Petaluma Regional Library
The Petaluma Library Advisory Board advises the Sonoma County Library Commission on issues affecting Petaluma Regional Library. If you are interested in serving on a library advisory board, please contact your branch manager.
The Friends of the Petaluma Library are an all-volunteer group that helps support Petaluma Regional Library.
The library offers free printing during branch visits and a free ePrinting service. If you have documents that need to be printed in black and white and/or color the library will print them for you and have your printed materials waiting for pickup as part of our ePrinting service. The library offers up to $5 of free printing per day.
About Petaluma Regional Library
Petaluma’s first library was an Odd Fellows Library established in 1858. By 1878, its ownership was transferred to the City of Petaluma as part of the Rogers Free Library Act and the library was relocated to the upper floor of City Hall.
In 1906, the Petaluma Library opened at Fourth and B Streets. The Carnegie library was designed by local architect Brainerd Jones and built from locally quarried stone. The building features the largest freestanding leaded glass dome in Northern California. With few changes through the decades, the building served as a Carnegie Free Library until 1976. In 1988, it was listed on the National Register of Historic Places. It is now the Petaluma Museum, a historical museum with a research library.
By the late 1950s, increased usage and limited space demonstrated the need for a larger facility with space to provide modern library services. Studies indicated that alternate solutions, such as enlarging the old building or opening a small east-side branch, would not be feasible. In three elections, bond proposals for a new library failed to get the needed two-thirds vote.
In 1973, as population and demand grew, the need for a new facility increased and a plan for a more centrally located building was developed. With the commitment by the city council and the county board of supervisors to allocate federal funds to cover half the cost, a bond issue for the balance was approved in a special election in 1974.
The new library, located at the corner of East Washington Street and Fairgrounds Drive, opened in 1976. The Petaluma Regional Library spans over 25,000 square feet and features exposed heavy timber trusses and natural wood finished walls. The library is constructed with brick-veneered walls and a copper roof. Several improvements have been made in recent years, including expansion of the Forum Room, and creation of a bookstore that is operated by the Friends of the Petaluma Library.