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Oral history interview with Annie L. McPheeters

Identifier: aarlOHC92-001

Scope and Content Note

This transcript contains the typed manuscript of Kathy Nasstrom of The Georgia Government Documentation Project. Ms. Nasstrom is interviewing Mrs. Annie L. McPheeters, Mrs. McPheeters is telling Ms. Nasstrom how she became a Librarian and what where her choices for choosing Librarianship for a carrer. Annie L. McPheeters, received an associate's degree in English and Education at Clark College in 1929, where she worked as a library assistant and later became the acting librarian. After teaching in Summerville, GA and Greenville, SC, McPheeters earned a bachelor's degree in library science from Hampton University in 1933. A year later, she went on to become the first African-American professional with The Atlanta Public Library. In 1950 Mrs. McPheeters accepted the position of a Reference Librarian with Georgia State University, becoming the first African-American faculty member at the school . She later obtained her master's degree in library science from Columbia University in 1956 and furthered her education by enrolling in journalism courses at Georgia State University and Clark College during the seventies.


  • 1992


Restrictions on Use

There are no restrictions on research use of this collection.

Copyright Restrictions

Prior permission from the Research Library must be obtained in writing before any portion of this collection can be published or reproduced.

Historical Sketch

Annie L. McPheeters (1908-1994) was the first professionally trained librarian hired by the Atlanta Public Library System. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Library Science from the Hampton Institute in 1933, and a Master of Science in Library Science from Columbia University in 1956. As an employee of the Atlanta Public Library system from 1934-1966, she served as the head of the Auburn Avenue Branch, and then later as the head of the West Hunter Branch of the library. After retiring from the Atlanta Public Library System in 1966, she worked as the first African American reference librarian at Georgia State University from 1966 until 1975.


0.25 Linear feet

1 transcript (67 pages)




The collection consists of the transcript of an oral history interview with Annie L. McPheeters on June 8, 1992 conducted by Kathy Nasstrom, of the Georgia Government Documentation Project at Georgia State University. During the interview, McPheeters discusses why she became a librarian; library's 1930 adult education program; John Wesley Dobbs; black libraries provide information for political, civic and voters leagues; Dr. Clarence A. Bacote; Reverend William Holmes Borders; Warren Cochran of the YMCA; libraries' role at Voter League meetings; Negro Women's Voters League and Ruby Blackburn; League of Women Voters; women's groups and voter education; the Hungry Club; Hallie Beecham Brooks; voter registration efforts in 1946; All Citizens Group; library desegregation; Friends of the Library; Atlanta Council on Human Relations; Whitney Young; Am Vets; John C. Settelmayer; Mayor Hartsfield; "Freedom Riders"; Julian Bond; Auburn Library black history collection; SNCC; Utopian Literary Club; school desegregation; McPheeters' attitude toward political participation away from the library; Sibley Commission; Mrs. Mexico Mickleberry and Margaret Davis Bowen; the cultural and intellectual role played by black libraries before desegregation; origins of the Metropolitan Atlanta Association for the Blind; Martin Luther King, Jr. and Maynard Jackson as youths at the library; black women move out into the community; Nina King; Chautauqua Literary Club; Atlanta Life Insurance Company; the Atlanta Daily World; Atlanta Housing Authority; McPheeters's reaction to feminism; McPheeters compiles indexes of/for black community.

Location of Original Materials

Forms part of: : Georgia Government Documentation Project, Series J: Black and White Women in Atlanta Public Life collection, Georgia State University. Originals at Georgia State University.
Inventory of the Oral History Interview with Annie L. McPheeters aarlOHC92-001 aarlOHC92-001
Finding aid prepared by Finding aid prepared by Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History
2004 September 15
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Auburn Avenue Research Library on African-American Culture and History Repository

101 Auburn Avenue NE
Atlanta GA 30303