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Nation's Librarian of Congress Promotes Reading
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Dr. Carla Hayden, Congressman Gregg Harper, with teacher signing
Desare Frazier

Mississippi's library system is getting help in promoting literacy from the nation's Librarian of Congress. MPB's Desare Frazier reports.

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"And he said, if you would give, you might get friends," said Hayden.

Dr. Carla Hayden, the nation's Librarian of Congress, is at the state library commission reading to students from the Mississippi School for the Deaf.

Congressman Gregg Harper asked Hayden to kick-off the Mississippi Book Festival held over the weekend at the state capitol. 

"But to watch her work with children from the Mississippi Children for the Deaf and see her heart, I mean Dr. Hayden is truly, is truly a rock star," said Harper.

Hayden is here to promote literacy and the joy of reading.

"The delightful children that helped me with a story today, were real examples I think of the magic of book and reading and how children with all types of abilities can enjoy books," said Hayden.

Librarians from across the state packed a hall to meet with Hayden. She encouraged them to take advantage of resources from the Library of Congress, such as traveling exhibits and streaming authors from Washington, DC live to local libraries. Auriane (are-ree-on) MIchelle Rouser said she's thrilled Hayden came to Mississippi. The 65-year old is the 14th Librarian of Congress and the first woman and African American appointed to the post. 

"I could not miss this opportunity in history to witness basically walking history here in our home state," said Rouser.

Hayden also has a personal connection to Mississippi, her great grandmother was born in Canton.