Thomas Balch Library

A outside view of the Thomas Balch Library in Leesburg.

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the opening of the Thomas Balch Library, according to an April 29 release.

Named after Leesburg native Thomas Balch, a prominent Philadelphia attorney in the mid-19th century, the library building was dedicated in May, 1922, the release states. In 1960 it became a free, though segregated, public library and in 1965, following desegregation, its services became available to all persons.

In 1974 it joined as a branch of the recently established Loudoun County Public Library system serving the community as a full service public library, according to the release. When the county’s new Rust Library opened in 1992, the Town acquired the Thomas Balch Library building, taking over its operation, and renaming it the Thomas Balch Library of Local History and Genealogy.

A special exhibit will be on display in the Margaret Mercer room and at the digital kiosk in the Divine Room at Thomas Balch Library throughout the month of May, the release states. Artifacts, photographs, and documents from the history of the library will be featured as well as an interactive timeline. Of note are items donated by the Balch family, original minutes and ledgers of the Leesburg Library Society, and memorabilia from the library’s first 100 years.

Other celebratory events will be held through May 2023.

To learn more, call 703-737-7195 or visit leesburgva.gov and search “Thomas Balch Library.

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