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Department of Special Collections and University Archives

1967-1985. Expansion


  • The Chapman addition to McFarlin Library is completed and the original structure is renovated. The addition contains 35,000 square feet of space or room for 315,000 volumes and 639 student study stations. Expected to accommodate 20-year growth.
  • The Rare book room is on the (at that time) fourth Floor. Prior to the new addition, it was a “vault”, really a cage, in the tower.
  • Bulletin: TU libraries contain some 290,000 cataloged books and government documents and more than 2,400 periodical subscriptions.
  • James A. Veasey bequest arrives: half of “3,513 items in 1790 lots” relate to Lincoln-Civil War.


  • Collegian: Harwell Library opened after renovation, the week of March 16 becoming the education library branch; capacity of 48,000 books, 300 seats..


  • TU libraries contain approximately 320,000 cataloged books (out of 383, 404 volumes, 188,564 in McFarlin) and government documents and more than 3,200 periodical subscriptions.
  • Guy W. Logsdon becomes the Director of University Libraries.
  • KWGS is located in the north basement of the library.



  • 23 professors placed material on reserve (62 books)
  • Modern Literature Guild started as support group for library acquisitions


  • Erskine Caldwell collection and Dime Novel collection added to library.


  • John Rogers gives more than 1,000 volumes.
  • Jack Houston gives Theodore Dreiser and James Branch Cabell collections.
  • Roger Randolph gives Stephen Crane and Grant Foreman collections.
  • Lynn Riggs and George Milburn collections purchased.
  • Mrs. Redmond Cole gives 150 scrapbooks.
  • Fannie Misch gives Tulsa Printing Company records.
  • “Library Associates program has grown”
  • May 31: 434,575 volumes (222,244 in McFarlin).


  • Leslie Poles Hartley correspondence, Edward Dahlberg papers are among the Special Collections acquisitions.

May 31

  • 462,038 volumes; 4,257 periodicals; 371 books borrowed, 177 loaned.


  • 685 seating in McFarlin, 300 Harwell.


  • Reserve circulation 2,427.
  • Sylvia Plath, Kurt Vonnegut, Pound letters, John Updike manuscript and Simon Watson Taylor collection purchased; Mr and Mrs Marion Brodsky donated 12th century manuscript. Mrs. J.V. Brazier gives photograph collection. Papers of C.I. Pontius placed in Special Collections.
  • Valid University ID is required for admission to McFarlin Library. Circulation of items to non-TU students, staff and faculty limited.


March 12

  • TU libraries celebrate the acquisition of the 500,000th volume. Elementary Arithmetic in Cherokee and English (1870) is donated by Rennard Strickland. Angie Debo is the speaker at the celebration.
  • Microforms counted for first time: 132,687 volume equivalent (plus 533,427 hardcopy volumes brought total to 666,114 volumes).
  • Entrance count: was 196,338.


  • Dorothy Richardson collection purchased; Greene movie scripts, books from library and translations.


  • Sidney Born Library moved to Geophysics Building.
  • John Martin’s D.H. Lawrence collection purchased.


  • Former student and Tulsa businessman, John Shleppey, bequeaths a vast collection of Native American materials to TU.
  • Jean Rhys notebooks and manuscripts are purchased.


  • McFarlin Library receives a “special grant” to join OCLC (originally the Ohio College Library Center, eventually renamed the Online Computer Library Center, and later just OCLC).
  • Brompton Books.
  • Doris Lessing manuscripts, library and diaries of Stevie Smith.
  • Paul Gibbens petroleum photographs acquired.
  • Library Associates funds used to-expand Dime Novel Collections (now exceeds 3,000 titles),
  • Lilah Lindsay papers obtained from Fannie Misch.
  • Entrance count for year was 164,465 including “4,155 special permission admissions”; the number of non-University admissions in previous years estimated at 36,000.
  • Eliot Bible given by anonymous donor.
  • Rhys letters & manuscripts, Laura Riding Jackson manuscripts; Left Book Club; Unmuzzled Ox; unique proof copy of Grapes of Wrath; Lowry typescripts (at auction), Hemingway items from Goodwin sale; Doves Bible; 115 Indian treaties from Eberstadt collection.
  • Helen Rushmore gives papers; sweaters from Joe Hause (1916 team).


  • TU President, J. Paschal Twyman, announces plans for a $3 million addition to the Library; anonymous donor gives $1 million. $2 million provided by Chapman funds.
  • Robert Graves-Laura Riding collection purchased from Ellsworth Mason “Modern Literature Guild worked extremely hard to obtain funds for this collection.”


  • Cyril Connolly’s library arrived: 8,050 volumes, 1,100 periodical issues.


  • Robert L. Samsell collection of F. Scott Fitzgerald acquired.


  • Edmund Wilson library acquired.


  • The library acquires, the F. Scott collection, and the D. H. Lawrence collection.
  • The Cataloging Department gets OCLC.
  • 828,853 volumes in collections.
  • Michael Andre (Unmuzzled Ox) gives “little magazine” collection
  • John Fowles manuscript purchased.


  • NEH Challenge Grant of $480,000 awarded (through 1982).


  • Hariett Shaw Weaver Collection is purchased (with Modern Letters funds from NEH grant); James Joyce Symposium celebrates.


  • Construction on the new west underground addition begins.


  • 902,508 volumes (including microform equivalent of 203,571)
  • 55,693 volumes added in 1977-78.
  • Special Collections open “less than 20 hours a week”; 182 user visits per year.
  • Eberstadt “American Indian portion” acquired from Jenkins, 2,000 volumes (1796 minutes of Cherokee meeting)
  • Pre-Columbian pottery: “a small collection purchased from Harry McPherson of Fayetteville, Arkansas, resulted in major gifts”: anonymous [Quintus Herron? Strickland?], Dr. F.E. McEvoy pottery; “Dr. David Harner of Springdale, Arkansas, contributed a “19th century Mexican Indian Dance mask collection and a valuable collection of Mexican Retablos”.
  • Modern Letters funds purchased Riding, Rhys, Toklas, T.S. Eliot (220 items including 18 unpublished letters), Edwardian fiction collection (450 volumes)
  • Additional OCLC terminal requested; so many more records that cash flow has increased.
  • 60,000 phonograph record museum collection transferred to library from The Record Museum (Whit Ozier, Lawton, OK).
  • Port of Catoosa papers given.
  • James Fenimore Cooper first editions from funds given in memory of Marion H. Parry by his friends at Zebco Industries. .
  • Fred Randolph (Muskogee) Osage oil materials; Wounded Knee papers are donated.
  • W.R. King collection of art books given by Martha King; geology collection of G.S. Dille given by Mary Bratt.


  • Graham Greene’s books purchased.

Sept. 1

  • David Farmer is hired as the first Director of Rare Books and Special Collections. Before this, the rare books and manuscripts were handled by the Humanities Librarian.


  • The Sidney Born Technical Library moves from North Campus to McFarlin Library.
  • A photo duplication center is set up in McFarlin.
  • One-millionth volume is added to the collection.
  • At this point, the floors throughout the building are renamed and renumbered.
  • Mr. and Mrs. E. R. Albert donate the sculpture El Nino Volador by Mexican sculptor Victor Salmones and the Albert Plaza is named.
  • President and Mrs. J. Paschal Twyman present the courtyard fountain Apogee as their gift to the University.
  • Inter-Library Loan begins using OCLC.
  • Eberstadt purchases concluded; “Meso-American Indians relics collection”; American Indian art; Jefferson, Dinsmoor, Sibley letters, Catlin proof; Pawnee history collection; Abel manuscript. 450 titles with funds from Pew Foundation (including Hamilton Bee, Black Hawk War, 1861 English Cherokee document).
  • Riding; Bifur, Martin Secker {715 volumes); William Trevor, Jhabvala.
  • 1,003,009 volumes reached.
  • $3.3 million addition to McFarlin
  • Francis Schmidt scrapbooks given by Mrs. Emily J. Miller of Wichita.
  • Bob Love gives Paula Love hooked rugs.
  • Clarence C. Allen cartoons and art works; Kenneth Barnes gave petroleum books, many to be placed in Petroleum History Collection; Harvey Heller gave 30 years of the Ticker Tape library (daily record of the American Stock Exchange); Robert Knightstep gave “large collection of Americana; Mr. and Mrs. James Palik of NYC gave 19th & early 20th century sheet music.
  • Stevie Smith and Jean Rhys addenda; Vernon Scannell, David Plante papers. Christopher Isherwood papers.
  • Peter Howard proletarian library acquired.
  • Rennard Strickland gave 12 Choctaw ethnographic illustrations by Chief Terry Saul


  • Edward Charles papers purchased.


  • Tage Le Cour collection purchased.


  • Paul Scott Papers purchased.
  • Ground breaking for $1 million addition to the Law Library.

October 20

  • New $3.3 million library addition dedicated; noted author Larry McMurtry gives the speech at the celebration. Lawrence manuscript of “The Captain’s Doll” was acquired. Millionth volume was commemorated (having been added five months earlier). Edmund Wilson library unpacked.

December 17

  • Stevie Smith archive purchased at an auction held at Sotheby’s.


  • McFarlin Library joins the OCLC library network.
  • Bob Love bequeaths Civil War and Will Rogers materials.
  • $141,000 processing portion of NEH grant begins to be used for Shleppey Collection: 8,000 volumes over two years..
  • Robert H. Patterson appointed Director of Libraries.
  • Kenneth Hopkins collection acquired.

May 31

  • 1,096,371 volumes; Reserve circulates 24,574 items (about 200 professors)


  • “Brief Guide to Literary and Related Materials” written


  • Library acquires the Daniel Hamilton Collection, the Siegfried Sassoon Collection, and the Robert Frost collection for Special Collections.
  • The Library Associates program is established.
  • 400 user visits recorded to Special Collections
  • “New library exhibit hall developed”; 13 exhibits 1981-82
  • Library Associates founded; 165 members; $9000 in dues, $150,000 in cash and Gifts in Kind.


  • Hugh Kenner report on McFarlin Library and Special Collections


  • ALDP self-study initiated (14 months)
  • $250,000 provided to upgrade/retrofit air-handling system.
  • “$500,000 a year earmarked for special collections acquisitions”
  • “Pauline Walter Estate endowment “exceeding $10,000,000 ‘for library development’ received”
  • Factory House library/Oporto collection is purchased.
  • Book Club of California publications purchased.
  • Standing orders placed for American Indian and Modern Authors materials.


  • Library Associates formed; takes over membership of 134.


  • 436,851-item backlog as of March 31 counted. The backlog at this time is housed in the upper reaches of the Tower.


  • Cyril Connolly Papers purchased.


  • Anti-theft system is installed in the Library
  • Reference, Card Catalog and Database search functions are centralized on the Plaza Level.
  • Library adopts Library of Congress classification system and begins retrospective conversion of materials from the Dewey Decimal System
  • Inter-Library Loan becomes its own department within the library.
  • University Archives is officially established.
  • McFarlin Library is favorably mentioned in a New York Times article on Tulsa.


  • Richard Aldington collection purchased from Larry Wallrich.


  • Muriel Spark manuscripts purchased.


  • LIAS contracts signed


  • Library gets LIAS (Library Information Access System) as its Online Public Access Catalog.
  • 1,441,345 volumes held.


  • PEN papers purchased.
  • David Farmer resigns as Director of Special Collections.


  • Sidney F. Huttner joins the library’s staff as Curator of Special Collections.