The Glenview Public Library enriches, educates, and inspires our diverse community by connecting people to the world of information and ideas.
On December 6, 1930, in the midst of the Great Depression, a group of Glenview residents gathered at historic Village Hall on Prairie Street to create a community library. The first Board of Trustees accomplished its goal three months later when the Glenview Public Library, which consisted of 398 books in a basement room of Village Hall, opened to the public on March 2, 1931.
From this humble beginning, the Library built its first permanent facility in 1955, twice expanded its footprint in 1968 and 1985, and finally built its present 85,000 square foot home on the same corner in downtown Glenview in 2010. The Library transformed in other ways too, adding new media, such as filmstrips and cassettes, and eventually, CDs and DVDs to its rapidly expanding collection; and providing access to each era’s latest technology like copiers and personal computers. As Glenview’s population flourished and modern innovation quickly changed the way we learned, the Library adapted to meet community needs, providing access to information and resources while looking to the future.
Today, patrons can use their Library card to check out a wireless hotspot, download an eBook or stream a movie to a tablet, or conduct research using one of 70+ online databases. Over 1,200 programs are offered each year, covering a wide range of topics for all ages, from storytime and sewing to learning to use a 3D printer and laser engraver in the Library’s Innovation Center. For those who simply want to browse the collection, the Marketplace showcases new and popular materials for every interest. With an average of 360,000 visitors each year, GPL has grown exponentially with each new generation and will continue to serve the vibrant and diverse Glenview community for years to come.
Through the Great Depression, a world war, the birth of a new century, and a global pandemic, GPL has endured, and we couldn’t have made 90+ years without the support of our community.
Our History in a Heartbeat
Find more historic images from Glenview Public Library’s past on our Flickr page.