The library relies heavily on endowments supporting its collection. In fact, about half of the library’s materials are purchased with endowment funds. Gifts to these named funds purchase books, journals, and other materials that are beyond budget resources.
Minimum contribution: $50,000
Giving to Endowments: How it Works
When you give to an endowed fund, the University invests your gift as part of its overall endowment portfolio. Each year, a portion of the value of your endowed fund is paid out to support the fund’s purpose (collections, programs). Any remaining earnings are used to build the endowment’s value. In this way, an endowment fund can grow and provide support for its designated purpose in perpetuity.
Endowments work best when the size of the endowment is large enough that its earnings can truly underwrite its intended purpose. The Board of Trustees approves all of W&L’s endowment minimums. The minimums are calculated based on how much it costs annually to fund the activity the endowment is supporting. However, a new donor may join existing endowments that share the donor’s goals and objectives if the gift is not able to meet the minimum needed within the specified time allowed. This allows existing endowments to grow and thus support the entire campus.
Please contact John Tombarge, University Librarian, to discuss endowments.
The following donors contribute to building our library collections:
|The Adrian L. Bendheim Jr. Physics Library Memorial Fund|
The Adrian L. Bendheim Jr. Physics Library Memorial Fund was established in 1963 by Mr. and Mrs. Adrian L. Bendheim Sr., family and friends as a memorial to this honored alumnus of the Class of 1942. Endowment to provide funds for physics materials.
|The John Roser Bestor '82 Memorial Fund|
The John Roser Bestor ’82 Memorial Fund was established by Mrs. Nancy Bestor in 1984 in memory of her son, a member of the Class of 1982. Additional gifts have been made by other family members and friends. The endowment’s purpose is to support library acquisitions in history, particularly African and Indian subcontinent history.
|The Boatwright Memorial Fund|
John G. Boatwright, Class of 1915, made a gift in memory of his wife, Mary Archer Glass Boatwright, and their son, Dr. Robert M. Boatwright, in 1981 for endowment purposes.
|The Victor Roger Bond '56 Library Endowment Fund|
The Victor Roger Bond ’56 Library Endowment Fund was established in 1999 by his two sons, Victor Scott Bond and Brett Neal Bond, in honor of their father, a member of the Class of 1956. The purpose of this fund is to support the Washington and Lee undergraduate library’s purchase of books and media related to sciences and engineering. Victor Roger Bond was devoted to furthering the nation’s space exploration program through his work and teaching, spanning four decades at NASA, supporting companies and universities. His work on the Apollo guidance programs contributed significantly to our country landing men on the moon and safely returning them. Victor’s family and friends also made substantial contributions to the fund.
|William Buice '61 Endowment Fund|
The William Buice Endowment for “Early English Books Online” subscription renewal was established by William Buice, Class of 1961, to provide yearly licensure for University Library to allow students and faculty internet access to over 125,000 texts printed in England between 1475 and 1700.
|Class of 1941/William "Buck" Buchanan Memorial Library Endowment Fund|
The Class of 1941/William “Buck” Buchanan Memorial Library Endowment Fund was established in 1991 by the class in celebration of its 50th reunion. The purpose of the fund is to support the library acquisition program. In 2003, the name of the fund was changed from The Class of 1941 Library Endowment Fund to its current name in memory of William “Buck” Buchanan. Buck was a member of the Class of 1941 and a distinguished and highly respected member of the Washington and Lee University politics faculty from 1966 until his death in 2003.
|The Lois Ferguson and Fred Carrington Cole Endowment|
The Lois Ferguson and Fred Carrington Cole Endowment was established in 1991 by Dr. and Mrs. Milton Colvin in honor of Fred Cole, who served as president of the University from 1959 to 1967. The fund supports the University library. Additional gifts for this purpose have been made by family and friends of Dr. Cole.
|The Ollinger and Marjorie Burford Crenshaw Endowment|
The Ollinger and Marjorie Burford Crenshaw Fund was generously established in 1994 by Mr. and Mrs. Albert B. Crenshaw, in honor of his parents, to support library acquisitions of history books, documents, manuscripts, and memorabilia.
|Alice Dean Endowment Fund|
Generously provided by the estate of Alice M. Dean in 1973 to support library acquisitions.
|The Graybeal-Gowen Library Acquisitions Memorial Fund|
The Graybeal-Gowen Library Acquisitions Memorial Fund was established in 2007 by James T. Graybeal, Class of 1949 and Law School Class of 1951, and his wife, Priscilla G. Graybeal, in memory of her father Howerton Gowen, Class of 1930. A permanently endowed fund at Washington and Lee it will purchase needed books and other information resources for the University Libraries as determined by the University Librarian.
|The Barbra B. and Hal F. Higginbotham Library Endowment|
— The Hal F. and Barbra B. Higginbotham Library Endowment was initiated in 1986 to provide financial support for the library program, particularly in the area of acquisitions. Hal F. Higginbotham, Class of 1968, and his wife, Barbra, are residents of New York City.
— The Hal F. and Barbra Buckner Higginbotham University Librarian Endowment was established on the occasion of the 50th Reunion of the Class of 1968. The endowment supports Washington and Lee’s Library and names the University Librarian position. The purpose of the endowment is to support special opportunities and needs of the Library in enriching the University’s academic mission. As such, earnings from the endowment are intended to provide flexible support for the Library beyond the capacity of the annual operating budget. Read more here about this gift.
|Johnston Memorial Fund|
Henry P. Johnston, Sr. generously established an endowment in 1982 in memory of his son, 1st Lieutenant Henry P. Johnston, Jr., USAF. The fund is primarily used for materials on economics.
|The Christoph Keller Jr. '39 Library Endowment for Philosophy and Religion|
The Christoph Keller Jr. ’39 Library Endowment for Philosophy and Religion was established in 1996 by the estate of the Right Reverend Christoph Keller Jr., a member of the class of 1939 and a retired Episcopal bishop of Arkansas. The endowment’s purpose is to assist the University Library with the acquisition of texts for students and faculty in the departments of philosophy and religion
|Peyton May Endowment|
The Peyton May Fund was established in 1984 through the estate of W. Peyton May, grandfather of Peyton Via, Class of 1976, to be used for the purchase of books for the library.
|McCrum Palmer Book Fund|
The McCrum Palmer Book Fund was generously created in 1975 by Foster McCrum Palmer, Class of 1934, in commemoration of three McCrum brothers who were born in Juniata County, Pennsylvania in the first half of the 19th century, their children and grandchildren who have been associated with Washington and Lee, and the town of Lexington, and other members of the donor’s immediate family.
|The A. Stevens Miles Library Endowment|
The A. Stevens Miles Library Endowment was established in 1991 by Mr. and Mrs. A. Stevens Miles of Louisville, Kentucky, to provide for the support and maintenance of the Leyburn Library. Mr. Miles, a member of the Class of 1951, is the former chairman and chief executive officer of the First Kentucky National Corporation. He was elected Rector of the University’s Board of Trustees in 1990.
|The Mollere-Oliver Library Fund|
The Mollere-Oliver Library Fund was established in 1994 by Phillip D. Mollere, Class of 1966, of New Orleans, Louisiana. The endowment was created to enhance the University’s collection, preservation, and archiving of articles related to Robert E. Lee and to the history of the Shenandoah Valley. In addition, the fund may be used to provide support for library exhibits and for publishing certain collection guides with preference for historical pieces pertaining to Robert E. Lee and the Shenandoah Valley.
|The Elizabeth Gray and Marvin Banks Perry Memorial Fund|
The Elizabeth Gray and Marvin Banks Perry Memorial Fund was established in 1952 by gifts from Marvin B. Perry, Jr. and his father, originally as a memorial to his mother with his father added in 1979. Marvin Perry, Jr. taught English at Washington and Lee for many years before serving as president of Goucher College and then Agnes Scott College. Over the years Perry and his wife, Ellen Gilliam Perry added gifts to build the fund until it was completed via an estate gift following the death of Ellen Perry in 2008. The endowment supports acquisitions for the University Library with a preference for books in English and American Literature. The fund is administered by the University Librarian or her/his designee.
|Paul D. Pickens '17 Fund|
Paul D. Pickens Fund was bequeathed by the estate of Paul D. Pickens, a member of the Class of 1917, as a trust held by others to support the undergraduate library specifically for the purchase of book subscriptions and software.
|The Paul Ayres Rockwell Memorial Endowment|
The Paul Ayres Rockwell Memorial Endowment Fund was established in 1986 by Dr. W.J. Kenneth Rockwell, Class of 1952, in memory of his father Paul Ayres Rockwell, Class of 1912. Paul Rockwell was a veteran of three wars and historian for the French Foreign Legion’s famed Lafayette Escadrille. The fund supports library acquisitions whose subject matter relates particularly to France and the eastern United States.
|The Mary P. Ross Library Endowment|
The Mary P. Ross Library Endowment Fund was established in 2000 through the estate of Mrs. Mary P. Ross, wife of the late Charles H. Ross, Class of 1923. The endowment’s purpose is to support the acquisition of books and periodicals for the University Library.
|Jock A. R. Stewart'39 Memorial Fund|
The Jock A.R. Stewart ’39 Memorial Fund was generously provided by Donald W. Stewart in honor of his son, Jock A. R. Stewart, Class of 1939, to purchase books on the history of art and culture in China.
|Max and Sylvia Weinstein Memorial Fund|
The Max and Sylvia Weinstein Memorial Fund was established in 1985 by Judge Paul Weinstein to promote Judaic Studies at Washington and Lee University and to support Jewish student activities on campus. Books and other materials are frequently purchased for the library with income from this endowment fund.
|Marjorie O. Williams Endowment for Library Acquisitions|
The Marjorie O. Williams Endowment for Library Acquisitions was created in 1993 by a gift from Mrs. Williams’ husband, Ernest Williams II, Class of 1938, and herself. The fund is intended to strengthen the holdings of the University Library.