life photographer

Emporia community members come out to see LIFE photographer Bernard Hoffman’s photos of William Allen White. The event was the first part of a three part series happening every Saterday in the WAW Library.

Special Collections and Archives hosted a presentation over LIFE photographer Bernard Hoffman and the photos he took of Emporia and William Allen White Sunday night.

During the presentation, Shari Scribner, assistant archivist, showed photos that Hoffman had taken during his career, most notably some he took of William Allen White and of Emporia when he was invited to White’s 70th birthday party.

The program is done as part of a partnership between the university and William Allen White Community PartnershipInc., according to Scribner.

“University Libraries and Archives has a subunit called Special Collections and Archives,” said Scribner. “We are responsible for collecting, preserving and making accessible the historical records of Emporia State University...We have things that go back to the first day of school in 1863 to emails sent out last week...Anybody can come in and use it as research material.”

ESU has the second largest collection of William Allen White papers in the world, second only to the Library of Congress, according to Scriber.

“I like that we’re doing more public programming,” Scriber said. “It’s kind of significant that this is happening on campus because it’s possible to see ourselves on campus as a compact community, so a program like this takes us outside of what’s happening right here at ESU and takes us to the larger community that we live in.”

The Hoffman presentation was the first in “a series of three programs exploring LIFE magazine’s coverage of William Allen White and his family,” according to the Campus Labs website.

Roger Heineken, retired Emporia State employee, spoke during the presentation as well.

“William Allen White had, for pretty much all of his life, cast Emporia as the quintessential midwestern small town,” said Heineken. “We were some what iconic for a variety of magazine feature stories that dealt with Emporia.”

The next program will be “LIFE Magazine: Editor White’s

First-Class Funeral” from 2-3:00 p.m. Feb. 17 at the Special Collections and Archives exhibit hall on the first floor of the William Allen White library. It is free and open to the public.

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