Sunday, September 4, 2011

Librarian Education: Spelman College

In 1930, the Southeastern Library Association held a six-week summer course to train African Americans to work in public libraries in the South. The course was funded by the Rosenwald Fund and held on the campus of Spelman College from June 14th until July 25th. A total of thirty-five students participated in the course.

Rachel Davis Harris (1869-1969), the first African American female director of the Colored Branches of the Louisville Free Public Library in Louisville, Kentucky, was an instructor for the program.

Note: The Rosenwald Fund was founded by Julius Rosenwald (1862-1932) of Sears, Roebuck, and Company. Rosenwald also helped provide funding to enable African American librarians to attend the First Negro Library Conference which was held March 15-18, 1927 at the Hampton Institute (now Hampton University) in Hampton, Virginia. In addition, Rosenwald provided funds to help organize libraries and schools ("Rosenwald Schools") for African Americans.

Sources: "Library Institute for Negro Librarians." Library Journal 55.18 (1930): 932. Print. ; Campbell, Lucy B. "Black Librarians in Virginia." The Black Librarian in the Southeast: Reminiscences, Activities, and Challenges. Ed. Annette L. Phinazee. Durham: NCCU School of Library Science, 1980. 134. Print. ; "Personals." Library Occurrent 8.2 (1927): 66. Print. ; Dalin, David G. "What Julius Rosenwald Knew." Commentary 105.4 (1998): 36-39. Print. ; Jones, Reinette F. Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky, from the Reconstruction Era to the 1960s. Jefferson, NC: McFarland, 2002. 22, 32, 35, 59, 62, 69, 71, 82, 85-86, 88-90, 96-97. Print. ; Curtis, Florence Rising. "Colored Librarians in Conference." Library Journal 52.8 (1927): 408. Print. ; Fenton, Michele T. "Stepping Out on Faith: Lillian Haydon Childress Hall, Pioneer Black Librarian." Indiana Libraries 33.1 (2014): 6. Print.

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