Member Spotlight: Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Unifying the voice of nonprofits to leverage their power

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

To Engage our Community in Literacy and Learning

The people of Pittsburgh love their city. They also have an enduring relationship with their library system, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

That enduring relationship is why the Library hosts more than 2.9 million visitors each year, why it is viewed as the catalyst to an improving quality of life in the region, and why it is considered a key partner in the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County and in the growth and vitality of our community.

More than a century ago, Andrew Carnegie believed that the greatest contribution that residents of this city could make was to support a public library. When he generously provided capital funding to build the initial library buildings, he intentionally resisted the notion of endowing the Library’s ongoing operations. He believed strongly that financial support from residents was the most effective way to maintain a strong relationship between the community and its community library. 

Since its inception in 1895, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh continues to build community, enable learning and provides equal access for residents of all abilities, skills and backgrounds. Today, our system consists of 19 neighborhood locations, including the Main Library in Oakland and the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped. Although books remain the heart of any library, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh has transformed into a strong library system that focuses on Education, Workforce and Economic Development and Community Vitality.

Through critical services such as early learning initiatives for children, out of school learning programs, job search assistance and computer and Internet access, the Library fosters lifelong learning and supports the region’s workforce, economic development and vitality.

Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is firmly committed to the goal that every child in our community is provided with the resources and opportunities to develop the skills they need to enter school ready to learn. High quality afterschool and summer library programs that reflect individual interests help keep children and teens engaged in learning throughout the year and focused on their future. Partnerships and collaborations support development and discovery. 

As a first stop for people seeking a job, exploring a new career or creating a new business, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh is a key regional partner in responding to emerging community needs. The Library is still the only place where all residents have free access to computers, the Internet and WiFi. Job seekers, career changers, small business owners and entrepreneurs come for the network but stay for the resources, programs, services and connections to organizations that can help them achieve their goals.

Comfortable library spaces in neighborhoods welcome people to read, to think, to learn, to share and to teach each other. Children and teens learn and grow; adults exchange ideas, acquire new skills and expand their understanding; and every person in our community has access to ideas, information and items -- in person or electronically. Through the community’s investment, the Library is able to do this and much more, helping to make life better for people in our region.