Thursday, December 1, 2011

Hallie Beachem Brooks: Librarian, Professor, and Indiana Native

Hallie Beachem Brooks (1907-1985) was a professor of library science at the Atlanta University Library School from 1942-1977. In 1964, she was appointed chairman of the Asia Foundation Grants Committee of the American Library Association. The Georgia Library Association awarded Ms. Brooks the Nix-Jones Award in 1979. In addition, Ms. Brooks was a librarian at the High School of Spelman College, an instructor in the Negro Teacher-Librarian Project, and the director of the Carnegie Corporation Field Service Program for Negro School Libraries.

Born in 1907, Ms. Brooks was a native of West Baden, Indiana, and worked as a library assistant and later a librarian at the Paul Laurence Dunbar Branch of the Indianapolis Public Library from 1922-1930. She received her librarian's certificate from the Indiana Public Library Commission Summer School for Librarians in 1924, and her Master of Library Science (MLS) from the University of Chicago in 1947. Ms. Brooks was a graduate of Shortridge High School in Indianapolis and attended Butler University (also in Indianapolis). She passed away in 1985.

See related posts: ALA History: 1928 Annual Conference of the American Library Association, West Baden, Indiana ; Lillian Sunshine Haydon Childress Hall: Pioneer in the History of Library Service to African Americans in Indiana ; and The Flanner Guild Deposit Station, the Paul Laurence Dunbar Branch, the Crispus Attucks Branch, and the George Washington Carver Branch of the Indianapolis Public Library (Indianapolis, Indiana).

Update 12/17/2012:

Hallie Beachem Brooks was one of several African American attendees at the 1928 American Library Association Annual Conference in West Baden, Indiana. One of the other attendees, Lillian Haydon Childress Hall, was the earliest known African American to receive a library science education in the state of Indiana. Hall was Ms. Brooks' supervisor, mentor, and friend when they worked together at the Indianapolis Public Library in the 1920s. Both women were graduates of the Indiana Public Library Commission Summer School for Librarians.

Update 5/18/2014:

Hallie Beachem Brooks is briefly mentioned in an I wrote an article on Lillian Haydon Childress Hall. The article was featured in the latest issue of Indiana Libraries (v. 33, no. 1). The link is below:

Fenton, Michele T. "Stepping Out on Faith: Lillian Haydon Childress Hall, Pioneer Black Librarian." Indiana Libraries 33.1 (2014): 5-11. Print."

Sources: Woodson, Almeta Gould. "Fifty Years of Service: A Chronological History of the School of Library Service Atlanta University, 1941-1979; the School of Library and Information Studies Atlanta University, 1979-1989; the School of Library and Information Studies, Clark Atlanta University, 1989-1991." Georgia Librarian 28.3 (1991): 71-73, 76-78. Print. ; "Summer School Students Accepted for 1924." Library Occurrent 7.3 (1924): 69. Print. ; "News of Indiana Libraries." Library Occurrent 8.3 (1927): 122. Print. ; "Gives Tea for Mr. Cullen." Indianapolis Recorder 5 Mar. 1927: 5. Print. ; " Indianapolis Girls Leave for Positions in South." Indianapolis Recorder 9 Sept. 1930: 6. Print. ; LeMon, Lillian M. "Indiana News." Chicago Defender 2 Jan. 1932: 11 . Print. ; "Atlanta U. Professor Heads Asian Study Fund." Jet 27.8 (1964): 20. Print. ; Jones, Reinette. Library Service to African Americans in Kentucky from the Reconstruction Era to the 1960s. Jefferson: McFarland, 2002. 116. Print. ; "Georgia Library Association Award Winners." Georgia Library Association. Georgia Library Association, n.d. Web. 23 Sept. 2010. ; Miller, Rosalind. "One Georgia Librarian: Hallie Beachem Brooks Remembers -1930 to 1977." Georgia Librarian 14.2 (1977): 29-38. Print. ; Totten, Herman L. "Southeastern Black Educators." The Black Librarian in the Southeast: Reminiscence, Activities, Challenges. Ed. Annette L. Phinazee. Durham: NCCU School of Library, 1980. 200-201. Print. ; McPheeters, Annie L. Library Service in Black and White: Some Personal Recollections, 1921-1980. Metuchen: Scarecrow, 1988. 11. Print. ; "Georgia Library Association Award Winners." Georgia Library Association Handbook, Appendices. 2003 rev. Rex: GLA, 2003. 58. Print.


1 comment:

  1. Miss Chestnut was a librarian at Dunbar Public Library (Indianapolis) in the mid's 1950s and early 1960's. She may have been the branch librarian, as we can't recall any other librarian up there when we visited. Dolores Wisdom