Lucile Speer recalls the history of the University of Montana Library (then Montana State University Library). She describes being hired by Gertrude Buckhous, the first trained librarian at the University, when the library was just one room in the basement of Main Hall in 1922. Speer reminisces about her introduction to the library profession, having first taught freshman English in Kalispell, Montana, before being diagnosed with osteomyelitis and accepting an apprenticeship at the UM Library from Winifred Feighner. Speer discusses her wages, schooling, and how the profession was referred to as “library economy.” She mentions Phillip O. Keeney’s hiring as the head librarian, the improvements he made to the library, and how he dealt with a budget crisis. She also recalls how Sidney Cox, an English professor at the University, was fired for printing an article containing profanity in The Frontier.
Gertrude Buckhous; Mary Craig; Winifred Feighner; Library science; Library economy; University of Montana librarians; Phillip O. Keeney; University of Montana Library budget; Sidney Cox; The Frontier
Lucile Speer Interviews Oral History Project, OH 046, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library
Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / email@example.com
Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (01:00:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (12 p.: 28 cm.)
Speer, Lucile, "Lucile Speer Interview, February 17, 1981" (1981). Lucile Speer Interviews Oral History Project. 10.