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In early 2022, a new exhibit at the Monroe County Public Library will display 34 prints of illustrations that honor Black history and culture. The illustrations, which were curated by the National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature, were created by award winners of the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards dating back to 1973.

The exhibit, titled “Our Voice: Celebrating the Coretta Scott King Illustrator Awards” will “honor the triumphs and struggles of African Americans throughout time and … evoke the beautiful facets integral to the culture and fabric of our nation, such as music, rhythm, and folktales,” according to a press release from the library.

Presented annually by the American Library Association, the Coretta Scott King Awards are given to outstanding Black authors and illustrators who produce books for children and young adults. The awards are named to honor civil rights activist Mrs. Coretta Scott King and her husband, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

On Saturday, February 5, two special events will be hosted at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater and the Monroe County Public Library. From 7–8:15 p.m. at the Buskirk-Chumley, award-winning author Jacqueline Woodson will speak about her career in a talk titled “The Power of Words: Changing Our World—One Author at a Time.” Woodson has written more than 30 books that “give voice to African American life” and “focus on race, gender, and sexuality with characters who face challenges in powerful tales that are laced with hope,” according to a press release.

At 8:30 p.m., Woodson will give a book signing at the library. Visitors can enjoy hors d’oeuvres and champagne while they view the curated illustrations in the Our Voice exhibit.

Admission to the talk at the Buskirk-Chumley Theater is free. Tickets to the library reception at $55. Learn more at