Roseville, Placer County
Gold Country area, Gold Country region
Roseville's Carnegie building is a colorful temple on a hill, its orange-beige brick contrasting with white, green and light pink trim that emphasizes its Classic Revival architectural features. At the southwest corner of Lincoln and Pleasant streets, its rose garden, proximity to "Historic Roseville" and overlook of the old concrete arch bridge over the railroad tracks all tie the building to the town's heritage.
Roseville's library began as an alternative to saloons as entertainment for the many young men who arrived in 1906, when the Southern Pacific established Roseville as a division point. A first reading room was short lived, but then a Mrs. Brand established a reading room in her home with donated books. In 1910 she sought help from the new Women's Improvement Club. A petition was circulated, a board of trustees appointed, and Carnegie funds sought. A grant of $10,000 was received in 1911. A.B. McRae donated a lot valued at $600 and William H. Weeks designed the building. Many of the building materials were manufactured at the Gladding McBean Pottery in nearby Lincoln. After its library years, the building was restored and reopened in 1988 as a local history museum and city meeting rooms operated by the Roseville Historical Society, whose historical collection meets the McRae gift stipulation that the building be used as a library in perpetuity.