Lisa Rand

Keeping History Alive

September 3, 2019

Even in the 21 years since the Good Friday Agreement officially ended the conflict, sectarian tension and renewed violence have punctuated the hard-won peace. Journalist Lyra McKee was killed in April while observing riots in Derry. Conversations with my grandfather gave an immediacy to the stories unfolding across the ocean. In order to get a … Continue reading Keeping History Alive


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ALA Honors African Americans Who Fought Library Segregation

July 3, 2018

Resolution to Honor African Americans Who Fought Library Segregation Whereas the system of “Jim Crow” laws and customs officially existed into the 1960s—a century after the official end of slavery in the United States; Whereas virulent racism, disenfranchisement, Black Codes, and racial segregation laws imposed a rigid system of officially sanctioned racial segregation in virtually … Continue reading ALA Honors African Americans Who Fought Library Segregation


“Every Person Matters”

February 12, 2018

An estimated 230 people attended the 6:30 a.m. celebration, joined by more than two dozen library leaders who read passages, made short speeches, and recited poems that recognized King’s legacy and advocated for peace and social justice. The event was sponsored by the American Library Association’s Office for Diversity, Literacy and Outreach Services, the Social Responsibilities … Continue reading “Every Person Matters”


Breaking Barriers with Patrisse Cullors and Marley Dias

February 11, 2018

Cullors’s parents had talked to her a little about the civil rights movement, but left out details. Mrs. Goldberg at Erwin Street Elementary School in Van Nuys, California, however, gave young Patrisse books to fill in the gaps, such as Mildred D. Taylor’s The Gold Cadillac. Goldberg also allowed Cullors to report on the books to the … Continue reading Breaking Barriers with Patrisse Cullors and Marley Dias




An officer escorts five men from the Alexandria (Va.) Library in August 1939. They were arrested and charged with disorderly conduct.

“I Always Will Refuse”

June 1, 2017

August 21, 1939. Five African-American men—William “Buddy” Evans, Edward Gaddis, Morris L. Murray, Clarence “Buck” Strange, and Otis Lee Tucker—walk into the whites-only Alexandria (Va.) Library (now the Barrett branch library). Strange’s younger brother Bobby, 14, serves as lookout and courier. The men, who range in age from 18 to 22, ask for library cards … Continue reading “I Always Will Refuse”


A young Jesse Jackson (center) was one of the Greenville (S.C.) Eight in 1960. Joan Mattison Daniel is third from the right.

The Greenville Eight

June 1, 2017

Another of the students was Joan Mattison Daniel, a then-18-year-old freshman at Morris Brown College in Atlanta, who recently told American Libraries that “Jesse Jackson was responsible for our getting together to stage the sit-in. He had come home in January and needed a book to write a paper. The book was not at the … Continue reading The Greenville Eight