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Former Santa Barbara Librarian Inducted into the California Library Hall of Fame

Santa Barbara Public Library's own Frances Burns Linn will be inducted in the California Library Hall of Fame this fall. Serving as the Head Librarian from 1906 through 1943, she was the impetus behind building the 101-year-old Central Library. Mrs. Linn solicited the Carnegie Grant that helped the City of Santa Barbara build such a beautiful Library, and she played an important role in the creation and building of the Faulkner Gallery.

Frances Linn was one of Santa Barbara Public Library’s first public library directors, and while serving as California Library Association vice president in 1927 she was responsible for creating and distributing the famous orange signs designating county library outlets throughout the state, which organized small reading rooms and outlets into Free Public Library Branches. Mrs. Linn’s service philosophy is as relevant today as it was then: “The library can be the means of building up the neighborhood life and community spirit. It can be the common interest in the small towns where differences of creed and politics and social position separate the people, dissipating the forces for good.”

To learn more about Frances Linn and the history of the Central Library visit SBPL’s Library History Page at


Contact: Jody Thompson, Senior Librarian for Adult and Public Services

Phone: 805-564-5641


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