On Saturday, July 14, the Mexico Library celebrated 50 years in the old post office building.
State Senator Jeanie Riddle read the proclamation from the Missouri Senate, noting the history of the process of the federal government turning over the deed to the building to the chairman of the library board in 1965.
Mayor Pro Tem Steve Nichols related the story of how proud he was as a youngster getting his first library card, and presented a proclamation from the city which stated that Mexico had a library since 1909 and then the Carnegie Library opened March 30, 1914.
Director Christal Bruner acknowledged receipt of a proclamation from the Missouri House from Rep. Jay Houghton. She also stated that the county commissioners had sent their congratulations as well as regrets that they could not attend because they were attending a conference out of state.
The keynote speaker was local historian Don Shire, who spoke of the egalitarian tradition of Mexico, citing as an example former slave Tom Bass who was allowed to excel at horsemanship here, and commented that tradition continues with Christal Bruner being the first African American director of the Mexico-Audrain County Library.
Previous directors Kurt Lamb and Ray Hall spoke of some accomplishments during each of their tenures while former acting director Violet Lierheimer quoted Thomas Jefferson, “I cannot live without books.” More than 50 people attended, enjoying the music of Scott Weber, who played songs from that past era.