Exploring The Dallas Central Library You Probably Haven't Been To.

Downtown, right by City Hall, is the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library.

The first central library was built in 1901, in large part to funding from Andrew Carnegie. In '82, they constructed the current version, all eight floors of it, and named it after the former mayor.

What makes the central library downtown so much better than the neighborhood branches? Well, aside from its sheer size, there happens to be a bunch of interesting stuff going on there at all times.

After conducting some extensive research for our 50 Free Dates article, we found out a lot more about this hidden gem downtown. For instance: Did you know there's an art gallery in there? And an exhibit of high school yearbooks featuring famous Dallas residents? That one in particular is super cool.

More important, though, is that the library houses one of the few remaining original copies of the Declaration of Independence. It's the only copy of the Declaration in the Western United States, right here in Dallas, and it's stored up on the seventh floor, with as little fanfare as possible. It's kept in a special display area at the end of a hallway, with some pretty poor wayfinding signage.

When I walked in, it was empty. In fact, there isn't anyone anywhere near it. It was a bit spooky. It felt like being in some forgotten section of the library. One that they at least remembered to dust, though, which was nice.

Also of note on that same floor: a copy of Shakespeare's First Folio that was printed not long after his death in 1623.

For these two items alone, the central library is worth a vist.

There's so much more, though. There's lots of great art displayed throughout the building, and plenty of Dallas history to absorb. We spent a little over an hour in there, and didn't even come close to doing everything.

We expect to head back there soon. We recommend you do the same.



















1481_2

1481_3

1481_4

1481_5

1481_6

1481_7

1481_8

1481_9

1481_10

1481_11

1481_12

1481_13

1481_14

1481_15

1481_16

1481_17

1481_18

1481_19

1481_20

1481_21

1481_22

1481_23

1481_24

1481_25

1481_26

1481_27

1481_28

1481_29

1481_30

1481_31

1481_32

1481_33

1481_34

1481_35

1481_36

1481_37

1481_38

1481_39

1481_40

1481_41

1481_42

1481_43

1481_44

1481_45

1481_46

1481_47

1481_48

1481_49

1481_50

No more articles
X