Historian Norman Saul to Give Lecture on U.S. Philanthropist and Globalist Charles R. Crane


NEW YORK, October 17, 2008 The Friends of the Columbia Libraries will sponsor a lecture by Norman E. Saul, Professor of History and Russian & East European Studies, University of Kansas, on Thursday, October 30, 2008 at 6:00 p.m. The lecture, “Charles R. Crane: A Major American Globalist and Philanthropist,” will take place in Room 523 Butler Library, 535 West 114th Street, and is free and open to the public.

Charles R. Crane (1858-1939) had a fascinating career. He started at Crane Company—the family firm and one of the largest manufacturers of plumbing and related supplies—and ended as a great American philanthropist engaged in wide-ranging political activities. Mr. Crane contributed substantial sums to the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts; international activities of the YMCA; the Harvard Medical School of China in Shanghai; and Constantinople Women's College. Columbia University also received support for purchase of books on the Near East.

Public service played an important role in Mr. Crane's life. President Taft appointed him the U.S. minister to China in 1909. Following his second term as minister to China (1921 - 1922), Crane founded the New York-based Institute for Current World Affairs (ICWA) in 1925.

Norman E. Saul is Professor of Modern Russian History and of the Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies at the University of Kansas. He received his Ph.D. in history from Columbia University, and taught modern Russian history at Purdue and Brown before beginning his tenure at the University of Kansas. Since the 1970s, his main focus has been on Russian-American relations, and he has completed four books on this subject. His Historical Dictionary of Russian and Soviet-American Relations will be published by Scarecrow Press in October 2008.

A reception will follow the lecture. For more information, or to attend, please respond to cul-events@columbia.edu. To view a listing of events, visit www.alumni.libraries.columbia.edu.

The Friends of the Columbia Libraries aim to cultivate an informed interest in and support for the Columbia Libraries. The Friends foster the growth and improvement of the Libraries through financial and in-kind gifts and provide opportunities for creating, collecting, and preserving library materials. The Friends also promote the visibility of the Libraries through sponsorship of educational and social events.

Columbia University Libraries/Information Services is one of the top five academic research library systems in North America. The collections include over 10 million volumes, over 100,000 journals and serials, as well as extensive electronic resources, manuscripts, rare books, microforms, maps, graphic and audio-visual materials. The services and collections are organized into 25 libraries and various academic technology centers. The Libraries employs more than 550 professional and support staff. The website of the Libraries at www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb is the gateway to its services and resources.

-END-
LMK