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Clarkson University Libraries

Library History  

Last Updated: Feb 1, 2016 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

Library History Print Page

Through the Years

Library Entrance circa 1956

Searching the catalog circa 1956

Circulation Desk circa 1956


Library History

Clarkson's library has occupied various buildings around campus. The first library was located in a room in the president's home. At one time it was housed on the first floor of Old Main and then on the second floor. When the president's home adjacent to Old Main was converted into office space, the library occupied the entire second floor. Later, the library was moved to the third floor of Peyton Hall.

In 1956, money donated by Mr. Burnap allowed for the renovation of the gymnasium which became the Harriet Call Burnap Memorial Library.

In 1980 the Harriet Call Burnap Memorial library was moved into the new Andrew S. Schuler Educational Resources Center on the hill campus.

 About Harriet Call Burnap and Frank P. Burnap

The Harriet Call Burnap Memorial Library was made possible through the generosity of Frank P. Burnap of Kansas City, Missouri, a native of Parishville, New York. The first library was housed in a room in the president's house before moving to the old Clarkson gymnasium that was converted into a library. The Harriet Call Burnap Memorial Library is now located in the Educational Resources Center located in the center of the hill campus. This welcome addition to the Clarkson campus is dedicated to the memory of Mr. Burnap’s wife, who originally lived in Potsdam.


Frank P. Burnap, born in Parishville, New York, in August 1861, met his future wife when they were attending the Potsdam Normal School


         Mr. Burnap’s first position was with the Boorum and Pease Company of Brooklyn, manufacturers of the line of "Standard Blank Books." While on a business trip west for that firm, Mr. Burnap saw an opportunity for the establishment of a similar business in Kansas City, Missouri, and located there in 1887. The busniess ventures of Mr. Burnap proved eminently successful, developing into the largest business of its nature west of the Mississippi.

He was married to Miss Harriet Call in 1891. She died on August 27, 1947.

Mr. Burnap held an interest in Potsdam and its affairs, and his generous gift to Clarkson University is indicative of that.


Information found on this page was taken from the book A Clarkson Mosaic: bits and pieces of academic, personal, sports and administrative history creating a portrait of Clarkson University's first hundred years 1896-1995 by Bradford Broughton, 1995.


Through the Years

Gym Renovation circa 1955

Early Computing circa early 1980s

ERC Library Entrance circa 1980

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