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“From Burns and Bibles to Barton Bulldogs” — the Focus of the K.D. Kennedy, Jr. Rare Book Room Symposium on October 20

WILSON, N.C. — October 12, 2016 — “From Burns and Bibles to Barton Bulldogs: Using Rare Books for Teaching and Learning at Barton College” will be the focus of the third annual K.D. Kennedy, Jr. Rare Book Room Symposium at Barton College on Thursday, Oct. 20. The symposium, to be held in the Willis N. Hackney Library from 3 p.m. – 6 p.m., will welcome noted featured speakers as well as faculty/student presentations. The program is open to the public free of charge and the community is invited to attend.

The symposium schedule will begin with a reception at 3 p.m. followed by keynote speaker John Lawrence, Head of the North Collection at East Carolina University’s Joyner Library, who will highlight a program executed at East Carolina University over the course of several years, in which all freshman English composition students (over 70 sections) used special collections materials for their final research papers. Lawrence will discuss the successes as well as the challenges, and offer suggestions about how such a program can be successful.

From 4 – 5 p.m., the symposium will host faculty/student panel discussions led by Professors Shawn McCauley and George Loveland and students discussing rare books, Barton College Archivist Shannon Wilson and students Nieimah Moore and Patricia Holliday highlighting the historical Discipliana Collection, and Dr. Susan Bane, Director of Barton’s Honors Program and Associate Professor of Physical Education and Sport Studies, with several of her honors students, explaining how the College Archives are used in student research.

At 5 p.m., the symposium will conclude with a presentation by featured speaker Elizabeth Sudduth, Director of the Irvin Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, University of South Carolina. Sudduth will share effective ways to promote rare books and special collections to increase undergraduate use of these materials. A plenary panel discussion with Q&A will bring the program to a close.

About the Symposium —

This year’s symposium will provide an opportunity to acquaint the public with the Special Collections at Barton College, which are divided into three distinctive divisions: Rare Books; College Archives; and the Discipliana Collection. These important and distinguished collections combine rare printed volumes; manuscripts; correspondence and personal papers; as well as sound and visual materials. Rare books focus on the works of Robert Burns and other volumes published in the British Isles in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. College archives document the history of Barton College. Discipliana materials contain published works dating back to the founding of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), and primary documents related to church founders, such as Alexander Campbell and Barton Stone.

The primary purpose of the College’s Special Collections is to support the academic mission of Barton College. “The materials provide a great depth and richness to Hackney Library’s ongoing teaching mission,” explained George Loveland, director of Hackney Library. “Students using special collections materials have presented their findings at Barton’s Day of Scholarship and other professional seminars and workshops.

“The purpose of the October 20 symposium is to highlight this student research, and to invite input from the Barton and Wilson communities as to how special collections might be used even more extensively to stimulate undergraduate student research,” he added. “It is unique for a school the size of Barton to have a facility like the K.D. Kennedy, Jr. Rare Book Room. It’s also important to understand that our rare book room is NOT a museum, where patrons view priceless objects through protective glass, but a learning laboratory, where students examine rare books to explore history, theology, art, and cultural and political values in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th century.”

For additional information about this event, please contact George Loveland, director of Hackney Library, at 252-399-6501 or gwloveland@barton.edu.