Pre-1937 San Diego Public Library Borrower’s Card No. 75273 issued to Lee R. Moore
San Diego Public Library
Opened to the public on July 15, 1882, the San Diego Public Library’s first location was the Commercial Bank building (aka the Consolidated National Bank) at 5th and G Streets. The use of rooms on the 2nd floor2 was provided to the library non gratis for the first six month,1 after which rent was paid from the $650 city appropriation.
In 1893, the library was moved once again to the fashionable St. James Building at 7th and F Streets and would remain there for at least five years.3
By 1898, the library began to outgrow its accommodations, so arrangements were made for space on the 4th floor of the new Keating Building at Fifth and F Streets. Rent increased from $50 to $85, but the rooms were more spacious and well-lit, and a modern elevator made access to the library much easier.4 The Keating Building was designed by George J. Keating, founder of a farm equipment company, and built in 1890 by his wife, Fannie, after his death on June 25, 1888.
While the Keating Building provided adequate square footage to accommodate the growing library, library space had been a concern several years prior to the move into the Keating Building. Efforts to raise funds for the building of a permanent home large enough to house the growing library was undertaken by the Ladies’ Wednesday Club as early as 1896.5. But it wasn’t until mid-1899, that a new library building became a realistic goal. In response to a letter sent to the Andrew Carnegie Corporation by library trustee, Mrs. Lydia K. Horton, in which she asked for photographs of previously built Carnegie libraries in hopes that the photographs would spark interest by her fellow trustees, the Carnegie Corporation promised a $50,000 grant to build the first Carnegie library west of the Mississippi River.6 On April 23, 1902, the new library building opened at Eighth and E Streets. The building designed by architects, Ackerman & Ross of New York, had room for 75,000 volumes and boasted a museum, art gallery, and lecture room. The Carnegie Library building would serve as the main library until 1952 when the building was razed to allow the construction of a new, modernized building. The new library opened at the same location on June 27, 1954. The current location of the San Diego Central Library is 330 Park Blvd. in San Diego.
San Diego Public Library and Comic-Con
Since 2013, the San Diego Public Library has partnered with Comic-Con and designed limited-edition comic-themed library cards, which are only available at the San Diego Public Library booth at the yearly Comic-Con convention in San Diego. The 2019 card, of which only 3,000 were made available, features Waldo over an image of the San Diego Central Library, which is located at 330 Park Boulevard in San Diego.
Lee R. Moore
Lee Reed Moore was born August 7, 1921, in Kansas City; He was the son of Lee R. Moore, Sr of Texas and Orpha Moore. Lee R. Moore was a salesman for Ryan Aeronautical Co. He died on April 29, 1980.
1 Catalog of the San Diego Free Public Library: Compiled by the Order of the Board of Trustees, by Lulu Younkin, April 1889
2 The Record (National City, California), June 11, 1885, p. 2
3 The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) April 5, 1893, p. 7
4 The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California) April 7, 1898, p. 13
5 The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California), December 7, 1896, p. 5
6 The Los Angeles Times (Los Angeles, California), July 18, 1899, p. 15