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Gaston County Public Library History


          Spring 1950

  • Cherryville Junior Woman’s Club collected 65 books for the library from the citizens of Cherryville. (The Cherryville Eagle, 5 May 1976)


          September 1950

  • The Education Department of the Cherryville Junior Woman’s Club selected the project of opening a new Cherryville Public Library. A location for the new library and a paid librarian were required before the Cherryville library could become a branch of the Gaston County Public Library. The Senior Woman’s Club assisted with the fund drive for the new library.
  • The Junior Woman’s Club Education Department included Chairman Mrs. Emmett Houser, Co-chairman Mrs. Webb, Mrs. James Blackwelder, Mrs. Herber Eaker, Mrs. Paul McGinnis, Mrs. Keith Lohr, Mrs. Donald Norris, Mrs. Everett Ellington and Mrs. James Allran. The Cherryville Library Board included Chairman Mrs. Emmett Houser; Co-chairman Rev. George L. Riddle; Treasurer Mrs. James L. Putnam, Jr.; W. B. Rhyne; Grier Beam; Rev. E. S. Elliot; W. T. Robinson; Carlyle Summer; and Fenton L. Larson. (The Cherryville Eagle, 5 May 1976)


          14 November 1950

  • The Cherryville branch of the Gaston County Public Library opened at the McGinnis Building on South Oak Street with Miss Nettie Willis as the first librarian. The Cherryville Senior Woman’s Club had voted to pay the first month’s rent of $30.00. The Dixie Lumber Company built and donated the shelving. Rainwater and Houser Furniture Company provided chairs. (The Cherryville Eagle, 5 May 1976)


          July 1953

  • The Library began placing the Gastonia Gazette on microfilm and purchased a Microform Reader.


          December 1953

  • North Carolina General Statutes replaced the 1938 Library Charter as the operating laws for the Gaston County Public Library. (Gaston Co. Public Library 1905-1981)



  • New, larger Gaston County Public Library Bookmobile, a Gerstenslager walk-in unit, was placed into service. Two previous Bookmobiles had already been worn out by this time. (GLRL Today and Tomorrow: a self study,1977 [027.422 G NCC]) (Gaston Co. Public Library 1905-1981)(GGZ 26 October 1954, page 1) Bookmobile was purchased from Taylor Motor Company of Mount Holly. (GGZ 2 December 1954, p.14)


          June 1954

  • The Cherryville Library was moved into a larger location in the Masonic Building behind the Old Post Office. (The Cherryville Eagle, 5 May 1976)


          3 January 1955

  • Gaston County Public Library commemorates the 50th anniversary of the Gastonia and Gaston County Public Library with an Open House at the library building. (GCHB Feb 1962) (GGZ Jan. 1, 1955, p. 1) (GGZ Tues. Jan. 4, 1955, p. 1)


          October 1955

  • Gastonia Altrusa Club public affairs committee plans organization of “Friends of the Library” (GGZ, 15 Oct 1955)


          9 December 1955

  • The “Friends of the Library” was organized under the sponsorship of the Gastonia Altrusa Club. (GCHB Feb 1962)


          19 January 1956

  • First organizational meeting for “Friends of the Library”, sponsored by Gastonia Altrusa Club, is held at the Gaston County Courthouse. (GC 15 Jan 1956)
  • First elected officers of the “Friends of the Library” included Ben B. Brown, Jr., president; Mrs. Frank Young of Gastonia, vice-president; Mrs. James Putnam of Cherryville, treasurer; Mrs. Wilfred Boney of Gastonia, recording secretary; and Miss Betty Willis of Gastonia, corresponding secretary.
  • Board of director members were Mrs. Emmett Houser of Cherryville, James Davenport of Mt. Holly, W. A. Mason of Belmont, Banks Bolin of Stanley, Robert Rhyne of Dallas, Earl Harmon of Bessemer City, J. D. Barbee of Cramerton, Coit Robinson Sr. of Lowell, and Neal Pharr of McAdenville.


          13 July 1957

  • Gaston County voters passed a 5-cent tax levy on each 100-dollar valuation of the taxable property in Gaston County to support branch library operations. (Commissioners Court, 4 Feb 1957)
  • The vote authorized the county commissioners to expend up to $250,000 in capital funds for the construction of one new branch library each in Bessemer City, Cherryville, Dallas, and Mt. Holly, as well as remodeling and enlarging the Main library on 115 West Second Avenue in Gastonia. (GCHB Feb 1962) (CO 7 Sep 1958)
  • Additional $50,000 or more added to total for the construction of Belmont branch location. (GGZ 14 March 1959, p.1)
  • One of the many supporters of the library tax was Gaston County Library Board chairman J. W. Atkins, then publisher of the Gastonia Gazette newspaper. (GGZ 20 April 1969)
  • Frank Griffin, Gastonia architect, designed some of the library branches.


          October 1957

  • Gastonia City transferred the Main Library property to Gaston County.


          21 February 1959

  • The new Cherryville Branch Public Library had dedication and open house at its location on East Main Street. (GGZ 20 Feb. 1959, p.2) (The Cherryville Eagle, 5 May 1976)


          23 February 1959

  • New branch library opened in Bessemer City, NC.


          2 March 1959

  • New branch library in Dallas, NC opened for service with Wilma Noles as the first librarian. (GGZ 29 June 1980)


          9 March 1959

  • New branch library in Mount Holly, NC opened for service.


          15 March 1959

  • Open House for the newly remodeled and enlarged Gaston County Public Library on 115 West Second Avenue, Gastonia. Cost was approximately $125,000. (GGZ 14 March 1959, p.1) (GGZ 19 Jun 1973) Library facilities were created for a new audio section with a gift from the music department of the Women’s Club. (GGZ 23 Feb 1964)


  • Proposal that additional funds leftover from appropriation for library construction would be made available for building Lowell and Stanley branches. (Separk book, p. 44) (GGZ 5 May 1959, p.1)


          1 November 1959

  • Gaston County Public Library contracted to supervise the operations of the Lincoln County Memorial Library for $200 monthly, which allowed the Lincoln County Library to continue qualifying for state aid. (Gaston Co. Public Library 1905-1981) (Dedication and Formal Opening of the Lincoln County Public Library, 306 West Main Street, Lincolnton, NC, April 4, 1976, 2:00 pm.- brochure)

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