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Local History of African American Libraries

Listen as Orange County Library System storyteller Crystal Sullivan interviews librarian Alice Grace about the history of the Washington Park Library on January 25, 2011.

LISTEN (2:55) Alice Grace

 

The Orange County Library System and the Shiloh Baptist Church celebrated the history of the former Booker T. Washington Library on December 30, 2001. A commemorative bronze plaque was unveiled at the previous site of the Library at 528 West Jackson Street. The building now houses the T. C. Collier Center, which belongs to the Church.

The Booker T. Washington Branch of the Albertson Public Library served residents of the west Orlando community. the Library was opened in June 1924 in what had been the rectory of St. John’s Episcopal Church at 107 South Terry Street.

The City of Orlando constructed the new BTW Library building on West Jackson Street. It opened to the public in August 1954. The library continued to serve the community until 1984 when it was incorporated into the Washington Park Library in the Lila Mitchell Community Center on Raleigh Street.

The City of Orlando owned the building until 1994 when the Church purchased it. The Church renamed the building the T.C. Collier Center in 1995.

 


ABOVE: Mrs. Eddie T. Jackson, Orange County Library System’s first African American Librarian.

 

Explore the Images and Documents below under Attachments. Click on the first image to begin the slide show.
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ATTACHMENTS

Children Reading at St. John Episcopal Church

Librarian Alice Grace with young readers at St. John Episcopal Church.

Eddie T. Jackson 1

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T. Jackson 2

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T. Jackson 3

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T. Jackson 4

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T. Jackson 5

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T. Jackson 11

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson.

Eddie T Jackson Painting 1

Orange County Library System's first African American librarian, Eddie T. Jackson. Painting is located on the 4th floor of the Orlando...

Eddie Harris 1990

Article published in BA Magazine (year not known) about Eddie L. Harris, Jr. Mentions: Montgomery Ward, Finance America Corp, Valencia Community Colle...

Booker T. Washington Branch Library - Open House Brochure

Brochure - Booker T. Washington Library Front Cover: Open House at the Booker T. Washington Branch Library November 13-19, 1949. Back Cover: Visit ...

Eddie T. Jackson - Painting

Ms. Jackson was born on March 25th, 1902 in Tampa, Florida to Lee Roy and Woodie Julia Byrd Thomas. Eddie's early training...

Alice Grace - African American Libraries

Long time OCLS librarian Alice Grace shares history of the Orange County Library System in the African American community.




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Orlando Morning Star Article - Booker T. Washington Branch Library

Orlando Morning Star Article - Booker T. Washington Branch Library


Albertson Public Library, Orlando Evening Star Article, January 1954, Eddie Yost, L . A. "Jimmy" Bryant, Edward Kirkland, Lydia Parent

Albertson Public Library, Orlando Evening Star Article, January 1954, Eddie Yost, L . A. "Jimmy" Bryant, Edward Kirkland, Lydia Parent


Orlando Evening Star, Booker T. Washington Branch Library, April 21, 1954, Contract Signed, New Building

Orlando Evening Star, Booker T. Washington Branch Library, April 21, 1954, Contract Signed, New Building


Obituary: Mrs. Eddie T. Jackson

Mrs. Jackson was a librarian in Orlando from1924 until she retired in 1946. Orlando's first black librarian, born March 25, 1902; died October 26, 1979.


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