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Kansas City Public Library
The Kansas City Public Library dates back to 1873 when the public school system allowed citizens to browse its only encyclopedia and borrow books from a single shelf of circulating titles. The city's first dedicated library opened in 1899 at 8th and Oak Street. In 1960, the library operated branches through the city and opened a new central library that included the first special collections department and reading room.
By the 1980s, the library's collections and programming exceeded the capacity of its 1960 facility. In 1999, a commitment of $50 million in public funding and private donations allowed the Central Library to renovate and move into its present location-the former headquarters of First National Bank. The bank was built in 1906 and the move included a multi-year effort to renovate and restore the bank to its original grandeur while converting it into an ideal facility for library programming. The remodel also funded updates and modern conveniences such as custom designed-tables that offer power outlets for portable computers. The library maintains a special collection of videos and a small theater in the former bank vault. It also maintains a small café that offers food and drink from local vendors.
SourcesLibrary History, KCPL Website, http://www.kclibrary.org/library-history accessed 12/20/14
Kansas City, MO 64105
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