Public Hearing Before               Glenn A. Walsh

Pittsburgh City Council:              P.O. Box 1041

City Designated Historic        Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15230-1041 U.S.A.

   Structure Status For           Telephone: 412-561-7876

Andrew Carnegie-Built          Electronic Mail: < >

West End Branch Library      Internet Web Site: < >

                                                             2004 June 30


Good afternoon. I am Glenn A. Walsh of 633 Royce Avenue, Mount Lebanon. Today, I am representing no formal organization.


From 1995-2000, I served as a Life Trustee, on the Board of Trustees, of one of Andrew Carnegie’s original libraries: the Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall in Carnegie, Pennsylvania, which opened in 1901. I served as the Library’s Treasurer from 1995-1996. I was the Consulting Editor for the April, 1999 issue of Cobblestone, a national history magazine for children; the theme of this issue was the life and philanthropies of Andrew Carnegie. And, I maintain an educational web site, on the Internet, on the History of Andrew Carnegie and Carnegie Libraries: < >.


The West End Branch Library, a well-known and loved landmark in the center of the West End business district, was the location of the very first children’s storytime in a public library. And, the West End Branch Library was the second library to house a specifically-designed and constructed library Children’s Room.


The Pittsburgh History and Landmarks Foundation, which provides historic building plaques on many buildings in the region, nominated the Hazelwood, Homewood, Lawrenceville, Mt. Washington, and West End Branches, of The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, to the status of City Designated Historic Structure. And, both the Historic Review Commission of Pittsburgh and the City Planning Commission have forwarded, to Pittsburgh City Council, positive and unanimous recommendations in favor of the historic designation of all five library buildings.


And, with the three Carnegie Libraries which already enjoy historic designation, the historic designation of these five libraries will complete the designation of the system of neighborhood library branches throughout the City, originally envisioned by Andrew Carnegie, which is of major historical significance.


In his letter to the Mayor and City Councils on February 6, 1890, Andrew Carnegie offered these library buildings to the City and said, “All of these should be thoroughly fireproof, monumental in character and creditable to the city.” Andrew Carnegie provided these wonderful buildings to be monuments of literacy and learning for each of these neighborhoods, each to be recognized by the people as a special place where a person can improve their lot in life.


I strongly recommend that Pittsburgh City Council approve Bill No. 285, conferring the status of City Designated Historic Structure on the West End Branch of The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.


Thank you.