TLL Temple Memorial Library

300 Park Street
Diboll, TX 75941

936-829-5497

History: 

The Library began on April 1, 1961, in a borrowed 12 x 12 frame building. In September of 1960, Latane' Temple, then Vice President of Southern Pine Lumber Co., (now Temple Inland forest Products) secured the small building from the Company, and it was set up in an area just off the Village Square. About 1200 books were first given and processed by housewives, secretaries, teachers or anyone else who could spare the time.

In February of 1961, the Friends of Diboll Library was organized and raised $800 for the library that would become the nucleus for a building fund toward a new building. This dream became a reality when, in less than three years, a brand-new 4,400 square feet, $150,000 public library was opened.

Known as the T.L.L.Temple Memorial Library, this new facility was officially dedicated on April 25, 1964. Architect John Desmond of Baton Rouge, Louisiana designed the building using locally manufactured products. As a result, Desmond won an award from the Institute of American Architects, and the Library won the Texas Library Association Project of the Year in 1968.

A nine - member Library Board was appointed in 1962, and James L. Love was elected Chairman of the Board. The first librarian was Gertie Mae Lawrence.

From its modest beginning of 1200 books, the Library currently contains over 32,000 volumes. The first month the Library was open, 160 books were checked out. Now, over 2,500 library materials are checked out to patrons.

To increase book space and create better library accessibility, the Jim and Mae Love North Wing was added in 1981. The foyer was connected by a walkway that also included a lift, thus providing handicap access to the Library. The library complex was completed when, in September 1985, the Temple Archives was opened. This new facility would be used for the preservation of historical documents and artifacts of the City of Diboll, the Temple Family, the Library, and Temple Inland Company Records.

Through the years, numerous activities and services have been provided for library patrons. Technology has created the greatest change in services in the last 10 years. In January 1996, Internet access for the public was made available for the first time. Local and state grants from 1999 to the present have enabled the library to set up a Technology Center, and provide 11 computers for the public to use.

In mid - October 2001 the Library became fully automated using the Athena circulation system. However, in September 2006 we will upgrade to the Info Center Circulation System. This technology has really opened the doors for everyone. In 2003, the Temple Archives moved into a brand new $2,000,000 facility (The History Center) that has become a great community asset. The Library and Archives continue to be a part of our ever - changing world in serving our greatest asset - our patrons!

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