The oldest library of Bhavnagar, Barton library was founded during the 19th century. The library is a depiction of the chronological and cultural importance of Gujarat and Bhavnagar. Placed in the heart of the city, it is a must-visit tourist place in Bhavnagar city for all age groups. The library has been named after, chief British representative, Colonel Barton and consists of manuscripts that are written in different languages. It is believed that the library was often visited by Mahatma Gandhi for readings. Due to the same reason, Barton library is a favorite haunt for historians. The library was won the Best Librarian award for its offering services to society since ages.
Barton Library houses an amazing collection of old as well as new books and thus is often visited by various intellectuals and book lovers. Initially, the library started after donation of 5000 books by Chhagan Prasad Desai. In the year 1960, the number rose to 15, 980. Today, there are as many as 60,000 books including 19000 English books, 25,000 Gujarati books and 4500 Hindi and some books in Sanskrit. The library also has a small collection of rare manuscripts. Daily newspapers in 11 languages including Hindi, English and Gujarati can be read here. The library issues books to around 1450 on daily basis. It is taken care of by Bhavnagar Municipal Corporation and Excel Crop Care Limited.
The library committee is planning to bring replicas of the renowned paintings of the country as well as an album of famous libraries. The committee is thinking of organizing architecture, painting, photography and cinematography exhibitions on a regular basis. They are also thinking about planning lectures on different subjects that would be headed by popular artists.