Tag Archives: North Georgia Libraries

S. B. Price Free Library, 1899 & 1934, Macon

In the late 19th century free public libraries were a relatively new concept but Macon Mayor S. B. “Daisy” Price wanted to open such a facility that would be free to all (white) citizens of his growing community. The library formally opened on 7 January 1900 and was named for Mayor Price, who had died on 22 November 1899. The structure’s entrance originally faced Orange Street and featured a turret but a renovation and needed update by the Civil Works Administration re-oriented the library and moved the entrance to 1st Street.

Macon Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --BIBB COUNTY GA--, Macon GA

Carnegie Library, 1915, Eatonton

This still serves as Eatonton’s public library.

Eatonton Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --PUTNAM COUNTY GA--, Eatonton GA

Harlem Library

This is one of the quaintest little public libraries in Georgia. I imagine it must have been a residence at one time.

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Filed under --COLUMBIA COUNTY GA--, Harlem GA

Hartwell Bank Building, Hartwell

Known today as the Carter Law Office, for its present owner, this is the most iconic commercial structure in Hartwell. [I use the original name for historical purposes]. It was home, for many years, to Homer Herdon’s Drug Store, a popular gathering place from the 1930s to the 1960s. The second floor once housed the Hartwell Library, as well. I have been unable to confirm a date of construction, but the Richardsonian Romanesque style, in which it’s constructed, was popular from the late 1880s to the turn of the 20th century.

Hartwell Commercial Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --HART COUNTY GA--, Hartwell GA

Old Macon Library, 1889

The Macon Public Library & Historical Society, which was chartered in 1876, commissioned D. B. Woodruff to design the city’s first library, completed in 1889 in the Romanesque Revival style. The library (located here until the 1920s) was on the second floor while commercial businesses occupied the first floor. It housed numerous other tenants over the years. [David B. Woodruff was a Connecticut native who came to Georgia in 1853 and served with the Macon Volunteers (Infantry) in the Civil War. He designed several important buildings in Macon and Augusta].

In the 1960s, the building was home to the College Discotheque, a popular hangout and music venue. On 2 May 1969, the Allman Brothers Band played their first gig in Macon here. They had recently moved to town to be near Phil Walden and Capricorn Records.

After falling into disrepair and facing demolition in the late 20th century, the old library was completely restored by Tony Widner around 2007. It’s now known as the Library Ballroom and serves as an event venue.

Macon Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --BIBB COUNTY GA--, Macon GA

Haralson County Courthouse, 1892, Buchanan

Designed by the Atlanta architectural firm of Bruce & Morgan, Haralson County’s historic Queen Anne courthouse is a sight to behold and a wonderful anchor for this small downtown. Though a more modern courthouse was built in 1972, this structure still serves the public as a library.

I’d like to thank Donnie Boswell for his hospitality during my brief visit and for sharing some of the history of Buchanan. He serves as the Main Street Affiliate Representative for Buchanan and is very enthusiastic about his community. He also let me know that the town name is pronounced buck-hanon not bew-canon.

National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --HARALSON COUNTY GA--, Buchanan GA

North Georgia College Library, 1939, Dahlonega

university-of-north-georgia-dahlonega-new-deal-library-photograph-copyright-brian-brown-vanishing-north-georgia-usa-2017

Typical of New Deal architecture, the old North Georgia College (now the University of North Georgia) library was built by the Federal Works Agency and is now used for classrooms, I believe.

 

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Filed under --LUMPKIN COUNTY GA--, Dahlonega GA

Childs General Store, 1870, Newborn

newborn ga childs store photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

Childs General Store was one of the first retail establishments built in Newborn before the railroad came through the town in 1893 and was restored after a fire in the 1990s. Now known as the Zeigler-Childs Building and home to the Newborn Town Hall and Library, it remains a symbol of the community.

Newborn Historic District, National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --NEWTON COUNTY GA--, Newborn GA

Bank of Shady Dale, Jasper County

shady dale ga city hall photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

After its initial use as a bank in the early 1900s, this landmark has served as the post office, city hall, and library. It’s all that remains of a once-thriving row of commercial storefronts.

shady dale ga bank post office city hall photograph copyright brian brown vanishing north georgia usa 2016

 

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Filed under --JASPER COUNTY GA--, Shady Dale GA

Mary Willis Library, 1889, Washington

Historic Washington GA Mary Willis Library First Free Library in Georgia Photograph Copyright Brian Brown Vanishing North Georgia USA 2015

Upon its opening in 1889, the Mary Willis Library was the first free library in Georgia. It was founded by Dr. Francis T. Willis in memory of his daughter and as a gift to the people of his hometown and county. Dr. Willis left Washington for Richmond, Virginia, in 1867 and never lost his love for Wilkes County and its people. An 1894 catlaog of the library states that the cost of the building was $15,000, the furniture and the first collection of books, $2,000, and that a fund of $10,000 was provided by Dr. Willis as endowment. Dr. Willis also donated his personal library, as did his half-brother, Samuel Barnett, first president of the library trustees. Many rare books from that core collection are still held by the library, as well as an extensive archive of local and regional ephemera.

Architect Edmund Lind of Atlanta designed the library building. Stained-glass windows illuminate the interior and the central window, commemorating Mary Willis, was made by Tiffany.

National Register of Historic Places

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Filed under --WILKES COUNTY GA--, Washington GA