"There is not such a cradle of democracy upon the earth as the Free Public Library, this republic of letters, where neither rank, office, nor wealth receives the slightest consideration."
— Andrew Carnegie
Andrew Carnegie, a highly influential philanthropist and businessman, dedicated much of his life and self-made fortune to educational causes.
His strongest philanthropic initiative, driven by his strong belief in and passion for free education, was the creation of 2,509 free public libraries around the world. In total, he spent $2,556,600 on the construction of 111 libraries in Ontario and another 14 elsewhere in Canada. These funds contributed significantly to the development of literacy in small communities across this province. Learn more about Andrew Carnegie.
* Photos courtesy Ontario Public libraries and/or public.
Click on photos to enlarge (where available).
This list includes all of the Carnegie libraries in Ontario that are still operating as public libraries.
Beaverton Public Library (Brock Township Public Library)
Campbellford (Trent Hills Public Library)
Mitchell Public Library (West Perth Public Library)
Renfrew Public Library
Stirling Public Library
Thorold Public Library
The following Carnegie buildings no longer operate as libraries, but instead have been adapted and now serve other purposes within the community.
Toronto Public Library — Central Reference Branch
Toronto Public Library — Queen & Lisgar Branch
This is a list of Carnegie libraries that have been demolished or destroyed.
Mimico Branch (Toronto Public Library)
Sault Ste. Marie