History and Mission

The original Imagination Library was founded in 1995 by Dolly Parton in her home county of Sevier, TN.  Dolly wanted to pay tribute to her late father by creating a literacy program in his honor.  In 2000 she announced that she would make the program available for replication. Any county could utilize the program structure, books, and marketing tools if the community in that county was willing to help fund its own program. Since then, the program has been picked up across the globe and over 100,000,000 books have been mailed to children in the United States, Canada, Australia, and the UK. 

The Lowndes County Imagination Library was founded in 2014 with the aim of increasing early literacy gains of Pre-K students in Lowndes County. We send an age-appropriate book to participants every month for FREE! Books sent out by the imagination library are chosen by an education committee at Dolly Parton's Imagination Library head quarters, they are quality books that are often also quite popular. One of the biggest differences between a book received from our program and one straight from the bookstore are the additional reading tips for parents. Parent child interaction is strongly encouraged by our program and we make it easy to enjoy book-specific activities with their child, while enhancing their knowledge of close reading strategies. 

Our county specific mission is to strengthen early literacy skills in children under 5 by sending age- appropriate books directly to the home and providing literacy building training to guardians.