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Essex County Carnegie Libraries

From the comments over the last few days, it seems there is some interest in the Carnegie libraries.

From the Evening Record – January 30, 1913:

    If you happen to go to Amherstburg these days you will notice a fine new handsome building at the corner where the car turns to go down to the river. It is the new public library that has been erected on the site of a former hotel that was burned down. The library is a very creditable structure and has an imposing appearance. The cost was about $12,000, of which Andrew Carnegie donated $10,000. The limestone was donated by the Amherstburg quarry. The plan of the building, prepared by Crane & Pennington of Windsor, architects, received very favorable endorsation (sic) by Mr. Carnegie, who wrote back that it was one of the best he had seen for a small library. The building has ample shelf room for books and is equipped with a commodious auditorium in the basement. The opening ceremony will soon be held. Much of the credit for securing the library belongs to Dr. Fred Park, the mayor of Amherstburg.

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The library still stands at the corner of Richmond and Sandwich Streets.

Ontario was a major recipient of Andrew Carnegie’s generosity. Only the states of Indiana (164) and California (142) received more Carnegie grants than the province of Ontario which had 111.

Essex county had Carnegie Libraries built in Amherstburg, Essex, Kingsville, Leamington and Windsor.

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The Kingsville carnegie, built in 1911 and designed by Crane & Pennington as well, also still stands.

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As does the one in Essex, also by Crane & Pennington this one from 1912.

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Leamington? Not so much. They join Windsor as the only other place in Essex County to have destroyed theirs. The Leamington Carnegie was built in 1910, and desgined by John A. Maycock. It was demolished sometime prior to 1983.

Parts of the Windsor Carnegie do survive however, the lobby doors to the Parks & Rec building on McDougall are from the demolished Carnegie, as well as the wood paneling in the conference room too…

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