Calgary Public Library Milestones

1906 On February 9, 1906, the Calgary Women’s Literary Club is founded by Mrs. Annie Davidson.
1907 Mrs. Annie Davidson organizes a petition requesting funds from the Carnegie Foundation to build Calgary’s first public library.
1907 The Public Library Act is passed on March 15, 1907.
 1908 Andrew Carnegie offers Calgary City Council $50,000 to build a library.
1908 Calgary’s public library bylaw is passed.
 1911 The Library Board hires Alexander Calhoun as Chief Librarian.
 1912 Central Park Library officially opens on January 2, 1912.
 1913 Crescent Heights Library opens on October 15, 1913.
 1923 Georgina Thomson joins the Calgary Public Library.
 1936 Library begins regular broadcasts on CJCJ radio.
 1945 William R. Castell replaces the retiring Alexander Calhoun.
 1946 The Inglewood Library opens.
 1947 Calgary Public Library becomes the first library in Canada to loan records.
1947 Hillhurst Library opens.
 1950 Glengarry Library opens.
 1952 Bookmobile begins service in October.
 1954 Original Alexander Calhoun Library.
 1959 Louise Riley Library opens.
 1960 Chinook Library opens.
 1962 City of Calgary annexes village of Forest Lawn, and the Forest Lawn Library joins the Calgary Public Library system.
 1963 Central Library opens at 616 Macleod Trail South.
 1964 Westbrook Library opens.
1964 The City of Calgary annexes village of Bowness, and the Bowness Library joins the Calgary Public Library system.
 1965  Georgina Thomson Library opens.
 1966  Southwood Library opens.
 1967  Memorial Park Library closes, and the collection moves to Central Library.
 1970 Hillhurst Library closes, and the collection moves to Sir Winston Churchill School and is renamed the Winston Churchill Community Library. This library opens in September 1970.
1970 The Westbrook Library moves in August 1970 and is renamed the Shaganappi Library.
 1973 The new Forest Lawn Library in the city’s southeast opens.
1973 Leslie (Les) Fowlie is appointed new Director.
1974 Central Library addition is officially opened by renowned Canadian author, W.O. Mitchell.
1974 Thorn-Hill Library opens.
1975 The Varsity Library replaces the Sir Winston Churchill Community Library.
1977 Memorial Park is restored and reopens as a Library, after serving as Glenbow Museum's reference library and archives for eight years.
1979 John Dutton is appointed Director.
1979 The Macleod Library opens.
1979 Bowness Library opens.
1981 The new Alexander Calhoun Library building opens.
1983 Properties Library closes, and Village Square Library opens.
1985 Fish Creek Library opens.
1986 Millican-Ogden Library opens.
1987 VHS videos are added to the collection.
1988 Nose Hill Library opens, replacing Varsity Library.
1991 The bookmobiles make their last run on February 28.
1991 Gerry Meek is appointed Director.
1992 The self-serve catalogue is introduced.
1996 Public computers and Internet access are introduced at several branches.
1998 Midnapore Library opens.
1998 Signal Hill Library opens.
 2001 Shawnessy Library opens, replacing the Midnapore Library.
 2004 DVDs are introduced to the Library’s collection.
2004 The Crowfoot Library opens.
 2007 Wireless Internet areas are added to all locations.
 2011 On July 24, 2011, the East Village is chosen as the site of Calgary’s new Central Library.
2012 100th Anniversary of the Calgary Public Library.
2012 Saddletowne Library opens to the public on January 3, with official opening celebrations on January 14, 2012
2014 Bill Ptacek is appointed new CEO of Calgary Public Library.
  • Book Trucks start visiting community stops and schools.
  • Nicholls Family Library opens on April 23, 2016.
  • Quarry Park Library opens on July 2, 2016.
  • Rocky Ridge Library opens January 15, 2018.
  • Memorial Park is designated a National Historic Site.
  • Central Library, at 616 Macleod Trail, closes on October 25, 2018. The new Central Library opens November 1, 2018, at 800 3 St SE, just a few blocks east. 
2019 Seton Library opens on January 14, 2019.