Lending Libraries: With the development of ( Adult Education) the first public lending libraries came into existence in the 19th century. In 1994 Austria had around 2,400 libraries maintained by municipalities, schools, parishes, Chambers of Labour and the Austrian Federation of Trade Unions. They comprise around 8 million volumes, 850,000 readers use the libraries regularly, every year 12.5 million books are borrowed from the libraries. Most of the 5,500 librarians are employed in an honorary capacity or work on a part-time basis, while around 500 librarians work full-time. They are employed in the libraries of the municipalities and trained by the Austrian Library Association (Buechereiverband Oesterreichs). This association also supports and advises organisations financing the libraries.
In 1897 the "Zentralbibliothek" association was founded, in 1904 the first workers' library was set up at Gumpendorf (Vienna) and in 1909 the "Volkslesehalle" association, the successor of the "Katholischer Bibliotheks- und Leseverein" association, was established. In 1948 the forerunner of the Austrian Library Association, the Association of Austrian Public Libraries, was set up.
Literature#Oeffentliche Bibliotheken in Oesterreich, from 1988; Handbuch Schulbibliotheken, 1994; Buecherei-Perspektiven, from 1984 - Associations: Buechereiverband Oesterreich; Oesterreichisches Borromaeuswerk (founded in 1948).