St. Augustine Tublic Library
12 Aviles Street
ST. AUGUSTINE, FLORIDA
The St. Augustine Public Library is housed in one of the
most interesting of the old buildings in St. Augustine. The
first known record of a structure on the southeast corner of
the present Aviles Street and Artillery Lane is found on a
map prepared by a Spanish engineer dated January 22,
1764. As this map was made prior to the first Spanish
evacuation, it is probable that this building had been used
as a residence for several years before this date. Records
show that in 1769 this house was allotted to a British Cap-
tain, Henry Skinner. During the British occupation the
house changed hands several times.
On the return of the Spanish, Bernardo Segui purchased
the site from Pablo Cortina. A map made by a Spanish
engineer, reveals that the first story was made of coquina
and the second of wood. Mention is made of the kitchen
and the map shows a small two-room building on Artillery
Lane. When Segui purchased the present Library build-
ing he already owned a house south of it in the next alley.
According to the school census of 1766 the Segui family
had six children, so it is likely that he enlarged the newly
It was in 1824 that the widow of Bernardo Segui rented
the building, for $75 a quarter, to Joseph Lee Smith. Mr.
Smith was, at that time, Judge of the Supreme Court of
Florida. It was in this building that Edmund Kirby-Smith
was born. He afterward became the famous Confederate
General. The Smiths later purchased the building and in
1887 there is the record of the sale, by General Kirby-Smith
and his sister, to E. P. Dismukes, who in turn sold to Mr.
and Mrs. John L. Wilson in 1894.
By the will of Mr. and Mrs. Wilson the building became
the property of the St. Augustine Library Association to be
used as a Public Library for the citizens of St. Augustine.
In 1894 the Library was established in the present build-
ing. Prior to that date it had been on the second floor of
what is now the Post Office. The Library today contains
approximately 20,000 volumes. There is a reading room
and reference room where one may sit and read current
issues of popular magazines and the daily papers or con-
sult standard works of reference. The Library caters to the
public with the latest popular fiction as well as the best in
In the Junior Room school children are offered a wide
choice of books. There are books for pleasure reading as
well as parallel reading for their school work and Merit
Badge Pamphlets for the Boy Scouts.
The Library is open to the public November through April
from 9:30 A. M. to 6 P. M. daily Monday through Friday.
Saturday, 9:30 A. M. to 1 P. M. May through October the
hours are, 9:30 A. M. to 1 P. M. and 4 to 6 P.M., closed
Saturday afternoon. The Junior Room is open the year
round 3 to 5 P. M. each day, Monday through Friday.
Visitors as well as local residents are welcome.
Ihe ')alue of a Smile
It costs nothing but creates much, it enriches those who
receive it, without impoverishing those who give.
It happens in a flash and the memory sometimes lasts
I1 creates happiness in the home, fosters good will in
business, and is the countersign of friends.
It is rest for the weary, delight to the discouraged, sun-
shine to the sad, and nature's best antidote for trouble.
It cannot be bought, begged or stolen, for it is something
that is no earthly good to anyone until it is given away,
and if in the hurry and rush of life, you meet someone who
is too weary to give you a smile-leave one of yours, for
no one needs a smile quite so much as he who has none to