• n 1927, Lin Yungai, a former mayor of Guangzhou, proposed setting up the Municipal Zhongshan Library to commemorate Dr. Sun Yat-sen ("Zhongshan" being his given name in Chinese) and to promote the cultural development. The Municipal Executive Csouncil later approved of its planning and establishment. In the same year, fund-raising commissioners were sent to the United States, Cuba, Canada and Mexico and received a lot of donations from the enthusiastic overseas Chinese.
  • In 1928, the Preparatory Committee for the Construction of the Municipal Zhongshan Library was established, with sixteen members, including Lin Yungai and Du Dingyou (a renowned librarian in modern China).
  • In 1929, construction of the Municipal Zhongshan Library commenced at site of the original Cantonese Confucius Temple on Wende Road.
  • On October 15, 1933, the Municipal Zhongshan Library was completed and opened, with Wu Zhimei as the first chief librarian.
  • In 1934, the provincial library was abolished and its collection of 33,500 books was handed over by the municipal library.
  • In 1938, the Municipal Zhongshan Library was suspended after Guangzhou was occupied by the Japanese.
  • In 1945, as China won in the war against Japanese invasion, Du Dingyou served concurrently as director of the Preparatory Office for the Re-establishment of the Municipal Zhongshan Library.
  • In 1949, the organization was renamed as the Guangzhou Municipal Zhongshan Library.
  • It was later renamed as the Guangzhou Zhongshan Library after the liberation of Guangzhou.
The original site of Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangzhou Municipality (Current site of the Wende Branch Library of Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong Province).
“Xing Huo Liao Yuan” Exhibition Hall, the predecessor of Guangzhou Library, in full view.
  • In 1955, the provincial and the municipal libraries were merged to form a new one – the Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong Province. The site of the original Guangzhou Municipal Zhongshan Library became the North Wing of the Sun Yat-sen Library of Guangdong Province, also known as the Sun Yat-sen Literature Museum.
  • In December 1980, the CPC Committee of Guangzhou decided during an office meeting to establish the Guangzhou Library.
  • In January 1981, the Guangzhou Municipal Bureau of Culture announced the establishment of the related Preparatory Committee and the decision to transform a revolutionary museum into the Guangzhou Library.
  • On January 2, 1982, the opening ceremony of Guangzhou Library was held.
  • In October 2004, the Guangzhou Development Planning Committee of Guangzhou formally approved of constructing the new premise of the Guangzhou Library.
  • From October 2004 to January 2005, the Guangzhou Library organized an international invitational tournament to solicit the best design proposal for its new premise.
  • On February 20, 2006, a foundation-laying ceremony was held for the new premise of the Guangzhou Library.
  • On December 28, 2012, part of the new premise of the Guangzhou Library was officially opened.