Auburn Library History, Part 1 of 3 by Anne Holmes


Libraries became popular in the 1880’s with reading rooms, some free and some private charging a fee.  The Little Gem Cookbook was created as a fundraiser for the Auburn Library Association in 1888.  In 1906 the city of Auburn approved the funding through taxes for a city library and in 1908 received a grant to build a Carnegie Library on Almond Street that opened in May 1909.  In 1936 the County Library system was born.  There were five branches, one for each supervisory district.  It was housed in the basement of the Carnegie building.

As usage increased the County Library moved to a new building at Sheppard Square on High Street across from the fairgrounds in 1958.  By 1961 talks began to consider combining the two libraries.  It was not an easy yes for the Auburn City Library to agree to be taken over by the County.  The merger finally took place in 1968, creating the Auburn-Placer County Library.  A bigger building was needed for the new library.  Land was chosen in North Auburn, on the edge of town, next to the Placer County offices on Fulweiler Ave.  After securing federal and state funds, the library, which took 2 years to build, was ready to open on February 13, 1973.