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Dulany Memorial Library

Library Mission & History

The mission and history of Dulany Memorial Library.


Dulany Memorial Library exists primarily to meet the informational and recreational needs of all residents within its service area. The library provides access to and actively promotes public awareness and usage of materials and service to meet these needs, as well as preserve the cultural and intellectual heritage.

One role of the library is to provide a popular material collection. Our definition of popular material is a balanced collection for all ages and interests in a variety of formats. Emphasis will be placed on requests for big demand, high interest materials.

Another role of the library is to serve as an independent learning center for all ages. The library will supply current and accurate general information for all ages and varying abilities in a variety of formats.


On November 7, 1914, a group of ladies met in the City Hall for the purpose of organizing a Civics League. Officers selected were Mrs. Charles Shire, Sr. President; Mrs. J. W. Ingram, Vice-President; Mrs. C. W. Aldridge, Recording Secretary and Mrs. J. W. Green, Treasurer.

Mrs. Shire announced that the first object of the league would be the establishment of a City Library. Dues of $1.25 would be required from each member using the library. The city allowed the use of a room and furnished heat and lights. Mrs. Kate Jennings was elected librarian with a salary of $3 per month. Committees were appointed to arrange and classify books and to form rules and regulations.

The library continued to be under the supervision of the Civic league until 1927 when a 1/2 mill city tax was voted and it became the Salisbury Public Library. A board of nine members was named by the mayor. Until that time the library had depended for its support on donations, membership fees and various other projects. Books were donated and plays were given with proceeds going to the library fund. This library was located in an upstairs room which was formerly Hawkins Market. The Library was moved to a downstairs location on East Second Street for a short period and then to the upstairs of the Holderle building on South Broadway.

In 1948 a one mill tax was voted for library support. Also in 1948 Mr. Wm. H. Dulany, a former resident of Salisbury, left the city a sum of $50,000 for a library building. Prior to that time, he bought the property from Miss Justine Philpott on South Broadway for the library's location. In November 1952, the new Dulany Memorial Library was dedicated. Its services are many -- best selling novels, magazines, reference material, audios, videos, internet connection for public use, and computers for word processing or research as well as interlibrary loan capabilities. It also has a community room in the basement that is used by the public for many functions. In August of 2003, the library was automated with the aid of a grant from the state. The building is now ADA accessible.

Erin Strodtman is the present librarian, since January 2023. Previously Mrs. Cheryl Springer was the librarian, beginning her tenure in May 1978. Past librarians were Mrs. Kate Jennings; Miss Vera Hamilton; Mrs. Mabel Edie; Mrs. Lillie Bricker; Mrs. Arley Sanders, Mrs. Parthenia Stevens, and Mrs. Minnie Vaughn.

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