Rundel Memorial Library – Rochester NY


Rochester, New York’s historic Rundel Memorial Library was constructed during the 1930s with the assistance of federal Public Works Administration (PWA) funds.
“Twenty-two years after the Rochester Public Library was established, construction finally began on a central library. … The Rundel bequest, after accruing interest over the years, now amounted to about one million dollars. A PWA (Public Works Administration) federal grant of several hundred thousand dollars supplemented the Rundel fund. A site had been chosen along the Genesee River on South Avenue between Court and Broad Streets. Ground was broken in December of 1933 after all arrangements had been made. The city of Rochester would at long last have the central library it had dreamed of.

Constructed of North Carolina granite and Indiana limestone the building measures 213 by 128 feet. It has three floors, a basement and a sub-basement.”

1934 is the date noted on the building’s cornerstone.

Federal documents show that the PWA supplied a grant of $314,000 for the project. Construction was completed in 1937.

PWA Docket No. 3253

Source notes

National Archives: Record Group 135: Public Works Administration; Projects Control Division; Entry 52: Indices to Non-Federal Projects; Report No. 5: Status of All Completed Non-Federal Allotted Projects, page 21.

Project originally submitted by Evan Kalish on March 7, 2015.

We welcome contributions of additional information on any New Deal project site.


Location Info

115 South Ave.
Rochester, NY 14604

Coordinates: 43.154122, -77.608139

One comment on “Rundel Memorial Library – Rochester NY

  1. Elizabeth Schaetzke

    Thank you for posting this information about the Rundel library building, which was constructed during the Great Depression. It is now one of two buildings that make up the Central Library of Rochester, New York. It was a great place to work. If you would like to know more about the Rundel building, please contact their Genealogy and Local History Division.

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