When was the last time that you read about the formation of a major new genealogy library? That is, a full-fledged genealogy library with more than 70,000 books and more than 10,000 CD-ROM disks, all related to family history? The brand-new Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center will be exactly that.
The Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center is being established in the Portland, Oregon, area to honor the memory of Eloise Connor Bishop and Charles Kay Bishop. The focus will be on materials to assist family history researchers and to "add meat to the skeletons" in their family histories.
Thanks to the generosity of Ruth Bishop and several others, the new Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center already has been able to acquire more than 70,000 family history books including:
The former circulating library of the New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS), formerly housed in the Boston area and circulated by mail to NEHGS members worldwide.
Richardson Dougall's collection of European History, formerly housed at the National Genealogical Society (NGS) library in Arlington, Virginia.
The NGS Hall of Fame Collection as well as duplicate copies from the NGS General Collection, formerly housed in Arlington, Virginia.
A large collection of Civil War and Americana books donated by Ruth Chauncey Bishop.
From William R. and Kaleen E. Beall, a large collection of Automotive History, Biography, Entertainment, and Medieval books, plus the Beall Family Library collections.
Stanley R. Clarke's British, Oregon, and General collections.
The Dean H. Byrd and Janice M. Healy Oregon Burial Site Guide Collection, including all photos and maps used for producing the book.
Bound Portland, Oregon, newspapers.
Other collections are also being donated through wills and trusts.
The members of the Board of Directors are currently purchasing even more materials to add to the general research materials.
In addition to the main reading room there will be rooms devoted to rare books, maps and microform, as well as a darkroom.
The Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center is not yet open for business. There are a few "minor items" to be completed: finding a location, purchasing a mile or so of shelving plus furniture and computers, and hiring staff. These will be happening in the coming months. I hope to write occasional reports of the progress and to describe the opening ceremonies in the near future.
Even with these extensive resources already obtained, the Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center needs many more books. Donations of books and of funds to purchase books are solicited. The new Resource Center has applied for status as a 501c3 educational organization and expects to be accepted. As soon as the 501c3 status is obtained, all donations will be tax deductible for U.S. taxpayers.
You can mail pledges to:
Connor-Bishop Historical Resource Center
c/o Janice M. Healy
PO Box 5414
Aloha, OR 97006-0414