Hundreds submit ideas on how to use a large donation to the Brentwood Library


Hundreds submit ideas on how to use a large donation to the Brentwood Library

By MATT BLOIS

Hundreds of people have submitted ideas about how to use a large donation to the John P. Holt Brentwood Library.

Last year, O’Delle Holt, a member of the Holt family and a longtime Brentwood resident, left $4.2 million to the library in her will. The city renamed the library in honor of her late husband.

Most of that most will be used as an endowment to continue providing a source of funding to the library for years in the future. However, the library will use about $1 million of that contribution for more immediate projects.

Brentwood recently created a survey to collect ideas from residents about how to spend that money. More than 500 people have submitted suggestions since the survey opened earlier this month.

The survey will be open until November 30. Residents can submit their ideas using this link.

Some of the ideas submitted so far include a cafe, an outdoor sculpture garden, a large teen section, a robotics lab, a genealogy center, solar panels, more meeting space and better services for people with special needs.

According to Library Director Susan Earl there are more than 27,000 people who use the library and she hopes to hear from as many as possible.

A link to the survey is also available on the city and library Facebook pages. Paper surveys are available at the library’s circulation desk or City Hall.

To commemorate the gift to the library the city recently installed two plaque outside the library’s main entrance.

One plaque recognizes the Holt family’s donation to the library, and a second plaque recognizes the contribution of the slaves on the Holt plantation who helped build the family’s wealth. 

This plaque recognizes the slaves on the Holt plantation that helped build the family’s wealth. // Photo Matt Blois
This plaque recognizes the Holt family’s donation to the library. // Photo Matt Blois

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