|Location||Newark, New Jersey, USA|
|Access and use|
James Street Commons Historic District
|NRHP reference #||78001758|
|Added to NRHP||January 9, 1978|
|Designated NJRHP||February 10, 1977|
In 1902 John Cotton Dana became employed at the Newark Public Library in Newark, New Jersey from until his death in 1929. He established foreign language collections for immigrants and also developed a special collection for the business community. This "Business Branch" was the first of its kind in the nation.
He also founded the Newark Museum in 1909, directing it until his death. After his death, his successor at the Newark Public Library referred to him as "The First Citizen of Newark". Six years after his death, the city of Newark appointed October 6, 1935 as John Cotton Dana Day. Rutgers-Newark's main library is named for John Cotton Dana.
On February 2, 2017 the library announced the appointment of a new library director. Jeffrey Trzeciak will begin the post February 27, 2017.
As of 2006, the Main Library was in the midst of a large-scale expansion and renovation project. The project has been split into three phases, the first of which has already been completed. The first phase of the project was designated to revamp the lobby and install new doors to the entrance on Washington Street. The second phase of the project is not yet under way as the capital to finance the project is still being raised. The second phase will include the restoration of Centennial Hall, the reading room on the second floor and the restoration of the Fiction Room and the Auditorium. The third phase is the construction of a glass building at 5 Washington Street, which will include the Charles F. Cumming New Jersey Information Center, the James Brown African American Room, the La Sala Hispanoamericana, world language collections, young adults space, a café, and a meeting room.
Phase one included the restoration of windows, repairs to the skylight in the main atrium, new wood doors to the Washington Street entrance, installation of two glass and wood display cases, widening of the entrance, new marble flooring, cleaning of walls and ceilings and floors, a new circulation desk, new shelving and cabinets in the main atrium, the addition of an audio/video room, and new computer terminals.