Partner Lucile Nix
Fairhaven Cemetery Millen, Jenkins County, Georgia, USA
Sarah Lewis Jones (November 19, 1902 – October 22, 1986) was the head of the Textbook and Library Division of the Georgia Board of Education and longtime partner of Lucile Nix. Sarah Jones was instrumental in improving state's school libraries. Jones was chief consultant for school libraries for the state Department of Education,
As a "consultant" although a full-time staff member from 1937 to 1967, Jones was "the instigator of school library services for the state of Georgia," according to Sarah Hightower, high school librarian. Jones' one-time colleague, Lucile Nix, held the title of chief consultant for public libraries for the state Department of Education. The two of them shared a home in Decatur, and between them, had much to do with shaping library service in Georgia. "There is no question that our profession, and our state organization, owe their beginnings to Lucile and Sarah," said Margaret Kerr, library coordinator for the Decatur city schools. ."
A biannual Nix-Jones Award is given by the Georgia Library Association "in recognition of outstanding service to the profession," according to Ann Morton, executive secretary. "At every level across the state and in the Southeast, Nix and Jones were recognized as national leaders," Morton said. In urging Georgia educators to improve their libraries, Jones "never said, 'Do this' or 'Do that.' She would suggest that you do so and so," Hightower said. "She really was the mother or founder of the school library program in the state of Georgia."
Sarah Lewis Jones was born Nov. 19, 1902, in Bainbridge, Ga., and grew up in the nearby town of Dawson. After her father died, her mother married a lawyer and later judge, Mannen J. Yeomans of Dawson, GA. Jones attended Dawson High School and received an A.B. degree from Wesleyan College in Macon, GA, in 1923. After serving as a private secretary in her stepfather's law office and doing substitute work in the Dawson Public School, she entered the Emory University Library School, from which she graduated with a B.S.L.S. in 1932.
Jones worked for a library in Knoxville, Tenn., before moving to Georgia. When she accepted the newly created position of assistant director of the Library Division in the Textbook Division of the Georgia Board of Education in 1937, she delighted Tommie Dora Baker, recently returning dean of Emory University Library School, who had served from 1930 to 1936 as American Library Association (ALA)'s Regional Field Agent for the South.
Jones received the Grolier Award for outstanding work with young people; a Wesleyan College distinguished service award; and the Georgia College Distinguished Service Award. The latter is for Georgians "whose contributions to the state are both significant and enduring." Jones was a member of the executive board of the American Library Association, chairwoman of an American Association of School Libraries committee on federal aid and a member of the Dawson, Ga., Methodist Church.
She died of a stroke on October 22, 1986, at the Americana Healthcare Center in Marietta. She was 83. Jones had suffered another stroke nine days before her death, according to a relative. She is buried at Fairhaven Church cemetery in Millen, Ga.
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