The Blairsville Library


The Blairsville Library

The Early Years

In Blairsville's early years, its progressive citizens decide one of the town's first needs was a library for its community.  In 1872 a Y.M.C.A. was started and included a library and reading room for the members.  Those rooms were in a building located on the northwest corner of Market and Liberty Streets on the Diamond.  Ten years later, in 1882, the library was relocated to a separate building on the northwest corner of Market and Spring Streets.  The library and reading room were open to all who paid $2.00 per year.  At this time they had about 300 books and a few periodicals and newspapers.  In 1886 the Y.M.C.A. and several community minded citizens realized that the library would do better if separated from the Y.M.C.A.  A Public Library Association was formed and a charter was granted on July 6, 1886.  the first officers were John Hill, president; A.P. Kirtland, secretary; T.D. Cunningham, treasurer; and the following directors:  Antes Snyder, W.R. Smith, D. M. Fair, Jacob Graff and J.A. Cunningham.

The overflowing shelves in 1969

The citizen's of Blairsville, along with a gift of $650.00 from Andrew Carnegie, raised enough money to buy a building located on the north side of Market Street between Liberty and Spring Streets.  After extensive repairs to the building, the Y.M.C.A. turned over all books, furniture and library equipment to the Library Association.  From that period to the present Blairsville has had a public library of which it can be justly proud.  In 1908 the association purchased and moved to its present location on the northwest corner of Walnut and Campbell Streets.  In 1969, continuing the progressive policies of the early founders, the Library Association razed its building and with service being interrupted for a period of only nine months, built the present modern Library.  The citizens of Blairsville can be very proud of this facility as few communities of this size have anything this nice.  Much of this was accomplished with local finance and a great deal of l


Officers of the Library Association

During this noble enterprise were:

 ​Frank M. Barkley, president

Miss Janet McClure, vice president

Mrs. W. Clark Richey, secretary

Donald G. Gilmore, treasurer

and the following directors:

Mrs. John A. Ackerson

Mrs. J. Freeman Ferguson

John A. Henderson

L. Harold Kirkell

Joseph V. Serwinski