"Californians have many things to be proud of, and not the least of these is the State Library, which is just entering upon the great field of possibilities before it." – William Watson, 1906
Californians are the owners of the millions of books, photographs, and other important collections which the California State Library (CSL) keeps in trust for them. The Library's goal is to put more of those items into their hands through the Internet and exhibits that will travel throughout the state. At the same time, grants from the State Library are improving Internet connectivity at public libraries so they can better innovate and serve their diverse communities.
The CSL is becoming the place to find out whatever you want about California's past, present, and future. It is working to connect all Californians with the information they need personally, professionally, and academically. The CSL is creating 3D images out of 150-year-old stereographs, reimagining its website, and connecting all the items in the Library's care so that one search delivers everything the Library has on a given topic.
Mary Eudora Garoutte, first librarian to head the California Section the CSL, c. 1890s.
Most importantly, the State Library is continuing its century old mission to help Californians of all ages become lifetime readers, which is by far the highest yielding investment of taxpayer dollars there is because it pays such enormous dividends in human capital.
(1930-51) Photo of Mabel R. Gillis, the seventeenth State Librarian
(1899-1917) Photo of James L. Gillis, the fifteenth State Librarian
County Free Library Organizer May Dexter Henshall, Inyo County, 19xx
Montage of various items from the CSWL collections
Contemporary photograph of the Stanley Mosk Library and Courts Building