Bloomsburg University's Harvey A. Andruss Library

Library Exhibits

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Remembering Our History: A Look at
Bloomsburg University's Anniversary Celebrations, 1939-1989


Students at the Bloomsburg State Teachers College
performing a pageant in celebration of the Centennial, 1939.

           In 1839, the citizens of Bloomsburg created the Bloomsburg Academy, the forerunner of what is now known as Bloomsburg University. 2014 marks the 175th anniversary of the Academy's founding. The school has grown considerably since 1839, developing into a State Teachers College by its Centennial year. By the 125th Anniversary, it had become Bloomsburg State College and finally Bloomsburg University in 1983. Now serving 10,000 students, the University is unrecognizable from the Academy it was built upon, although its history has been remembered over the years through anniversary celebrations. During the Centennial, 125th anniversary and Sesquicentennial, a number of events and commemorations were sponsored.
           This exhibit recognizes these past celebrations through documentation of the different ceremonies, parades, convocations, symposia, pageants, guest speakers and Homecoming football games occurring during the anniversary years of 1939, 1964 and 1989. The exhibit not only displays the events which took place, but also the era in which they took place. It presents the transformation of the College from the early 1900s to the 1990s, showing the different buildings on campus and presidents who led the institution. In general, the exhibit reflects the time periods of the Centennial, 125th anniversary, and Sesquicentennial years and how they were celebrated.
           The display is currently installed in the flat cases on the third floor of the Andruss Library and contains programs, yearbooks, newspapers, newspaper clippings, clothing, and photographs, among other artifacts from the time periods. The exhibit will be on display until February 20, 2015.

           A second display entitled "Treasures from the Archives Celebrating 175 Years of Bloomsburg University History" can be found in the wall cases in front of the University Archives. It features artifacts and memorabilia from the Normal School days of the 19th Century to Bloomsburg University of the 21st Century.


The University Archives periodically creates online or 'virtual' exhibits to highlight the Archives' collections and the history of Bloomsburg University. The first such exhibit is Bloomsburg State Teachers College in 1959. This is a pictorial look at the campus of 40 years ago, complete with historical and current information on all campus areas that existed at that time. The second online exhibit by the University Archives is entitled A Gallery of Presidents and History of Bloomsburg University, an in-depth look at the history of the University with detailed biographical information on each of its presidents.  The third exhibit is Views of the Bloomsburg State Normal School, 1921-1923, a look at the state normal school using photographs and information from the course catalogues.  The fourth exhibit is the 1919 War Hero Memorial Pinery, which examines the history of the World War I memorial located near Carver Hall, and provides biographical information on the 16 students who are remembered there.  A fifth online exhibit is The Maine Experience: Bloomsburg State College Summer Art Classes at Moosehead Lake, 1975-79, which remembers the summers during the 1970s that art students from Bloomsburg went to the wilds of Maine to paint, draw, learn their craft and experience life.  The sixth is A Legacy of Champions: The Story of Wrestling at Bloomsburg University, which documents the history of the wrestling program at the University from its founding in 1930 to the present day, featuring many of our individual and team champions from over the years.  The most recent one is The Navy V-5s at the Bloomsburg State Teachers College, telling the story of the naval flight instructors who trained in Bloomsburg during World War II.

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Updated 9/23/14