Palisades Library Celebrates 50 Years!

Palisades Library

Palisades Library Celebrates 50 Years!

From a one-room school house in 1928 to the current location in 1964

Celebrate 50 years at the V St NW location on Saturday, Nov. 15 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. 

Enjoy special performances by Barefoot Puppets at 10:30 a.m., Sherier Mountain Boys at 1 p.m. and the Palisades Community Band at 3 p.m. Technology demonstrations, giveaways, and refreshments will be available during the event. 

A special ceremony will begin at 1:30 p.m., featuring Director Richard Reyes-Gavilan, Councilmember Mary Cheh, Friends of Palisades President Peter Lynch, and former Palisades librarians. 

The Palisades Neighborhood Library is DC Public Library's sixth-oldest location, opened to the public on Nov. 20, 1964. The building is the second home of the library, which was started in 1928 as a sub-branch in the one-room schoolhouse, the Conduit Road School. 

The schoolhouse was regarded from the beginning as a temporary solution for the then Potomac Heights neighborhood’s need for a library.  The library was renamed the MacArthur Boulevard Branch on Nov. 16, 1942, following the renaming of Conduit Road for General Douglas MacArthur in March 1942. The name was changed again on March 24, 1950, to the Palisades Branch after the Citizens Association had adopted “The Palisades” as the name for the community.

The Palisades Library was designed by Albert O. Goenner (1913-91), son of a Washington architect of the same name, who graduated from Catholic University in 1936 with a degree in architecture. The Palisades Branch was one of two libraries that Goenner designed under the D.C. Public Works program, the other being the West End Library. The new Palisades Library was dedicated on November 19, 1964, with Walter N. Tobriner, president of the Board of Commissioners, serving as the principal speaker.

Do you have special memories or photographs from the library's time in the Conduit Road School or the opening of the Palisades Library at the V St NW location? Please share with us by e-mailing kimberly.knight@dc.gov.