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International Association for Identification Tags WVU Libraries as Official Repository

Posted by Admin.
December 8th, 2004

WVU Libraries could serve as the set for a new program in the fall lineup – CSI: 1893. It may be light on the cool special effects, but the story is still interesting.

Long before FBI agents were searching digital files to find a match for a fingerprint found at a crime scene, Sir Frances Galton began studying fingerprints as a means of identification. The result was Finger Prints, an 1892 work that included the first fingerprint classification system.

Galton established two major points. First, an individual’s fingerprints are unique – the chance of two people having the same prints would be 1 in 64 billion. Second, fingerprints stay the same as a person ages.

An 1893 edition of Finger Prints is part of the collection that the International Association for Identification is entrusting the WVU Libraries with for the next decade.

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WVLA Names Penny Pugh President

Posted by Admin.
December 8th, 2004

Penny Pugh
Penny Pugh, Head of Reference for the Downtown Campus Library, was named president of the West Virginia Library Association during the organization’s fall conference at Stonewall Resort.

In the post, she will guide the group which represents librarians and staff from public, academic, K-12, and special libraries around the state.

“It’s very challenging and humbling to be president of this organization,” Pugh said. “The association represents libraries of all types and gives us an opportunity to work together toward common goals, which ultimately serve the citizens of West Virginia.”

Pugh comes aboard with a full agenda already on her plate. The WVLA succeeded last session in securing funding from the Legislature to acquire statewide electronic database licenses for hundreds of libraries.

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Observances of Brown vs. BOE anniversary continue on WVU campuses

Posted by Admin.
October 7th, 2004

Illustrating the message — Below, Elizabeth Fitzgerald Howard reads from one of her books to a group of children at Westover Elementary during a presentation entitled “Every Family Has Stories.” The author visited the school last week as part of the University’s marking of the 50th anniversary of the Brown vs. Board of Education decision. Howard, who resides in Pittsburgh, was a member of WVU’s library science faculty from 1978-93.

Elizabeth Howard

– Mountaineer Spirit

WVU Libraries observe Banned Books Week

Posted by Admin.
September 29th, 2004

Banned Books Display

Sophie Bogdanski (right), Monographs Unit Librarian for the WVU Libraries, explains Banned Books Week to Shelia Shurina, an education junior, at a display in the Downtown Campus Library Alumni Lobby.

Banned Books Week, a national event that runs from Sept. 25-Oct. 2, has two goals. First, the annual observance is a celebration of the freedom to read. It is also a chance to educate people about the library’s responsibility to collect, provide access, and archive materials on all points of view and on any given topic without censorship.

“The library is a bias-free zone,“ Bogdanski said. “This freedom is essential on a university campus where students, faculty, and staff need to research both sides of controversial issues such as cloning.”

In spite of differing opinions about what is written in a book, people still have the right to read it. This right is embedded in the First Amendment of the Constitution.

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WVU Libraries add electronic journals to online catalog

Posted by Admin.
September 27th, 2004

Research may be a few steps faster and net greater results for many WVU Libraries users. Mountainlynx, the libraries’ online catalog, now includes electronic journals in its listings.

Until now, someone searching for a mix of resources to research a topic had to check Mountainlynx to find books, films and microfilm, then look elsewhere on the Libraries’ Web site to find available electronic journals.

It’s now one-stop shopping.

“If students and faculty know to go to Mountainlynx, then they can find the electronic journals they need,” said Linda Blake, electronic journals coordinator and science librarian.

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White Hall Mural Swings onto the Big Screen

Posted by Admin.
July 27th, 2004

Several current and former WVU students probably feel their Spidey Sense tingling while watching Spider-Man 2. The thought that there’s something familiar about one particular scene probably swings through their minds.

As Peter Parker can attest, trust those senses. There is something familiar about the film’s bank robbery scene for anyone who has sat in G-21 of White Hall.

A replica of the Robert Lepper mural covering the front wall of the WVU auditorium adorns a wall of a bank in the latest Spider-Man installment.

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Libraries Debut New Online Exhibit

Posted by Admin.
July 1st, 2004

Mountaineer Spirit

The WVU Libraries have launched a new online exhibit featuring an old and fragile book, “Boydell’s Illustrations of the Dramatic Works of Shakespeare.” The illustrations in this rare and delicate book can now be used by scholars and students with access to the Web, and without further wear on the brittle book.

The 1805 book consists of “100 elegant engravings” by several different British artists. The exhibit’s illustrations are accompanied by descriptive paragraphs, with the act and scene, some including brief excerpts of dialog. The exhibit can be viewed at:

Moving the Books: HSL Prepares for Construction of New Library, Center

Posted by Admin.
July 1st, 2004

WVU Health Sciences Library is preparing for the construction of the new Health Sciences Library and Center for Learning.

During Phase I, book collections (including reference, new books and oversized) are being moved to prepare for the renovation. Journals published before 1980 are being sent to the WVU Libraries Book Depository

Scanned versions of the articles from these journals will be made available upon request from the Web page at

For more information on the library construction project visit or
call 293-6810.

While in the library, please inquire about new locations for library materials at the HSL Circulation and Reference
desks. The library staff thanks patrons for their patience.

WVU Libraries to exhibit state native’s artwork in honor of WV’s birthday

Posted by Admin.
June 7th, 2004

CONTACT: John Cuthbert, West Virginia and Regional History Collection 304-293-4040 ext. 4201

In honor of West Virginia’s 141 st birthday, the West Virginia University Libraries’ West Virginia and Regional History Collection will exhibit the artwork of Mountain State native Richard Kidwell Miller on Saturday, June 19.

Miller is scheduled to attend the exhibit in the James Hornor Davis Family Galleries and present a lecture. The exhibit will open at 5 p.m., and Miller’s lecture will follow at 6 p.m. The galleries are on the sixth floor of the Charles C. Wise Jr. Library, part of the Downtown Library Complex.

Miller was born in Fairmont during the Great Depression. He displayed artistic talent at a young age and earned early release from grade school each day to study at a local WPA arts center.

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Smithsonian Adds Links to WVU Libraries Digital Exhibits

Posted by Admin.
June 3rd, 2004

Mountaineer Spirit

WVU has taken up digital domain in the Smithsonian Institution.

Links to four WVU Libraries digital exhibits appear on a Smithsonian Institution Libraries Web site. The site, “Library and Archival Exhibitions on the Web,” lists nearly 3,000 library-related exhibits from more than 25 countries. In 2003, close to 16,000 people visited the site.

“We’re honored that the Smithsonian has taken notice of our
work in the digital arena,” WVU Libraries Dean Frances O’Brien said. “Electronic resources and archives quickly became commonplace in academic libraries, and we want not only to compete in the field but to make an exceptional offering.”

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Researching Isaac Asimov

Posted by Admin.
March 21st, 2004

two library employees

Alisha Myers didn’t know what she was getting herself into last summer. An art education major at WVU, Myers, who works in the university’s newly renovated Wise Library, spent her summer in town, expecting the doldrums to seep in and take over.

The days were lazy, until the Web Services Librarian Beth Toren, who is also her supervisor, came to her with a project proposal – to help her put one of the library’s most extensive collections on the Internet.

Isaac Asimov (1920-1992) is the showcased author. He’s best known for his science fiction, but also wrote commentaries on the Bible and numerous books on science that could be understood by the common layman.

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Oh, the Memories

Posted by Admin.
February 12th, 2004

Mountaineer Spirit

BEANIE, BABY—Harold Forbes, associate curator with the West Virginia and Regional History Collection, holds the beanie he wore as a WVU freshman in 1967.

See the photo and full caption (PDF).

WVU to Mark 137 Years with Library Exhibit, Treats

Posted by Admin.
January 29th, 2004

CONTACTS: John Cuthbert, West Virginia and Regional History Collection, 304-293-3536 ext. 1318
David Master, WVU Dining Services, 304-293-2096 ext. 5

Come Feb. 7, don’t forget to sing a few bars of “Happy Birthday to U.”

That’s right: West Virginia University is turning 137 years old.

WVU Libraries will mark the occasion with a month-long exhibit featuring memorabilia from the school’s bygone days when homework was done with pencil and paper and a mouse was something that scurried across the floor. WVU’s Dining Services, meanwhile, will treat students to cupcakes and cookies on the actual birthday, which falls on a Saturday.

The library exhibit, “Some West Virginia University Firsts,” opens Monday, Feb. 2, in the J. Horner Davis Gallery 2 of the West Virginia and Regional History Collection and will remain on display throughout the month, curator John Cuthbert said. The collection is on the sixth floor of the renovated Charles C. Wise Jr. Library.

The display will include the deed to Woodburn Circle, upon which WVU was located; the first diploma issued by WVU; photographs of assorted first graduates; an oil painting of the Rev. Alexander Martin, WVU’s first president, and a copy of his inaugural speech. Also included are photos of WVU’s first buildings; a montage of early facilities no longer in existence; and mementos from the University’s early swing at sports.

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WVU librarian maps out learning techniques during Wednesday talk

Posted by Admin.
January 26th, 2004

CONTACT: WVU Center for Women’s Studies 304-293-2339

West Virginia University librarian and administrator Carroll Wilkinson knows that simple curiosity will always be the key to complex learning – even in today’s high-tech classrooms, where pixels can be more common than ink pens.

And just how that basic thirst for knowledge melds with the digital age will be the subject of Wilkinson’s Wednesday (Jan. 28) talk in WVU’s Fireside Chat Series, presented by the Center for Women’s Studies.

She’ll discuss “Curiosity and Cognitive Maps: Fresh Insights into Information and Women’s Studies,” from 3:30-5 p.m., in Room 104 of WVU’s Downtown Campus Library.

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WVU Libraries commemorate Asimov collection with digital display

Posted by Admin.
January 15th, 2004

CONTACT: Monte Maxwell, WVU Libraries 304-293-4040 ext. 4004

Science fiction writer Isaac Asimov used his books to explain the complicated world of science to readers around the globe. The West Virginia University Libraries are now using the Internet to share his works with the masses.

WVU Libraries recently launched an online exhibit celebrating their Isaac Asimov Collection.

The collection, donated last year by WVU alumnus Larry Shaver, contains works by Asimov, who has been called one of the greatest science fiction writers of the 20th century. Many critics, scientists, educators and readers praised Asimov for explaining complex scientific concepts in a clear, digestible way.

“We often think of rare library books as old books,” said Beth Toren, Web services librarian. “It is exciting to see something really different: a late 20th century science fiction collection, the complete works of one author, which include many first editions, autographed copies and great visuals. The sci-fi art lends itself to a graphic display, as do the hardcover editions with their book jackets intact.”

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