National Library Week

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National Library Week (sometimes known as Libraries Week) is observed by a number of countries, initially just by the United States (since 1957).

Artwork created for National Library Week at Loyola Marymount University, 2017.

First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week (NLW) as observed in the United States is sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the USA each April, typically the second full week.[1] It promotes library use and support.

In 1954, a nonprofit National Book Committee was established between the ALA and the American Book Publishers. Virginia Mathews served as Deputy Director and then Director of the National Book Committee.[2] In 1957, the committee developed the idea for National Library Week, hoping that it would motivate people to read and support libraries.[3]

National Library Week occurs in April which is School Library Month. National Library Workers Day (Tuesday of the week), National Bookmobile Day, and Support Teen Literature Day (Thursday of the week) all occur during National Library Week. Each year the week has a new theme. The theme of the first sponsored week in 1954 was "Wake Up and Read!" and 2021's theme is "There's More to the Story."[4][5]

The honorary chair of National Library Week, April 3–9, 2022, was actress, comedian Molly Shannon. The American Library Association released the State of America's Libraries Report, highlighting the challenges U.S. libraries faced in the second year of the pandemic.[6]

Other countries[edit]

NLW has spread to different countries. The first National Library Week of the Jamaica Library Association was held March 6–12, 1966.[7]

Libraries Week display in 2017, Skipton Library, UK

Australia's Library and Information Week is organized by the Australian Library and Information Association, and held annually at the end of May. The first Australian Library Week was held in 1968 by the Australian Library Promotion Council.[8]

The UK observes Libraries Week. Originally it was a one-day event, National Libraries Day, that began in 2012.[9] It is now a week long observance, more formally organised by CILIP.[10] In 2023, the week had an environmental focus, rebranded as Green Libraries Week and held 2–8 October.[11]

South African Library Week is observed annually, since the early 2000s.[12]

India has celebrated National Library Week in November since 1968.[13]


  1. ^ Anderson, Dee (2009). Reading is Funny!. ALA Editions. p. 135. ISBN 978-0-8389-0957-7.
  2. ^ Council of the American Library Association (2011), Memorial Resolution Honoring Virginia Mathews (PDF), Proceedings of the American Library Association, New Orleans, Louisiana{{citation}}: CS1 maint: location missing publisher (link)
  3. ^ "Celebrate National Library Week". Conferences & Events. 2006-11-08. Retrieved 2018-03-19.
  4. ^ American Library Association (2021). "National Library Week". Conferences & Events. Retrieved 2021-09-14.
  5. ^
  6. ^ "NLW 2022".
  7. ^ Drake, Miriam A. (2003). Encyclopedia of Library and Information Science: Des-Lib. CRC Press. p. 1428. ISBN 0-8247-2078-4.
  8. ^ "Peak bodies forum". National Library of Australia. 2007.
  9. ^ National Libraries Day 4 Feb 2012 Save The Date, archived from the original on 2012-01-20, retrieved 2023-10-04
  10. ^ NLD events in previous years, archived from the original on 2018-03-20, retrieved 2023-10-04
  11. ^ "Green Libraries Week - DCMS Libraries". Retrieved 2023-10-04.
  12. ^ National Library Week 2000, archived from the original on 2004-07-08, retrieved 2023-10-04
  13. ^ Staff. "National Library Week, 19-11-2022". Retrieved 2023-10-04.

External links[edit]