Letcher County native Micca Watts-Gordon, a second grade teacher in Jefferson County, has opened her own little library in front of her home in Shelbyville.
According to the Shelbyville News-Sentinel, the library honors her grandmother, Odell Watts, and her great-grandmother, Lauren Hawkins, who passed down their love for reading to Watts-Gordon.
The library, a box made of recycled materials with a waterproof door, contains a few hundred books. It is located in front of Watts-Gordon’s home and is painted with a picture of her grandmother’s home in Letcher County. The box was made by her father, Michael Watts of Letcher County, from wood from her grandmother’s house, and the painting was done by Watts-Gordon’s aunt, Kae Fisher.
The Sentinel- News quotes Watts- Gordon as saying her great- grandmother Lauren Hawkins “liked to read so much she would keep things to read in her apron pocket, things that were just written on small scraps of paper because books were hard to come by in those days in eastern Kentucky.
“She had all these clippings, and she would fold them and unfold them and read them. There weren’t any libraries, or even very many books for that matter, and most people didn’t even know how to read.”
The little library operates on the honor system, and book borrowers can contribute books they would like to share with other readers.
Watts-Gordon told the News-Sentinel that as a teacher she has seen children come into the school system as kindergarteners whohave not been exposed to books before and they are at a disadvantage, so she hopes her little library can help children get started in the right direction.