San Mateo, San Mateo County
Monterey to San Francisco area, San Francisco Bay Area region
San Mateo's first library was started in 1883 by the women of St. Mathew's Episcopal Church Guild; the following year the San Mateo Library Association was formed. In 1889 the association was able to construct a building for its library at a cost of $12,000 on a donated lot. Known as Library Hall, it also included an assembly hall, a lodge room and stores. Although that building was destroyed by fire in its first year, it was soon rebuilt. When San Mateo incorporated, it took over the property, voted support for the library, and built a new building on the site. In April 1905, a $10,000 grant was offered by Carnegie. The Classical Revival style building, designed by Coxhead and Coxhead, may have been under construction at the time of the 1906 earthquake. A supplemental $2,500 grant for earthquake repair was received and the building opened in 1907. Later enlarged, the building served until a new library was built in 1968.