Alexander M. Bracken Library, 1975-Present
Shortly after beginning his presidency in 1968, John J. Pruis initiated plans to build a new university library using state funds. That year the University Board of Trustees appointed Frazer G. Poole, planning consultant from the Library of Congress, to write the program for the new library facility to accommodate over 20,000 students and a million volumes. Dr. Marion B. Grady, Head Librarian until her retirement in 1969, summarized the functional needs as determined by the library staff. By 1972, the university had successfully convinced the Indiana General Assembly to appropriate the necessary funding for the project.
A plan was drawn up to construct a modern facility that would house the collection, allow for growth, and add new services that simply were not possible in the old library. Groundbreaking took place on May 24, 1972 just before the Spring commencement ceremony. The $14.9 million structure was completed in the spring of 1975, opening in time for the start of the 1975-76 academic year.
Alexander M. Bracken Library Groundbreaking Ceremony, May 24, 1972
Named in honor of Alexander M. Bracken, a prominent local attorney and president of the board of trustees for 22 years, the impressive new library added a unique centerpiece to the Ball State University campus.