SHREVEPORT, La. (KTAL/KMSS) – The Mooretown Branch of Shreve Memorial Library celebrated its 20th birthday last week.

Like any great birthday, the branch celebrated with cupcakes but they also took the opportunity to display how the history of the branch is intertwined with the history of the surrounding community.

“So, we just try to engage with the community, and as the bridge across the field states, we’re building bridges with the community,” said Marcus Persley, Assistant Branch Manager of the Mooretown Branch.

That connection to the community is on display every day with a mural painted by three local artists in coordination with the Shreveport Regional Arts Council.

“The mural commemorates the story of Mooretown. from the founding with Colonel Giles Moore all the way up to the opening of Coleman College,” Presley said.

Coleman College was the first secondary school available to black students in North Louisiana, moving from Gibsland to the Mooretown neighborhood in 1943.

Today, the library carries on that spirit, helping to give residents opportunities to grow.

“Well, the people in this community are, we have a lot of people who are not financially well off. And, you know, a lot of times when you need something to, you wanna relax, you wanna use a computer, you have to have funds,” said Rose Davis, Mooretown Branch Manager.

And while the staff works to ensure the history of the community is not forgotten, they are still looking ahead to the next generation and the next 20 years.

“You know, I’ve been here 20 years, and I’ve seen children grow up and then bring their children back. So it shows we are offering a service that just cannot be matched,” Davis said.