers replica to a spacecraft. DSCN0759



Monday, October 1, 2012

Lawrence, Kansas

I visited this Carnegie Library in Lawrence, Kansas in September 6, 2001. The library had been the Lawrence Arts Center since 1975 but I understand that shortly after my visit it was taken over the the Parks and Recreation Department.  In January of 2011 the Lawrence Parks and Recreation Department began operating the facility, once again making it available for public use. Destination Management and the Freedom’s Frontier National Heritage Area has offices in the facility, as well as exhibit space to display historical information about Lawrence and the surrounding area.

This Carnegie Library was constructed at 200 W. 9th Street in 1904 with a grant of $27,000 from Andrew Carnegie. During the 1930’s an addition was build to accommodate the growing volume of books and materials. It served as the Lawrence public library until a new library was constructed in 1972. It was placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1975



I found this description of the Lawrence Carnegie Library on the website The Carnegie Legacy in Kansas.

The Carnegie library is rectangular, a one-story brick structure with a raised basement measuring approximately 75' x 35'. The south facade with its Neoclassical style boasts of a portico which occupies the center third of the library's front. Two Corinthian columns flank the entrance on either side. The exterior of the building is of pressed buff brick on a five foot Warrensburg stone foundation. A brick parapet extends above the roof line and no part of the flat roof is visible to the viewer. The entablature is Corinthian in design. An ornate terra cotta pediment is situated on the parapet wall directly above the entrance and bears the date 1904.


I always look for a date on the libraries.  This one is high atop above the entrance.



MVC-097SMore history found on the Carnegie Legacy in Kansas:

Peter E. Emery was responsible for leading citizens to secure a gift from Andrew Carnegie, enlisting the support of U. S. Representative J. D. Bowersock, of Lawrence. Carnegie offered $27,500.00 on May 31, 1902. At the April 7, 1903, election, voters approved placing the library under the state law and to levy a tax. Mrs. Chas. P. Grovenor, as a memorial to her late husband, donated the site for the building at the northwest corner of Vermont and [now] Ninth Streets. In May, 1903, the library board selected George A. Berlinghof, of Beatrice, Nebraska, as its architect. The building was modeled after the Carnegie library in Beatrice, a fact that is not surprising since the architect lived there. [What is surprising, though, is that the picture labelled as "Public Library Lawrence" in the 1902 Handbook of Kansas Libraries is actually that of the Beatrice City Library!]
The contract was awarded to George A. Shaul of Seneca, Kansas, on July 30, 1903. Because of delays the building was not completed until December, 1904, and the project cost a total of $27,412.00. The library was formally opened December 26, 1904.

Note:  When we visited this Carnegie we had just begun following the Oregon Trail.  Five days later while we were stopped to see the covered wagon wheel ruts in Nebraska we were stunned to watch the events of the terrorist attacks of September 11th unfold.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

Minot, North Dakota

105 2nd Avenue S.E. - Corner of 2nd Avenue & 1st Street S.E.

Established 1908

$15,000 Grant from Andrew Carnegie

My last Visit: Sept 11, 2004 although I visit every time I come “home” to Minot.  It is now home to the Carnegie Art Center.

My first visit: when I was six years old a LONG time ago!


The grant was awarded on 1908, the date on the front of the library is 1911 but it was dedicated in 1912. It served as the Minot Public Library until 1965 when a new library was built.

This is where I got my first library card and checked out the first of what would be many library books.

My impressions as I noted in my Sept. 11th, 2004 Journal:  “The old library was open so we went in-so cool to be in there. The lighting fixtures weren’t original but had been taken from the old Montgomery Ward building. I’d forgotten about the fireplace. Downstairs the book shelves from the children’s section were still there although they’ve been painted. Love it-my favorite Carnegie Library.”

The children’s library in the basement was one of my very favorite places when I was growing up.  It was quiet and I could escape into the world of books.   Note the radiator on the wall. The shelving is original but has been painted since I was a patron.


Lighting fixtures from the old Montgomery Ward store on Main Street.  (Actor Josh Duhamel is a partner in 10 North Main, a restaurant located in the old Monkey Ward building.)


Fireplaces such as this is typical in many Carnegie Libraries. 


Newel post with original detailing – showing it’s age.



Original tile in the entrance of the building.


Article from the Minot Daily News:

Happy birthday, Carnegie

January 23, 2011 - Kent Olson/Back In The Day

She looks pretty good for turning 100 this year, "she" being the old Carnegie Library, known to the present generation as the Carnegie Center.

One of the most endearing buildings ever built in Minot, the Carnegie Center has been spruced up lately, including getting a new roof two years ago. And, Esther Ost, one of the current board members at the Carnegie, said the board has goals of replacing the building's original boiler, adding air conditioning and new, efficient storm windows before February 2012.

While the date on the building reads 1911, it wasn't dedicated until Feb. 19, 1912, and then served as Minot's public library until December 1966, when the present library was dedicated.

Even longtime Minoters might not know that the Carnegie wasn't the city's first public library. Five Minot residents met in September 1907 to organize a public library and the first one opened Jan. 13, 1908, in two rented rooms on Main Street in the new "Optic Block." Miss Clara Kunst was the first librarian. Because the town was booming then, within two years Minot was in need of a new library and a $15,000 grant from the Andrew Carnegie Foundation largely financed a fine new structure at the corner of Second Avenue and First Street Southeast.

On the big opening day, Miss Margaret Greene, who by then was the new and lone librarian, reported that 221 books were loaned out, Mrs. W. H. Montgorery securing the first one. The volume of books checked out set a daily record for the four-year-old public library.

Not unlike providing public access to computers and the Internet today, the new Carnegie Library invited patrons to come and use its telephone for free but cautioned that the service, available in Minot for about 10 years already but still a luxury, shouldn't be abused. And there was the beginnings of an information and referral system. People who had telephones were invited to call the Carnegie with their questions, such as how to spell a word, after all the library boasted having three dictionaries and three sets of encyclopedias on its shelves.

The man who built the Carnegie Library, and another prominent builder of the same era, are the focus of the balance of this report.

Carl Peter Bartleson was born in November 1872 near Stavanger, Norway, and by 1900 was living in Spencer City, Iowa. He then made his way to Minot by way of Leeds where he built the Leeds School in 1908. In Minot, besides the Carnegie Library, Bartleson family history credits him with building the McKinley School addition (1910), the original Lincoln School (1914), the Sons of Norway Hall, Zion Lutheran Church (1909 or 1910) and as the firm of Bartleson and Ness, the first wing of Trinity Hospital in 1923. Also according to family history, he built the Mountrail County Courthouse in 1914, and schools in Des Lacs, Portal and Surrey. Bartleson later moved to Seattle where he and Ness built the Seattle Civic Auditorium, but returned to North Dakota, dying in Jamestown in 1944.

D.A. Dinnie's name is more familiar to Minoters because it was attached to one of his properties the Dinnie Flats built at the corner of Burdick and Broadway in 1908-09. Post cards depicting the Dinnie Flats can still be found in collectors' hands but the significance of the building has perhaps been lost. A photo caption for a picture of the Dinnie Flats in 1954 said it was believed to be the first building in Minot specifically erected for apartments. The nine two-story units were said to be "swanky" back in the day.

But the Dinnie Flats was hardly the namesake's first project in Minot.

David Arthur Dinnie was born in Ontario, Canada, in 1865 and with no formal schooling left home before the age of 10, his mother having died young. Dinnie was the youngest of the 12 children of his Scottish parents to survive to adulthood. With less than a dollar in his pockets, he moved to Grand Forks in 1893 where he learned the brick making trade and became a contractor. He moved to Minot on Jan. 24, 1901 110 years ago tomorrow where he quickly established himself, having built the growing city's McKinley School (1903) and a new City Hall in 1904.

Other projects in Minot for which Dinnie was the general contractor included the State Normal School, the old Central School (1905), the original Sunnyside School (1907) and he was a sub-contractor when the senior high school was built (1916-18).

Perhaps his best projects, though, were the massive International Harvester Building and the Jacobson Opera House, the latter which opened Jan. 5, 1903.

Dinnie, who left Minot in the mid-1920s for Oakland, Calif., where he died, was also known locally, worldwide perhaps, for his race horses. Harness racing was exhibited at a South Hill location in those days, and Dinnie owned two pacers that held world records.

Bartleson and Dinnie were certainly prolific builders back in the day, and the buildings listed here are but a few of their accomplishments to be sure, but neither had yet to arrive in Minot when the first brick buildings were going up.

H.T. Van Waggoner, a contractor who also had a brick plant in the area of the fairgrounds, is mentioned in connection with the earliest brick structures that went up after numerous fires had claimed frame buildings downtown. One source says the first brick building in Minot was the Bank of Minot (1892), made with Van Waggoner brick.

While the opening of Bartleson's Carnegie Library took center stage in early 1912, Dinnie and family were also in the news. In January, Dinnie had just been elected president of the Minot Builders and Traders Exchange and his older brother, James A. Dinnie, was in town for the state exchange meeting at which he was elected president. James Dinnie was a prolific builder himself in Grand Forks and was mayor for a time.

D.A. Dinnie and Bartleson were elected to represent Minot at the 1913 state convention.

Also in the news, Mrs. D.A. Dinnie Elizabeth was elected to office that month as well, as the first president of United Charities of the City of Minot, a group formed to consolidate and coordinate the city's charitable efforts.


Friday, May 18, 2012

Morrilton, Arkansas

Established 1916

$10,000 grant from Andrew Carnegie

My Visit: September 24, 2010


An old photo showing how the library was a prominent building in Morrilton.


I noticed from the plaque mounted outside that this library has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places but isn’t on the list I printed from the internet so must be fairly recently added.


This was a good visit. As usual I asked permission to take photos inside. The young lady at the desk didn’t know and called to have someone come up. I’m guessing that the man was the librarian but didn’t ask.

He was more than happy to let me take pictures and even guided me around the library showing me the numerous photos and items of interest taken at different times. Of course, the customary portrait of Andrew Carnegie is displayed.


He said that the tall grandfather clock was built specifically for the library. The floors are original hardwood. The floor in front of the main desk the floor is a mosaic of marble which he said was taken from somewhere in the library during one of its renovations. Several of the library tables are original and also the card catalog. He said that the former train depot just down the street houses more memorabilia, also a Genealogy Center.


The main floor is now adult but originally the children’s library was situated to the right as you enter the library. The children’s library in the basement is all renovated but still utilizes old tables.