24 S. Pollard St. (P.O. Box 290)
$10 Monthly Donation
$100 Annual Donation
Shop at your favorite store, save and the merchants will give a percentage of their profits to the library.
Library grand opening kicked off with first annual street festival
The Fort Deposit Public Library had its grand opening celebration Saturday, June 13 from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. The event was kicked off with a ribbon cutting ceremony at 10 a.m. followed by its first annual street festival.
“We had a funfilled day for the entire family,” said Library Director Cathy Standridge.
Quinn Records supplied music with a live performance by recording artist Katrena Jefferson who is an opening act and backup singer for Willie Clayton.
Tables and borrowed chairs were available in front of the stage to listen to the music while people ate their favorite food which was for sale in front of the library. “Soft drink donations by Pepsi and hot dog donations by Piggly Wiggly and buns by Ranbow helped make all this possible. All money raised will help defray expenses so that the library can offer the best services available,” Standridge said.
There was a book signing by author Cindy Hillary, face painting by Stacey Taylor, and a moon walk inflatable provided by Air Jumpz, LLC. The Fort Deposit Volunteer Fire Department also had fire trucks there and the LifeSouth Bloodmobile was there as well for people to give the gift of life which is always in need.
“Volunteers have been working hard to bring library services to the Fort Deposit area,” said Dan Therrien, library board president. “More than 2,000 wonderful books are currently on the shelves from how to books to romance novels with more being added daily. Three state of the art computers allow patrons to do research, conduct job searches, take free GED preparation courses and much more. We want everyone to come out and see first hand all the progress that’s been made especially over the past 4 months,” Therrien added.
The summer reading program now in progress is designed around the theme “Get Creative and Express Yourself” and focuses on music which started June 1, art which began July 1 and theatre which starts Aug. 3. Mondays and Tuesdays are reserved for kids age 5-10 and Wednesdays and Thursdays are for youth age 11-17 and are conducted from 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. All participants must have a library card and registered by a parent or adult care provider.
“The summer reading program helps increase reading and math skills by having the youth read about the areas they’ll be working on and keep a journal, built tools to use in the specific arts then apply what they learned by playing an instrument they made and so on,” Standridge said.
Fort Deposit Welcomes It's First Library Director
The Fort Deposit Public Library made history again March 14 with the appointment of Cathy Standridge as the town’s first ever library director.
”We are extremely fortunate to have such a highly qualified and motivated volunteer to run the library,” said Dan Therrien, library board president. “She comes to us with 15 years of library experience and three college degrees including psychology, computer technology, and electrical engineering, making her the right person at the right time as our library continues to grow.”
“I’m very thankful for this opportunity to serve Fort Deposit and excited about the future of the library with the help of our volunteers and supporters,” Standridge said. “I hope to quickly have some programs and activities that will encourage everyone in the community to participate,” she added.
The library made history 8 months ago when it first opened with not much more than a couple tables of books, a roof that badly leaked and no heating or air conditioning. Over the past several months a lot of renovation has been done, the roof has been resurfaced and a new energy efficient heating and air conditioning system has been installed. Shelving is now in place and thusands of books are being catalogued one by one into the newly acquired computerized cataloging system with more being added daily. Nearly 300 new library cards have been issued in the past couple months and the computers are getting lots of use.
“The library computers have much to offer its patrons,” Therrien said. “Students can get free live homework help from online tutors on any subject, people can take free GED preparation classes, get assistance preparing resumes, finding jobs, and so much more.”
A lot of renovation to the building is still needed to fulfill future goals of expanding to a multipurpose/career learning center with classrooms, conference room, kitchen and more but will require lots of money. To make a donation, make checks payable to the Fort Deposit Public Library, bring it by at 24 S. Pollard St., mail to P.O. Box 290, Fort Deposit, AL 36032 or make a donation by clicking the link to the left.
Cathy asks everyone to take a moment and come by to meet her and join in the excitement that’s building to make Fort Deposit a better place.
A new chapter in the history of Fort Deposit resulted in the town opening its first state recognized public library July 1, 2008. The library is located in downtown Fort Deposit on the corner of W. Jones St. and S. Pollard St.
Fort Deposit, the largest town in Lowndes County, has been in existence since 1813, and until now the nearest library was 15 miles away.
“Having a public library provides an opportunity for our residents to have a brighter future and help our community grow,” said Fort Deposit Mayor Fletcher Fountain.
National studies based on a survey of library users, economic development officials, government officials, library staff and others have shown a number of benefits to having a public library. These include helping prepare patrons with critical skills for the job market and is deemed critical to the economic and educational well being of a community. Services range from providing children's programs and services, computer training and literacy services, information on setting up and running a small business, meeting space for workshops and seminars on topics such as home buying, job hunting, and tax assistance. Libraries have also been shown to be a service which attracts patronage to local businesses and increase local property value.
Outpouring of support
“We are very fortunate to have had an outpouring of support from people from around the state,” said Dan Therrien, Fort Deposit Library Board president. “Donations have been incredible. The nearly 11,000 square foot building was donated by the Charles Haigler family, office furniture was provided by the Alabama Public Library Service, a complete library shelving setup was donated by the Foley Public Library, scores of books were donated by local residents and libraries from around the state, and financial donations from local businesses, churches, county commission and individuals. Thanks to a $100,000 grant from the Alabama School and Public College Education Incentive Fund and a $10,000 grant from the Cornerstone Community Outreach, Inc. the library is able to get some needed roof resurfacing done and install a new heating/air conditioning system.”
“My grandfather, Charlie B. Haigler Sr. started our families' automobile business in 1928. My father, Charlie B. Haigler, Jr. made the tough decision to relocate the dealership from Fort Deposit to Greenville in 2000 when he opened "Greenville Motor Company," explained Charles Haigler, III.
“The people of Fort Deposit continue to be some of our best customers. My mother and I could think of no better purpose than to donate the former "Fort Deposit Motor Company" property for the new public library. My grandfather and father would be very proud to see that Fort Deposit is "on the move,” Haigler said.
Young patrons enjoy reading shortly after the library opening.
Library Volunteers Needed
Those who would like to help by volunteering to help operate the library may call or visit the library.
Charles Haighler III turns over the deed from the former Fort Deposit Motor Company to Fort Deposit Mayor Fletcher Fountain at noon Aug. 1 from the library parking lot while live on the air with WAKA-TV’s Meterologist David Baxley to provide local coverage during “David’s Roaming Weather Wednesday” broadcast. Benny Stanford, Friends of the Library member who helped raise thousands of dollars for the library, and Blu Braden who volunteered his contracting skills to conduct library renovation, watch on. (photo by Dan Therrien)