Freedom Libraries were originally a product of ‘Freedom Summer’—the voting registration campaign launched by various civil rights organizations in Mississippi during the summer of 1964. Information about these libraries has been extremely limited, so much so that their very existence remains “virtually unknown even within the American library community” (Cook 3). This changed in 2008, when Karen Cook’s dissertation provided a comprehensive and exhaustive look at Mississippi Freedom Libraries. She positively identified over 80 different ones. While reading Cook’s work, I began to wonder if something similar had occurred in Alabama. After all, Alabama was ground zero during the Civil Rights Movement--“the most important piece of geography in the most important movement of our times” (Gaillard xvi). While literature about the ones in Mississippi was limited, information about ones in Alabama was and is nonexistent.
"Freedom's Reading: The Discovery of Two Alabama Freedom Libraries,"
The Southeastern Librarian: Vol. 61:
3, Article 5.
Available at: https://digitalcommons.kennesaw.edu/seln/vol61/iss3/5