Bentley Historical Library 75th Anniversary Celebration
September 26, 2010
Thank you, Bob, and thank you to Kim Eagle and the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra for today’s celebration concert. We are all looking forward to the music of Michigan.
Over the decades, Hill Auditorium has welcomed many memorable performers and speakers, from Robert Frost, Van Cliburn and Marian Anderson to Leonard Bernstein, Jessye Norman and Bruce Springsteen.
Today we celebrate the library that has helped to chronicle not only the history of Hill, but also the rich narrative of our university, our city and our state.
For 75 years, the Bentley Historical Library has been the repository for the reputation of the University of Michigan. When we look to the Bentley to learn about our past, we are informed and enlightened about decisions that will determine our future.
As so many of you know from firsthand experience, the Bentley is an invaluable archive of unique materials. It is a collection of books and papers, manuscripts and maps, recordings and photographs – more and more of which are digitized.
At its essence, the holdings of the Bentley are about people – their aspirations and accomplishments, and how their lives shaped our university, our community and our world.
The Bentley is also about donors – the thousands of individuals and organizations that through the years have generously contributed their stories and resources to support the Bentley’s mission. These donations are priceless, because they make the Bentley’s holdings available to everyone, from authors and scholars who come here from around the globe, to freshmen learning to conduct research and genealogists looking for family connections.
Simply put, the Bentley is a treasure, and one we are pleased to share with the world.
An English politician once said, “Libraries are not made, they grow.” The Bentley flourishes because of the generosity and goodwill of supporters who love history, and everything that history means to our future.
So let’s celebrate this remarkable institution, and do so in grand style with the best of our community – the collections of the Bentley, the faculty of the university, and the musicians of Ann Arbor. Please enjoy today’s performance, and thank you again.