News & Notes

Middleton Library celebrates 50th Anniversary

Posted in Exhibitions
Middleton Library, c. 1960, illustration by Ben Looney.

Middleton Library, c. 1960, illustration by Ben Looney.

The LSU community celebrated the dedication of a new library on October 23, 1959.  To help mark the anniversary of this momentous occasion, LSU Libraries Special Collections has mounted  the mini-exhibition Troy H. Middleton Library: 50 Years of Service to LSU, now on display in Hill Memorial Library’s lecture hall.  The exhibition features the architects’ rendering, images of the library’s construction, and a pen and ink drawing of the completed library.  Also included are a narrative and photographs on the life of Troy H. Middleton for whom the library was renamed in 1979, and a brief history of technological change in the library.

Constructed  between April 1956 and August 1958, the LSU Library was designed by the architectural firm Bodman, Murrell & Smith and opened in September 1958.  According to a contemporary press release, the new library contained enough steel to build 1600 cars and enough concrete to build a three-foot-wide sidewalk from Baton Rouge to New Orleans.  Images on display give a glimpse at various phases of construction, from reinforcing the foundation to erecting the steel skeleton to assembling the stacks.  A pen-and-ink drawing by Ben Earl Looney shows the exterior of the completed structure, ca. 1960.

Troy H. Middleton became almost synonymous with LSU during his service to the University.  As a major in the U.S. Army, Middleton arrived on campus in 1930 to become commandant of ROTC cadets.  Middleton also served as assistant vice president of the University in the wake of the “University Scandals” in 1939 and comptroller until the end of 1941.  During the Second World War, Middleton ably served as a division and corps commander in the invasion of Sicily and Italy in 1943, the post-D-Day thrust through France and Belgium, in 1944, and as defender of Bastogne during the Battle of the Bulge in 1944-1945.  Middleton returned to service at LSU after the war as comptroller and in 1951, the Board of Supervisors elected him president of the University, an office he held until 1962. It was largely through Middleton’s efforts that the new library became a reality.  The library was officially named the Troy H. Middleton Library in 1979 after Middleton’s death.

Technological change in the library—covering the  evolution of both search techniques and material format—is illustrated in the display as well.  B. F. French’s five-volume Historical Collections of Louisiana is used to show the transitions from  card catalog to online catalog,  and from printed volumes to microfiche to CD-ROM and finally to web-only resources.

The exhibition runs through December 23, 2009.

More activities and exhibitions commemorating the 50th anniversary of the library’s dedication are taking place in Middleton Library. Visit for details.

Exhibitions Coordinator, LSU Libraries Special Collections

Posted in Exhibitions

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On Display

Made in New Orleans: The Past in Print  –  Main Gallery

John Earle Uhler Papers  –  Reading Room

In the News

Made in New Orleans
“Hill Memorial Library showcases ‘Made in New Orleans: The Past in Print’,” The Daily Reveille

Made in New Orleans
On exhibit: ‘Made in New Orleans’ at LSU Hill Memorial Library, March 19-June 8,” inRegister

Letterform Characters
“Hill Memorial Library exhibit explores history of typeface,”  The Daily Reveille

Through the Valley of Death
“Hill Memorial Library debuts WWI exhibit,” The Daily Reveille

Investigating Sherlock
“LSU’s Hill Memorial hosts Sherlock Holmes exhibit,” The Daily Reveille

Jazz Fest 101: A Showcase of Student Oral History Research
“Hill Memorial Library displays ‘Jazz Fest 101,’ explores festival’s past,” The Daily Reveille

A Voyage to the Floating World: Japanese Illustrated Books and East-West Cultural Exchange in the Nineteenth Century
“On Exhibit: A Voyage to the Floating World,” inRegister

Advancing Scholarship & Learning for 80 Years: LSU Press and The Southern Review
“Hill Memorial Library Displays History of LSU Press, Southern Review,” The Daily Reveille

A la Militaire” – The Battle of New Orleans
“Hill Memorial opens ‘A la Militaire,'” The Daily Reveille

Cooperative Extension at LSU
“AgCenter: Louisiana resource for 100 years,”
The Advertiser

I Remember: An Art Show of Environmental Significance
“Time for oil and gas industry to come to the table on coastal restoration,” BR Business Report

The Relentless Pursuit of “Equal”
“Integration Exhibit Opens,” LSU Daily Reveille

Centuries of Style
“Style Stories,” The Advocate

“Clothing as Social History,”

Of Kin & Cane
LSU Daily Reveille

Blacks in the Red Stick
LSU Daily Reveille

Louisiana for Bibliophiles
The Advocate

Change(less): Photography and the Ephemeral Made Permanent
DIG Magazine

Recent Faculty Publications


Hebert, Andrea. “Information Literacy Skills of First-Year Library and Information Science Graduate Students: An Exploratory Study,” Evidence Based Library and Information Practice Volume 13, Issue 3 (September 2018).

Miller, Marty. “Sacred vs. Profane in The Great War: A Neutral’s Indictment: Louis Raemaekers’s Use of Religious Imagery in Adoration of the Magi and Our Lady of Antwerp.” Catholic Library World, vol. 89, no. 1, Sept. 2018, pp. 20–32.

Wilder, Stanley. “Delayed Retirements and the Youth Movement among ARL Library Professionals,” Research Library Issues, no. 295 (2018).

Ziegler, Scott. “PAL: Toward a Recommendation System for Manuscripts,” Information Technology and Libraries, Vol. 37, No. 3 (2018).


Caminita, C., Cook, M., & Paster, A. (2017). Thirty years of preserving, discovering, and accessing U.S. agricultural information: Past progress and current challenges. Library Trends, 65(3), 293-315.

Dauterive, Sarah, John Bourgeois, & Sarah Simms. “How little is too little? An examination of information literacy instruction duration for freshmen.” Journal of Information Literacy, 11.1 (2017): 204-219.

Fontenot, Mitch; Emily Frank; and Andrea Hebert. “Going Where the Users Are: Three Variations on a Theme,” Louisiana Libraries, Fall 2017.

Johnson, Hayley. “#NoDAPL: Social Media, Empowerment, and Civic Participation at Standing Rock,” Library Trends, Fall 2017.


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