‘Celebration Of Renewal’ Planned For Concord University’s J. Frank Marsh Library

For Immediate Release: 
Oct 07 2014

CONTACT:  Sarah Dalton

Concord University

Office of Advancement

PO Box 1000, Athens, WV 24712

(304) 384-6312, news@concord.edu






ATHENS, W.Va. – A “Celebration of Renewal” marking the renovation of the J. Frank Marsh Library at Concord University will be held Friday, Oct. 10. The outdoor ceremony will begin at 3 p.m. in front of the library’s main entrance. The community is invited to attend.

The library at what was then Concord State Teachers College was officially dedicated in November 1941; nine days later Pearl Harbor was attacked.  In 1969, the library was named the J. Frank Marsh Library in honor of President Marsh who served as President of Concord from 1929 to 1945.

As enrollment grew at Concord, so did the library. Changes were necessary to provide for more reader stations, study rooms and additional shelf space.  A major renovation took place in the late 1970s and the library was rededicated in 1980.

Significant renovations have taken place again at the library and have been completed this year. The building is now equipped with air conditioning, a new roof has been installed and the windows in the main reading room have been replaced. A unisex handicapped restroom was added, new entrance steps have replaced the original ones, spaces for collaborative study were created, a West Virginia room and a dedicated location for the University Archives were all completed during the most current renovation.  All of the public spaces have had a fresh coat of paint and carpeting was replaced throughout.

“The rededication is an exercise to honor the history, not only of the J. Frank Marsh Library, but also the very rich history of Concord University,” Connie Shumate, director of the Marsh Library, said. “An institution that began with one building, destroyed by fire not once, but twice, that was rebuilt and continued to grow while educating the students of southern West Virginia, is a fete to be recognized and honored.

“At the same time the ceremony itself serves to showcase the work that has been done to maintain the integrity and beauty of the 73-year-old building while equipping it for the 21st century.  It will truly be a Celebration of Renewal,” she said.

Mr. Robert Holroyd, well-known Princeton, W.Va., attorney and community leader, will serve as Keynote Speaker for the rededication ceremony. The ties of Holroyd’s family to the Athens and Concord communities date back to the 1850s when William and Sarah Holroyd become residents in the area. The Holroyds were among the families who assisted in the establishment of Concord. Mr. Holroyd is also a descendant of the Marsh Library’s first librarian, James French Holroyd.

Following the ceremony, Concord University students will conduct tours of the library.  Refreshments will be served.

For additional information on the “Celebration of Renewal” contact Connie Shumate at cshumate@concord.edu or 304-384-5366.



Persons with disabilities should contact Nancy Ellison, 1-304-384-6086 or 1-800-344-6679 extension 6086

if special assistance is required for access to an event scheduled by the University on campus.