Public Library is the public library system of Richland County, South Carolina
. It has 11 branches including its 242,000 sq ft (22,500 m sq) Main Library. In 2001, it was named the National Library of the Year by the Library Journal and the Gale Group.The library began as a private charity in 1896. In 1924 the City of Columbia
took over the operation and financing of the library, and the Columbia Public Library was born. In 2001, the Library Journal and the Gale Group named Richland County Public Library the National Library of the Year.
Costing $11.6 million, the four story, 242,000 square feet (22,500 m sq) Main Library, designed by architect Eugene Aubry.Aside from the striking exterior, the Children's Room, which is located in the building's basement, has a mural of characters from Maurice Sendak's Where the Wild Things Are.