1888-1890: Library is started in connection with the Agricultural Experiment Station.
1891: Rhode Island’s “State Agricultural School” (now the University of Rhode Island – see URI’s ‘Detailed History’ for more) builds College Hall, which in addition to housing students and faculty, contains the school’s first library.
1895: College Hall catches fire.
1895-1897: Library collection temporarily housed in the village library.
1897: Library (7,000 volumes) moves to Lippitt Hall. Seating capacity: 27.
1928: Library moves to Edwards Hall. Stack capacity: 50,000 volumes.
1933: Plans made for a new library and administration building.
1934: Library moves to temporary quarters in Davis Hall, with collections stored in the first floor and basement as well as in the basement of South Hall and the attic of Ranger Hall.
1937: Library (60,00 volumes) moved to newly built Green Hall.
1960: Rhode Island votes approve a $2,000,000 bond issue to build new library.
1964: Library (260,000 volumes) moved to present location. Stack capacity: 460,000 volumes. Seating capacity: 780.
1971: Librarians gain faculty status.
1976: A two-floor addition constructed.
1993: Present structure was completed, with shelf space for 1.4 million volumes and seating for 1,300 users, primarily students.
1996: Feinstein Providence Campus Library (branch) was relocated to the Shepard Building.
2000: Mezzanine storage facility was created on Level 3.
2009: Building was named in honor of Robert L. Carothers, URI President (1991-2009).
2011: Bay Campus Pell Library (branch) moved to present location.
2012: Learning Commons created.
2013: Open Access Policy adopted.
2015: Active Learning Classroom (ALC) constructed, first of its kind on campus.
2015: Additional seating added – 88.
2016: MakerspaceURI opened.
2016: Additional seating added – 277.
2017: Big Data Collaborative established on the Kingston Campus.
2017: DataSpark joins URI Libraries.
2018: AI Lab opened.
2018: Launch Lab opened.
2018: Think Lab created (dual locations – Kingston Library/Providence campus).
2019: 24-Hour Room expanded, 67 additional seats.
2020: Eleven quiet study rooms added on the Lower Level, 88 additional seats.
2020: New study spaces created, 85 additional seats (total seating increase since 2014, 65.7%).
2023: Feinstein Providence Campus (branch) and the Providence Think Lab location closed when URI vacated the Shepard Building.