Cornelia Crenshaw Memorial Library Adventure

Cornelia Crenshaw Library Adventure

The Adventurer Episode for Cornelia Crenshaw Library

Upcoming Events

Explore Memphest
Cornelia Crenshaw Memorial Library
Sat., Aug. 03, 1:00 pm

Did You Know?

Cornelia Crenshaw Memorial Library was previously known as Vance Avenue Branch, the second oldest library of the MPL system. After decades of pressure by local activists, the library board purchased a former funeral home at 531 Vance Ave., opening the city’s first standalone branch for African Americans in 1939. To see images of the original Vance Ave. Branch click below.

Did You Know?

The original Vance Avenue Branch building was completely destroyed in a fire during the summer of 1978. Over 20,000 books were lost. Through the activism of citizens like Cornelia Crenshaw, a new, expanded library was built on the same site, opening in 1981. To see more images and learn about the fire, click below.

Did You Know?

Cornelia Crenshaw spent decades advocating for fair housing and better pay for workers, often using the library as a home base for her activism. In 1997, the library was renamed in her honor, memorializing her work to advance Black lives in Memphis and the rights of workers throughout the city. Click below to see a photograph of Cornelia Crenshaw.