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ABOUT THE LIBRARY

 

In the 1880s, the Lanier family gained control of the West Point Manufacturing Company and began a policy of community involvement that continued for more than 100 years. The Company built schools, houses, churches, theaters, and recreational facilities in the mill towns of Lanett, Shawmut, Langdale, Riverview and Fairfax. Beginning in 1896, the West Point Manufacturing Company provided each town with a library building, a librarian, and a collection of books, magazines and newspapers. After World War II, all of the community libraries except Lanett’s closed.

In 1973, WestPoint Pepperell and The Neighbors Fund (a Lanier family organization) offered to build, furnish and equip a library facility if Chambers County, Alabama and the cities of Lanett, Alabama and West Point, Georgia agreed to allocate funds to support the operation of the library.

The H. Grady Bradshaw Chambers County Library was dedicated on June 13, 1976. The library was named in honor of community leader, Mr. Henry Grady Bradshaw, who was employed as personnel director at the Lanett Mill and served as Executive Director and President of the George H. Lanier Boy Scout Council. He was an active member of the West Point Rotary Club and the First Baptist Church of West Point. Mr. Joseph L. Lanier, Sr. said of Mr. Bradshaw at the library’s dedication: “No more appropriate name could be found to call our new library. By naming it for H. Grady Bradshaw, we can be assured that future generations will know of his interest in and his service to his community and region.”

In March 1956, members of the LaFayette Pilot Club organized and operated a library in the courthouse in LaFayette. By 1960, the library had outgrown the small room in the courthouse and moved across the street into the County Office Building.

The LaFayette Presbyterian Church building was given to the city of LaFayette and dedicated at the home of the LaFayette Pilot Public Library on February 11, 1990.

The library was further expanded with funds for capital improvement made available in 1994 by the passage of a 2-mil property tax referendum for Chambers County. A 3,000 square foot building was added to the church, and in 1997, the expanded library building was dedicated.