Chapter 13, 1989 -

CM Story

The new main library, with more than twice the space of the old facility, was planned to accommodate expanded services and changing technology. The building features conference and meeting rooms of various sizes, public typing and computer rooms, display areas and a state of the art film, sound and video library with preview facilities. On the third floor the Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room houses special collections of historical materials, documents, manuscripts and rare books. The building opened in June 1989 with a new $1.5 million computer system to provide the public with on-line access to the library system's collection of close to one million items.

Main library under construction, 1988

Designed by Middleton, McMillan, Architects of Charlotte, in association with Morris Architects of Houston and architect Gene Aubry of Sarasota, Florida, the building incorporates design details which alluded to the 1903 Carnegie library. A great room features a two-story reference area with a grand staircase, and arched doorways and window tracery recall the neo-classical theme.

Howell Room for Mecklenburg Research

The Public Library of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County is poised to enter a new era of growth and development as it approaches its one hundredth year of service. From its modern beginnings in rented rooms above a bookstore, to today's system of urban research library, neighborhood branches and community outreach offering close to a million volumes, it has maintained its strong commitment to providing the educational and informational resources needed to continue to be an "influence for good" in Mecklenburg County.

The grand staircase in the great room reference area

Model of the new main library

Bookplates used by the library over the past 100 years

Branches of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library (as of 1989)

Brevard Street Branch 1929-1961 (established in 1905 as an independent library)
Cornelius Branch 1931 -
Davidson Branch 1931 - 
Huntersville Branch 1931 - 
Matthews Branch 1931 -
Pineville Branch 1931 - 1985
Piedmont Courts Branch 1941 - 1973
East Branch 1956 - 
South Branch 1956 - 
North Branch 1957 - 
Mint Hill Branch 1958 -
Derita Branch 1960 - 1968
West Branch 1962 - 
Sharon Branch 1963 - 
Northwest Branch 1964 - 
Tryon Mall Branch 1968 - 
Independence Branch 1974 - 
Alexander Street Branch 1973 - 1975
Belmont Center 1975 - 
Scaleybark Branch 1985 - 
West Boulevard Branch 1985 - 
Carmel Branch 1985 - 
Hickory Grove Branch 1986 -