The Edmonton Public Library was founded in 1909 with the passing of Bylaw 240-1909: A Bylaw to Establish a Public Library. This document enabled the appointment of the Edmonton Library Board. The following year the Strathcona Library Board was appointed. Both libraries opened their loan departments in 1913.
Since its creation the Edmonton Public Library has sought to improve the lives of Edmontonians through various information-related programs and services, relying initially on the printed word, but by the 1950s including audio visual, and more recently digital material as well.