Bethlehem Area Public Library - South Side Branch

400 Webster Street
Bethlehem, PA 18015


The South Side Branch travelled a 25 year journey through various schools and storerooms before finding its current location at 4th and Webster Streets. The Branch initially opened May 28, 1906 in the post office building at the corner of 4th Street and Brodhead, where it resided until moving to the old Quinn School building in 1921. One year later, it moved into the South Side Junior High School at the invitation of the school board. The school location, however, was less than ideal. Declining patronage and stagnant book circulation was largely attributed to the move off of a main thoroughfare. In 1927 the South Side Branch moved into crowded temporary quarters on West 4th Street, while the Library began the search for a more accessible permanent site.

Today, the South Side Branch has in large part stayed true to its focus of serving children with its storytime events and other family-friendly programming. The "Language Center" and a large Spanish-language collection continues to make it a hot-spot for the city’s Hispanic population. The historic building retains much of its charm as well as an old-fashioned atmosphere of informality that many of our regular patrons enjoy. So whether you’re a South-Sider or live elsewhere in the city, the South Side Branch is still a wonderful place to get lost in a book.

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