With integration, the Durham Colored Library became part of the Durham Public Library System. The DCL, Inc. board then turned its attention to another project, the Merrick Washington Magazine for the Blind.
The Merrick Washington Magazine project (MWM) is a publication started in 1952 that brings news articles about and related to African American culture and history to a sight-challenged population who do not readily have access to Braille or large print editions of major publications. We hope to give our readers the independence to read these materials on their own, rather than rely on others to convey this information to them. The articles featured in each issue cover everything from American politics to health issues and are culled from a range of top-notch new sources, including The New York Times, Essence Magazine, and National Geographic Magazine, to name a few. The bi-annual publication is usually available in both Braille and large print editions, depending on funding. It is distributed to readers, organizations and schools around the U.S. that support the visually-impaired. Our target demographic includes people who have been sightless since birth and those dealing with diseases and medical conditions that affect eyesight.
We publish MWM this in memory and in honor of the founders- Mrs. Lyda Moore Merrick (deceased – she was Aaron McDuffie Moore’s daughter and chaired the DCL, Inc. Board for several years) and Mr. John Carter Washington- and all of the Durham, N.C. leaders who believed in the mission and love behind this project. In particular, we honor the memory of John H. Wheeler (deceased), who in 1969 called together the members of the Durham Colored Library, Inc. board and led the decision to bring MWM under the guidance of that organization. We also honor the memory of Josephine Dobbs Clement (deceased), the first editorial board chair under this new arrangement, and the other members of that board: Constance Merrick Watts (daughter of Lyda Moore Merrick), John Carter Washington and W.C. Bennett (deceased). Over the years, many women’s civic organizations have also continued to lend support to MWM. We are grateful for their faith in our project and mission.