Volume XXVII · Winter 1973-1974 · Number 2
A New Friendship
--BEN C. BOWMAN
It is especially gratifying, in this issue of the Bulletin, to report formation, during the past year, of the Friends of the University of Rochester Libraries. Memberships already number 200 or more, and a promising cash balance has been established in the treasury.
But there is a good deal more than these bare facts to report upon, for the record of the Friends, though only a beginning one, is nonetheless an impressive one.
It began when a group of like-minded people seriously interested in strengthening the University's resources for research and learning joined forces for the purpose of developing support for its Libraries and formed an Ad Hoc Steering Committee for Establishing a Friends of the Libraries.
The committee took two important and effective steps. After a consideration of procedural matters and appropriate forms of organization, it established, by letter of invitation, a governing body for the Friends -- a thirty-member Council. Next, in October 1972, the Ad Hoc Committee invited the new Councilors to a dinner at the Faculty Club and a business meeting in Rush Rhees Library. A program of objectives and activities for the Friends was outlined, a dues structure was discussed and approved, and a president (Mrs. Morton J. Baum) was named. Soon afterward, an Executive Committee was formed -- and the Friends was well on its way.
During the next few months, the Council's Executive Committee and its sub-committees worked hard and effectively on several programs. Visits by Council members to each of the University's three Libraries -- Rush Rhees Library, Edward G. Miner Medical Library, and Sibley Music Library -- were scheduled. A typographically distinguished brochure soliciting memberships was created and mailed this first mailing resulting in at least 170 memberships. Even before the end of its first full year as a formal organization, the Friends had planned and conducted an "Upstate New York First" (handbill collectors, take note). This was a Book Auction and Fair, September 21 and 22, 1973. Not only did proceeds from it add substantially to the Friends' treasury, but, of greater importance and excitement, the Auction and Fair brought together a rather special company. It included the interested -- Readers; the keen and knowing -- Dealers; the afflicted -- Collectors; and the inspired -- the Organizers and Planners.
The University and its Libraries are grateful to them all. The Friends can be proud of a good start toward an important goal.