Upcoming Events & Classes
Used Book Sale-Ongoing
-Tech Tuesday. Every Tuesday.
Individualized help with computers and devices. Call to make an appointment.
Renew your books
211 East Washington Street
Demopolis, AL 36732
Tel : (334) 289-1595
Fax : (334) 289-8260
E-mail : send message
Since 1922, the Demopolis Public Library’s mission has been to provide materials and services that meet the individual, educational, and professional needs of the community.
The library serves the community as a stimulating space to exchange ideas and encourage lifelong learning. We offer free wireless internet, public computers and printers, books, DVD’s, downloadable eBooks, audiobooks, iPads, newspapers, magazines, programs, meeting spaces, and more!
Hours & Directions
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Closed on Saturdays and Sundays
From I20/59 :
About 30 miles south of Tuscaloosa, you will take the Eutaw exit. Follow the signs to Highway 43 South. You will travel approximately 25 miles. Once in Demopolis, at the 2nd traffic light, turn left onto Washington Street. After you cross Strawberry Street, you will see an entrance to a parking lot on Washington on your left. Park in this lot and enter through the door with the blue awning.
From Hwy 43 South :
At the intersection of Hwy 43 N and Hwy 80, turn left onto Hwy 80. You will pass a variety of gas stations and hotels. Just past CVS, turn right at the traffic light onto Cedar Street (also Hwy 43 N). You will go through two traffic lights. Just after you pass over the bridge over the railroad tracks, you will turn left at the traffic light onto Washington St. We are the third building on the right. Just past the front of the library is the entrance to the parking lot. You may either park in the lot or on the street.
From Hwy 80 East :
Once in Demopolis, you will pass a variety of gas stations and hotels. Just past CVS, turn right at the traffic light onto Cedar Street (also Hwy 43 N). You will go through two traffic lights. Just after you pass over the bridge over the railroad tracks, you will turn left at the traffic light onto Washington St. We are the third building on the right. Just past the front of the library is the entrance to the parking lot. You may either park in the lot or on the street.
The Library will be closed on the following days:
- Monday, September 5 for Labor Day
- Monday, October 10, 2016 for Columbus Day
- Friday, November 11, 2016 for Veteran's Day
- Thursday, November 24 and Friday, November 25 for Thanksgiving
- Friday, December 23 and Monday, December 26 for Christmas
- Monday, January 2, 2017 for New Year's
The Demopolis Public Library Board of Trustees advocates the library and its services to the community, supervises the director of the library, and advises and guides the director in making decisions that promote the welfare and progress of the library.
Board meetings are held monthly at the Demopolis Public Library. All meetings begin promptly at 5:15.
Buck Webb, Chairperson
Morgan Allen, Director
Anner Gray, Assistant Library Director
Connie Lawson, Circulation Manager
Kathy Owings, Children's Librarian
Sandy Dickie, Genealogy and Local History
Since its organization in 1922, the library has occupied several locations in Demopolis. The library began has a room at city hall and was later moved to the building on Cedar Street currently owned by the Demopolis Board of Education. The library is now housed in a building that was built in 1924 by the Ulmer family. On December 14, 1987, the city used $75,000 of federal revenue sharing money to purchase the building. Education bond money of $97,272 was designated for use, matched by $23,728 in city funds. On December 4, 1989, the library moved into its newly renovated location. At a breakfast August 13, 1991 honoring fund raisers, the city council and Mayor Austin Caldwell announced that the note of the library for $750,000 had been paid in full. This money was largely raised through committee work and private donations.
There were several reasons the Ulmer Furniture Store building was selected to house the Demopolis Public Library in 1987. “The building is well suited for use as a library”, said Marilyn Sullivan of Chambless and Associates said. “First, it will work well with downtown. The revitalization effort and the development of the library will go together”.
Other reasons were that it was built as a furniture store and warehouse so it was built to carry heavy loads. It already had appropriately placed entrances and had an elevator shaft in the perfect place. These were money saving things and the building already looked like a library.
In October 1997, the library received a major grant from the Gates Library Foundation, established by Bill and Melinda Gates. The Demopolis Public Library was one of six in Alabama chosen to receive the first grants from the Foundation. The $33,000 grant provided a computer training center with eight workstations, software, and audio-visual equipment. Actually, Demopolis became the first location to be activated. On February 17, 1998, the Demopolis Public Library hosted a reception honoring Mr. and Mrs. Bill Gates as they began a tour of several Alabama libraries receiving their grants. Press from Washington D. C. to Washington state arrived in Demopolis to cover the event.
In February 2006, the second floor of the library opened as the new children’s area. A new circulation desk and a staff workroom were constructed. The Gates Foundation donated six new computers. Amos Kennedy hand printed all of the signage. Kirk Brooker painted the murals. Alabama Power Service Organization, The Friends of the Library, the City of Demopolis, the Marengo County Commission, and many individuals contributed to the effort.
The blue and white print by the first floor staircase is by Ramon Waites. He is a Demopolis native and considered “America’s most influential designer in the American Modern Country movement”. This acceptance of his design philosophy is represented by the sale of $4.5 billion at retail of branded and private label products. Ramon gave birth to New Vintage Home design. The collection offers 3 distinctly different lifestyle settings of furniture, for each season, merchandised with coordinating accessories from more than 20 American furnishing categories.
Mercer is an Alabama-born artist. Her sculptures are familiar around the world. One of Mercer’s works most endeared by Marengo Countians is the colored terra-cotta relief depicted in a poster that the library has hanging behind the first floor circulation desk. The relief is a detail from the larger Julia S. Tutwiler Memorial Tablet sculpted in marble in 1933 which now hangs in the Alabama State Archives. Tutwiler played an important role in Mercer’s education at the Alabama Normal School in Livingston and in encouraging her to develop her artistic skill. Mercer’s skills were sharpened during a 2 year apprenticeship with Italian artist Guiseppe Moretti, sculptor of the Alabama Landmark-The Vulcan.
Mercer returned to Marengo County in 1964 where she continued to paint, sculpt small puppets, and raise flowers. Before her death in 1984, at age 95, Mercer published her spiritual reflections on life in her Devotional Meditations.
At her death in 1985, Mercer became the first Alabama artist to have all her work documented at the Smithsonian Institution.
Gwyndolyn Collins Turner Reading Room
In 1996, the Friends of the Demopolis Public Library provided seed money for the Gwyndolyn Collins Turner Reading Room. This room houses our genealogy resources and serves as a quiet, comfortable place for researchers to work. Gwyndolyn Turner served on the Demopolis Board of Trustees and was instrumental in moving the library to its current location. She believed in renovating the historic building and helped in the fundraising efforts. In 2008, The Friends of the Library had shelving built for the room.
The Happy Rogers and Baby Bee Rogers Children’s Room
Demopolis native Jim Rogers donated funds to the children’s department in 2011 in honor of his two daughters, Hilton Augusta (Happy) and Beeland Anderson (Baby Bee). The children’s department was named the Happy Rogers and Baby Bee Rogers Children’s Room. The funds helped wire the floor for better internet connection and construct a whimsical tree to hide wiring and create an inspiring atmosphere. The library has plans to turn part of the area into a reading nook for parents and children with the remaining funds.
Ulmer Furniture Building
Ulmer Furniture Company, Inc. was established in 1917 by three brothers: O.S., I.B. and DuBrutz Ulmer. The original location was on Franklin Street, but later business was moved to Strawberry Street. In 1920 the partnership was dissolved and O.S. Ulmer formed Ulmer Furniture Company. He moved the business to its present location on Washington Street in 1924.
Saunders Ulmer, Jr., president of the corporation, joined the business in 1942 after completing four years of study at Alabama Polytechnic Institute (Auburn University) where he specialized in Home Design. Clarence K. Ulmer, vice-president and treasurer of the firm, joined his brother in business in 1945. His specialty is the Carpet Department—both sales and installation. The Ulmer Furniture Company’s motto is “We turn houses into homes.”
George Randall was a salesman and Miss Jeanette Tate the bookkeeper. Mrs. O.S. Ulmer, Jr. (Weezie) started at the firm as assistant bookkeeper. She came up with the idea of “helping out” during a busy period, but never found a suitable time to quit. William Lewis and Sid Williams were porters and part-time salesmen. The City of Demopolis purchased the building in 1987.
For more information about the history of the library or Ulmer Furniture Company, visit the Demopolis History Collection of Cumulative Indexes in the Gwyn Collins Turner Reading Room located on the second floor of the library.
The library currently houses about 29,500 items including books, magazines, newspapers,, DVDs, audio books on CD, downloadable eBooks and audiobooks, genealogical materials, and a comprehensive local history collection. The materials are selected to encourage life-long learning and leisure reading for all ages.