Event: Tuesday, May 30, 2017 2pm-4pm
Harney County Library has a long and rich history for such a wide and sparsely populated area. In 1903, a group of women formed the “Ladies Afternoon Club,” and books were housed in a private residence. Over the years, the name was modified to the “Ladies Library Club,” and eventually, with a new location (a tiny room over the local jail), the “Burns Library Club.”
In the late 1960s, the board of directors got serious about an adequate building with an expanded collection. With substantial donations of funds and land, and matching funds from the Library Services Act, a new building—unusual and modern for its time—was constructed in 1969, which Harney County Library occupies to this day.
Two important private collections of local and western history were bequeathed to the library—approximately 1500 volumes of rare and first edition books covering Indian history, exploration, fur trade, immigration, and development of the Northwest—and in 2006, the construction of an addition to provide space and equipment for research was completed. In addition to the western history collections, a substantial oral history project, begun nearly a half-century ago, is housed in this additional space.