“A library is a good place to go when you feel unhappy, for there, in a book, you may find encouragement and comfort. A library is a good place to go when you feel bewildered or undecided, for there, in a book, you may have your question answered.” – E.B White
I love the E.B White quote above. It is one of my favorite quotes. I don’t just love it because I’m a librarian and I love all things library and book related but I believe that what White says is true. A great library has a wide variety of resources and it is a place to turn to for help. Whether you’re seeking answers, encouraging words or anything in-between; the humble walls of a great library will provide these resources in a welcoming space with knowledgeable and helpful staff. These qualities among many others make libraries important today and I am very grateful to be part of an institution that embodies these qualities and what I believe a library should be.
For over a century the Library has served the campus community and the town of Grove City. Built in 1900, the first library on campus was located in Carnegie Hall. It is one of six academic libraries in the state founded by Andrew Carnegie. For over 50 years Carnegie Hall was home to the library and several librarians including Agnes Henderson (top) and Mary Dunbar (bottom). As the collections and services of the library grew, a bigger space was needed and the library moved to upper campus.
Construction began on the new library building in 1952. The building named in memory of Henry Buhl, Jr. who served as a trustee and the Buhl Foundation for their generous contribution, first opened its doors to the campus community in 1954. Today Henry Buhl Library houses a collection of over 137,000 books and provides access to over 160,000 eBooks, 96 databases and 96,000 Journal titles.
Whether it was research through print and card catalogs of years past or digital resources in today’s technology age, the Library continues to serve an important role for the campus community. We continue to grow and change to meet the needs of the College. The Library offers a variety of study spaces for students, and librarians step out from behind the reference desk to go into classrooms to teach research skills. Our busy students and faculty will find a librarian in classroom buildings at Library Help-on-the-Go sessions. We also offer events that help students de-stress by inviting therapy dogs into the library every semester to help ease finals craziness.
The Buhl Library of today may be very different from the small library that began in Carnegie Hall many years ago but one thing remains the same; whether you’re searching for answers, encouragement, or anything (and everything) in-between, you’ll find it on our shelves and within our walls from our staff and students. We will continue to serve an important role to our Grove City College community because as E. B White once stated, “the Library is a good place to go…” and we will continue to strive to make it a good place to go for many years to come.
Guest author, Megan Babal joined the Buhl Library staff in 2013. She has a B.A. in History from Indiana University of Pennsylvania and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Pittsburgh. She is passionate about library outreach and serving the campus community. In her free time she enjoys spending time outdoors, reading, traveling and spending time with her family, friends and her dog, a Welsh Corgi named Holly.