The opening date of the library is deemed to be December 31, 1910, when there by the decision of the Vernenskaya city duma opened the library-reading room. In 1931 there by the decree of the Presidium of the Central Executive Committee of the Soviets of the KazSSR dated March 12, 1931 “On the establishment of the State Public library of the KASSR” the library was transformed into the State public library of the Kazakh SSR. From May 5, 1931 it started servicing the first readers. In February, 1937 the library was given the name of A.S.Pushkin as the sign of commemoration of the memory of the great Russian poet and in connection with the centenary from the day of his death.
In 1991 there by the Decree of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Kazakh SSR dated December 9, 1991 №775 “About the National library of the Kazakh SSR” the State library of the Kazakh SSR after A.S. Pushkin was renamed into National library of the Kazakh SSR and thus it acquired the state and public significance as an especially valuable object of culture.
In 2020 there by the Decree of the President of the Republic of Kazakhstan dated November 20, 2020 about the giving of the status of “National” to some organizations of culture to National library of the Republic of Kazakhstan was given the status of “National”.
National library is the largest scientific-methodological centre of the libraries of Kazakhstan; the depositary of legal copy of the works of print of Kazakhstan; the depositary of the Committee for the control in the sphere of education and science of the Ministry of education and science of the RK of the candidate and doctoral dissertations in all branches of science defended in Kazakhstan; the depositary of the abstracts of theses of the countries of the CIS; from 1993 – the depositary of scientific dissertations and editions of UNESCO; from 2005 – the depositary of the literature published by the State programme “Cultural heritage”; from 2012 – the depositary of the editions of the Assembly of the people of Kazakhstan of Almaty city.
The first director of the library – Uraz Dzhandosov, the prominent state and public figure of Kazakhstan. The main task in the activity of the library he deemed to be “the accumulation of all printed production in the Kazakh language and all the literature about Kazakhstan”. From that time the library functions as the state national book depositary which collects and keeps the documentary written heritage of the Kazakhs and the other peoples of Kazakhstan.
The book fond numbers more than 78 mln units of storage. The annual visits of the readers constitutes more than 1 mln, book issuance – approximately 2 mln. the readers are serviced by the 14 specialized halls for 1500 seats.
The visit-card of the library is its site www.nlrk.kz, the purpose of which is the organization of the single informational point of access to the electronic resources of the library. The annual virtual visits of the web-site constitutes more than 1,6 mln.
The National library of the RK from 1992 is a member of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (the IFLA), the Conference of Directors of National Libraries (the CDNL), fro0m 1993 – of the Non-commercial partnership “The Library Assembly of Eurasia” (the LAE). From 2008 it is the regional centre of the IFLA/PAC Main Programme in Preservation and Conservation.
The strategical priorities of the National library of the RK:
- The acquisition of the fonds and the provision of their preservation;
- The quality library-informational servicing;
- The development and inculcation of modern informational technologies;
- The initiation of the republican and international informational-library projects.
- The library building was constructed by the special project in 1970 and is brought in the State list of monuments of history and culture of republican value, approved by the Decree of the Government of the Republic of Kazakhstan dated March 21, 2008 № 279.