College To Dedicate New McKay Archives Center on February 20
Center will house Methodist documents, Chiles Center for Florida History, Citrus Archives and Hall of Fame, FSC archives and Wright memorabilia
LAKELAND, Fla. (Feb. 11, 2009) — Florida Southern College is pleased to announce the new Sarah D. and L. Kirk McKay, Jr., Archives Center will be dedicated at noon Friday, February 20, at the Water Dome Plaza. Special guests at the dedication will include Rhea Chiles, the late governor's widow, who is scheduled to speak; and FSCs Board of Trustees.
The 10,100-square-foot McKay Archives Center, adjacent to the Roux Library, comprises two stories. It will house historically valuable collections that tell a comprehensive story of the spiritual, academic, cultural, social, and economic history and development of the State of Florida. The McKay Archives Center will be home to the Ruth K. and Charles T. Thrift, Jr., Florida United Methodist Heritage Center; the Governor Lawton M. Chiles, Jr., Center for Florida History; the Florida Citrus Archives; the Citrus Hall of Fame; and the Florida Southern College Archives and Frank Lloyd Wright collection.
"The entire FSC community is honored to dedicate this magnificent facility named after Dr. Sarah D. McKay and her late husband, respected Lakeland business leader L. Kirk McKay, Jr.," said FSC President Anne B. Kerr. "We greatly admire and respect Dr. McKay for her outstanding service to the College, including more than a decade on the Board of Trustees and past service as chairman of the Board. This state-of-the-art resource will have an immeasurable impact on our community and our state."
Named for FSC Trustee Dr. Sarah D. McKay, who contributed more than $1 million toward the $3.5 million project, the McKay Archives Center will enable students, faculty, and scholars to study the history of United Methodism, Florida, and the citrus industry, as well as construction of the Wright campus. A full-time archivist will assist scholars and visitors in using the historical materials and will oversee the preparation and preservation of these treasures for personal, professional, and historical research; scholarly interpretation; and spiritual inspiration. The McKay Archives Center also will serve as a laboratory for students to gain invaluable experience in research, archival techniques, and modern research technology.
The Florida Conference of the United Methodist Church voted to entrust its archival collection to Florida Southern. Grants also were given to name the Ruth K. and Charles T. Thrift, Jr., Florida United Methodist Heritage Center and the R. Ira Barnett Plaza. The plaza will connect the McKay Archives Center and the Roux Library.
In addition, an anonymous gift named FSC's Center for Florida History after the late Governor Lawton M. Chiles, Jr.