Until the spring of 1879 each of the Literary Societies kept its
collection of books in its own hall for the use of its members. They
had been able to make no great additions since the reopening of the
College in January, 1866, but at this time each had about 4,000
volumes, many more than they had room for on the shelves, so that
many were lying in piles on the floor. More room, however, not only
for the Societies but for their libraries was provided in the new Heck-
Williams Building in 1879, of which an account will be given in the
chapter on Buildings and Grounds. As this building was nearing
completion the Trustees on March 1, 1879, voted that "Halls in the
new building are tendered to the Societies on condition that the books
of the two libraries be consolidated into one general library, which
library shall be under control of the Trustees of Wake Forest College
for the benefit of the two Societies and others as they deem best."
This proposition was promptly accepted by the
At their next annual meting, June 10, 1879, the Trustees appointed
the faculty a committee with power to prepare the upper central hall
of the new building for the reception of the library and the lower
central hall for a reading room, and authorized them to make such
regulations for their use as they thought proper, and to make annual
The faculty having received this assignment were not slow to act.
On June 14 they appointed Professor W. G. Simmons to superintend
the shelving of the Library. To this work Professor
Records of Phi. Society, March 6, 1879: Mr. Gulley reads the resolutions of the
Trustees in regard to the consolidation of the Libraries.... On motion of Mr.
Ragsdale the conditions are accepted and the books delivered up." The moving of
the books, however, was a gradual process; those of the Euselians were not removed
until the next fall. Minutes of Faculty, September 5, 1879.