For the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ

About the Library



In their service to the University community and support of the mission of Cedarville University, it is the Purpose of the staff of the Centennial Library to demonstrate leadership in providing for our users an effective gateway to the world of information access and use. Within this mission the goals of the Library are:

  • to develop collections and access to resources that meet the program support needs of its academic community.
  • to design and deliver services that empower its users to utilize information resources and technologies independently, critically, and efficiently.
  • to provide a physical and personal environment that enhances the educational experience.
  • to invest resources in the provision of adequate staff who are properly oriented, trained, developed, and evaluated.
  • to participate in the broader regional, national, and international resource sharing community.
  • to advance the image and awareness of the Library, its resources, its services, and its staff.


During the 1995/96 academic year, the staff of the Centennial Library celebrated the centennial year for the Cedarville College Library.

In the Fall of 1895, Dr. McChesney, the first faculty member hired by the College and later to be its second president, made an appeal to the congregations of the Reformed Presbyterian Church for contributions to a library. In answer to this appeal over 1200 volumes were donated, and a number of periodicals were provided. The collection and reading tables were located in the chemistry recitation room in College Hall, now Founder's Hall, and managed jointly by faculty and students.

This arrangement only partially met the needs of the students. So in December, 1905, through the efforts of Dr. McKinney, first president of the College, and Whitelaw Reid, a prominent resident of Cedarville, Andrew Carnegie offered a gift equal to the sum the College could raise to erect a library building. That condition was fully met, and the building, one of hundreds of "Carnegie Libraries" built across the country, was completed and entered in 1908. That building, currently the Fine Arts building located on North Main Street, served as the College library until 1967.

In 1966, construction on a new library was begun with the big moving day coming uptown from the old Carnegie library in May of 1967; that building was occupied by Library operations for 20 years and is now the Milner Business Administration Building.

In 1986, after five years of planning, construction on the current Centennial Library was begun and the facility was completed in 1987 during the College's centennial year. Library operations were moved to the Centennial Library on April 29, 1987, and the building was dedicated during Homecoming festivities in October, 1987.

Contact Information

Centennial Library
Cedarville University
251 N. Main St.
Cedarville, OH 45314
937-766-7840 (phone)
937-766-2337 (fax)
Email Us