Gadjah Mada University Library was established on March 1, 1951. At first, the Library was located in a building (now Limaran Hotel) on Jalan Setjodiningratan (Jalan Mayor Suryotomo). In 1959, the Library moved to Jalan C. Simanjuntak in a building formerly used as Colombo Conference or known as Gedung Pantja Dharma, Sekip Unit 3. At present, Gadjah Mada University Library Unit 2 covers 4.461 m2.
In 1975, Gadjah Mada University built a library in an area with 2.883m2 which was placed in the southern side of Gadjah Mada University Main Building. The Library was officially opened on July, 31 1975 and now is Gadjah Mada University Library Unit 1. At first, the Library Unit 1 was used for Diploma program students, while the Library Unit 2 was used for Bachelor Degree students. However, during its development, the Library Unit 1 and 2 serve all students.
Based on the Decree of Gadjah Mada University Chancellor Number 200/P/SK/HT/2008 dated May 9, 2008 the Graduate Library which was previously placed in a building with 1782m2 in the eastern side of the Library Unit 1 merged into the University Library. The building is now named Library Unit 3 or Academic Resource Center (ARC).
During 50 years of its establishment, the Library has led by several directors:
- Woerjarto (1951-1955)
- Moerjopranoto (1955-1967)
- Soedjatmiko (1967-1975)
- Dra. Sawitri-Suharto, M.A. (1975-1985)
- Soedjatmiko (1985-1986)
- Dra. Murianti, M.L.S. (1986-1997)
- Dr.drh. Slamet Soebagyo (1998 – 2002)
- Drs. Ida Fajar Priyanto, M.A. (2002 – present)