Library Heaven in Columbus, GA

I recently spoke in Columbus Georgia. Columbus is a town that clearly struggles with harsh economic times. Everywhere you can see boarded up abandoned buildings. And yet there is  positive spirit there in the face of economic woes. The first thing that struck me was he performing arts center in a downtown area in the midst of renewal. A grand an inviting structure. But nothing could prepare me for the library.

Historically a library is the grand salon of a community. A comfortable place for  people to gather, to study, to read, to enlighten themselves. The Columbus Central library is the benchmark of what a modern library should be. Vast comfortable spaces dozens of public computers. Light streaming in from huge windows. I could live in this library.  There is huge support in the community for the arts and for the library System; things that transcend the here-and-now and look to the future.

I think to my home state of California, where libraries – particularly school libraries are severely underfunded and in some cases even shutting down.  The health of a community  can be judged not by it’s wealth but by how it chooses to spend it’s resources. By investing in it’s libraries, Columbus has invested in it’s future. It’s good to see a community with it’s heart and priorities in the right place.


2 Responses to “Library Heaven in Columbus, GA”

  1. Htebezele Says:

    It’s really great that you’ve brought attention to the sad state of the library systems. In our town we have a small-ish library that has only a few shelves of books, and any books requested have to be ordered from another location and take weeks to get to our branch. The funds are being cut constantly, and the only new books in there are donations. It’s really sad, and I’m glad to hear that despirte Columbus being poor economically that they are investing in something important. 🙂

  2. That Little Notebook Says:

    That is a gorgeous library. I’ve become more interested in them of late–most notably for two reasons. 1) My sister is going for a Library of Science degree and 2) I’m starting a library (well, two technically) in Nicaragua. It will not have its own building–and will by no means be grand–but the fact that the kids I fell in love with will have books is spectacular enough. =] If you wanted to learn more about the Library Mission, you could go here:

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