ALBANY -- The Albany Library will hold a belated 100th birthday celebration on Jan. 26 in the main room of the adjacent Albany Community Center, 1247 Marin Ave. The program begins with the Albany Historical Society's general meeting at 1:30 p.m., followed by a centennial program at 2 p.m. A reception that follows will include activities for children.
The event is jointly hosted by the library, the historical society, the Friends of the Albany Library and the City of Albany.
The actual anniversary of the library's founding was on Dec. 4. Albany's library was the fifth branch of what was then called the Alameda County Library Department, according to Wikipedia. The department was part of the Oakland Free Library. The original library was located on Solano Avenue, just east of San Pablo Avenue. Alameda County supplied many of the books and Albany residents agreed to allocat $5 per month to supplement the collection.
The library moved to a second story addition to the old City Hall, which was on Solano just west of San Pablo. In 1952, the library moved again, this time to its own building on Solano. The site was centrally located, but over the years the popularity of the branch location, by then part of the county library system, taxed the small space.
In January of 1994 the branch moved into its current location, on the site of the old Albany Hospital. Its former building is now part of the Albany YMCA.
The celebration will include a presentation by branch manager Deborah Sica on the history of the library.
She has been researching the institution in preparation.
A timeline of the Albany Library's history, along with historic photos are online at www.ibabuzz.com/westcounty.