Local History

We have been working to grow our Local History Collection and make that collection available to the public with ease of access. Library staff are in the process of uploading materials so that a digitized copy will be available and safe. We will still have microfilm and hard copies of most of the material but having this digitized copy assures that this information will be available for many generations to come.

See link below to download directions for how to search for information on


Summer Internship

Elba Public Libary through the Public Library Association’s Inclusive Internship Initiative Program


The Elba Public Library was selected to participate in the Public Library Association’s Inclusive Internship Initiative (III).  This initiative offers a paid, summer-long internship to a high school student at the library.  Through III students are introduced to careers in librarianship.  We are currently recruiting for a motivated, public-service minded high school student who will enter their eleventh grade, twelfth grade or first year of college in Fall of 2021.  The intern will work up to 35 hours a week for 10-12 weeks with the primary objective of developing a project that will strengthen connections with the Library’s community and encourage diversity and inclusion.  The library staff will provide guidance for the intern’s project, offering a range of goals that can support both professional exploration and meaningful community service.  The project will have immediate benefit to the intern, Elba Public Library, and the community.


Under the guidance of the Library Director, the intern will:

  • Design and deliver a connected learning project that meets the library’s needs, fits with the current long range plan goals, and is of high interest to the intern.  Examples of projects developed by past III interns at other public libraries include: Outreach to teens held in local temporary detention center, Library resource booklet for at-risk youth, how to get your GED, local history digitization project, and translation of library policy and rules documents.
  • Work up to 35 hours per week in the library to complete the project as well as assist staff in day-to-day library operations by helping the public, community engagement, assisting patrons in finding materials, assisting check in or check out of materials, shelving items, answering the phone in a polite and courteous manner and other duties as assigned.
  • Participate in weekly virtual learning and networking opportunities organized by the Public Library Association.
  • Complete a short bi-weekly survey.
  • Share their successes, challenges, and opportunities across the III cohort.


  • Interns must be entering their junior or senior year of high school or have graduated from high school but not yet begun college. 
  • Minimum GPA of a 2.5 on a 4.0 scale. 
  • Must be flexible, independent, and able to communicate professionally and effectively. 
  • A letter of recommendation from a teacher, school official or community leader is required.

Student must be available for Kick-Off event June 21- 22, 2021 and Wrap-Up event September 25-26, 2021.

Students who are bilingual in English and Spanish are preferred.

Public Library Association’s Inclusive Internship Initiative Program


Email the library for an application packet – jamlong@elbaal.gov

Or come by the library and pick up an application packet.

Or call 334-897-6921 with questions.

Applications open – April 22, 2021

Last day to turn in applications – Friday, May 7, 2021

Last day for interviews – Friday, May 21, 2021

Intern Announced – Monday, May 24, 2021

Intern starts work at library – Wednesday, June 2, 2021

Kick-Off event – June 21-22, 2021

Intern Project due date – TBA

Wrap-Up event – September 25-26, 2021

Why the Census matters

Why does the Census matter?

Funding for Programs that Impact You, Your Family and Our Communities.

  • Medicaid
  • Medicare Part B
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
  • Head Start
  • Title I Grants to Local Education Agencies
  • Pell Grants and Student Loans
  • Section 8 Housing and Housing Choice Vouchers
  • Highway Planning and Construction
  • Community Development Block Grants

Congressional Representation

            The population count taken in the 2020 Census will determine the allocation of the 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives. States with the most population gains are projected to gain additional seats while states with population losses or slow growth are at risk of losing seats.

Economic Development

            Data collected by the Census Bureau is considered by business and industry as valuable, unbiased data collected by a neutral third party. An improvement in a community’s Census data could mean additional retail and restaurant growth as well as more consideration from companies wishing to expand or relocate, creating job opportunities.

Covid 19 and the Library

“In the end, it will be impossible to know if we overreacted or did too much, but it will be QUITE apparent if we under reacted, or did too little.”
I saw this quote on a discussion group of Library Directors trying to decide if libraries should close. As Library Directors we struggle because we know how important our service is to our patrons and our community. Yes there are many who still check out books and yes that may be considered entertainment. But there are also many who depend on the library for the things many of us take for granted. Just know that when your local library decided to close it is a choice that was made with the concern of all of our patrons.

We are working to get online resources available to you. Please be patient but check back to stay updated as resources become available. The Library Staff understands that this is a strain and stress on many of our patrons, as we all do the best we can to “Social Distance” ourselves in order to stay safe. We will be posting resources that could help relieve that stain and stress at least a bit.

Thank you all for your support and remember –

Be Light, Be Kind and Help Others.

So Much More Than Books!


By jfalcon on July 25, 2018

Library shelves

By Jena Barchas-Lichtenstein, Rebecca Joy Norlander, and Deb Robertson

Libraries have always had a broad educational mission, yet many of us associate libraries with a single specific tool of education: books. For us to fully appreciate the value of libraries, our public discourse needs to move beyond that image and recognize the full spectrum of services and programs that libraries provide.

This past Saturday, Forbes published – and quickly removed – an op-ed by economist Panos Mourdoukoutas arguing that Amazon has made libraries obsolete and irrelevant. Tom McKay at Gizmodo responded that libraries and stores are “entirely different ways of providing access to things.” And in the Washington Post, Christopher Ingraham pointed out that an awful lot of people still use libraries, but he focused in part on library cards and thus, by implication, on circulation. Both responses were spot-on, but neither corrected the over-emphasis on books.

They were far from the only ones responding incredulously. Mourdoukoutas’s tweet about the piece received thousands of responses from library professionals and library users. Among other critiques, they wrote about inequality and the digital divide and the breadth of library programs. Few if any of them assumed that books are the primary thing libraries provide.

New York Public Library president Anthony Marx said, back in 2014:  “Books are a 500-year-old delivery system for providing access to information. We aren’t getting out of the book business, but now we are providing new ways to access information.” Libraries of all types have begun shifting towards a more proactive and social model of learning from the older model of primarily self-directed and individual learning through, yes, books.

It’s true that libraries have historically been collections holders – but they are also centers for lifelong experiential learning, hubs for civic and cultural gatherings, and partners in community-wide innovation. The American Library Association’s Public Programs Office (ALA PPO) was founded in 1990 to support libraries in their role as centers for engagement and lifelong learning. Since then, we have seen enormous growth in library programs, backed by field-wide statistics. At the same time, we hear library staff members describe programs as increasingly central to their work.

Right now, we are in the middle of the National Impact of Library Public Programs Assessment (NILPPA), a three-phase, eight-year research collaboration between ALA PPO and New Knowledge Organization Ltd., a social science think tank. This project aims to document the current landscape of library programs and the impact of those programs across the nation. NILPPA also explores the current state of professional development for library professionals in order to ensure that training is responsive to these shifts in library practice.

These changes are the most visible in public libraries, but they’re not just happening there. We see similar shifts in academic and school libraries, too. Books are part of the picture, but they’re not the whole story. Academic and school librarians tell us again and again that their job is to create space for learning, and that can look like anything from a makerspace to a multilingual film series to an Edible Book Festival.

Yet despite these changes, we know that the public image of libraries is lagging behind. When we talk to colleagues in the library world about NILPPA, they immediately see the need for it. But when we talk to people who aren’t regularly library users, they are surprised to hear about the professional shifts we see so clearly. That’s because public discourse continues to paint libraries as book lenders above all else. In some ways, Mourdoukoutas’s editorial was typical of this misunderstanding – and we will continue to overlook the value of libraries unless we correct it.

Jena Barchas-Lichtenstein, PhD, and Rebecca Joy Norlander, PhD, are senior researchers at New Knowledge Organization, a social science think tank. Deb Robertson is director of the American Library Association’s Public Programs Office.