Fayetteville Public Library Celebrates the Numbers

Fayetteville Public Library Celebrates the Numbers
Courtesy Photo

Courtesy Photo

As the community turns toward FPL’s 10th Birthday Bash on Mountain Street, we give a collective glance back to our library numbers:

98 years:

A short 98 years ago, in 1916, UA librarian Julia Vaulx and a group of citizens established the Fayetteville Public Library in the basement of the Washington County Courthouse.


The postal street number for the library on West Mountain Street.

1 percent:

In 2000, Fayetteville citizens approved a 1 percent sales tax to be levied for 18-months to fund construction of a new library. Ultimately, the library began serving the citizens of Washington County debt free.

$3 million:

The single largest private donation to the new library, made by Jim Blair, honors his late wife Diane Divers Blair, his grandmother, Bessie Motley Blair, and his aunt, Dr. Mary Grace Blair. In recognition of this generous donation, the building’s carries the official name of Fayetteville Public Library Blair Library.

12 blocks:

The new library moved 12 blocks off the previous Dickson Street address to the current Mountain Street location. Best part, still situated in a local neighborhood.


Year the library won the coveted national Library of the Year award sponsored by Library Journal and Thompson/Gale Publishers. By 2006 the New York Times travel section, TravelSmart newsletter, rated our library as an American Landmark Library.

14th Day:

September 14 the doors closed on Dickson Street and patrons said good-bye to the Roberta Fulbright Building on a Tuesday night, 2004. Tears shed: countless


Total square footage of the Blair Library


Jump back! Total annual circulation of items from the library.


The difference between the Fayetteville’s population (73,850) and the number of library card holders (69,451).

72 Final Words:

A month long series of events celebrated our grand opening and new beginning. Lolly Greenwood, Manager of Children Services, vividly recalls the August parade from the old library to the new building prior to opening day. Gretchen Allen, Circulation Services, likewise remembered that parade as fun, bubbling with laughter. October 9 the doors swung open to Aaron Copland’s “Fanfare for the Common Man” performed by the North Arkansas Symphony. It echoes still.

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