History

Serving Beacon Hill since 1945

The first Beacon Hill Library opened Oct. 23, 1945. Members of the Beacon Hill Community Club, Beacon Hill Parent-Teachers Association and Jefferson Park Ladies' Improvement Club contributed time, money, materials and labor.

On Dec. 6, 1962, the library moved to a larger, rented space that was originally built in 1927 as a food store and later converted to a retail store. In 1968, fire destroyed a neighboring store, but heavy rain kept the library from burning. The Library bought the building and property in 1975.

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Architecture

A community focal point

Interior view of sweeping roof forms at the Beacon Hill Branch
Interior view of sweeping roof forms at the Beacon Hill Branch

The new Beacon Hill Branch was the 11th project completed under the "Libraries for All" building program.

The building was designed by Carlson Architects and built by Steele Corp. The architects designed the sweeping roof forms, which allow natural light to flood the building, to provide a visual landmark and establish a focal point for the community. Wood and stone are used throughout the building to provide a harmony of natural warmth and enduring craft. Plaster and interior finishes were donated by Mark Ricketts of Medici Architectural Finishes LLC.

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Art

Neighborhood writers shine

Artwork by Miles Pepper at the Beacon Hill Branch
Artwork by Miles Pepper at the Beacon Hill Branch

Eleven Beacon Hill-area writers and poets have haikus, prose or fiction throughout the branch and outside on quarry rocks. Also outside, a boat sculpture called "Dream Ship" moves with the wind.

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Named Spaces

Friends of The Seattle Public Library Meeting Room

For 65 years the Friends of The Seattle Public Library has been a grassroots volunteer organization that has supported the Library as an essential institution in society. The Friends supports Library programs, advocates for the Library, and raises money through book sales and a FriendShop in the Central Library. Grants from the Friends have provided additional resources to enhance the Libraries for All building program in several branches.