The Thomas Murray collection includes not only stock from his bookstore, the Bleury Book Store in Montreal, but also a number of rare items he had accumulated as a private collector. As the collection came up for sale, the University Librarian, Neal Harlow, discussed the benefits of acquisition with Walter Koerner, a major benefactor of the Library and Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee of the Friends of the Library. In the spring of 1958, the collection was purchased for $60,000 (about $350 000 by contemporary standards)
The Friends of the Library understood that by purchasing such a collection, the library's resources would be advanced several stages. Dr. Samuel Rothstein, who was involved in the negotiations to purchase the collection, noted that "(t)his is the way to build up a distinguished collection....at one fell swoop (we) have something that...will bring the scholars to (us)."
The collection filled three hundred boxes, each measuring two cubic feet and weighing a total of ten tons. Processing of this enormous collection was not completed until after the formation of the Library's Special Collection Division in 1960.
Previous web exhibits have identified the following themes within the Thomas Murray Collection
This page has been adapted from preserved web content prepared for UBC Library by Jeremy Heil in 2000.
Want to explore this collection but don't know where to start? We've created some links that can help you discover the material in this collection.
Indexes, Catalogues, and Bibliographies in Print
This extensive catalogue of materials in the collection categorizes the books under the following headings. Where applicable, these headings are linked to the catalogue. For more reliable collocation of these titles as they belong to the Thomas Murray Collection, see the Amtmann inventory.
Scrapbook for a golden anniversary : the University of British Columbia Library, 1915-1965. Victoria: Morriss Printing Co., [1965?].
Related UBC Collections
Related UBC Library Research Guides