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What year did Omaha Public Library become a department of the city of Omaha?

In the early days the library was a stand alone organization that raised money to purchase books and pay staff, I think. When did it become a City department? I've had no luck myself and we're using this information on a project at OPL. Thanks for your assistance!
Last Updated: Dec 23, 2017  |  18 Views

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Thanks for asking! On June 13, 1877, the Omaha City Council appointed a library board, levied a tax to support the library, and accepted a donation of materials from the defunct Omaha Library Association. This date is generally recognized as the birth of the Omaha Public Library. See this page in our digital local history collection for details. The information there is borne out by the 1945 publication Omaha Public Library: Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow and Philip Kalisch's Early History of the Omaha Public Library, both available in our Nebraska Reference collection. (Along with the 1878 Omaha Public Library annual report, which is well worth a look.) 

(Point of interest, it was the 1877 founding year that inspired the name of the OPL Foundation's young professional wing, the 1877 Society!) 

Thanks again for asking, and thanks for using AskOPL! Feel free to call 402-444-4825 for further assistance. 

Answered by Mark SorensenBookmark and Share

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