About Us

Hours: 8:30am-5:00pm, Monday - Friday. Closed on state holidays.

The South Carolina State Library's Talking Book Services department provides informational and recreational reading materials in accessible formats for free to qualified users. The program serves South Carolinians unable to use conventional print materials because of the following:

  • Those who cannot hold book or turn pages due to physical disabilities;
  • Those who cannot see standard size print due to visual impairment or blindness;
  • Those who have temporary disabilities due to injury, illness, or surgery and;
  • Those who have physically-based learning disabilities.

South Carolina residents (all ages and income levels) unable to read or use standard print materials as a result of temporary or permanent visual or physical limitations are eligible for this service. Blindness is not the only qualifying condition. Even those with low vision due to problems such as macular degeneration, are eligible. Physical conditions such as missing arms or hands, lack of muscle coordination, or prolonged weakness are qualifying conditions when their result is an inability to hold a book or turn pages. Persons with physically based, medically certifiable reading disabilities (such as dyslexia), and institutions serving clientele with qualifying conditions are also eligible. 

Vision

The South Carolina State Library develops, supports, and sustains a thriving statewide community of learners committed to making South Carolina stronger.

Mission

We serve the people of South Carolina by supporting state government and libraries to provide opportunities for learning in a changing environment.

Strategic Directions & Goals

STRATEGIC DIRECTION I

The South Carolina State Library sustains and enhances its relationships with partners and those we serve.

  • Strengthen relationships and communication among libraries.
  • Demonstrate how libraries are essential to educational and economic well-being.
  • Facilitate informed governance.

STRATEGIC DIRECTION II

The South Carolina State Library implements and promotes a strong technological environment statewide.

  • Offer technical training and development opportunities.
  • Develop technical expertise around technology trends, issues, needs and support.
  • Lead a statewide digitization initiative.

STRATEGIC DIRECTION III

The South Carolina State Library provides equitable access to information.

  • Negotiate collaborative purchases for statewide access to resources.
  • Expand electronic resources in response to changing information needs.
  • Develop and deliver programs that support literacy for children and at risk groups of all ages.

STRATEGIC DIRECTION IV

The South Carolina State Library creates standards and provides guidance for excellence in library services.

  • Design a new comprehensive statewide certification program.
  • Support training for delivery of excellence in 21st century library services.
  • Coordinate programs that address the needs of the underserved.

Facility

Talking Book Services is housed at the South Carolina State Library building at 1500 Senate Street, which was authorized by the South Carolina General Assembly in 1965. The building was financed with state funds and with a federal grant under the Library Services and Construction Act. Construction on the library, which was designed by architect John Califf of the firm of Geiger, Califf and Player, was begun in 1967 and completed in 1969.

The most distinctive features of this building are the two bronze lions that flank the front entrance. These statues were designed by sculptor A. Pelzer and manufactured by the firm of W. H. Mullins in Salem, Ohio. They originally stood at the Court Inn in Camden, South Carolina.  After the Inn closed in 1962, a private citizen in Camden acquired them. When they were offered for sale in the fall of 1965, the lions were purchased by South Carolina state government for use at the planned State Library building.

The lions were subsequently nicknamed Sol and Edgar, after two powerful state politicians, both from Barnwell County. Sol, the lion on the west side, was named for Solomon "Sol" Blatt (1895-1986), Speaker of the South Carolina House of Representatives for more than three decades. The lion on the east side was named for Edgar Brown (1888-1975), long-time President Pro Tempore of the South Carolina Senate.