The Libraries of South Carolina
by Mary Frayser
Page 20
Bulletin 292 page 20
  (Click on image
to view scanned image
of Mary Frayser's booklet)

In 1927 the demonstration of county-wide book service had been made. The matter of tax levy of one mill for library support was put up to the people of Greenville county living outside of the city of Greenville. It carried.

The provision by Greenville county for service to the negroes of both city and county was the first made for public library service to negroes in this state.
Greenville bookmobile service to Blacks
Figure 4. -- The Greenville library truck serves Negro school children

There was library legislation in South Carolina in 1928, when an act was passed to amend Section 2609, Code 1922, Vol. 3; authorizing the issuance of bonds by school districts for the erection, equipment, and maintenance of libraries as well as schools.*

According to the terms of the library law of 1915 permission was given to county, township, or school district to tax itself for the support or acquisition of a library. The 1928 law authorized a different type of provision, i. e. the issuance of bonds, and made provision for only one type of library, i. e. the school district library. The wisdom of this act may be questioned since the consensus of opinion of library authorities is against the creation of school district libraries and in favor of county library systems. Libraries may be provided for under the terms of either act.

Both the 1915 and the 1928 library laws, it should be noted, are permissive only. Provision for school libraries is mandatory in many states.

In September, 1929, the women of The Wednesday Club of Laurens entered upon an active campaign for the establishment of a county-wide free public library. The club offered to give its book collection of 2,500 volumes valued at $5,000 for the nucleus of a county library if the Laurens county delegation would provide the funds necessary to make possible the free circulation of the books. This offer was accepted and a bill was passed in 1930 creating the Laurens county library. The library opened its doors to the public in March that year.

The women of the Chester clubs inaugurated a movement in 1931 for school district support for the public library which they bad long sponsored. In August, 1931, the matter was voted upon and a tax laid for library support to become available January 1, 1932.

*S. C. Acts, Library Bonds, 1928, pp. 1211-1212, No. 636.

back to page 19 to Table of Contents on to page 21

Back to page 19

To Table of Contents

On to page 21