Excerpt from Dedication of the Library, 1912, Vol. 14
To begin with I wish to say a few words on the general subject of libraries as the problem presents itself to the architect. I shall then outline the solution of the problem offered by the University Library at Berkeley.
Libraries, speaking largely, are of two types, - the single room structure in which books and reader are assembled in the same apartment; and the complex scheme, in which readers and books are separately administered. The former is the ancient, the primitive type; the latter is the up-to-date, the developed type. The first lends itself to intimacy, charm, freedom; the second, to formality, economy of administration, discipline.
The single-room plan is suitable for the comparatively small library only. In proportion as the establishment increases in size, either as to number of books or as to number of users, this plan tends to cut off the head of its own usableness. It becomes unwieldly and out of human scale. It loses its specific qualities of intimacy and charm, and for the freedom which is really possible, or at any rate enjoyable, only within narrow compass, substitutes an imprisonment of grandeur.
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