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History of the Colored Branch "Colored Branch Library Work in Louisville" American Liberty League. 400dpi TIFF G4 page images Digital Library Services, University of Kentucky Libraries Lexington, Kentucky LFP_rblue_2_06_04 These pages may freely searched and displayed. Permission must be received for subsequent distribution in print or electronically. History of the Colored Branch "Colored Branch Library Work in Louisville" American Liberty League. unknown unknown 1927-03-15 Is Part of the Reverend Thomas F. Blue Papers, ca. 1905-1935 housed at the Louisville Free Public Library, Louisville, KY. This electronic text file was created by Optical Character Recognition (OCR). No corrections have been made to the OCR-ed text and no editing has been done to the content of the original document. Encoding has been done through an automated process using the recommendations for Level 1 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines. Digital page images are linked to the text file. ï»¿LOUISVTLLK Â» EE PUBLIC LIBRARY COLORED DEPARTMENT The first free public library for colored readers with colored attendants was opened in Louisville, Kentucky, September 23, 1905. This was a branch of the Louisville Free Publio Library * The library opened in temporary quarters in three rooms of a residence, with 1,400 books, and two assistants, Thomas F. Blue, branch librarian, and Vm* Rachel D, Harris, in charge of children's work. The Dewey decimal system was used, and the circulation of books the first year was 17,838, On October 29, 1908, the library opened its beautiful Carnegie building that had been generously provided by the library Board, This is known as the Western Colored Branch, The work at the first oolored branch library proved so successful that a second Carnegie building was erected in the eastern part of the city, known as the Eastern Colored Branch, and was opened January 28, 1914. The cost of the two buildings, including sites and equipment represent 4112,814, Louisville has the distinction of being the only city that has for its oolored readers two Carnegie branch buildings. On March 12, 1919 the library board reorganised the work of the two branches and oreated the Colored Department, with Thomas . Blue as Head, with eight assistants. This is the first colored department of a free public library. Some outstanding features of the work are the followingi The annual story telling contest between the two branches, which has attracted wide attention. The social center service which provides a common meeting place for gatherings of an educational and social uplift ~ which have numbered 93 during a single month. The library apprentice class which has trained forty persons* The Oolored department has not only trained its own assistants but it was a pioneer in training oolored library assistants for ï»¿-2- branoh libraries in a number of southern cities. Following are s)6me of the cities that sent their library assistants to Louisville |to be trainedt Atlanta, Birmingham, Chattanooga, Knoxville, Memphis, Hashville, Houston, Texas, and Tampa, Florida* On November 1 and 6, 1930 the Western Colored Branch celebrated the twenty-fifth anniversary of its opening* One day was given to the children's celebration and one to the grown-ups. Hon* William B. Harrison, the Mayor of Louisville, who is president of the Library Board, was present on both occasions and took part in each celebration. The Mayor's appreciation was further expressed by the gift to the children's department of a large silk flag. On the twenty-fifth anniversary of the beginning of the work the Colored department had 27,600 volumes, and included two Carnegie branch buildings, two high schools, sixteen stations and eighty-one classroom collections in twenty-seven school buildings, with a circulation of 192,080 books for the year ending August 31, 1930. The circulation includes 93,388 books read by adults and 98,632 by children.