A History of the
University of South Carolina Libraries


Koleman Karesh Law Library
McKissick Memorial Library
Music Library
South Caroliniana Library
Thomas Cooper Library

The University of South Carolina has been a ground-breaking institution, both in building libraries and in experimenting with library services and formats. The University of South Carolina was one of the first universities in the new world to have a free-standing library on campus and the first in the United States to experiment with separate undergraduate and graduate library facilities. There are several special libraries on campus housed in a variety of buildings. The main library building, Thomas Cooper Library, won an award for its architectural design.

South Caroliniana Library, the first University library, was also the first free-standing academic library in the United States. Library expansion at the University began with the building of McKissick Memorial Library and continued with the construction of the Thomas Cooper Library. Speciality collections such as the Music Library have continued the rich and growing history of the University libraries. Please click on the appropriate links to find out more about the buildings, collections, and histories of each of these libraries.

Special thanks to the librarians at the USC Archives, South Caroliniana Library, and Thomas Cooper Library for help in locating the materials for this project.



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This page updated May 2, , 2002.
Copyright 2000 by the
Board of Trustees of the University of South Carolina