Public Libraries of Illinois

Cities E-G

2018 image of the Earlville, IL public library, taken & copyright by Judy Aulik

Still in use, although its upper storey is under some sort of restrictions. The building strongly resembles the old Carnegie library of Des Plaines, which was designed by George W. Ashby.

The mural was painted by a local teen, and was difficult to photograph well. It's very impressive, however.


2018 image of the Earlville, IL public library, taken & copyright by Judy Aulik

The unattributed card was mailed in 1911, and bears the architectural information:

Kesson White - John Haniben

Associated Architects

Nertney Building - Ottawa, Illinois.

East St. Louis

This card is known as a 'pioneer' or a Private Mailing Card, and bears the notation 'Authorized by Act of Congress-May 19, 1898.' I hope I look so good at 117!


I don't have any authoritative information on this building. I have heard rumors that it's one of many abandoned buildings in the city. It moved out of one building-- possibly the one pictured--and into another between 2001 and 2004.

Elgin (Gail Borden Public Library)

Where the rest of America had Andrew Carnegie, Elgin had the step-sons of condensed milk magnate Gail Borden. 
Despite a second storey addition in the 1930s, and a wing abutting the neighboring building;by 1968, the featured building was outgrown, and a new library built several blocks away on the Fox River.
In 2003, the riverside building in turn was superceded. Supposedly there is a Curt Teich chrome postcard of that building.

The old red brick library was used by the Ackemann Department store in the '70s for a hip junior store. It then went through several iterations as a restaurant.
I have been informed that the building is now a private residence.


(L) Albertype card mailed in 1943.

(R, above) Linen-finish Curteich-Chicago 'C.T. American Art' postcard which shows the main facility.

(R, below) Chrome finish Artvue card that shows the addition.



The Wilder Mansion facility was superceded by a new building in October, 2003. The addition to Wilder Mansion was removed in a restoration.


The windows of this Library appear to be reflecting a school (or similar) across the street. It appears to have either moved into said school building, or have received a concordant addition or two.


Photo postcard.


The top half of the image features the Carnegie library, the bottom, the newer 1961 library building. The current building, as seen on Wikipedia, is much taller, and is the home to nesting peregrine falcons.

It makes me feel a little better about the demolished Carnegie building (above).

This is not a postcard, but is the same size.

Fairbury (Dominy Memorial Library)

(L) Mailed as a Christmas card, in 1907.
Photo cards don't exactly strike me as Christmassy.

(R) Early Curt Teich card,mailed 1909.

This library causes me a quandary. It's a non-profit library, not a public library, opened on New Year's Day, 1905. Yet, it serves a locality, not special interests.
Its rather tragic origin is detailed on its history page. The non-tragic part is that it was built by Paul Moratz.


(R) The sender of this card was requesting a Reading book from Hall & McCreary. These are mentioned online in use as late as 1922.

Geneseo (Hammond Public Library)

C.R. Childs postcard, never mailed.


Slightly reminiscent of the Carpentersville and the Loda library.
Built in 1898, replaced in 1976.

Used as the Geneseo Historical Museum: now serves as library storage. The current library is in a sprawling building.

Gibson City (William Moyer Library)

(L) Photo card of the library, and a woman on the sidewalk.
(R) Correspondent DB noted in 1945:

Do you suppose that is Mom coming from the library?
If she is walking past the library, it is some other lady.

(L) Photo card, now with cannon. Return your books on time!
Mailed in 1937: might the cannon have been scrapped in WWII?


A 1911 donation by William Moyer funded the original building, which has been replaced. The ivy must have covered a multitude of sins, because this building was condemned in 1962.
History in 'A lott (sic) of city in 100 years; centennial history of Gibson City, Illinois.'


Not much to be said about this North Shore library. The picture isn't that great, and comparing it to the Google Street View allows me to conclude that it may or may not be the same building seen here.


Photo postcard, never mailed.


Caption: First Presbyterian Church and Golconda Public Library
Golconda, Illinois


Curt Teich waxes more poetic about the church, but does state that the library was a gift to the city by the late Chas. Rauchfuss in memory of his wife and mother.

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