Historical Lighting Featured at Special Ceremony at Concord
Athens, W.Va. — Following Concord’s victory in the homecoming game on Saturday, October 16, students, faculty, alumni, and friends gathered in the J. Frank Marsh Library for a special lighting ceremony. Six historical and unique light fixtures were refurbished and re-hung, to be used as a secondary lighting source in the Library’s main reading room.
In the fall of 1980, the lights were saved from destruction when then President, Dr. Joseph Marsh, Jr., and former physical plant Director, Homer Ball, discovered that a contractor remodeling the Marsh Library had slated the "old" light fixtures for disposal.
“About a year ago, we looked at them and decided that they were too valuable not to use,” said Dr. Stephen Rowe, library director and professor of English. “They looked like unique and original lights,” he continued.
Dr. Rowe and Concord Archivist David Shumate hand-delivered the fixtures to Crenshaw Lighting in Floyd, Va., to assess their value and determine if the lights could be refurbished. That company recognized the lights as valuable and unique fixtures and was able to refurbish the historical lights.
The 85-pound lights, if purchased today, would cost anywhere from $10,000 to $15,000 each. Refurbishing the lights was considerably less than a new purchase price, according to Rowe.
“You will be the first to see them come on in a ceremonial fashion,” Rowe shared with the crowd at the lighting ceremony. Alice James Moore, an alumna of the university, activated the lights during the ceremony. Earlier this year, she was honored by Athens, W.Va., Mayor Robert Richardson with the “Elder Citizen” award at the Athens-Concord Town Social.
Mike Mangus of Mangus Electric in Princeton, W.Va., personally wired each of the lights on a separate lighting circuit so that they could be used for special occasions. Rowe took time to thank Mangus during the ceremony.
About fifty people attended for the lighting ceremony. Each person in attendance received a wooden limited edition collectable picturing the J. Frank Marsh Library.
“We hope that alumni and current students appreciate the restoration of this classic look,” said Rowe.
PHOTO: Dr. Stephen Rowe, director for the J. Frank Marsh Library, welcomed guests to the special lighting ceremony.
PHOTO: The new lights add a historic touch to the Library.
Jesse Call, a student in Concord University’s political science department, wrote this press release. His hometown is Pocahontas, Va.