Sublette County Library Logo with a red book and Squaretop Mountain in the background.

Sublette County Libraries

About the Pinedale Library

Hours & Location

Address
155 S Tyler Ave
P.O. Box 489
Pinedale, WY 82941

Contact Us
Phone: (307) 367-4114
Fax: (307) 367-6722
Email Us

Hours
Monday – Thursday  |  10 am – 8 pm
Friday  |  10 am – 6 pm
Saturday  |  10 am – 5 pm
Sunday  |  Closed

Address
155 S Tyler Ave
P.O. Box 489
Pinedale, WY 82941

Contact Us
Phone: (307) 367-4114
Fax: (307) 367-6722
Email Us

Hours
Monday – Thursday  |  10 am – 8 pm
Friday  |  10 am – 6 pm
Saturday  |  10 am – 5 pm
Sunday  |  Closed

The History of the Library

A historical photo of the original white-painted Big Piney Library buildingIn the 1920s, community members were hopeful of a library for the Pinedale community. The Pinedale Boosters and the Community Club took on the project in 1922, obtaining at least 200 books from the Wyoming State Library and the University Library. These books were available to all citizens of Sublette County, but those who could not make it into town could request a book by mail for the price of postage. The books were moved to the courthouse and more donations piled in from local residents. A two-cents-a-day fine was charged for books returned late. This fee would remain until 2000 when late fines were dropped altogether.

By 1939, the library had a collection of approximately 450 books, most of which were classic and modern novels. These were available to any Sublette County resident willing to buy the 25-cent library card, which entitled them to check out up to 15 books.

In 1931, the Community Club Library was moved from the old courthouse in Pinedale’s Town Hall to the Sublette County building. Clerk of Court, Miss Billings, attended to the library in addition to her county work. By 1936, the library was expanding its offerings by collecting books from local citizens in a door-to-door campaign.

A library committee decided to hold a public meeting in November 1951 to discuss establishing a county library. At this time Sublette was the only county in Wyoming without a public library. After considerable public discussion, including an informational meeting, the decision was sent to a ballot. Every registered voter was “asked to help elect a provisional county library board to promote the project until the county commissioners can be asked to take over.” Betty Blake and Alice Harrower were elected as temporary chairman and temporary secretary-treasurer respectively. Together they helped to conduct the election of a board and solicit donations towards a fund.

One of the better known projects by the “2 Better U” Club was the re-establishment of a library in Pinedale. The libraries in Pinedale established in the past had been supported exclusively by donations and had ceased operation. An earlier attempt by the county’s legislator to obtain state assistance had been unsuccessful. Ethelyne Worl, the first to suggest this idea, was appointed as president of a new library committee.

The Sublette County Library Association was then formed to promote a county library. The group emphasized the importance of a county library system, with Big Piney included.

While work continued toward obtaining a county library supported with state funds, the “2 Better U” Library Committee went ahead with a community library supported locally. In December 1952, the committee started gathering books and magazines to be temporarily housed at Worl’s Ford Service building. Donations were gathered door-to-door and from surrounding communities.

In January 1953, there was a formal opening of the new library. In preparation, an all-volunteer brigade cataloged and shelved more than 1,000 books. At this time any resident of Sublette County could get a free library card and check out books and magazines. Temporary residents could secure a library card with a $2 deposit, with the money refunded when the card was returned.

This new library quickly outgrew Worl’s Garage so the Town Council approved the use of the front room of Town Hall. They also agreed to pay for heat, water, and lighting. Open hours were later expanded for school children to come by with tremendous success.

The Pinedale Community Library received national recognition by winning the John Cotton Dana Publicity Award in June 1954 for the “spontaneous cooperation and publicity that achieved a library for this isolated, book-hungry little community-population 770.”

A historical image of librarians behind the front desk at Pinedale LibraryIn 1958, the Wyoming Legislature increased the mill levy statewide for libraries, allowing for more funds for building improvements. This was a major shift from when community members and towns paid these bills. Community leaders from Pinedale and Big Piney worked together to create a county library system to take advantage of this new state funding. Together they established the first county library board. The Pinedale Community Library became a part of this new county library system and Gertrude Olson was installed as the first county librarian. The library in Pinedale moved from Town Hall to a small log building in the southern part of the courthouse square.

The Sublette County Library at Pinedale provided service to six rural schools in 1960 and routinely requested books from the State Library in Cheyenne, the University of Wyoming Library, or the Bibliographical Center in Denver.

The Pinedale Library expanded its space in June 1966, moving to the newly acquired Cutter Office Building, which was then moved to the courthouse square.

In the late 1960s, Sublette County built a new Pinedale Library on Fremont Avenue which featured a multi-purpose room available for public meetings and library activities. It was designed by Kellogg and Kellogg and constructed by Superior Lumber Company.

Community members worked together to expand the local library in 1981 when the County Commissioners granted an addition to be built by contractors Carlson and Wenz. The costs were covered by the Sublette County Library Foundation, a non-profit, tax-exempt corporation that had been founded six months earlier.

In 1988 the Commissioners purchased the old elementary school on South Tyler Ave, tore it down in 1993, and donated the lot for a new library. Groundbreaking took place in the Fall of 1996, and was built by architects Nancy and John Carney and Specific West Construction. A majority of the construction costs came from nearly 400 private donations.

The exterior of the building was made of lodge pole pine, red cedar shingles, and a steel roof with rusting patina. The interior boasted a warm welcoming feeling due to the wood, colored concrete floor, towering cathedral ceiling, and separate children’s library.

Library patrons were encouraged to take large numbers of books and materials home for a month while the facility was moved to its new location. Eventually, the space was unveiled and opened in January 1998. Story hours and summer reading programs were offered to children and library-themed gifts were given out to newborns. Programs for adults, too, were abundant, including art projects, music programs, and book discussions. Neal Conan from NPR even visited in the winter of 2003 and 2004 for an evening of holiday music offered free to the community.

By 2000, the library was connected to state-wide collections through its subscription to the Wyoming State Library program, WyLD Cat.

With a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 2002, the library purchased Spanish-speaking materials and resources, including a computer keyboard in Spanish.
By 2004, over 55,000 books were in circulation at the Pinedale Library.

In 2008, a major addition was made to the Pinedale Library, using rammed earth as a construction material, the first like it in the country. This choice in material was chosen for sustainability purposes; it has maximum energy efficiency for the high-altitude climate. Plus it can withstand seismic activity known to the area. This new addition was unveiled to the community in May 2009 and boasts a cozy community meeting room, gallery, Western Americana collection, administrative offices, bathrooms, and teen library.

In the 1920s, community members were hopeful of a library for the Pinedale community. The Pinedale Boosters and the Community Club took on the project in 1922, obtaining at least 200 books from the Wyoming State Library and the University Library. These books were available to all citizens of Sublette County, but those who could not make it into town could request a book by mail for the price of postage. The books were moved to the courthouse and more donations piled in from local residents. A two-cents-a-day fine was charged for books returned late. This fee would remain until 2000 when late fines were dropped altogether.

By 1939, the library had a collection of approximately 450 books, most of which were classic and modern novels. These were available to any Sublette County resident willing to buy the 25-cent library card, which entitled them to check out up to 15 books.

In 1931, the Community Club Library was moved from the old courthouse in Pinedale’s Town Hall to the Sublette County building. Clerk of Court, Miss Billings, attended to the library in addition to her county work. By 1936, the library was expanding its offerings by collecting books from local citizens in a door-to-door campaign.

A library committee decided to hold a public meeting in November 1951 to discuss establishing a county library. At this time Sublette was the only county in Wyoming without a public library. After considerable public discussion, including an informational meeting, the decision was sent to a ballot. Every registered voter was “asked to help elect a provisional county library board to promote the project until the county commissioners can be asked to take over.” Betty Blake and Alice Harrower were elected as temporary chairman and temporary secretary-treasurer respectively. Together they helped to conduct the election of a board and solicit donations towards a fund.

One of the better known projects by the “2 Better U” Club was the re-establishment of a library in Pinedale. The libraries in Pinedale established in the past had been supported exclusively by donations and had ceased operation. An earlier attempt by the county’s legislator to obtain state assistance had been unsuccessful. Ethelyne Worl, the first to suggest this idea, was appointed as president of a new library committee.

The Sublette County Library Association was then formed to promote a county library. The group emphasized the importance of a county library system, with Big Piney included.

While work continued toward obtaining a county library supported with state funds, the “2 Better U” Library Committee went ahead with a community library supported locally. In December 1952, the committee started gathering books and magazines to be temporarily housed at Worl’s Ford Service building. Donations were gathered door-to-door and from surrounding communities.

In January 1953, there was a formal opening of the new library. In preparation, an all-volunteer brigade cataloged and shelved more than 1,000 books. At this time any resident of Sublette County could get a free library card and check out books and magazines. Temporary residents could secure a library card with a $2 deposit, with the money refunded when the card was returned.

This new library quickly outgrew Worl’s Garage so the Town Council approved the use of the front room of Town Hall. They also agreed to pay for heat, water, and lighting. Open hours were later expanded for school children to come by with tremendous success.

The Pinedale Community Library received national recognition by winning the John Cotton Dana Publicity Award in June 1954 for the “spontaneous cooperation and publicity that achieved a library for this isolated, book-hungry little community-population 770.”

In 1958, the Wyoming Legislature increased the mill levy statewide for libraries, allowing for more funds for building improvements. This was a major shift from when community members and towns paid these bills. Community leaders from Pinedale and Big Piney worked together to create a county library system to take advantage of this new state funding. Together they established the first county library board. The Pinedale Community Library became a part of this new county library system and Gertrude Olson was installed as the first county librarian. The library in Pinedale moved from Town Hall to a small log building in the southern part of the courthouse square.

The Sublette County Library at Pinedale provided service to six rural schools in 1960 and routinely requested books from the State Library in Cheyenne, the University of Wyoming Library, or the Bibliographical Center in Denver.

The Pinedale Library expanded its space in June 1966, moving to the newly acquired Cutter Office Building, which was then moved to the courthouse square.

In the late 1960s, Sublette County built a new Pinedale Library on Fremont Avenue which featured a multi-purpose room available for public meetings and library activities. It was designed by Kellogg and Kellogg and constructed by Superior Lumber Company.

Community members worked together to expand the local library in 1981 when the County Commissioners granted an addition to be built by contractors Carlson and Wenz. The costs were covered by the Sublette County Library Foundation, a non-profit, tax-exempt corporation that had been founded six months earlier.

In 1988 the Commissioners purchased the old elementary school on South Tyler Ave, tore it down in 1993, and donated the lot for a new library. Groundbreaking took place in the Fall of 1996, and was built by architects Nancy and John Carney and Specific West Construction. A majority of the construction costs came from nearly 400 private donations.

The exterior of the building was made of lodge pole pine, red cedar shingles, and a steel roof with rusting patina. The interior boasted a warm welcoming feeling due to the wood, colored concrete floor, towering cathedral ceiling, and separate children’s library.

Library patrons were encouraged to take large numbers of books and materials home for a month while the facility was moved to its new location. Eventually, the space was unveiled and opened in January 1998. Story hours and summer reading programs were offered to children and library-themed gifts were given out to newborns. Programs for adults, too, were abundant, including art projects, music programs, and book discussions. Neal Conan from NPR even visited in the winter of 2003 and 2004 for an evening of holiday music offered free to the community.

By 2000, the library was connected to state-wide collections through its subscription to the Wyoming State Library program, WyLD Cat.

With a grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in 2002, the library purchased Spanish-speaking materials and resources, including a computer keyboard in Spanish.
By 2004, over 55,000 books were in circulation at the Pinedale Library.

In 2008, a major addition was made to the Pinedale Library, using rammed earth as a construction material, the first like it in the country. This choice in material was chosen for sustainability purposes; it has maximum energy efficiency for the high-altitude climate. Plus it can withstand seismic activity known to the area. This new addition was unveiled to the community in May 2009 and boasts a cozy community meeting room, gallery, Western Americana collection, administrative offices, bathrooms, and teen library.

Historical information is courtesy of Ann Chamber Noble’s Pinedale, Wyoming: A Centennial History, 1904-2004.

What Can We Help You Find? Search the Library's Website. Online Catalog.

What Can We Help You Find? Search the Library's Website. Online Catalog.

What Can We Help You Find?
Search the Library's
Website. Online Catalog.

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