Library History

Pincher Creek & District Municipal Library's history is long. Before 1900 a reading room was opened, as a place where area residents could go to read their own books, mail, or newspapers. This lasted for a few years, but by 1903 Pincher Creek residents had become interested in library service. A committee was established to begin collecting books and lending them out. This first library collection was housed in the Presbyterian Church Hall. $1.00 was charged for an annual membership. As the library's collection quickly expanded, it needed more storage space, so it was moved to the warehouse in Scott Brothers' Furniture. However, the following years saw library membership decline, and eventually the library was forced to move to a less desirable location, Mitchell's Drug Store.

In 1928, many books were brought from the Litchfield Memorial Library in Boston, Massachusetts. These books were added to the existing collection and the library moved to the Town Hall. At first the library at Town Hall was only open on Saturdays and paid its employees $1.00 per week. Later it was also open on Wednesday evenings. Unfortunately the library was closed in 1940 due to insufficient funds. Throughout World War Two, although there was no public library, a local pharmacist opened a private library and charged five cents per book per week to rent. In 1949 a library was opened under the Provincial Libraries Act, housed in the former high school building. 

In 1963 the Municipal District of Pincher Creek and the Village of Cowley took over some of the funding costs and the library was renamed the Pincher Creek & District Municipal Library. Pincher Creek's centennial project was to build a new library facility, which was completed in 1968. Later the library received a gift of $10,000 to build the Bert Rigall Memorial Alcove. The library stayed in this home until 1999 when it was moved to the Pincher Creek Multi-Purpose Facility, where it remains today. Our library has gone through many stages to go from its simple beginnings as a reading room to becoming a part of our town's modern public services.