The Koth Memorial Gallery was dedicated in 1993 in memory of Wesley L. Koth, citizen of the world, art connoisseur, and longtime patron of the Longview Public Library.
The library art gallery was refurbished with a bequest from the estate of Wesley Koth and generous gifts from Wesley Koth's nephew, Frank Koth, and his wife Arlene and their three children: David Foster Koth, Judy Charles, and Nancy E. Thompson, who said "It is a perfect memorial as it incorporates both the arts and the library, two of his most favorite things!"
Wesley L. Koth, 1915-1992
Koth retired from the Washington State Employment Security Department in 1978 after 29 years of service. He was a 1938 graduate of the University of Washington and attended graduate school at the New School of Social Research in New York to study under a faculty of exiled European intellectuals. He also studied at Oxford University, England, in the summer of 1948. A consummate world traveler, he visited Australia, India, Africa, the former Soviet Union, China, Central America, South America, and Europe; to many of these countries he paid return visits. He also traveled extensively in the United States and Canada.
After Koth's death in June 1992, in addition to the bequest from his estate to the Longview Public Library, his family gave to the library many of his books reflecting his interests in art, music, history and travel.
Wesley Koth was a man of many interests. Though he was a world traveler, he always returned to his home in Longview. He took great personal interest in family and is remembered fondly by his nieces and nephews. Quiet and unassuming, he left a major legacy to the community through this gallery, which offers area artists opportunities to share their talents with the many citizens who visit the Longview Public Library daily.