Vallejo, Solano County
San Francisco Bay/Delta/Sacramento area, San Francisco Bay Area region
Vallejo, the earliest and by far the largest city in the county, was incorporated in 1868 but dates its first library from an 1856 Vallejo Library Association. That library was still active, though quite small when in 1870 the Temperance Union and a more liberal temperance group, the Dashaway Association, were operating reading rooms. It was another temperance library, the 1883 WCTU library that led more directly to the establishment of a city library when the WCTU learned of an idle $577 library fund in the city treasury. Management of the library was hotly contested by the WCTU and the city and in 1885 the books were transferred to the city and located in new quarters as the Vallejo Free Public Library. Carnegie funding of $20,000 was granted in December 1902. Architects Werner and O'Brien designed the building in the Classical Revival style. The cornerstone was laid December 5, 1903 and the building was dedicated July 4, 1904. There was apparently a city funded small addition in 1905, perhaps relating to a 1906 report that half the basement was used for city storage. The building was demolished in 1969.