Cherry Street Library, Evansville, Indiana (1914-1955)

The Cherry Street Library was a segregated branch of the Evansville Public Library (now Evansville Vanderburgh Public Library) located at 515 Cherry Street in Evansville, Indiana. It was the first free public library built north of the Ohio River exclusively for African Americans and one … Read MoreCherry Street Library, Evansville, Indiana (1914-1955)

Alma S. Jacobs (1916-1997)

Librarian Alma Smith Jacobs was the first African American to serve as the Montana State Librarian. She was a lifelong advocate of free access to library resources and was active in local and state civil rights causes. Alma Victoria Smith Jacobs was born in Lewistown, Montana on November 21, 1916. … Read MoreAlma S. Jacobs (1916-1997)

Vivian Gordon Harsh (1890-1960)

Vivian Gordon Harsh was the first African American librarian in the Chicago Public Library system and a significant contributor to Chicago’s Black Renaissance.  In 1932 she was appointed head librarian of the George Cleveland Hall Branch, the city’s first library built in an African American … Read MoreVivian Gordon Harsh (1890-1960)

Augusta Braxston Baker (1911-1998)

Librarian, author, and storyteller Augusta Braxston Baker was the first African American woman to hold an administrative position with the New York Public Library (NYPL). She was a pioneering advocate of the positive portrayal of blacks in children’s literature, and beginning in the 1930s removed … Read MoreAugusta Braxston Baker (1911-1998)

Dorothy Porter Wesley (1905-1995)

Dorothy Porter Wesley (1905-1995), a scholar-librarian and bibliographer was born in Warrenton, Virginia in 1905, to her father, Hayes Joseph Burnett, a physician, and her mother, Bertha Ball Burnett, a tennis champion.  After receiving her A.B., from Howard University in 1928, she became the first … Read MoreDorothy Porter Wesley (1905-1995)

Effie Lee Morris (1921-2009)

In choosing librarianship over teaching or social work, Effie Lee Morris combined her desire to help people with a personal passion for education.  In doing so she became one of America’s leading advocates for services to children, minorities, and the visually-impaired.  Born in Richmond, Virginia … Read MoreEffie Lee Morris (1921-2009)