Our History

searchAbout 50 years ago, local library service began in Level Green, Pennsylvania, first in the home of Mr. Lloyd, then at Joan and John Mohr’s house. Later, the collection was moved to the old kindergarten building at Route 130 and Murrysville Road. Thanks to the generosity of the Penn-Trafford School District, the library eventually occupied the whole building.

The Level Green library organized formally in September 1970 and was incorporated as the Penn Area Library in 1972.

As the population of Penn Township increased, the Harrison City Reading Center was established in the Penn Township Municipal Building in 1975. After several expansions in the municipal building, the Level Green branch was closed, relieving the library of increasingly expensive maintenance. This also allowed the collections to be combined and the staff to operate out of a single location.

The Penn Area Library continued to grow and by 1998 was in need of additional space. The board of trustees, with the encouragement of the township commissioners and the Westmoreland County Federated Library System (WCFLS), applied for a Keystone Grant for library expansion. A $200,000 grant was awarded to the library, and the township commissioners contributed a substantial amount of funding to construct the current 9,000 square foot library — greatly expanding the library’s previous 2,400 square foot space.

The library continues to grow, thanks to the community, staff, trustees, and commissioners. In 2005, Penn Area Library circulated over 100,000 pieces of material and served over 75,000 patrons.