Sunday, July 7, 2024

Curley C. Jones (1941-2015) and the University of Utah's J. Willard Marriott Library

Curley C. Jones was the first African American professional librarian to work for the University of Utah, where he served for 39 years before retiring in 2011. 

Curley Cleveland Jones was born on February 23, 1941, in Rossville, Tennessee. His parents were Cleve and Susie Palmer Jones.  Jones studied library science at the State University of New York (SUNY) at Geneseo, receiving his Master of Library Science (MLS) in 1971. In addition, he received a Certificate of Advanced Study in Librarianship in 1977 from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Jones also had degrees from Saints Junior College in Lexington, Mississippi; Tougaloo College in Tougaloo, Mississippi; and the University of Utah.

In 1972, Jones began his library career at the University of Utah's J. Willard Marriott Library. He worked there as the Educational Librarian, and did collection development for education, educational psychology, general reference, African American studies, religion, and law. 

 In addition, to his service at the University of Utah, Jones was active in several associations:

  • Member of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA).
  • Member-at-Large for the Reference and User Services Association's Management and Operation of User Services Section's (RUSA MOUSS) Reference Services in Small and Medium Sized Research Libraries Discussion Group 
  • Historian for the Salt Lake City Chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NCAAP).
Jones also wrote Black Bibliography in 1974 as part of the University of Utah's Bibliographic Series.

Curley Cleveland Jones died on March 3, 2015, in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Sources: Jones, Curley. Black Bibliography. Salt Lake City, Utah: University of Utah, 1974; "Staff Directory." University of Utah J. Willard Marriott Library. University of Utah, n.d. Web. 8 Dec. 2010; Goldberg, Beverly. "African Americans 'Stretch the Envelope' at the First Black Caucus Conference." American Libraries (Nov. 1992):833-835; "Honor Roll of Donors." GSLIS Alumni Newsletter, 2003-2004. [Urbana-Champaign, IL]: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, 2004. 40; Email messages from Curley Jones, BCALA Listserv,14 Dec. 2010 and 15 Dec. 2010; Email message from Marcellus Turner, BCALA Listserv, 6 Dec. 2010.; Email message from Billy C. Beal, BCALA Listserv, 6 Dec. 2010; "Curley Jones Obituary.", Mar. 2015. Web. 7 July 2024; Harris, Linda S. "Minutes: ALA Midwinter Meeting, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, January 26, 2003." RUSA MOUSS Reference Services in Small and Medium Sized Research Libraries Discussion Group, 2003. Web. 7 July 2024; Seale, Colleen. "Minutes: ALA Annual Conference, Toronto, Canada, June 22, 2003." RUSA MOUSS Reference Services in Small and Medium Sized Research Libraries Discussion Group, 2003. Web. 7 July 2024.

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