Category: Library


Central Library in 2014

Thanks to Librarian Melinda Martin’s hard work, the renovation of the Central Library is nearing completion:

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Thanks to a select few who donate to the Preservation of Central History Fund, we now have enough to procure a replacement marker.

This week Central History Archives Team will send a check to the State to pay for a marker to replace the one run over by a careless driver or vandal.  We are coordinating with TDOT and City of Chattanooga for final approval to place the marker on State property just outside the McCallie fence.  Mindful that we need to reduce the risk of “accidental” damage to the marker, we intend to place it facing Dodds Avenue and as close to the McCallie fence as possible.

Please keep in mind, your continuing donations to Preservation of Central History Fund will allow the Chattanooga Central History Archives Team (CCHAT) to continue other preservation efforts such as cleaning the Bellamy Flag and procuring a case in which to archive it.

The vast majority of CCHAT efforts are by a few volunteers who spent countless hours supporting the Central Librarian who directs our efforts and works tirelessly to preserve Central history and rare books in the Central Library–Central alumni are grateful.

I have counted the 16mm films and we are around 75 or so.  Dating from early 1940s to 1980.

Please feel free to post that I am taking in more reels if anyone would like to drop any by the Library.  I am VERY INTERESTED to see if we can find any from the 30s.  Thanks so much.

Melinda

I wanted to update everyone on the happenings and progress that have been taking place here in the E. F. Chapin Library.

A local designer has taken an interest in our Library and came in to meet with me last week about the possible renovation of our space.  Se was part of the team that designed East Hamilton High and Middles’s Libraries and is currently involved with renovation of the Library at UTC.

The meeting went very well and Ms. Fitzgerald walked out with our blueprints and is in the beginning stage of designing a layout that will best suit our needs.  We are hopeful that the current issues with Central well be taken care of swiftly so that the interior of our Library will be fresh and ready for the updates we so desperately need from this talented local designer.

To ready ourselves for possible renovation, I have moved all Central Digests, Yearbooks, and anything “historical” into what will be our Alumni Room..  Now that they are in one area, I am confident we can do a detailed inventory of what we have in our collection.  Please feel free to visit us and do not hesitate to call me to discuss any aspect of our archives and/or issues that you feel need to be addressed.  I’m here for all of you.

I have also “struck a deal” with an amazing Chattanooga company called “SouthTree.”  The company will be converting all our 8 mm and 16 mm reals, VHS tapes, photos and slides onto DVD!

I visited the company yesterday and was amazed at the technology.  The owner of the Company was very excited to have an opportunity to preserve film from Chattanooga and ever willing to take on the project of digitally archiving some of our print media.

I asked Mr. Boeselanger he could tell me the oldest film conversion he’s done.  His answer was around 1931.  An older lady from Signal Mountain had wanted it transferred.  If anyone could beat that with a CHS film from the attic, I am sure we could impress him even more!

You can read and learn more about this company at SouthTree.  I will say that I am very proud that we can keep our business local, and I am very confident that it will take great care of our cherished memories.

In my research on the type of scanner we need to archive the Central Digest, I have found out that the best way to preserve the spines and and overall integrity of the book itself is to place The Digest open on a book stand and photograph each double spread, using at least a 6 megapixel SLR camera, tripod, and basic lighting.  The numbering system on a camera (providing we use the same camera) will be consistent and after each book is photographed, the JPEG files can be converted to PDF.

Thanks to you all for your dedication and support.

Ms Martin, CHS Librarian

Central Library

This CENTRAL HIGH HISTORY moment was copied from Central Alumni NewsLetter authored by Susan Watkins Kendall Class of 1978 (see Central News).

There’s no better time to research, show off, and preserve Central’s history than during our Centennial year!   I thought everyone might enjoy this bit of history about Central’s E. Y. Chapin Library.  Ed Hoback

HISTORY OF THE E. Y. CHAPIN LIBRARY written in 1970 by Mrs. Pansy Allison, Central High Librarian

When Central High School was organized, a library was not included in the original plans.   In the early 1920s, Mr. John Setliffe, a Latin teacher, felt the need for an organized collection of books.   He gathered together a number of books which were located in an area under the south stairs on the first floor.   In 1926, Central was given some donations from a private classical library, and in cooperation with the Chattanooga Public Library, the Hamilton County Board of Education was able to organize a library for Central.   The library was then located behind the rotunda, directly over the cafeteria.

During the years of the Depression, Central’s book supply was running low.   Just when it seemed Central would have to give up the library, the Hamilton County Board of Education, in order to meet standards set by the Southern Association of Libraries, appropriated $2,000 to buy enough books to maintain the library.   After the Depression, Central built the left wing of the school, and in 1937 the library moved to that location.   Until 1952, Central maintained three librarians, but when student enrollment dropped below 2,000, two librarians were enough to run the library.

In 1938, the library was added to the school as a branch of the Chattanooga Public Library and was named in honor of Mr. E. Y. Chapin.   Several years later, Central’s library broke away from the Public Library and since that time has been supported by the Hamilton County Board of Education.   In 1950, Mr. E. Y. Chapin donated $3,000 to buy books.   In his will, he left the school an endowment fund which has gone a long way toward making Central’s library the largest high school library in the South.

Since 1927, the head librarians of Central High have included:

  • 1927-29:  Garnett Leader
  • 1928-29:  Mary W. Atkinson
  • 1929-30:  Elizabeth Lacey
  • 1930-43:  Augusta Kolwyck
  • 1943-61:  Mary Sanders
  • 1961-69:  Ellen Mullennix
  • 1969-70:  Ariel Colburn
  • 1970-86:  Pansy Allison

In 1969, the Central High School Library moved into its new location at the school on Highway 58 in Harrison.