Also unveiled were the winners in a popular vote for favorite authors to be displayed on the walls of the reading room, as local favorite authors were enshrined in the parapet of the library when it opened in 1995.
C.S. Lewis was the top vote getter. He was chosen in the religious literature category. 34 authors will be honored, two each in 17 categories, such as Charles Portis and Dee Brown for the Arkansas literature category. Full details follow.
The names of the top two vote-getters in each of 17 categories will be displayed in the Central Arkansas Library System (CALS) Main Library's newly remodeled 5th floor. As space allows, up to 18 additional names may be added. The fifth floor will be open to the public this winter, and will become the Main reading room for the downtown Library.
Over 1,300 votes were cast on ballots collected in branches, online, and at Regions Bank locations. Nominations for writers to be on the ballot were solicited from library patrons, and the resulting ballot contained the names of 165 writers. The election was sponsored by Regions Bank.
C. S. Lewis received the most votes overall, and 430 participants who selected Lewis were automatically entered in a drawing to receive $500 worth of "gently used" books from River Market Books & Gifts (http://www.cals.org/about/locations/cox.php), the library's used book store. Laura Sisterhen of Little Rock was the winner of the gift certificate for books.
The top two names from each category to be included:
POPULAR FICTION: GENERAL
John Grisham, Alice Walker
POPULAR FICTION: MYSTERY/SUSPENSE
Arthur Conan Doyle, Stephen King
POPULAR FICTION: FANTASY/SCIENCE FICTION
J.K. Rowling, Ray Bradbury
POPULAR FICTION: HISTORICAL
Margaret Mitchell, James Michener
Rudyard Kipling, William Butler Yeats
Oscar Wilde, George Bernard Shaw
Anne, Emily & Charlotte Brontë, Leo Tolstoy
John Steinbeck, Ernest Hemingway
Harper Lee, Maya Angelou
Voltaire (François-Marie Arouet), René Descartes
Confucius, Sigmund Freud
Thomas Paine, John Locke
Karl Marx, John Kenneth Galbraith
C.S. Lewis, Martin Luther King, Jr.
Charles Darwin, Louis Pasteur
David McCullough, Barbara Tuchman
Dee Brown, Charles Portis
As space allows, other names to be included: Thomas Aquinas, Kevin Brockmeier, Geoffrey Chaucer, Paul Laurence Dunbar, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Edward Gibbon, E. Lynn Harris, Louis L'Amour, Niccolò Machiavelli, Isaac Newton, Friedrich Nietzsche, Flannery O'Connor, Eugene O'Neill, George Orwell, Ayn Rand, Dorothy Sayers, Adam Smith, H.G. Wells.
Decorating libraries with the names of important writers is an old tradition. CALS incorporated this tradition into the renovation of the Fones building as the site of the new Main Library in 1995, when library patrons voted on the names which were engraved on the parapet of the Main Library.