The Gleason Book Award Committee of the American Library Association (ALA) Library History Round Table (LHRT) is pleased to present the 2016 Eliza Atkins Gleason Book Award to Cheryl Knott, Associate Professor at the School of Information at the University of Arizona, for Not Free, Not for All: Public Libraries in the Age of Jim Crow (University of Massachusetts Press, 2015). Presented every third year, the Gleason Award recognizes the best book written in English in the field of library history. First given in 2004, this award honors the professional contributions of Dr. Eliza Atkins Gleason, the first African American to receive a Ph.D. in Library Science (University of Chicago, 1940).
The Gleason Award Committee was impressed with the caliber of this year’s nominees. Submissions included biographies, institutional studies, histories of particular periods and places, and far-reaching efforts to re-think historical paradigms. The Committee would like to congratulate all the scholars making such important contributions to the field, and we would similarly like to thank the individuals who brought many of these works to our attention.
In Not Free, Not for All, Cheryl Knott delivers an illuminating account of the development and demise of separate public libraries for African Americans in the South during the era of segregation. She uses institutional records, contemporaneous secondary documents, primary sources and scholarly work in the fields of print culture and civil rights history to tell a complex story of goodwill and hostility between blacks and whites who valued libraries during the turbulent era of Jim Crow.
We congratulate Dr. Knott on her valuable contribution to the professional scholarship.
2016 Eliza Gleason Book Award Committee:
Renate Chancellor, Ph.D., MLIS, Assistant Professor, Catholic University of America, (Committee Chair)
Doug Campbell, MLS, MA, MDiv, Librarian, University of North Texas Libraries
Anne Henle, Head of Public Services, Western New Mexico University Library
Carol A. Leibiger, Ph.D., MSLIS, Associate Professor, University of South Dakota
Carole Nowicke, PhD, MLS, Reference Librarian, School of Public Health-Bloomington, Indiana University