Whatever Happened To ... ?


August 02, 2008|By Frederick N. Rasmussen

Anna Curry has been busy since leaving the Enoch Pratt Free Library in 1992, where she had worked for 38 years and was the library's first African-American and female director.

"My first job at Pratt was at the Pennsylvania Avenue branch in 1954, and later I worked with Margaret Edwards and Bunny Siebert ... in young-adult services. It was exciting going to city public schools and getting kids excited about reading," Curry said.

Curry moved up through the Pratt hierarchy until she was named director in 1981.

But that's all behind her now. Curry just celebrated her 75th birthday.

In the mid-1990s, she and her sister, Clara Anthony, became intrigued by an Ashburton neighbor's backyard pond, where koi and goldfish swam in a landscaped environment complete with several waterfalls.

"As a result, I played a major role with other Ashburton homeowners when we established Pool Scapers, that put ponds in people's backyards," she said. "I did that for a good long while."

Curry, a 1954 graduate of what is now Morgan State University who earned a master's degree in library science in 1960 from Atlanta University, has always been interested in history, and African-American history in particular.

In 1998, she and her sister opened Sepia, Sand & Sable, a book kiosk at Reisterstown Road Plaza that specialized in African-American history and fiction.

A year later, they swapped it for a permanent store in the Northwest Baltimore shopping center.

"We're having a wonderful time. We're open from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. and even have several book clubs that meet in the shop," she said.

She also keeps busy with her work as a trustee of the Margaret Alexander Edwards Trust, which honors her old Pratt mentor and promotes teenage reading.

What is Curry reading this summer?

"I'm caught up in the presidential race, and I'm reading everything I can about Barack Obama," she said.

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