Federal fund cutbacks and devaluation have put a financial squeeze on the College Library, and the University will attempt to offset that shortage with a new fund-raising campaign, the librarian of Harvard college said yesterday.
Louis E. Martin said the campaign will seek donors to contribute funds solely for the purchase of library materials.
The library was particularly hard hit by devaluation of the dollar, since 60 per cent of the library's acquisitions are made overseas. Martin said that a reduction in federal funding not only could reduce the library's purchasing power but also may restrict maintenance programs.
"There's no doubt we definitely have to find new sources of funds," Martin said. "It's not a bleak outlook," he added, and characterized as "reasonably good" the library's chances to "stay current in those areas in which we have traditionally been strong."
Library balances from previous years have allowed the acquisition of new books this year to continue uninterrupted.
Martin explained that until recently the College Library received most of its money from endowed funds. As endowments fell behind financial demand, support from the Faculty grew significantly. Martin added that federal funding for libraries has significantly decreased since the beginning of the Nixon administration.
The current fund shortage is already directly affecting the maintenance program of the library. The preservation and conservation of rare books, the replacement of old books and the filming of books have suffered as available money has been channeled to the acquisition of new titles.
some rare books have been placed in open stacks due to a lack of room in the rare book section. These books will probably remain vulnerable to human handling, climate and humidity until 1975 when completion of the air-conditioned Pusey Library ends the crowding, Martin said.