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Olean Public Library

General Information


The Olean Public Library is a co-central library in the Chautauqua-Cattaraugus Library System. Our facility is a single-story building of approximately 19,200 square feet of floor space. We are the largest library in Cattaraugus County and the only public facility offering year-round arts programming. Our current facility opened in August, 1973, and began to schedule regular arts activities in January, 1974. At present we offer monthly visual arts exhibitions, an annual reading series by writers, and a fall film series. Overall annual attendance at the library has topped 200,000 for the past twelve years. Attendance for a single literary event varies from 35 to over 100 persons.
Our mission is to support the education, information, and leisure needs of every individual in the community and in so doing improve the community’s quality of life. It is our goal to provide as much diversity in arts programming to the general public as possible and to make available a public forum for the professional artist and for works of recognized merit. We also strive to provide learning and growth experiences for new talent and for persons aspiring to become artists. The current program of writers’ appearances began in 1975 with the help of local authors and with support from Poets & Writers, Inc. Helen Ruggieri led this group of writers and developed the NYSCA-supported writers series into a regular feature of library arts service. Helen served as writers series coordinator until 1979. Thomas Krampf became coordinator of the writers series when Helen left to pursue her Ph.D. Tom has continued to develop this series to a hallmark level that becomes even more remarkable given our rural location and the limitations of our budget. Tom is particularly sensitive in exploring an array of issues that affect us all. By working with area colleges and universities he has been able to bring together teams of writers, experts, and persons whose experience and concerns are relative to a particular topic. These gatherings and symposia serve to generate a higher level of awareness of the topic, of course, and also on the vitality of writing prose and poetry.

Full Name

Olean Public Library


134 North Second Street Olean, NY 14760-2583


Cattaraugus (Chautaugua-Allegany)

Phone Number

(716) 372-0200



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