Hawkes Children’s Library will party on Saturday like its 1922.
A ceremony marking the library’s 90th birthday will be from 2 to 4 p.m. at the historic building, across from City Hall. The event is free.
The event will be highlighted by a visit from Mike Morehouse, who impersonates library founder, Dr. A.K. Hawkes. “Dr. Hawkes” will be there at 3 p.m. to blow out the candles on the libraries birthday cake and at least five 1920s vintage automobiles will be on hand. The Junior Friends of Hawkes Libary will sing.
“It will be a block party,” said Nanci Hendrix, library volunteer.
The library was built by and named for Dr. Albert King Hawkes, a leading optician in the U.S. in 1894. He sold glasses from Atlanta that were shipped to more than 8,000 towns across the country and had an interest in the education of children. After a visit to West Point, he gave the West Point Womans’ Club $100 for books, and soon was convinced to bequeath the money for a children’s library in the city.
When Hawkes died he left about $7,500 for a library building. It was named Hawkes Children’s Library as requested in Hawkes’ will, but later changed to Hawkes Library so as not to discourage adults from using it.
In 1991, the library was put on the national register of historic places.
Inside the building still looks much as it did in 1922 and is one of the few places were patrons still check out a book by signing their names.