Scope and Content of Collection
The records of the Library Director's Office cover the years 1905 through 1989 with the bulk of the material dating from 1930 to 1975.
The records include library correspondence, staff memos, annual and biennial reports, acquisition records, collection and equipment inventories, survey questionnaires and statistics. Also contained in the collection are budget requests, committee reports and minutes, organizational charts, brochures and pamphlets, drafts of articles, bibliographies, and blueprints of the library buildings.
The records document the growth of the University of Maryland Libraries from their beginnings as a single reading room in the Maryland Agricultural College to the current state-wide library system. Topics found in the collection include the planning of library facilities; acquisition of major collections and individual books and serials; formation of the library administration; development of library personnel policies and library service policies; interactions between the University Libraries and professional library associations, library networks, and state institutions; the effects of the Depression and World War II on the libraries; and the development of automated library services.
Many noteworthy University of Maryland at College Park (UMCP) staff and faculty members, as well as prominent Marylanders, corresponded with the Library Director's Office. In this collection are found letters from C. O. Appleman, Robert A. Beach, Jr., Frank Bentz, C. W. Cissel, Helen M. Clark, Ernest N. Cory, George W. Fogg, and R. Lee Hornbake. Other correspondents include Rev. James J. Kortendick, Albin Kuhn, Theodore McKeldin, Maude F. McKenney, Marie M. Mount, and Alma Preinkert; as well as Marion Robinson, Thomas S. Spence, Nettie Taylor, the Millard Tydings family, Walter B. Waetjin, Louis R. Wilson, Dr. H. Boyde Wylie, and all of the University Preisdents from Silveseter to Elkins. In addition, the head librarians/Library Directors are represented in the files: Frank B. Bomberger, Lulu E. Connor, Miltanna (Rowe) McVey, Grace Barnes, Carl Hintz, Howard Rovelstad, and Dr. H. Joanne Harrar. Until the university re-organization in 1970-71, the Library Director oversaw all university libraries. In 1996, Charles Lowry was hired as Dean of the Libraries on the College Park campus and the title "Library Director" was abandoned. In 2009, Patricia A. Steele became Dean of the Libraries at University of Maryland, College Park.