History of Schlow Centre Region Library
Schlow Centre Region Library opened in January of 1957. The first library, originally called the State College Public Library, was located on West College Avenue in two rooms in a house owned by State College businessman Charles Schlow. Local eighth graders conducted a massive community used book drive to establish the first collection of library books. In 1958 Mr. Schlow expanded the library by adding a storefront, and the library was renamed the Bella S. Schlow Memorial Library in memory of Charles' wife.
The library quickly outgrew the enlarged space. In 1965, the Library Board purchased the old post office building from the federal government. After remodeling the facility, the library moved to its current site at Beaver Avenue and Allen Street in 1966. The library, by then named Schlow Memorial Library, was enlarged twice, once in 1975 and again in 1986.
In February 2004, Schlow Library relocated to the former Borough Building on Fraser Street while a new, larger library was rebuilt on an enlarged Allen & Beaver site. On October 3, 2005, the Schlow Centre Region Library opened at 211 South Allen Street. The new facility was funded by local municipal contributions, state and federal grants and a community fund drive.
The library started as a publicly funded library with a board of trustees appointed by State College Borough Council. A referendum in 1960, which established a library tax in State College Borough, earned the library a prestigious special commendation from the American Library Assocation.
By 1968, the library had become a regional library, with board appointments from the four surrounding townships (College, Ferguson, Harris and Patton) as well as from the Borough, and annual financial contributions from these municipalities. The library also began receiving funding from Centre County as early as 1968. In 1972, the library was folded into the new Centre Region Council of Governments, and now operates as a Centre Region COG agency. In the 2000s, Halfmoon Township joined the other municipalities in funding the library, and in 2008 appointed its first member to the Schlow Centre Region Library Board of Trustees.