Stephen F. Austin State University

Lucky Number Thirteen (June 2013)

Lucky Number Thirteen (June 2013)

Lucky Number Thirteen
By Vina Lee

The first library in Carthage was started by thirteen innovative and creative women in 1958 who were members of a group called the Service League. They had all sorts of fundraising events to create enough money to purchase the old telephone building on West College Street and opened the Service League Library in 1963. Sammy Brown gave generous donations along with Dixie Whitaker, Katheryn Stovall, Francis Payne, Tish Parker, Ida Moore, Faye Ivie, Doris Hebert, Marie Gerardy, Nena Flournoy, Cordelia Engs, Marie Bartlett and Virginia Brown as well as the whole community. Today, the library is funded by the Service League, the city of Carthage and Panola County.

A state of the art facility is open this month at 319 South Market Street in Carthage. Director, Debbie Godwin points out that there is a Wi-Fi seating area, a community room for meetings and programs and a slot drop book return on the south side of the building. E-books are available, movies on DVD, twelve computers for the public with four of them designed for children. The summer reading program theme is "Dig Up a Good Read." Youngsters will like story time, crafts and entertainment on Wednesdays during July on Healthy Mind, Healthy Body in response to the county-wide wellness program in Panola.

The ribbon-cutting is scheduled for June 20, 2013 with an open house from 10:00 AM to 12:00 Noon. Bev Brown, former Commander of the National Guard will be speaking about the history of the library and the building during the ceremony. We are proud of the thirteen women who dedicated much of their lives and time to making a public library become reality in Panola County. web site will have updated information and pictures of the new facility in Carthage.