In February 2015, HPL was honored to host the discussion of the Congressman’s first graphic novel, March: Book One, which marked the launch of the Houston Public Library Quarterly Reading Series (HPLQ). A capacity audience attended the free program that was held in Houston’s Wortham Theater Center. The following morning Representative Lewis toured HPL’s African American Library at the Gregory School.
HPL director, Dr. Rhea Lawson remembered the congressman stating, “We will always remember his visit to the Houston Public Library. The passing of Congressman Lewis is the loss of a living social justice library for the nation. The road he travelled, and the exemplary life he led in the name of true democracy is, in a sense, what we strive for as an organization. To leave a legacy and a roadmap in words, actions and resources for future generations to explore and learn from in the evolution of civil rights.”
At the HPLQ presentation Congressman John Lewis shared a first-hand account of his lifelong struggle for civil and human rights. Drawn by artist Nate Powell, March: Book One spans Lewis' youth in rural Alabama, his life-changing meeting with Martin Luther King Jr., and the Nashville Student Movement's battle to tear down segregation through nonviolent lunch counter sit-ins, building to a climax on the steps of City Hall. The story continues in the second installment of the memoir trilogy with the newly released March: Book Two, including the 1961 Freedom Rides and the legendary 1963 March on Washington. For individuals looking to learn more, or refresh their knowledge of the Congressman, copies of both March books— in both print and e-book format—are available for check out with the Library’s MY Link card.