When UAB was formed in 1969, a small extension division library existed. From that beginning, the Mervyn H. Sterne Library emerged and has developed into a major academic library. From 1969 until 1973, the Library was housed in several locations. The Sterne Library opened for service in January 1973 at its present location, 917 South Thirteenth Street. Since that time, the Library has undergone several renovations and expansions.

The Sterne Library’s collections support teaching and research in the arts and humanities, business, education, engineering, natural sciences, mathematics, and social sciences. In addition to more than 1 million print and electronic books and subscriptions to over 41,000 periodicals, the library also provides users with access to specialized databases, audio-visual materials, microforms, and other electronic resources.

The Sterne Library has seating for more than 1,150 users. In addition to serving the University community, the Library provides support to users from schools and businesses within the city and the state through various partnership agreements.