The Library: A Retrospective View

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This exhibit presents a broad, retrospective look at the origins, development, holdings, and operations of the University of Chicago's Library. It suggests the range of issues, personalities, and events central to the growth of the Library. Assembled Primarily from Material drawn from the University Archives, the exhibit draws on manuscripts, letters, books and photographs. Occasioned by the tenth anniversary of the Regenstein Library, the exhibit focuses on the search for an adequate library. Organized in four parts, the exhibit first concentrates on the earliest years of the University Library; Harper's attempts to find books, buildings, and librarians; the proliferation of departmental libraries; and the building of the Harper Library. The second section focuses on the individual library directors, the issues they confronted, and their achievements and personalities. The third section presents an overview representative of donors, gifts, and staff from the earliest years of the Library, suggesting something o the character and scope of library operations. The exhibit concludes with a series of cases displaying various plans for a central library developed since the 1920s, culminating in the construction of the Regenstein Library. The exhibit forms part of a series on the University of Chicago as it approaches its centennial.