The Downtown Main Library was a popular place Friday afternoon.
Redwood City Mayor Alicia Aguirre, Fire Chief James Skinner, several members of the police department, and representatives of the Native Sons of the Golden West from all over the state - as well as people from the community - were on hand Friday to witness the library being recognized as a historical building, with the dedication of a bronze plaque.
Many don't know that the downtown library building was once home to Redwood City's very first volunteer fire station.
Back in 1865, Redwood City Fire Station #1 and its volunteer staff was formed, becoming San Mateo County's very first nonprofit organization.
Eventually, the fire station moved into the building at 1044 Middlefield, built in 1920.
In 1984, the fire fighters moved out of the building, and in 1989 it became the main downtown library.
The building's architecture is notable, as one of the last remaining buildings in the area that features a classic Italian Renaissance design.
Redwood City's main library has been recognized around the world for its excellence. In 1992, it was named Library of the Year, and it has also received multinational five-star ratings from the Library Journal.
Several high-ranking members of the organization The Native Sons of the Golden West were on hand to host a ceremony in honor of the building and its new bronze historical plaque.
The Native Sons of the Golden West is a fraternal order of native-born Californians founded in 1875, following the Gold Rush, for the purpose of preserving California's history. The group frequently travels throughout the state dedicating historical landmarks such as the downtown library, and raises funds to help preserve such pieces of local history. Some of the group's most notable preservation projects include Sutter's Fort, Historic Columbia, the Franciscan Missions and the Custom House in Monterey.
See photos from the dedication ceremony and a video of highlights from the mayor's and fire chief's speeches above.
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