Mesa Public Library is the Los Alamos branch of the Los Alamos County library. The library started in 1943 as a subscription library, after the donation of $5 by 70 families living in Los Alamos. In 1945 it became free and open to all. In 1981 the White Rock Branch Library opened in White Rock. In 1994 the library moved into its new building at 2400 Central Ave., west of Fuller Lodge. The library collection has more than 160,000 items, which include books, CDs, videotapes and other. Courtesy/wikipedia
It was just 20 short years ago this month that volunteers from all over town helped move all the books into the “new” library at 2400 Central Ave.
To celebrate that momentous occasion, the Los Alamos County Library System is hosting a party for the community 2-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 26. The celebration will include a unique birthday cake, tours of the building led by Library Manager Steven Thomas, and tours of the artwork in and around the library by staff member Katy Korkos.
In conjunction with the anniversary of the building, there is a retrospective art show in the Mesa Public Library Upstairs Gallery. The exhibit features representative work from a few of the more than 100 exhibits that have been shown in the gallery. Also in the retrospective show are several of the conceptual drawings that architect Antoine Predock created as potential designs for the building.
Los Alamos has had lending libraries since the days of the Ranch School. Historians Sharon Snyder and Heather McClenahan presented a history of libraries Thursday as part of the library’s Authors Speak series and in honor of the Anniversary. McClenahan described a timeline during which many of the books in the Ranch School library made the transition to the Manhattan Project collections, to the AEC Library, to the Los Alamos High School Library and finally into the Los Alamos Historical Society archives, collecting stamps along the way from their various owners, much as a passport holder collects visa stamps on her travels.
The Anniversary celebration will take place upstairs in the Rotunda and in the Upstairs Art Gallery. The public is welcome to attend.
Anyone who helped to move the books 20 years ago, please bring your snapshots of the event.