Thursday, August 29, 2013

Samford University wasn’t always named Samford University

In 1841, Samford University was founded as Howard College. Originally located in Marion, Alabama, Rev. James Harvey DeVotie advocated naming the college after the 18th century philanthropist and English prison reformer, John Howard.

To a modern audience, John Howard seems a strange choice for a small Baptist college in Alabama. He was not Baptist, nor was he heavily involved in church matters. Rather, John Howard was a member of the merchant class of Britain and attributed for being the first English prison reformer. He traveled across Europe documenting the deplorable conditions of prison.

As for his dedication as a prison reformer, Howard viewed his work as humanitarian. In the 19th century, prison reform was a topic of heavy debate which is perhaps why DeVotie chose to name the school after the renowned John Howard. He was widely revered as a model of Christian compassion.

 If you’d like to read more about John Howard, check out Dean Chapman’s article for Season’s magazine in Spring 2005 or come visit the Special Collection. The Special Collection in the University Library holds a first edition, 1777, of John Howard’s book on English prisons and a second edition, 1791, of his book on European prisons, as well as a letter by Howard and several other items of interest, all thanks to the generosity of a donor.

So, why aren’t we still Howard?  In part because when Howard College became a university in 1965 there already was a Howard University. The name was changed to Samford University in honor of Frank Park Samford and the Samford family’s contribution to the university. The Howard College of Arts and Sciences retained both the name and the legacy of this great humanitarian.

On Tuesday, September 3rd, the University Library will celebrate John Howard’s 287th Birthday with cake and coffee at 10:00  am.   Come Join the Celebration!

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

University Library 101

Welcome new students! Have you been in the University Library yet? We want you to spend many hours studying & using our resources while you're a SU student. We realize you might have some questions so here's a list of places to find answers:

Questions? Use Ask Us! to find more answers & all the different ways to contact us.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

The Story Continues...Librarians on the Move!

Adding to our theme of Librarians on the Move: Here, There, Everywhere, we have enhanced our support for traditional and online education with a new Research Guide and by adding the option of online library instruction. In addition to in-person instruction, and other services (see our à la carte menu), you can now request this new online service. Librarians can also create videos on how to use the library and help you embed ASK US! (A live chat and e-mail feature where students can get help) inside Moodle or on other online sites.

To request this new online service or traditional in-person library instruction, click here. From there, click on Library Instruction Request form.

Questions? Please contact Dr. Stephanie Rollins.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

What happens in the library when the students aren't around?

Lots of things! We're busy planning for the future, taking care of projects that need to be completed before fall semester begins, & trying out new ideas to see what works.

Here are just a few of the things we do during the summer:

  • Attend virtual webinars
  • Move collections
  • Process new collections & manuscripts
  • Upgrade computers & software
  • Implement new programs
  • Order, process, & catalog materials
  • Make sure books & materials are shelved properly
  • Count everything that doesn't move
  • Order supplies
  • Ponder a lot
  • Schedule future displays & exhibits,
  • Handle ILL requests
  • & so much more
What? You thought we read all day? Sorry to disappoint you!