This week, I had the pleasure of visiting the Carnegie History Center, housed in the former Carnegie Public Library building. If you're unfamiliar with Carnegie Libraries, read all about them here.
The library holds a lot of unique records reflecting the history of the area. I was there to look at some of those records on behalf of a client. Here are my tips and impressions if a genealogy visit to Bryan is in your future.
Parking was free along Main Street in front of the library, but all signs pointed to a 90-minute limit. I drove around to the back of the library and found a free parking spot with no limit.
The staff was very friendly and helpful toward me, so expect the same on your visit. Many archives request visitors store their belongings in lockers, but the Carnegie History Center does not have them, nor do they require that you stow your belongings. They did ask that I only use pencils (no pens), but even lent me one to borrow.
The library has copy machines, but I just took photos of the records using my camera. I don't know if their microfilm machine takes flash drives, so call ahead if that's part of your research plan.
Let's talk food. Are there places to eat around there? This is my first question when I go to a new repository because I'll likely be there all day and will need some sort of lunch. The Carnegie History Center is right in the middle of historic downtown, with restaurants in walking distance.
The architecture of the building is so stunning, that it was a bit of a distraction for me. I needed to work quickly to finish everything in one day, but I often found myself staring at the tin ceiling above me:
If you visit the Carnegie History Center, make some time to view the entire building, and ask for a quick tour if possible.
Carnegie History Center
111 S. Main St.
Bryan, Texas 77803
Amy Lenertz, MLIS is the founder of Raincross Information Services.