Greenwood-Phinney Branch, The Seattle Public Library, opens on May 16, 1928.

  • By David Wilma
  • Posted 10/13/2002
  • Essay 3982

On May 16, 1928, the Greenwood-Phinney Branch, The Seattle Public Library, opens at 7020 Greenwood Avenue N. Funds to rent the storefront were raised by neighborhood groups. The branch will prove to be very popular and will be expanded twice before 1954, when a new Greenwood Branch will open.

A One-Woman Campaign

In March 1926, the library board let it be known that it would give "favorable consideration to the proposition of installing a branch library" (Greenwood Archives) if the community paid for rent, utilities, and janitorial service. Edith Marston of the Greenwood Parent Teachers Association was appointed to head a campaign to raise the necessary money. Marston asked families to subscribe 10 cents a month for two years. She collected $340.80, almost all of it personally.

The library board rented a small storefront at 7020 Greenwood Avenue N. The opening was advertised with a banner on a plumber's truck that cruised the district. Approximately 1,000 books were shelved along one wall and there was seating for 24 readers. The first day, almost one third of the books were checked out. The branch was so popular that the hours were expanded twice in the first year.

In 1954, Greenwood-Phinney branch closed when the Greenwood Branch was built.


"Greenwood-Phinney Library 1928--," folder, Seattle Public Library Archives; "Greenwood-Phinney Library -- History," folder, Ibid.; "Greenwood Library 1953-1974 -- Annual Reports," folder, Ibid.; "Library Opening 1954," folder, Greenwood Branch Library Archives; "Greenwood Branch," folder, Ibid.; "Greenwood Branch -- Misc.," folder, Ibid.; "Green Lake Library -- Annual Reports," folder, Ibid.; "Brief History of the Greenwood-Phinney Branch," undated typescript, Ibid.

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