This collection contains documents that demonstrate the thirty-year history of the Bentley Rare Book Gallery prior to its transformation into the Bentley Rare Book Museum. The Bentley Rare Book Gallery was established in 1986 by two men: Mr. Robert B. Williams, Senior Curator of Rare Books, and Mr. Fred D. Bentley, Sr., a Cobb County lawyer and avid book collector. In the late 1980s, Mr. Bentley donated a large number of nineteenth and early twentieth century first editions as the foundation of the Museum collection. Since that initial donation, the collection has grown and developed, evolving into an assemblage of manuscripts and books representing the history of the book with a focus on the English-speaking world. Today, the Bentley Rare Book Gallery has transformed into the Bentley Rare Book Museum and holds over 10,000 items, ranging from Sumerian clay tablets and medieval manuscript leaves to modern fine press books and literary first editions. The collection supports teaching at the university through incorporation into course instruction sessions and class assignments, as well as lectures, workshops, and exhibitions. In addition, we welcome individual researchers from Kennesaw State University and the broader community.

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