Letter to the Editor

Library donation

Dear Bill

I am writing to bring to the attention of the members of the IUCr the extraordinary generosity shown recently by their society toward Colorado State University. A little over a year ago (July 28, 1997) a classic western flash flood roared onto our campus from the west. The devastating flood waters, which tragically took five lives elsewhere in Fort Collins that terrible night, broke through the west wall of the university's Morgan Library and inundated almost the entire science collection under 10 feet of murky water. In all, the flood damaged more than 437,000 volumes and journals, including more than 18,000 sets of bound journal titles and all recent science books. I am happy to report that our library is on its way back from those depths. An extraordinary outpouring of donated volumes (presently more than 500,000 volumes!) from other universities, individuals, professional societies, and publishers has been the first component of its recovery. Library staff estimates that roughly 90,000 of these donated volumes are exact replacements for volumes damaged in the flood, and these volumes will be back on the shelves for users this fall. Shortly after the flood, I asked Ted Baker whether the IUCr could help restore our collection by donating back issues of Acta Crystallographica that might be in stock with the publisher. Ted, Sine Larsen, and Mike Dacombe offered quick and unswerving support, and their efforts were instrumental in the IUCr's decision to donate all back issues in stock to help with our library's recovery. I wish to thank those three individuals, as well as the entire IUCr, for this incredible act of generosity. As a member, I am proud to know that today the International Union of Crystallography is one of the donors recognized as a key contributor to our library's recovery in a permanent glass sculpture on display in Colorado State's Morgan Library. Thank you Ted, Sine, and Mike - and thank you to all of the IUCr members whose organization made this possible.

Oren Anderson