Building a Movement for a Better Tennessee

Appalachian Liberation Library

Current Hours:
Tuesdays, 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Wednesdays, noon to 2:00 pm
Fridays, 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm
Sundays, 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Interested in volunteering so that we can be open more hours? Attend the evening or afternoon volunteer librarian training session later this month!

The Appalachian Liberation Library is a community lending library located at the shared workspace of the Northeast TN People’s Movement and the Workers Alliance of Northeast Tennessee. Our collection covers:

Appalachian Liberation Library
  • Labor History
  • Labor Organizing
  • Appalachian History
  • Political Theory
  • History of Struggles & Liberation
  • Community Organizing
  • Local-Level Political Change
  • Economics & Inequality
  • Sociology
  • Fiction
  • Books for children and teens
  • & More
You can see what we currently have on the shelves (and what’s checked out at the moment) at our Goodreads profile!


The Appalachian Liberation Library (ALL) is located at 323 W. Walnut St., Suite 202, in Johnson City. We recommend using the building’s back entrance (with the wooden ramp). Coming in that way, we’re the last door on the left.

Current Hours:
Tuesdays, 7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Wednesdays, noon to 2:00 pm
Fridays, 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm

Lending Policies

  • Membership is free. (Donations keep the library open & growing, though)
  • Members and nonmembers alike are welcome to read anything in our collection at the library
  • Members in good standing may check out one book at a time (it’s a small library) for a 30-day period, plus one kids’ book per child. (We haven’t settled on a policy for pamphlets & zines yet, so they’re not available for check out, but you can read them on premises.)
  • The 30-day lending period can be renewed in person or by email
  • There is no minimum age for membership; your kids can have their own cards if you like (particularly if they’re ready to check out books outside the kids’ section).
  • If someone requests a book you have out and you are past your initial 30 days, we may ask you to return the book
  • To get a membership, visit the library during open hours and fill out a form.

How the Library Protects You & Your Privacy

  • Your membership form with your contact info is filed in a lock box that is not stored on premises.
  • The information you provide on the form will not be entered into any computer system, with the exception of your first name and email address if (and only if) you specify that you would like to be added to our mailing list.
  • You will receive a library card with your membership number and no other identifying information.
  • When you check out a book, we will put your membership number and no other identifying information on the checkout card at the library, along with the book’s title, author, and checkout date.
  • Your membership form will only be accessed in the event that we need to contact you about a checked out book, and it will only be accessed by specifically authorized library volunteers.
  • When you return your checked-out book, the checkout card will be destroyed.
  • We keep no record of your reading history.

Donations Welcome!

There’s no membership fee to join the library. We do, however, gratefully accept donations. Financial donations will be put toward rent to keep the library space open. If we take in more than we need for that, we’ll use the funds for library materials.

Book donations that are in good condition and fit our collection policies will be added to our collection. Those that don’t fit our collection policies will be sold to help fund the library. Although we don’t encourage donations of books in poor condition, if we receive them, they’ll be put in a “free to good home” box.

Other items sought: functional electronic readers and audio players (tape, CD, or MP3) so that we can provide access to materials to a wider range of abilities, plus books on tape or CD, DVDs, pamphlets, magazines/journals, newspapers, and zines that fit our collection policies.

Collection Policies

“When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe.” —John Muir

Our collection focuses on struggles for justice and liberation, including economic, social, criminal, political, and environmental justice. Because one group cannot struggle without affecting the whole (nor does the cause of their struggle exist outside of the whole), we seek to pull all these struggles together—workers, women, the poor, immigrants (including the historical struggles of immigrants who would now be considered “white”), Black, Native, queer, etc.—to provide greater context and understanding. Our collection also includes political theory, praxis, Appalachian history and culture, reference, fiction, poetry, and books for children and teens, all with some connection to our main theme: justice and liberation.