A Never-Failing Spring - Our Public Libraries
Check out what our local library system is offering these days - you'll find more than just books. Lots more.
- story by Carole McKellar
The first library in Hancock County was established in 1935 as a WPA (Works Progress Administration) project. It was housed in a log cabin. We’ve come a long way, with four branches currently operating in Bay St. Louis, Waveland, Pearlington, and Kiln. Recent budget cuts forced the closure of the Diamondhead branch. The Hancock County Library System is funded by county and city taxes and is accessible to every community member.
During difficult economic times library budgets often decrease, though their role becomes more important. During recessions, libraries prove their worth to the community by offering job information, preparing resumes, and assisting online job applications.
There are many reasons why libraries matter. Let’s start with books. Most people can’t afford to buy or don’t have room for all the books they want to read. Our library has a large selection of books, DVDs, audio books, and e-books for loan. There are periodicals and reference books. If you are not sure where to find what you need, friendly, helpful staff members are readily available.
Computers are available to residents, and Internet access is free. Classes that improve digital literacy and use of online research tools are provided. The goal of the library is to provide lifelong learning for all members of the community by offering a wide range of programs for all ages.
All of our library branches have charming and engaging children’s sections that make early literacy a pleasurable experience. Story time is provided weekly at each branch for children from birth to age five. The programs include storytelling, crafts, and music.
The website, www.hancocklibraries.info/, is comprehensive. You can reserve books using their online catalog, or find the schedules for activities and events, such as Matinee in the Bay or the latest Authors & Characters event.
Meeting and conference rooms are available for community use. The rooms accommodate activities as varied as voting, movies, lectures, book sales, and a variety of classes.
“There is not such a cradle of democracy upon the earth as the Free Public Library, this republic of letters, where neither rank, office, nor wealth receives the slightest consideration.” - Andrew Carnegie