PULLMAN, Wash. — Joan and Vernon Gallup made a substantial contribution to faculty, staff, students, alumni and researchers with their gift of more than 15,000 rare books. Related to angling and outdoor sports, the gift is to the Washington State University Libraries’ department of Manuscripts, Archives and Special Collections (MASC).

Valued at $1.8 million, this is the largest single gift of rare books in the 120 year history of MASC. It puts WSU at the forefront of such collections nationally and internationally.

A reception in honor of the Gallups will be 5:30-7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, in the Terrell Library Atrium. For more information contact Anna Wheatley at awheatley@wsu.edu or 509-335-6205.

The Gallup Collection “will no doubt serve as the foundation for significant graduate work in humanities and related fields,” said Todd Butler, associate professor and vice chair of the Department of English. 

Assembled over decades from American and British dealers, the collection is three times the size of well known angling collections at Princeton University and the University of New Hampshire. It represents one of the largest of its kind ever donated to a public institution.

“This collection is replete with amazing books, such as Sarah Bowdich’s ‘The Fresh Water Fishes of Great Britain,’” said Trevor James Bond, head of MASC. “To vividly illustrate her book, Bowdich ground scales from fish and mixed them in her paints.”

The unusually fine collection also includes such treasures as a complete set of 19 first editions of Henry Abbot’s privately printed birch books, Oswald Crawfurd’s personal, annotated copy of “The Compleatest Angling Booke,” and a first edition (1653) of Izaak Walton’s “The Compleat Angler.” Bond said the “The Compleat Angler” is, along with the Bible, “one of the most popular books ever published in English.”

See an earlier article and SoundSlide about part of this collection here
Anna Wheatley, WSU Libraries, awheatley@wsu.edu, 509-335-6205

Media contact:
Darin Watkins, WSU News, darin.watkins@wsu.edu, 509-335-4456