Friends Celebrate Library Milestone
The Oklahoma State University Library has existed as long as the institution itself. The first library started as a collection of books housed in the offices and homes of a few professors. When Old Central, the University's first permanent building, was dedicated in 1894, the Library found its first official home there. In 1901, the Library moved to Williams Hall, which was shared with the English, literature and biology departments. Twenty years later, the collection moved again to the Library Building located south of what is now Gundersen Hall.
Nearly fifty years ago, in February 1953, the Edmon Low Library opened its doors. It is the current home of the main collection. To commemorate the upcoming milestone, the Friends of the OSU Library have appointed a special committee to steer a yearlong celebration of the Edmon Low Library's 50th Anniversary.
Representing the Friends of the OSU Library Board on the 50th Anniversary Committee is Cheryl Jones, also an OSU alumna and OSU Foundation's Board of Governors member. Jones says, "This anniversary provides each of us the opportunity to join the visionaries who financially supported and celebrated the opening of our library in 1953. It is time for us to show our pride in the heart of the OSU Campus, the Edmon Low Library."
Jones graduated from OSU in 1978 with a B.S. in secondary school education/psychology. She now works in Oklahoma City as an education and campaign consultant. She says, "Unfortunately, I didn't 'discover' the inside of the library until my senior year, as my transcript reflects. Still, the Edmon Low Library is meaningful to me for its timelessness. Each time I walk up the stairs beside the fountain to attend campus meetings I'm drawn back to those years as a co-ed."
"Our Library has been the nucleus of the campus for fifty years. It's a place of memories for athletes, scholars, freshmen, grad students, professors and partiers alike. Library memories can link all of us to the past and the future of Oklahoma State University."
The Library 50th anniversary celebration kicks off on November 7, 2002 with the H. Louise and H.E. "Ed" Cobb Speaker Series featuring S.E. Hinton and will continue until the following November. The Library Dean's Office and 50th Anniversary Committee have several special events planned to commemorate this milestone. Visit the Library's calendar of events or call (405) 744-7331 for details on upcoming events.
Jones says, "I'm looking forward to all of it. Our theme is That was Then, This is Now. We've asked for Homecoming of 2003 to reflect this theme and celebrate the library with us. Meeting and hearing S.E. Hinton, the author of The Outsiders and its sequel, That was Then, and This is Now, will be a highlight. Hinton rarely makes public appearances but she has accepted the opportunity to be our featured author in 2002. Ms. Hinton is from Tulsa; these books are about 1950's teens growing up in the Midwest."
Jones is working on marketing for the celebration with representatives from the Library, Public Information Office and the Alumni Association. She is using her personal contacts to help identify media targets and collect stories of Library memories. She says, "Reading the stories we're gathering is great fun. No matter the age of the writer the stories ring of youth and idealism. We would like for OSU students, grads, employees and professors to share a memory that occurred at the Library. I hope Legacy readers will send their stories to us."
If you have a special memory of the Library you'd like to share call (405) 744-7331, email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to Library Marketing, 216 Library, Stillwater, OK 74078.
For more information on giving to the Library contact the Brandy Cox, Senior Director of Development, at bcox@OSUgiving.com or 405-385-0715.