Public library celebrates over 100 years of service in Josephine County

September 12, 2022 in

Josephine Community Library celebrates over 100 years of service in Josephine County during the month of September. Community members are invited to visit each branch in Grants Pass, Illinois Valley, Williams, and Wolf Creek for special displays recounting the history of that branch; to browse local history recommended reading on the library’s website; and to follow along on social media for photos giving the community a glimpse into the history of the library system.

The public library movement in Grants Pass began in 1913 by a committee made up of members of the city and county. They began fundraising and accepting book donations in 1914. The first official library was a single room upstairs at City Hall. From that point, the library has endured closures, location changes, and expansions, ultimately developed into the current four branches.

Referencing the writing in Josephine County Historical Highlights, compiled by Edna May Hill, and using archived photos taken by library volunteers and staff over the decades, past records, and historical articles from the Grants Pass Daily Courier, the library shares its rich history back with the community. These historical photos and articles are available to view in the library during the month of September and on social media, @JosephineCommunityLibrary, on Facebook and Instagram.

For information about the history of libraries in Josephine County and for recommended reading and resources, visit, email, or call 541-476-0571.