In the 1920s, almost 20 years before the Library was officially begun, the Stuart Book Club cleaned out the basement of the Patrick County courthouse to form a reading room for the young men of the community then later started a book rental service. The club's entire book collection was later donated to the library.
In 1941, Mr. David Bruce - who, at the time, served in the Virginia General Assembly, and later became ambassador to Great Britain, West Germany, and China - donated a library and a collection of books to Patrick County. (He gave 9 additional libraries to the poorer counties of Southside Virginia.) The library was housed in the Bruce Building until 1991 when it moved to the current location at 116 West Blue Ridge Street.
This current site is on a hilltop, where you can see the Patrick County "Loveworks" Sign, neighboring DeHart Park, Patrick Henry Community College, The Virginia Motorsports Museum and Hall of Fame, the Wood Brothers Racing Museum, and the summit of Bull Mountain and the Blue Ridge Mountains beyond. Besides the observation deck below the LOVE sign, the library's side porch offers a table and chairs to enjoy the view outside. Be sure to walk around the grounds and enjoy the large shade trees, Kousa Dogwoods (whose fruit is edible), and some other nifty things closer to the entrance.
The Patrick County Bookmobile is garaged at this BRRL branch, when it's not out covering its annual average of 8000 miles on Monday-Thursday. The library also shares the building with the Patrick County Historical Society, which maintains a collection of exhibits here. The docent I spoke to gave me very detailed information about the location and disposition of the propeller monument on Bull Mountain memorializing a WWII B-24 crash, Stuart's new Rails to Trails walking trail, and the trail's nearby site of the old train depot.
This hunt could easily be a Park N Grab, but with so much to see and do here - without even going downtown - I hope you stop long enough to enjoy it. (Operating hours can be found by following the Related Web Page link, above.) Next time I come, I'm going to picnic on the grounds ... and contemplate visiting that pool at DeHart Park.