February is Library Lovers Month – and on a college campus, few buildings deserve more love than the library. At Wilkes University, the E.S. Farley Library, provides a quiet, comfortable place to study, 24/7. No matter how familiar the library may seem to students, faculty and staff, it’s a building that holds hidden treasure. There are surprise collections, little-known resources and just plain interesting things about the building located on the corner of South Street and South Franklin Street. Here are ten things you may not know about the Farley Library:
- The Farley Library is one of the largest resource libraries in the region, boasting more than 200,000 books and bound journals, 75,000 full text online journals, microforms, instructional audio-video materials, and over 430 journals and newspaper subscriptions.
- The library is named and dedicated in honor of Wilkes’ founding president, Eugene S. Farley. Although hundreds pass in and out of its doors every day, few could repeat the words on the plaque that honors him near the building’s main entrance: May all who study in these halls gain vision to inspire, conviction to sustain and wisdom to guide.
- But….if you think the library’s Farley Room is named in honor of Eugene S. Farley, you are wrong. It honors his wife, Eleanor Coates Farley. The antique piano in the room is an homage to the fact that she was an accomplished pianist.
- The Polish Room is one of four special rooms in the library. Located on the 2nd floor, it is dedicated to the memory of settlers from Poland who have made their homes in the Wyoming Valley since 1856. It contains furniture, carvings and other cultural artifacts. The Polish Room Committee, made up of community members, holds events there every year, including a food tasting of Polish cuisine.
- Everyone knows there are books in the library – but did you know there is an autograph collection as well? The McClintock Autograph Collection has the autographs of presidents from Washington to Eisenhower, Voltaire, Catherine the Great, Napoleon and a host of others.
- And while we’re at it – there’s a McClintock Room too! It honors Gilbert Stuart McClintock, a former prominent local attorney who served as chairman of the Board of Trustees of Wilkes College.
- The library was one of the most severely impacted buildings on campus in the 1972 flood caused by Hurricane Agnes. More than 53,000 volumes were destroyed.
- Technology is available to be checked out with a Wilkes library card. While much of it must be used onsite in the library, students, faculty and staff can borrow iPads, laptops, and even cameras by stopping by the front desk.
- You don’t have to mosey into the library to ask a question. But you can also text librarians a question at 570-664-8292. Prefer an online chat? Scroll down to the bottom of this page and start a conversation with a librarian
- You can immerse yourself in the University’s past. The Wilkes University Archives, located on the fourth floor of the library, selects, preserves, and makes available records that document the programs, people, and history of Wilkes University and the Wyoming Valley. It includes archives of The Beacon student newspaper, going back to its forerunner, The Bison Stampede, as well as photos, blueprints and more.