1314 Broad Street
City Directories and History: 1941 – Camden Public Library, 1964 – Camden Public Library
Camden Archives and Museum – The Camden Archives building was originally the city library, a gift from the Carnegie Library Foundation in 1915. In 1 973, it was converted to its present function as a repository for historic objects and documents relating to the history of Camden and Kershaw County. Today, it is an invaluable aid to historians and scholars. The facility has an outstanding genealogical collection. Among the important artifacts housed at the Archives are the original works of the Old Opera House Town Clock, a Confederate bayonet which served for years as a clapper spring for the clock’s bell, and the original King Haiglar weather vane. [Courtesy of the Camden Tour Book]
“The Camden Library Association organized in 1900 and utilized a room above a store on the southeast corner of Broad and DeKalb streets as a subscription library. A 1912 fire destroyed some three thousand volumes. Camdens Civic League and other groups and individuals worked to secure a new library. In December 1914 the Andrew Carnegie Foundation agreed to donate five thousand dollars for the construction of a separate library building. Tentative plans were drawn for the colonial-style building, and a site was chosen on the”square between the two schools directly to the north of the ‘Hughes house.’ ” Shortly after the library site facing Main (Broad) Street was announced, the newspaper printed a letter from C. D. Kershaw, who took issue with the proposed location. The writer, a descendant of Joseph Kershaw, the man who had donated the public squares to the town, stated that there had not been any doubt until recently “for what purpose the squares were given.” She was concerned that placing a building on space the donor had designated for a park would set a dangerous precedent. Although the decision of the library location was not changed, a point was made that influenced future decision making restricting the use of public green spaces within the city. In 1915 construction began on the Camden City Library building. One of fourteen South Carolina recipients of Carnegie funds, Camdens new library opened in 1916 and eventually became part of the later organization of the Kershaw County Library.39 “ (Information courtesy of A History of Kershaw County, S.C. by Joan A. Inabinet and L. Glenn Inabinet, 2001 – The Un. of S.C. Press)
Click on the More Information > link found below the picture column for additional data or pictures. (Kershaw County Library Bookmobile in 1937)
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IMAGE GALLERY via photographer Bill Segars – 2009
IMAGE GALLERY – Courtesy of the Monarch Collection (Camden A&M)
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