Hattiesburg Public Library

FS64 - Public Library - Web
FS64 - Trail Mareker 7 - Web

Narrator: Cameron Rackley

Historical Narration: Umoja Kwanguvu, provided by the University of Southern Mississippi Center for Oral History and Cultural Heritage. 

Although it was funded by the taxes of all citizens, the Hattiesburg Public Library reflected the ideologies of a segregated society as it only allowed white citizens to check out books and use its services. Several attempts were made by African-American children to check out books during Freedom Summer 1964; however, they were denied. For this reason, Freedom Schools offered books and literature for those who wanted them.

The Italian Renaissance-style building now houses the Hattiesburg Cultural Center, which is home to the Hattiesburg Arts Council and Hattiesburg Area Historical Society. It is a Mississippi landmark structure.


Umoja Kwanguvu was a Freedom Summer teacher who encountered problems when visiting the library. He recounts the story on the audio for this stop.