When the Clay County Genealogical Society was formed, the founding members created a small library collection by donating their books. The collection was housed in a spare bedroom of Mrs. Helen CONWAY TARVIN JACKSON. Both the Society and the library grew. When the library flowed from the bedroom into Helen’s dining room, the Society started seeking a permanent location.
With the help of Ben COFFMAN, the former grocery store on the northwest corner of Gilbert and Main Streets here in Center Point was purchased. The fall issue of The Researcher announced that a board meeting would be held in the new library on November 11, 1985. Also announced was that you had to bring your own chair. On January 11, 1986, an open house was held in the new library building. The Society and the library continued to grow. Time and wear were showing in the building, so it was decided to redecorate. On July 17, 2005, an open house was held to show off the newly refurbished interior. We are proud of our vast and varied resources that continue to grow.
On January 20, 2012, at the age of 99 years and 7 days, the Clay County Genealogical Society lost one of its most faithful supporters when Helen passed away in Plainfield, IN. She had moved there to be near her only child, Ann TARVIN. Ann and her husband, Lee EDMUNDSON, stopped by the library on the last Saturday in September. We took this picture of Ann and Lee standing beside the picture the Society has prominently displayed in honor of Helen and in memory of her graciously allowing us to use her home as our first library.
We would like all of our readers to stop by the library to see the picture and be amazed at how the first references have expanded to fill the building.
Alice Ann COURTNEY, 2012 President