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Andrew Carnegie’s vision of the library as a place for intellectual elevation through the introspective act of reading offered the promise of increased prosperity and wisdom to persons in all walks of life. The architecture of Spokane’s Carnegie library spoke of this promise through its neoclassical façade and visual references to an age revered for civilized accomplishment. While some of these sentiments have fallen out of favor, the underlying principle of encouraging curious engagement by inspirational architecture remains true for libraries today.

Poster presented at the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the Society of Architectural Historians, Seattle, WA.


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