The Justice-Query Instructional Materials Center is named after Ila Taylor Justice and Mary Eunice Query, two exceptional educators who each played a fundamental role in establishing the Library Science program at Appalachian State University.
Ila Taylor Justice, Ed.S.
Ila Taylor Justice (b. September 22, 1914) was born in Crestmont, North Carolina and reared in Banner Elk, North Carolina. She attended Lees-McRae Junior College from 1932-34 and then transferred to Berea College where she received an A.B. degree in history and English in 1936. After receiving this degree, Justice accepted a position with the Westchester County Schools in New York as a tutor of students.
Justice received the B.S.L.S. degree from George Peabody College (now part of Vanderbilt University) in 1941 and accepted a position as librarian and teacher at Pleasant Hill Academy in Tennessee. She worked there until 1944 when she moved to Eastern Illinois State University. While at EISU, she worked as the librarian of the Demonstration School and was an assistant professor of library sciences.
In 1947, Justice received the Master of Science degree in Library Science from George Peabody College. In 1949, Justice came to Appalachian State Teachers College (now Appalachian State University) where she served for 31 years in the Department of Educational Media (now Library Science.) For seventeen years Justice served as chair of the department, and in 1973 she completed the Ed.S. degree in education and reading at Appalachian State University.
Throughout her career, Justice received numerous awards for her contributions to the field of library science. In 1976, she received the Trustees’ Outstanding Teaching Award from the College of Learning and Human Development. In the same year, she also received the Governor’s Citation for Outstanding Volunteer Work for organizing Watauga Hospital’s medical library. In 1979, Justice’s current and former students established an annual lecture series in her honor. In 1980, Justice received the Mary Peacock Douglas Award, an award honoring outstanding contributions to school libraries in the state of North Carolina. Justice retired from Appalachian State University on July 1, 1980. One year later, the Instructional Materials Center was officially named the Ila Justice - Eunice Query Instructional Materials Center in honor of Justice and her longtime colleague, Mary Eunice Query.
Mary Eunice Query, M.A.
Mary Eunice Query (1909–2007) was born in Hudson, North Carolina. Query graduated from Davenport High School in Lenoir, North Carolina, in 1926. After completing a college course at Davenport in 1928, she taught at Reeds Elementary School in Davidson County for two years. She then attended Duke University and received her A.B. degree in English and social studies in 1931.
Query accepted a teaching position at Hudson High School in Hudson, North Carolina and taught there from 1931 until 1936 when she became the assistant librarian at High Point School. In 1938, Query returned to college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received her A.B. degree in Library Science that same year. At the end of the year she accepted the position of librarian at Lenoir High School where she served for nine years. During the last two years of her service there (1945–1947), she was also the librarian for the Caldwell County Public Library in Lenoir.
In 1947, Query joined the staff at Appalachian State Teachers College (now Appalachian State University) where she taught for 25 years. While at Appalachian, she earned an M.A. degree. She also served as the acting state school library advisor for the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction; interim chair of the Library Science department at Appalachian; and as director of five library education institutes and courses funded by the United States Office of Education. Recognized for her knowledge and contributions to the field of school libraries, Query acted in consulting and accrediting roles for libraries and library programs throughout the southeastern United States.
Mary Eunice Query retired from Appalachian on June 30, 1972. The University honored her in 1981 by naming a division of Belk Library the Ila Justice-Eunice Query Instructional Materials Center. Query has also been honored by scholarships which bear her name: the North Carolina Library Association Query-Long Scholarship and the Appalachian State University Eunice Query Scholarship. Miss Query established scholarships herself in honor of her students and colleagues both at Appalachian State University and at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Miss Query received the Distinguished Alumni Award by the School of Library Science at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In 1984, she was honored with the Mary Peacock Douglas Award, North Carolina’s most prestigious award honoring outstanding contributions to school libraries in the state of North Carolina.