A School for the People tells the story of OSU’s nearly 150 years as a land grant institution through more than 500 photographs, maps, documents, and extensive captions. A capsule history includes many of the iconic photographs associated with the university. Other chapters focus on themes such as campus development, the growth of academics, the evolution of research as a major focus of the university, campus life and organizations, and, of course, athletics.
As one of the first colleges and universities to offer photography as part of its curriculum in the early 1890s, OSU is well documented visually. Most of those photographic treasures have made their way into the holdings of the Special Collections & Archives Research Center at OSU’s Valley Library. Gleaned from hundreds of thousands of images at the Center, many of the photos included here have never before been seen by the general public. Several were scanned from the original glass and film negatives and color transparencies to ensure the highest-quality reproductions.
Written by a longtime archivist at OSU’s Special Collections & Archives Research Center, A School for the People does not obscure the inevitable ups and downs of the institution with the manicured gloss of recruitment brochures, but aims to tell the full, dynamic story of this multi-faceted and living university. Overflowing with visual riches, it will appeal to OSU alumni, faculty and staff, and anyone with an interest in the history of higher education in Oregon or land grant institutions generally.
Lawrence A. Landis has been an archivist at Oregon State University since 1991. During that time, he has served as assistant university archivist, university archivist, and since 2011, director of the Libraries’ Special Collections & Archives Research Center. He began his archives career as the photographs archivist for a major special collection at the University of Texas at Austin. He has degrees from the University of North Texas and Texas Christian University, and did post-graduate work at UT-Austin. He has researched many aspects of OSU’s history, particularly its built environment and buildings designed by architect John V. Bennes.
"Lawrence Landis has written a very appealing book that features a wide array of photographs that illustrate a great many themes in the history of Oregon State University (OSU). Landis has served as an archivist for the university since 1991, and his long connection with Oregon State is reflected in his careful selection of images as well as his appreciation for the university's rich history...A School for the People
will rank high in the genre of university and college histories in the Pacific Northwest. Both Larry Landis and the Oregon State University Press should be commended."
-Dale E. Soden, Pacific Northwest Quarterly