Julie H. Young still remembers the musty smell of the old library, the way the floors would creak and the confusing book stacks.
“Call numbers would end and they would resume on another floor or several feet away,” said Young, a student assistant supervisor for research services. That all changed 10 years ago this month when the “new” Henry Madden Library opened to the public.
The Fresno State community will celebrate the 10th anniversary the renovated Madden Library on Tuesday, Feb. 19, with a birthday celebration from 1:30 to 2:30 p.m. in the library lobby. Students, staff and faculty will enjoy cake, display their birthday wishes for the library, grab limited edition anniversary giveaways and more. Victor E. Bulldog III will be visiting patrons from 2 to 3 p.m.
“The Madden Library is truly the intellectual and cultural center of our campus,” said Del Hornbuckle, dean of library services. “We are proud to not only offer this beautiful building, but also the millions of resources and services inside to help our students create, discover and grow.”
Also open this month is the Anniversary Exhibition in the Leon S. Peters Ellipse Gallery on the second floor of the library. The exhibition features never-before-seen historic photographs, rare University artifacts and an original art installation created by the Laureate Lab. The exhibition is on display now and open to the public through March 8.
Thanks to generous donors including the Table Mountain Rancheria and its $10 million gift, Fresno State’s goal of housing one of the top academic libraries in the nation became a reality. To honor Table Mountain Rancheria’s transformational gift and celebrate the Native American culture prominent in the Central Valley, Madden Library architects thoughtfully wove traditional Native American patterns into the design of the building itself.
The signature design element is the elliptical entry tower that evokes Native American forms, using steel, zinc and wood woven together in a style similar to basketry created by the region’s Mono Indians.
More than 12 million people have passed through the Madden Library doors in the past decade. Its many services and activities have made it a focal point for all who work and study at the University. With exhibitions, guest speakers and activities routinely open to the general public, the library has reached thousands in the community, providing a place for local residents to experience cultural and educational programs free of charge.