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What are the 50 Largest American Public Library Systems? Part VIII

The forty-seventh-largest public library in terms of print holdings is the San Jose Public Library. Originally, I ranked the San Jose Public Library (S.J.P.L.) in thirtieth place in a tie with the Columbus Metropolitan Library and the Austin Public Library.
The statistics I had on hand for the S.J.P.L. showed collections of 1,700,000 books, 2,925 electronic books, 151,000 audio materials, and 2,037 print subscriptions. More detailed statistics show collections of 1,702,672 volumes and other print materials, 2,925 eBooks, 266,755 videos, 151,000 audio materials, and 2,037 print subscriptions.

The S.J.P.L. was one of ten libraries and museums to win the 2011 National Medal for Museum and Library Services from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Libraries Services. The central library of the S.J.P.L. system is the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library, which is a joint venture between the S.J.P.L. system and San Jose State University (S.J.S.U.) that opened in 2003. In addition, the S.J.P.L. has twenty-two branches.

At least insofar as I can tell, it is the only library for San Jose State University. The collaboration between the S.J.P.L. system and the S.J.S.U. for a combined academic/public library means residents of the city have access to the university’s collections of books and other materials and the faculty and students of the university can borrow the city’s collections of books, eBooks, movies, music, and other materials. Anyone with borrowing privileges can borrow anything from the branch libraries as well as the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library.

As of June 8, 2014, the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library reported a collection of 1,900,000 volumes. I believe this represents the number of volumes in the whole S.J.P.L. system, as well as all the volumes owned by the university.

Combined statistics for the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Library and the S.J.P.L. branches in FY 2012-13, indicate an inventory of 2,099,054 items. It lent 10,702,251 items (or lent items that many times from the combined collections of the S.J.P.L. system and the S.J.S.U.), had 5,835,611 visitors (or people visited it that many times), and answered 563,781 reference questions.

The forty-eighth-largest public library in terms of print holdings is the Multnomah County Library in Portland, Oregon. Originally, I ranked it in thirty-third place in a tie with the Wake County Public Libraries in Raleigh, North Carolina; the Akron-Summit County Public Library; the Memphis Public Library & Information Center; the Albuquerque-Bernalillo County Library System; the San Diego County Library; the Santa Clara County Library in Los Gatos, California; and the Riverside County Library System.

The statistics I had on hand for the Multnomah County Library (M.C.L.) showed collections of 1,400,000 books, no electronic books, 151,000 audio materials, and 3,929 print subscriptions. More detailed statistics show collections of 1,375,624 volumes and other print materials, no eBooks, 105,646 videos, 151,000 audio materials, and 3,929 print subscriptions.

As of May 28, 2014, it reported a collection of 1,982,801 volumes. The M.C.L. has Library Administration, the Central Library, The Title Wave Used Bookstore, and eighteen branches. In 2014, the M.C.L. is celebrating its sesquicentennial (the 150th anniversary of its foundation) in 1864.

Tied for forty-ninth place are the San Antonio Public Library and the Indianapolis Public Library. Originally, I ranked the San Antonio Public Library in twenty-eighth place in a tie with the Sacramento Public Library, the Prince George’s County Memorial Library System, the Tacoma Public Library, and the Oakland Public Library.

The statistics I had on hand for the San Antonio Public Library (S.A.P.L.) showed collections of 1,900,000 books, 287 electronic books, 122,000 audio materials, and 1,146 print subscriptions. More detailed statistics show collections of 1,898,438 volumes and other print volumes, 287 electronic books, 135,938 videos, 122,000 audio materials, and 1,146 print subscriptions.

As of May 18, 2014, it reported a collection of 1,800,000 volumes. The S.A.P.L. has a Central Library and twenty-five branches.

The Indianapolis Public Library was formerly known as the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library. Originally, I ranked the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library in thirty-second place in a tie with the Phoenix Public Library.

The statistics I had on hand showed collections of 1,500,000 books, 16,736 electronic books, 155,000 audio materials, and 3,202 print subscriptions. More detailed statistics show collections of 1,518,111 volumes and other print materials, 16,736 eBooks, 120,181 videos, 155,000 audio materials, and 3,202 print subscriptions.

As of June 3, 2014, it reported a collection of 1,800,000 volumes. The Indianapolis Public Library (I.P.L.) has the Central Library in downtown Indianapolis and twenty-two branches. The Library Support Center houses administrative offices for the county-wide system and hosts the annual book sale.

The famous Franco-American architect and industrial designer Paul Cret (1876-1945) designed the Central Library, which the National park Service added to the national Register of Historic Places. Woollen Molzan and Partners Inc. designed the addition to and restoration of the original building.