East Orange Public Library

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The East Orange Public Library is the free public library of East Orange, Essex County, New Jersey

Locations and circulation[edit]

As of 2011, the library had a collection of 343,918 volumes, served a population of approximately 73,000 and circulated 318,748 items annually.[1] from four locations.[2]

  • Main Library - 21 South Arlington Avenue
  • Ampere Branch - Ampere Plaza
  • Elmwood Branch - 317 South Clinton Street
  • Franklin Branch - 192 Dodd Street

Carnegie libraries[edit]

Of the library's four locations, two were originally among the thirty-six Carnegie-funded libraries in New Jersey. East Orange's original library buildings, except the Ampere Branch, were constructed in part with funds from the $116,000 in grants from the Carnegie Corporation.[3][4] The former Main Branch, now a courthouse, was also a Carnegie library.[5]

East Orange Municipal Court Building[edit]

The first of libraries built with Carnegie funding was the former Main Library. Alexander King, resident of the city and child-hood friend of Andrew Carnegie, orchestrated the first grant to be offered in New Jersey made January 18, 1900.[3][4][5] Originally it was of source of controversy. While Carnegie offered $50,000 he also stipulated $5,000 be committed by the municipality for its upkeep, and some residents felt they would prefer to manage the city's library without Carnegie's interference and could easily make use of the recently opened library in Orange.[6][7] Eventually the city purchased a lot a Main Street and South Munn Avenue where the building was constructed and opened on January 3, 1903.[5] This original section was the work Ackerman and Ross, who also designed the library that is now houses the Historical Society of Washington, D.C.[8] In 1914, the Carnegie Library Fund granted another $40,000 to an expansion of much needed wings, designed by Hobart A. Walker and opened the following year.[5] Circa 1974, the building was altered and converted to the East Orange Municipal Court and later renovated again in 2009.[9]

Franklin Branch Library[edit]

After receiving a grant of $13,000, the Franklin Branch was built, opening on August 1, 1909 at its location on Dodd Street near Watsessing Park. It was expanded in 1939.[5]

Elmwood Branch Library[edit]

The Elmwood Branch was made possible through a $13,000 grant from the Carnegie Library Fund and opened on January 12, 1912.[5]

Ampere Branch[edit]

The Ampere Branch opened as a deposit station in 1915. After changing locations it become a branch library in 1923, and on March 17, 1931 moved to its current location[5] across from the former Ampere Station. The building was originally built around 1914 as horse-drawn fire engine station; a second floor was added in the 1950s, and underwent renovation in 2010.[10]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "East Orange Public Library". librarytechnology.org. September 2011. Retrieved 2011-09-29. 
  2. ^ East Orange Public Library
  3. ^ a b Bobinski, George S. (1969). Carnegie Libraries: Their History and Impact on American Public Library Development. Chicago: American Library Association. ISBN 0-8389-0022-4. 
  4. ^ a b Jones, Theodore (1997). Carnegie Libraries Across America. New York: John Wiley & Sons. ISBN 0-471-14422-3. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Hart, Bill (2000), East Orange in Vinage Postcards, Arcadia Publishing, ISBN 978-0-7385-0457-5 
  6. ^ "Oppose a Carnegie Library; Some Residents of East Orange Will Fight the Acceptance of the Millionaire's Offer.". The New York Times. January 22, 1900. Retrieved 2011-10-03. 
  7. ^ "Oppose Carnegie Library Residents of East Orange will Fight Offer". Meriden Morning Record. January 23, 1900. Retrieved 2011-10-03. 
  8. ^ "Library History". Port Jervis Free Public Library. Archived from the original on 2011-09-14. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 
  9. ^ "1903-2009 Then and Now The East Orange Library". East Orange Timeline. 2009. Retrieved 2011-10-04. 
  10. ^ Bondy, Halley (March 24, 2010), "East Orange library closed for asbsestos should reopen by summer", The Star-Ledger 

External links[edit]

Coordinates: 40°45′36″N 74°12′42″W / 40.760003°N 74.211725°W / 40.760003; -74.211725