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Allegra Westbrooks, 2007 March 12

Identifier: OH-WE0561

Scope and Contents

Allegra Westbrooks recounts her thirty-six year career as head of library services at the segregated Brevard Street Library, located in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Charlotte, North Carolina, also known as Second Ward, and later in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg public library. She describes library services and programs, including starting a discussion group centered around African American religion, serving neighborhoods without libraries with a bookmobile, and using clubs and churches to promote reading. Ms. Westbrooks discusses how the Brevard Street Library, a part of the Charlotte public library system, closed in 1961 as the libraries became integrated, and describes the community\u2019s reaction to the closing. She also describes urban renewal in Charlotte during the 1960s and 1970s, the reason why she believes Brooklyn was targeted for urban renewal, and the African American community's relationship with local government during that time.


  • Creation: 2007 March 12

Language of Materials

From the Collection:

The material is in English

Conditions Governing Access

3 of the 57 interviews have been digitized and are available in the digital repository.

Biographical Note

Allegra Westbrooks was an 86-year-old woman at the time of interview. She was born in Cumberland, Maryland in 1921. She was educated at Clark Atlanta University, School of Library Services and was employed as head of library services at the Brevard Street Library and with the public library system in Charlotte, North Carolina.


73 Minutes

Repository Details

Part of the Oral Histories, J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, UNC Charlotte Repository

Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
9201 University City Blvd
Charlotte NC 28223 United States

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