The Pinellas Park Public Library began in December 1948. It was started by Mrs. Madalya Fagan, who was the first president of the library association. It was a volunteer organization with a board and various committees. This is how public libraries began all over our county, and many throughout our state.

In 1963, the library became a city department. The first paid librarian, Marjorie Trimble, was hired in 1959.

The very first library was in the old pump house in what was called Triangle Park. This building, Park Station, is sitting on what was once Triangle Park, or Triangle Shuffleboard Courts, and the Chamber of Commerce building.

The second library was at 5795 Park Boulevard, an old city building now gone.

Ms. Harrop, the first librarian with the Master of Library Science degree, was hired in 1967 and a new building for the library was built in 1969. It was at our current address, 7770 52nd Street.

We are still at this location. It was redesigned in 2001 and now has 30,972 square feet – quite an increase from the 1969 building which was only 7,000 square feet and the 1984 addition which brought it up to around 15,000 square feet.

Who Was Barbara S. Ponce?

Mrs. Ponce served as the City of Pinellas Park's Library Director from 1985-1999. She was known for her sense of humor, her Southern charm, and her quick wit. She continued to serve as the Library Director even when taking on the greater role of Community Services Administrator in 1999.


City projects accomplished during her tenure include the redesign and expansion of the library in 2001, the development of Broderick Recreation Center, the addition of 20 acres of new park land, the development of the equestrian park area and a dog park at Freedom Lake Park.

Barbara Ponce

She also oversaw the growth in special events at the England Brothers Band Shell and the transformation of the former Crosspointe Baptist Church into the Pinellas Park Performing Arts Center. Mrs. Ponce retired in 2008.


Mrs. Ponce passed away in June 2013, but her work ethic, positive attitude, creative flair and love of libraries left a permanent imprint on the community. In December 2013, the Pinellas Park City Council voted unanimously to rename the Pinellas Park Public Library in her honor. The rededication ceremony took place on June 6, 2014.