The FPL Library: A New Chapter


The FPL’s National Forest Service Library is a go-to resource for current and historical information on wood and wood products. Having recently moved to a newly renovated space in FPL’s historic Building One, supervisory librarian Julie Blankenburg describes the new space as a “vast improvement” over the cramped conditions of the past. Central air-conditioning helps maintain stable temperatures and moderate humidity while better lighting and increased square-footage create a more research-friendly space for library patrons and staff.


FPL Library staff, clockwise from bottom left: Mary Funmaker, Crystal Schmidt, David Smith, Carra Davies, Julie Blankenburg, and Shelley Bishop.

The new space, formerly the Engineering Mechanics and Remote Sensing Laboratory area, allows for the consolidation of book and journal collections that were previously stored in two or more locations across about 5,900 total square feet of space. Now at about 8,200 square feet in one primary location, over two dozen bookcases have been added to accommodate FPL historical documents and, soon, the many photography negatives cataloged by FPL’s diligent photography staff.


The new library occupies part of what was formerly the Engineering Mechanics Laboratory, shown here in the mid-1930s. Photograph by student intern, Steve Schmieding.

Library content areas mirror FPL Research Work Units, including: solid wood products, pulp and paper, mycology, wood anatomy, wood engineering, biotechnology, adhesives, wood preservation, fire research, economics, biodeterioration of wood, paints and coatings, and wood recycling.


More space and better lighting add to the allure of FPL’s new research library area.


Staff cubicles, work spaces, and stacks span the entire length of the new library space, about 8,200 square feet.