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Cora Miltimore

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Cora Miltimore Image

Cora Miltimore, born December 7, 1879 at Great Bend Kansas, was the first full-time assistant librarian at Oklahoma A & M College. She took the position in 1900 and in 1901 she and her student assistant were credited with making a complete catalogue of the 8,000 or so books in the library. In 1902 she became the first person to hold the head librarian’s position without other responsibilities and held this position until she resigned in 1914 making hers the longest term of service for a person in that office that the institution had known. Her term as head librarian would be one of the four longest in the first one hundred years of the institution’s life. Through her term as librarian holdings increased 600-800 volumes per year.

Few librarians in the country held degrees in library science early in the twentieth century and Miltimore was no different however she held a 1899 bachelor of science degree from Oklahoma A & M College. She was interested in continuing education and spent her first summer as the college librarian traveling over the country, at her own expense, to see firsthand some academic libraries in operation. She devoted 100% of her time to the job of librarianship and brought professional library methods to the college which had not previously been incorporated into the library program. Miltimore was especially commended for bringing professional library methods into the college. In addition she gave more time to the library needs of the faculty and the students than any previous librarian and frequently served as a hostess to social and cultural events held in the library. She worked closely with the study body and cooperated in their undertakings. She received subscriptions to the student newspaper, posted notices on the library bulletin board, served as alumni editor of the Orange and Black student newspaper as well as served on its board of directors in 1913.

In the summer of 1914 Miltimore resigned from Oklahoma A & M College to take a position of librarian at Pacific University at Forest Grove, Oregon. In 1917 she made another bold move as she took the opportunity to serve in World War I in a conservation agency concerned with the proper distribution of food and clothing and returned to Oklahoma where she was based in Muskogee. She returned to the library profession in 1918 when she took a librarian position at the University of Florida where she initiated a program of study in library science. While in Florida she was elected president of the Florida Library Association. Throughout her career Miltimore was active in the American Library Associate of which she was a life member. She retired in 1937 and passed away in Jacksonville Florida on April 21, 1976 at the age of ninety-six.

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