The Friends' annual dinner has included a speaker each year since its inception. At the 2000 dinner, then provost and president of the Friends Board of Governors Warren Vander Hill announced that future presentations at the annual dinner would officially be known as the "Kirkham Lectures." The named lecture honors E. Bruce Kirkham, professor of English at Ball State and the first executive secretary of the Friends.
Kirkham conceived and started the Friends group when the A. M. Bracken Library opened in 1976, then served as executive secretary until his retirement from Ball State in 2000. Kirkham returned to the university in 2001 to give the first Kirkham lecture at the Friends dinner. The Kirkham Lecture is published and distributed to members of the Friends each year. We are pleased to now make these lectures available on this web site.
2011 "Capturing the Soul of Indiana"
2010 "Changing Gears: The Closing of BorgWarner and the End of an Era"
James J. Connolly and Justin T. Jones
2009 "Movers and Stakers: Stories along the Indiana National Road"
2008 "George Dale: Then and Now"
J. Andrew Dale
2007 "Civil War Battlefield Preservation"
2005 "In Defense of Literary Biography" (.pdf)
2004 "Amazing Discoveries and Inventions and Other Productions of Muncie
2003 "Bernard Shaw, Theatre, and Pedagogy: A Backward Glance into the Future"
Michael M. O'Hara
2002 "Native American Music" (.pdf)
Luke Eric Lassiter
2001 "Libraries, Mrs. Stowe, and Me" (.pdf)
E. Bruce Kirkham