October is Public Library Month in my neck of the woods. How better for Great War 100 Reads to mark the occasion than by featuring a library.
Some communities decided to honour those who served in the war with a building of practical use to serve the community. As memorials, these buildings have not always stood the test of time.
The Halifax Memorial Library in Grafton Park on Spring Garden Road opened on 12 Nov 1951 “in memory of those who gave their lives in defence of their country” in 1914-1918 and 1939-1945. By the 21st century, the building could no longer support the library’s needs for programming, technology, storage of the collections or accessibility. The library closed in Aug 2014 and the dramatic new Halifax Central Library opened across the street in Dec 2014. Several memorial elements moved to the new building. (Some of which will be featured in a later post.) The fate of the old building has not been determined.
Oscar Nemon’s statue of Winston Churchill was unveiled in front of the Halifax Memorial Library in January 1980. The image is said to be taken from a photograph of Churchill walking in Halifax. The 10 ft statue weighs 1.5 tons.