About the Library

History of McCain Library

1910 - The Andrew Carnegie Library was the College's first library building. A gift of Mr. Carnegie, it was on the southeast corner of the Woodruff Quad. That building was demolished in 1986, having served first as a library, then as a student center ("the Hub") after the new library was constructed.

1935 - In May 1935, the College Board of Trustees authorized the construction of a new library.

1936 - The new library opened in the fall of 1936. Still called the Carnegie Library, it consisted of 4 main floors, a grand reading room, and an attached "stack tower" of 7 floors.

1951- The library was renamed for James Ross McCain on the occasion of his retirement as the second President of the College.

1974-1977 - The first major renovations of the library building were done over the course of four summers, leaving the library open during the academic year. This renovation included air conditioning, a new stairway, a larger elevator, reading platforms in the main reading room, and improvements to the Board of Trustees' meeting room, special collections, and archives.

1999-2000 - The library building was closed for a complete renovation from June 1999 through December 2000. The 1936 stack tower was torn down. The rest of the old building was upgraded, and new stacks along with new reading, study, instruction, and technology areas were added. During the renovation, the library operated out of a temporary "trailer" facility in the Rebekah parking lot which housed the main circulation desk, reference, current periodicals, and staff offices, and a warehouse on the south side of campus which housed the main book collection.

2001 - The newly renovated McCain Library opened in January 2001, in time for the beginning of spring semester.

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