Thursday Doors 24/52 Carnegie Lakeport Library

Copyright ©2016 Deborah M. Zajac. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

My friends and I arrived in Lakeport, CA a day before our Grebe boating trip because, we had a 3 hour drive to get there, and a 5:30 a.m. boarding time Sunday morning.

We spent Saturday afternoon birding in Clear Lake State park, then went to dinner at a local Thai place, and finally we wrapped up the day in Library Park on the lake front for sunset. Image here.  If you’re a foodie and in the area, and like/love Thai food; hit me up for this place. It’s great!

Before setting up for sunset I spotted a door I really wanted to photograph. It turned out to be a Carnegie Library Door!


The Lakeport Library Committee submitted Carnegie’s ” Schedule of Questions” hoping they would qualify for a grant. The Carnegie Corp. approved an $8,000.00 grant in 1914. Construction started in 1917 and  was completed in 1918.

Carnegie Lakeport Library

The lake was actually all the way up here prior to dredging for Yolo County’s Power Plant which built Clear Lake Dam also in 1914.  White & Co., investment bankers in New York financed YWP’s dredging in Clear Lake and filling in the area along Lakeport’s waterfront. Owners of the new land deeded their property to Lakeport for a city park.

The library and building might have been lost to a fire in 1953 had not librarian Gertrude Benson smelled the smoke and called the Fire Department! It was an electrical fire which started in the attic. The fire department was able to extinguish the fire before major damage occurred.

In 1986 the county library moved from the cramped Carnegie to a new library on High Street in Lakeport.

In 2008 the Carnegie Library was entered into the National Parks Service’s National Register of Historic Places.

Just after the lights came on at the Gazebo, and the colors in the sky faded T, and Dali were hailing me from my reverie to come see it. They know me so well. They knew I’d want a photograph of that. 🙂

Library Park Gazebo Lakeport CA

In 2014 the building was vacant. The city contracted with Garavaglia Architecture, Inc. to prepare a Feasibility Study to see what needed to be done to preserve and save the building, and put to it other use.

The plaque/sign beside the door reads: City of Lakeport


I can’t make out the small font below that- then




Economic Development


I could not find any current information about the building beyond 2014 in my surfing the Internet. I don’t know if it’s in use now or still vacant. It looks quite old and in need of some TLC en mon avis.

I love the lamps, which were in the design tastes of Carnegie’s secretary James Bertram. They symbolized enlightenment.

“Every Library was simple yet formal and entered through a prominent doorway, nearly always accessed by a staircase which symbolized a person’s elevation by learning.”

I really  love how people think of that stuff ahead of time and incorporate it in their plans during the design/planning stage.  Me. I never think of stuff like this ahead of time. It’s always a day, or month later!

Carnegie was a Scottish-American business man and philanthropist.  There were 2,509 Carnegie libraries built between 1883, and 1929. 1,689 were built in the United States of America. ~ Wiki-pedia

The History Buffs can find a pretty thorough history of the Carnegie Lakeport Library’s History here.

This post is part of Norm 2.0’s Thursday Doors.  If you love doors and would like to see the doors others are posting, or post doors you’ve photographed and join other door lovers from around the world click here.

At the end of Norm’s latest Thursday Door post is a little Blue Link-up/View button click it to be taken to a page with all the links, or add your own.

Nikon Df| Nikkor 20mm f/1.8| Delkin Digital Film| Tripod| PS CC 2015

More to come…












27 thoughts on “Thursday Doors 24/52 Carnegie Lakeport Library

  1. What an interesting place. That door seems to belong to a much more stately building but it looks kinda cute when you see the full building.

  2. The Carnegie Library Door is stunning, just perfect for Thursday Doors… I love the beautiful gazebo as well…
    Great pics… have a wonderful weekend. Aquileana 🌟

  3. Lovely photos, Deborah. We have a Carnegie library here in our town, too. It’s not in use but I hope it’s going to be preserved. Shame to let these old buildings go to ruin.

  4. Ah a beautiful stately door, and thought I would see a much larger building instead of this quaint Caribbean island-like one:) The gazebo is even more impressive (in my opinion) in beauty! Gotto look up where Lakeport is – you’re going to all these places i’ve never heard of:):) Have a great Thursday, Deborah!

    1. 🙂 The Gazebo is a fairly new addition I think. It’s right next to the Library bldg.
      I read the meeting notes, and a wedding venue was mentioned among other things. With the Gazebo for a wedding in nice weather and the building for a reception hall it could be lovely.

      Thanks Jesh! You have a lovely evening and great week-end.

  5. A lovely door with a simple but elegant design. I sure hope they manage to preserve the building and most importantly find a good use for it.

  6. I love this door and the other photos today, Deborah. Growing up in Pittsburgh, we learned a lot about the Carnegie Library system. He had a robber Barron past, but he did some wonderful things with his money. I hope it can be properly preserved. The gazebo looks like a cool place to sit for a while.

    1. Thank you Dan! Steel magnate wasn’t he? Then sold for a whole lotta money right?
      His idea of putting libraries in small towns was brilliant!

      The Gazebo is really nice. I hope they’re able to do something nice with the old Library building too.

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