Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Alabama Churches

The Special Collection recently finished digitizing over a hundred photos of Baptist churches throughout the state of Alabama. While we're still getting them uploaded into our online system for everyone to see, we thought we'd show off a few of our favorites. 

These photos come from SCAV 960, a collection of photos of Baptist churches from the 1950s and 1960s that were gathered by the Alabama Baptist Historical Commision. Sadly, most of the photos are not dated and on some there is no location, so we've not always been able to percisely ID each of the churches in questions. After all, churches sure do like the have the same name. 

Hanceville First Bapitst Church

Hanceville First Baptist Church in Hanceville Alabama is a member of the East Cullman Association. We don't have a date on this photo, but we're thinking it is from the 1950s. 

 First Baptist Church in Steppville, Alabama
We don't know much about this church, but love the photo. No association has been able to be verified for the church. So, if anyone recoginizes this door, we'd love to know. 

Philadelphia Baptist Church, Phenix City, Alabama
Philadelphia Baptist Church in Phenix City, Alabama. Philadelphia Baptist Church is a member of the Russell Baptist Association. 

Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Decatur, Alabama
Pleasant Hill Baptist Church in Decatur, Alabama. After some digging, we've traced the church to the Morgan Baptist Association, but we're not certain about that. Sadly, this great old photograph is creased in the center, causing considerable damage. 

 Union Grove in Morgan County
One of our more mysterious churches, Union Grove is identifed on the photopgraph as a member of the Gillam Springs Association, but the Gillam Springs Association no longer exists. We haven't been able to find the church is another association and Union Grove is a very common church name. If anyone recognizes this church, please contact the Special Collection at (Link to Email) . We'd love to track it down. 

And that's it! Just a few of our newly digitized church photos. We're always adding more, so check out our Alabama Relgious Life digital collections online.

Thanks, once again, to Rachel Cohen of the Special Collection and University Archives for blog text and photographs.

Thursday, June 30, 2016

Library Closed for Independence Day

The Samford University library will be closed on Monday, July 4th, to observe Independence Day.

The anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 commemorates the signing of the document which declared:

 "We hold these truths to be self evident, that all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness."

The American revolutionaries declared the thirteen original colonies to be independent states, free of British rule.

Have a safe and blessed holiday!  

The library will re-open as usual at 7:30 am on July 5.

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

The First Summer School

A Group of Howard College's First Summer School Students 

Originally published in the Howard College Bulletin in July 1915, this rare photo shows our first class of Education students.

The photo caption tells us that, "In order to provide for the extension of teachers' certificates, Howard College established a Department of Education with the opening of its first summer school, June 7. The school for teachers was run in conjunction with the summer school for college students. About fifty students were registered the first summer. Professor James W. Norman, recently named to the faculty of the School of Education of the University of Minnesota, was Dean of the Summer School. The school closed July 16."

So, this group of students were some of our first Education students ever! And they started classes here 101 years ago today.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Celebrating 10 Years with Dr. Westmoreland!

Early Thursday morning on June, 1, 2006, Dr. Andrew Westmoreland entered the office of the president and sat behind his new desk. This brought the beginning of a new era for Samford University and a new era for Dr. Westmoreland. Before coming to Samford, Dr. Westmoreland served as a leader for Ouachita Baptist University for over twenty-seven years. He was elected president of Ouachita in 1998. His predecessor at Samford, Dr. Corts, retired on May 31 after twenty-three years of service.
Dr. Andrew Westmoreland

In unlocking the door for the first time, Dr. Westmoreland chose not to use the shiny new keys presented to him earlier in the week. Instead, he chose to use the keys left for him by the previous president, Dr. Corts. Dr. Westmoreland's choice in using the old keys served as a link to the tradition and legacy left behind by his predecessor. Dr. Westmoreland wrote about the legacy and the keys in his first email to the faculty and staff of the university.


Dr. Westmoreland brought with him a pen presented to him by the members of the faculty and staff at Ouachita. The pen was crafted from the remains of the first building constructed at Ouachita’s campus. The building burned in 1949.

Business cards were printed weeks before Dr. Westmoreland's arrival on campus. The first business card printed for the new president is now a part of the archives of the university.

Dr. Westmoreland's valise, a gift from Dr. Bob C. Riley of Arkansas

As Dr. Westmoreland opened the door to his office, he carried with him a leather valise given to him just prior to his first day at Ouachita in June of 1979. The valise was given to him by his friend and mentor, Dr. Bob C. Riley, a former chair of the political science department at Ouachita, lieutenant-governor and governor of Arkansas. Dr. and Mrs. Westmoreland treasured their relationship with Dr. Riley. Their daughter Riley is named for him.

This post is an adaptation of an earlier feature in the Special Collection Treasures, found here:

Thanks, as always, to the University Archives and Special Collection for their amazing work.

Monday, May 2, 2016

New Study Room Feature pre-Finals!

Two weeks ago we quietly added a new feature to the library’s website:  a live view of study room availability.  

You’ll find the link in the quick link menu, lower right side of the home page, and at the top of the study room policy page. There’s also an image in the rotating image feature on the right side of the page.

Quick Links are on the bottom right of


Click, click, click!

Click here, too!
The information has always been in the catalog, we simply created a link directly to it. 

The list of study rooms uses the library catalog’s availability status display to show if the key to each room is available, checked out and due (date/time), or recently returned.

Note that the page does NOT show the media rooms on the first floor or the lab study rooms on the lower level.

Keep calm, guys, and use this cool new feature!

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Spring, Stress, Haiku 2016

Do not fret, Samford.  
Doors close, doors open, assignments 
End, and so does stress.  

Feeling inspired by the loveliness that surrounds you on our campus and in the beauty of the Earth?

Blind to the budding trees and blooming flowers due to looming deadlines?

Beginning to contemplate life beyond this semester or the confines of college?

Send us your meditations that follow the short poem structure of haiku.

You can use the form embedded below.

You can also email your haiku to

Breathe deep, seek peace, Samford.