Thames Carnegie Library - Thames, New Zealand
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member No Fixed Aboder
S 37° 08.056 E 175° 32.303
60H E 370175 N 5889232
A generous offer of 2,000 pounds was made by Andrew Carnegie which made this library possible.
Waymark Code: WM88D0
Location: North Island, New Zealand
Date Posted: 02/18/2010
Published By:Groundspeak Charter Member BruceS
Views: 8

In 1902 it was suggested that the Thames Borough Council take advantage of American steel magnate's offer to pay for the erection of a public library in any city in the English speaking world which would provide a site and commit itself to the permanent maintenance of the institution'. Carnegie promised 2000 pounds and a brick building was designed by architect J Currie and built by Lye and Son. It was opened on November 2, 1905 by Mayor Arch Burns.

The main room was 35 by 25 feet, with 4000 books. There was also a newspaper room and a ladies reading and writing room which had a separate entrance.

The 1905 building has high studs, pressed metal ceiling tiles, heritage tiles, original gas fittings, fireplaces, ceramic lights, archways, huge sash windows and original skirting boards that are double the usual height found in Victorian villas. All the rooms had grates for fires.

The famous Carnegie Library is now classed as a Heritage Class 2 building. On the front of the building a stone plaque states 'This building was erected by funds donated by Andrew Carnegie Esq America'.

As this building rapidly became to small to house the large number of book finally the council made a decision for the building of a new town library which opened on 1st June 1990.

Now the library is one of the three remaining Carnegie Libraries built in New Zealand from the origional 18.
Address of Library Building:
705 Queen Street
Thames, North Island New Zealand

Current Use of Building: The Coromandel Heritage Trust was formed in 2003 to establish THE TREASURY, a purpose-built archive and family history centre in Thames, New Zealand.

Year Built (optional): 2/11/1905

Website about building: [Web Link]

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willbuild visited Thames Carnegie Library - Thames, New Zealand 03/17/2010 willbuild visited it