Sacramento Public Library


Sacramento Public Library is the essential resource for our communities.


Sacramento Public Library inspires our communities to discover, learn and grow.

Key Facts and Figures

  • Fourth largest library system in California, serving a population of over 1.3 million
  • Joint Power Authority governed by a 15-member board of elected officials
  • Annual budget of $35 million
  • 28 locations with nearly 450,000 square feet of public space throughout the County of Sacramento, including 19 community rooms
  • 280 staff members
  • Volunteers contribute more than 105,000 hours of service each year
  • A collection of 2 million volumes, with access to 9 million additional items through the Link+ Service
  • Circulation of over 7.9 million items each year
  • 4.5 million visitors annually
  • Over 7,000 free programs for kids, teens, adults, and families each year
  • 910 public computers and laptops
  • Over 39 million hours of access to public computers with Internet annually

A Brief History of the Sacramento Public Library 

In 1857, some of Sacramento’s leading citizens, including E. B. Crocker, Leland Stanford, and C. P. Huntington, formed the Sacramento Library Association to “provide for the present generation and transmit to posterity ample and increasing means of information and improvement—that it should flourish in years to come and rise to eminence among kindred institutions.”  The association transferred its building and collection over to the City of Sacramento in 1879 and city residents voted to turn the subscription association into a free library.
The Sacramento Free Public Library opened on June 14, 1879, with a collection of around 6,000 volumes to serve a city of 21,000.  The city and library flourished and in 1908, the city library system became the first in California to open service to the entire county. Small deposit stations, branches and bookmobiles expanded service to the far reaches of the county over the following decades.
Today, Sacramento Public Library is still serving the residents of the greater Sacramento area. Although time and trends have changed the delivery of library services over the last century and a half, the Library has never changed its commitment to providing those services with excellence and professionalism. Today, the Library remains the heart of the community, meeting the needs of its diverse population and responding to ever-changing interests.

Latest News

America's racist laws and policies: Historic and now

October 19, 2016

Join us as Sacramento Faces Race

​Friends to host warehouse book sale Nov. 5

October 17, 2016

More than 100,000 gently used books for sale

Cast your vote at the Library

October 10, 2016

Making it easier for you to vote with voter service centers and ballot drop-off sites

Early literacy workshops

October 9, 2016

Learn five key activities to help your young child get ready to read

Let's Talk About: Voting

October 6, 2016

Learn about the 17 measures on the ballot and view reading lists on voting

Back to Top
Back to Top