In early November, 1999, I came across the Gainesville, Florida Library web site. I saw that it had a fairly detailed history of its library development. This gave me the idea to start such a project for our Library System and to put it on our web site.
One of the first items of history I came across was an outline prepared in 1974 by Norman Graham, former Director of the Harrison County Library System entitled, "A Chronology of Public Library Development in Harrison County". this outline was the foundation for my history project. I have built and expanded on the work he did back in 1974.
When I started, I had no idea of how involved this project would become. I have spent the last several months researching and reading through literally hundreds of pieces of information. When I asked the Reference Librarians and Head Librarians for any historical information they might have, I became completely inundated with newspaper clippings (dating back to 1893), Library Board meeting notes (dating back to 1913), photographs (dating back to 1916), and letters (dating back to 1914).
I have tried to put all of the key events into this outline, leaving out minor details, and keeping only the "red letter date" events. I have also, where possible, linked to original newspaper articles, documents, and photographs.
I have not yet completely read through all of the information supplied to me; therefore, I will be adding more key events in the near future.
Thank you for taking the time to read through this outline, I hope you find it informative.
Former Systems Administrator
Harrison County Library System