Hale Library adds its three millionth volume

Lori A. Goetsch, Dean of Kansas State University Libraries, watches as Provost and Senior Vice President April Mason accepts the 3 millionth book from Cliff Hight, assistant professor in K-State Libraries and university archivist Monday afternoon at Hale Library. It took only five years to jump from two to three million volumes, after taking more than 20 years to go from one to two million.

People gathered in the Hemisphere Room in Hale Library yesterday in celebration of the 3 millionth volume acquired by Hale, “Generations of Success – A Photographic History of Kansas State University 1863-2013.”

The book was written by Tony Crawford, Curator of Manuscripts at Hale Library, and Clifford Hight, an assistant professor at Hale Library. Each was responsible for the completion of three chapters in the book and presented their section to the audience using one favorite picture from each chapter to talk about. Hight presented the first three chapters of the book with events ranging from K-State’s beginning in 1863 until 1943.

“We simply wanted to document 150 years of Kansas State’s success,” Hight said. “We did not know that it would be the 3 millionth volume.”

The book was made with pictures and short captions to help depict K-State experiences. Crawford was responsible for chapters of the book with events ranging from 1943 to 2013. Crawford said he wanted his section to be focused on student life, academics and athletics of K-State.

“It was quite a challenge to only pick one picture to represent each chapter,” Crawford said.

The showcase of the book was wrapped up with acknowledgments to others who helped Hight and Crawford do some of the work on the book, as well as the raffling off of two copies of the book. Provost and Senior Vice President April Mason contributed to the excitement of the atmosphere with all smiles as she closed the session.

“This is all very scary and humbling, but accredits our staff,” Mason said. “To reach the goals of K-State 2025 we absolutely require a top notch library.”

In 1982, Hale Library acquired its first million volumes. It wasn’t until about 20 years later that K-State Libraries made its big jump to 2 million total volumes. With this being noted, the library staff was more than overjoyed that it only took five years for the collection to again grow from 2 million volumes to 3 million volumes. The rapid growth of the collection was aided by the Morse Department of Special Collections and the use of technology, which allows for electronic collections as well as the preservation of books that were in poor condition. Technology also allows the library to reach out to a wider audience.

“I am more than confident this will be a record for the generations to come,” Crawford said.