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Special Collecting Areas

In addition to the Clarke Library’s enunciated collecting areas of Michigan history, children’s literature, and Central Michigan University, the library also collects extensively in two areas.  These are:

  • The Reed Draper Angling Collection 
  • Presidential Campaign Biography Collection

Created by a gift from Reed Draper, the Angling Collection represents a large body of literature devoting to fishing, particularly fly fishing.  There is a representation of both British and American works on the subject, with a particular strength in the nineteenth and early twentieth century.

The Presidential Campaign Biography Collection was begun in 1964 when the graduating class of Central Michigan University gifted the library with funds to acquire biographies written as part of an individual’s quest for the presidency.  The collection today extends chronologically from the election of Andrew Jackson to that of Barack Obama. It focuses on candidates from the two major parties, the Democrats and Republicans, and generally does not include biographies published by third party candidates. For more contemporary campaigns the collection includes not only biographies of the two final presidential candidates, but also any announced candidate for a major party nomination who has part of a primary campaign published a biography. For more contemporary campaigns, the collection also includes politically-motivated books about primary candidates or presidential nominees that are not issued by the candidate.  Although it can be difficult to draw clear lines in this area, these books are neither primarily abstract discussions of policy nor primarily journalistic endeavors, but rather books published primarily either to support or attack a particular candidate.