(1) those that were created to bring together items meeting certain collecting criteria; andRare Books, Faculty Publications and Alumni Publications are of the first type; the others are of the second.
(2) those that were donated to the library with the understanding that they would be preserved as "a collection" and remain separate from other collections.
"Rare" books include, but are not limited to: very old; first or limited edition; very costly or otherwise extremely valuable; unusual; scarce; signed by the author, subject or other person involved with publication; former property of or associated with a famous person; irreplaceable or in fragile condition but "keepable". A "rare" book may also be one that would normally be located elsewhere in the library but would be at risk if free access were allowed (books that tend to disappear or are prone to mutilation) or one that needs to be kept but doesn't really fit one of the other collections. There are also rare periodicals, recordings, photographs and art in various formats in the collection.
"Faculty Pubs" is a small but growing collection created by Special Collections staff. It consists of books, original music scores, theses, dissertations, video tapes and other materials produced by present or former University faculty and staff. Some of the oldest books were written by the University's founder, Joseph Baldwin.
"Alumni Pubs" was created to acknowledge the scholarship and creativity of our former students. Books and items in a variety of formats previously catalogued to other collections were brought together as the core of this collection. Many of the books, especially those written in recent years, are signed copies and were gifts from the authors. The earliest title is Columbian Historical Novels, a 13-volume set by John R. Musick (Class of 1874).
"Missouriana" (meaning Missouri collection) by definition contains books and other materials that
were written by a Missourian, are about Missouri or were published in Missouri. It is the largest of the
"Special" collections and was the first to be donated to Pickler Library as a designated collection.
E.M. Violette The core of the collection is the combined personal Missouri history libraries of professors Eugene Morrow Violette and Clarence H. McClure. Violette was head of our history department 1900-23 and while here created the University Archives and began collecting the artifacts which would later be named the E.M. Violette Museum in his honor. His children donated his library after his death in 1940. McClure, head of the Division of Social Science at the time of the Violette gift, added his own library to the collection a short time later. Both libraries contained many books which were already out of print, scarce or rare so a "Missouriana Room" (later Special Collections) was created at the request of the donors to protect the books while allowing access for research and study. The Library continues to add both new and rare titles to the collection which is identified as "Mo Collection" on the library catalogue.
Dr. Minnie Brashear, a Normal school alumna, long-time University of Missouri faculty member and well-known Mark Twain scholar, donated her personal Twain library to Pickler Library shortly before her death in 1963. Three years later, the University purchased the extensive collection of Moberly attorney Roswell Henderson to supplement Dr Brashear's. Both collections contain many first and foreign language editions of Mark Twain's works as well as works about the author. Although a part of Missouriana, the combined collection is maintained separately and is designated on the catalogue as "Brashear" or "Henderson".
The library and personal papers of alumnus Glenn Frank were donated to Pickler by his wife after his death in 1948 and placed in the Glenn Frank Memorial Room (later combined with the Missouriana library to form the Special Collections Department). Frank was managing editor of Century Publishing Company (publisher of books and Century Magazine) for several years and was later President of the University of Wisconsin. All the books now in the collection are signed (including some with tipped-in correspondence) or are association copies.
The Laughlin Collection is another combination books and manuscript collection and was given to Pickler Memorial Library by the family of Harry H Laughlin, an alumnus and former faculty member. Dr. Laughlin was the Director of the Eugenics Record Office and internationally known for his research in this field. The book collection, with his personal library as its core, is primarily on eugenics, genetics and related topics but does include other subjects. The Guide to the Harry H. Laughlin Papers is accessible on line to help researchers locate information in the manuscript collection.
Iowa Congressman and Mrs. Fred Schwengel began giving his life-long collection of Lincolniana to their alma mater in 1976. Primarily books and art, the collection also contains pamphlets, periodicals, newspaper clippings and ephemera about Abraham Lincoln and, and because it is inseparable from him, the Civil War. During his eight terms as a member of the US House of Representatives, Mr. Schwengel organized the US Capitol Historical Society and served as its first president, so there are some publications in the collection on the Capitol as well as a piece of original art by US Capitol artist Allyn Cox.
A gift of Pickler Memorial Library's Director Emeritus, George N Hartje, this collection covers the history of books, libraries, printing, and all aspects of the printed word. It includes old and rare editions as well as current works and continues to grow courtesy of a fund established by Mr. Hartje for that purpose.
From 1940 until 1993, the personal library of President Emeritus John R Kirk (1900-1925) resided in cases built especially for it in the Kirk Room of Kirk Memorial. The primary subjects of the collection, which Mrs. Kirk gave to the college after her husband's death in 1937, are the social sciences (psychology) and the philosophy of education. The books are now one of Pickler's special collections. President Kirk's papers are in the University Archives.