Multnomah County Library is the oldest public library west of the Mississippi, with a history that reaches back to 1864. Today, Central Library and 18 other neighborhood libraries make up a library system that offers more than 2.7 million books and other library materials. As Oregon's largest public library, Multnomah County Library serves nearly one-fifth of the state's population.
- Multnomah County Library patrons checked out or renewed 16.5 million items. That's an average of 20 items per person.
- Library staff filled more than 1.4 million holds.
- The library was visited online and in person 7.8 million times.
- More than 95,000 children participated in the library's countywide 2021 Summer Reading program.
- In total, virtual and in-person library programming targeted to all age groups, from infants to seniors, reached 41,000. This includes many Black/African American culture; Indigenous culture; and Chinese, Russian, Spanish and Vietnamese language programs.
Among U.S. libraries serving fewer than one million residents, Multnomah County Library ranks No. 2 in annual circulation of books and other materials, according to the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) FY2020 Public Libraries Survey.