Friday, September 14, 2012

Significant Changes at the Library

Changes are never easy, but sometimes necessary. Our patrons know us as the Judge George W Armstrong Library, but we also have served as the headquarters of the Natchez Adams Wilkinson Library Service (formerly the Homochitto Valley Library Service) and often referred to as NAWLS. Both are equal mouthfuls! Since 1979, the Armstrong Library has managed the public libraries in Wilkinson County: the Kevin Poole Van Cleave Memorial Library in Centreville and the Woodville--Wilkinson County Public Library in Woodville.

Among the numerous services provided to these two libraries are the selection, purchasing, and cataloging of all materials (books, dvds, cds, etc.); network maintenance; payroll and bookkeeping; all record-keeping; the filing of all taxes, reports, statistics, etc.; applying and filing for Universal Services discounts (telephone and internet costs); inventory control; and the library's automation system (card catalog and patron database). Providing these services meant weekly visits to each of the two libraries.

Funding for these services has never been completely dependable and this has created problems for the Armstrong Library. At no time have Natchez taxpayers financially supported the Wilkinson County libraries, but there have been times when the funding situation became critical. There have been discussions by the Library Administrative Board of Trustees for several years about these funding concerns.

The final straw, so to speak, for the Board, was the mechanical problems with the Armstrong Library-owned station wagon. This vehicle was purchased thirteen years ago, simply to make the weekly trip to Wilkinson County and back. When mechanical problems developed, it was determined that the cost of the repairs nearly equalled the blue book value of the vehicle. We took it as a sign of what needed to be done.

The contract between the Armstrong Library and the Wilkinson County libraries allowed that either party could decide to not renew the contract and simply had to provide  sixty days written notice to the other party. That notice was given, and changes are taking place.

As of October 1, 2012, there will be no Natchez Adams Wilkinson Library Service. We will simply be the Judge George W Armstrong Library. Of course, that means that each and every reference to the Natchez Adams Wilkinson Library Service must be changed!

Did you ever wonder why our web addtess was Think about it - naw (Natchez Adams Wilkinson) dot lib (library) dot ms (Mississippi) dot us (United States). So, of course, our email addresses followed that guide. And, if you think that is a hard to repeat to someone, try, which used to be our name! We would lose people at "h o m o c h - what???" 

You'll be happy to know that beginning October 1 (the beginning of our new fiscal year), our new web address will be Email addresses, likewise, ( will be much more simple. We also have a new logo, created by local designer, Timothy Givens - and we really like it!

We feel this change is a good one, even though it will take us some time to make all the adjustments.  There may be some bumps, but we are looking forward to our new look and hope you agree. However, every reference to NAWLS will need to be changed: policy manuals, documents, vendor contacts, name tags, etc.
So, please bear with us during this transition. The results will be worth it!

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