special collections

Save Your Family History

Preservation Week April 25 through May 1, 2021 www dot ala dot org slash preservation week

There are lots of options for storing and preserving family memories captured in the digital age. But what about all those family photos and videos captured before digital cameras and smart phones? Schedule your appointment in the Library’s Digitization Station and let us help you pass down your preserve and pass down your family history for generations to come.

Beyond the Four Walls of a Building

Library Book Truck from 1928

What we do and where we do it can change from time to time. Library service doesn't always happen at the library and it certainly doesn't always occur inside the four walls of a building. Our job is about meeting, you, our customer, where you are. Sometimes, we have to take that show on the road! In the past, one of our more "novel" approaches to library service was our bookmobiles.

They Called Her Harry

Henrietta C. Dozier, a.k.a. "Harry"

Recently, there has been some discussion about and renewed interested in Jacksonville’s first female architect, Henrietta Dozier aka “Harry.” This Women’s History Month, the Library dug into its Special Collections and a few old Florida Times-Union articles as well. Just what was there about this woman’s story that’s so compelling that we come back to it, decade after decade? Was it her determination to succeed in a field dominated by men? Was it her approach to life or the boundaries she pushed? What more can we learn from her?

Digital Learning Day: Computers In the Library

Woman and a group of children using library computer 1990s

Digital Learning Day celebrates the use of digital technology in learning. While libraries have always been centers for lifelong learning, it has been our embrace of technology over the last several decades that have kept us both relevant and essential in this new age of hand-held devices and instant access to information. That is also why, this past year, libraries were able to shift quickly to virtual programming and add more digital resources in response to the pandemic. Things have changed so fast. It's easy to forget that just 30 or 40 years ago, many of us had never even used a personal computer. The appearance of desktop computers in libraries was still somewhat novel in the 1980s and 90s. Now, computers and the Internet are essential to library operations and the services we provide to the public.

Recently Digitized: Local Black History Gem

Scrapbook page from the segregated Duval Recreation Program in the 1950s

In the 1950s, the Duval County Recreation Program ran in the segregated African-American schools, the Jefferson Street Swimming Pool, and the Brewster Hospital during summer break. Activities included playground, library, homemaking, arts and crafts, movies, and music. These photos were originally kept in very large wood bound scrapbooks but can now be accessed online thanks to a recent digitization project.

When Jacksonville Hosted The Super Bowl

Remembering Super Bowl 39

The Super Bowl is one of America’s most-watched and most popular sporting events for one of our all-time-favorite pastimes. Even if you’re not a football-fanatic, you might look forward to the half-time show and the Super Bowl commercials. In this “year like no other,” with COVID-19 mostly keeping spectators out of stadiums and live broadcasts having to pump in “crowd noises” to make it all sound and feel a little less weird, fans and players have had to make some major adjustments. You may even be forgoing the traditional big parties with family and friends in an effort to be safe and social distance... For our part, the Library decided to take look back to a different Super Bowl and one that's particularly close to our hearts.

Play Outside Day: StoryWalk® in Klutho Park

National Play Outside Day with StoryWalk at Klutho Park

Did you know that February 6 is both "National Play Outside Day" and "Take Your Child To the Library Day" this year? So, how do you choose which one to celebrate? After all, they are both great ways to spend a Saturday! Well, this year, you don't have to choose. While there are no scheduled events or activities... there is something you can do that's both Library-related and involves playing in a park! Have you heard about StoryWalk® in Klutho Park?

Jacksonville Lights and Luminaries: Dorcas Drake

Lights and Luminaries: Dorcas Drake

Jacksonville judge, justice of the peace, and philanthropist Dorcas Drake was perhaps best known for starting the Dorcas Drake Christmas Party and Toy Drive, which made the holiday season a little brighter for Jacksonville’s children from 1957 until 2003. This special "Throwback Thursday" celebrates this remarkable and kind woman. The toy drive and party was eventually replaced by the Children's Christmas Party of Jacksonville (which was first held in 1999). But Dorcas Drake's light and legacy is undeniable.

International Human Rights Day

International Human Rights Day

Human Rights Day is observed every year on December 10 — the day the United Nations General Assembly, in 1948, proclaimed the inalienable rights to which everyone is entitled as a human being and adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. The purpose of the document was to create equal opportunities for all - regardless of race, color, religion, sex, language, political or other opinion, national or social origin, property, birth or other status - and to re-build the world through this lens of interconnectedness and shared humanity.

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