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Frostburg State University Dedicates J. Glenn Beall Archives
10/16/2002

Frostburg State University on Wednesday, Oct. 16, dedicated the J. Glenn Beall Archives, housing thousands of papers, photos and artifacts from former U.S. senators J. Glenn Beall and his son, J. Glenn Beall Jr., one of Western Maryland's most prominent political families.

The elder Beall served in the U.S. Senate from 1953 to 1965, following a decade in Congress as U.S. Representative from Maryland's 6th District. Before that, he was a Maryland State Senator. He died in 1971.

His son, J. Glenn Beall Jr., was a U.S. Senator from 1971 to 1977, following a term as 6th District U.S. Representative and five years in the Maryland House of Delegates.

"J. Glenn Beall and his family are legendary in Maryland for their dedication to public service at the local, state and national levels," said FSU President Catherine R. Gira.

When Glenn Beall Jr. left office and returned home from Washington in 1977, Frostburg State became the repository for his senatorial papers. They eventually filled 23 file cabinets.

When it came time to sell his childhood home in Frostburg, the Beall family found boxes, trunks and suitcases filled with newspaper clippings, letters and pictures from J. Glenn Sr. and his wife Margaret's life together, including the 22 years he was involved in government in Washington.

"I thought, we can't let this stuff go. We should save it for people to see," Beall said. Beall Jr. said he then reflected about his own mortality and decided that there were many items he and his wife, Nancy, collected over the years that should be archived as well.

"Through the generous donations of Senator Beall and his mother, Mrs. Margaret Beall, the Frostburg State University Foundation has now established an endowment through which these important collections can be organized, cataloged and safely stored and made accessible to researchers for many years to come," Gira said.

"These things belong in Frostburg because our roots are deep in Frostburg," Beall said. The first Beall came to Allegany County in 1783, he said, and by around 1800 a Beall had settled in the town that would come to be named Frostburg.

Glenn Beall Jr.'s connection to Frostburg State University runs deep, as well. His first six years of school were spent at the Frostburg State Teacher's College Training School, later named the Laboratory school.

"We at Frostburg like to think that firm educational foundation he received during those formative years can be credited with much of his later success," Gira said.

Nearly 200 well-wishers, including a number of Beall's former senatorial staffers, filled the fourth floor of the library for the dedication. Three of Beall's staffers in attendance are graduates of Frostburg State.

Among the treasures in the Beall Archives are photographs of both Senators with every president during their terms of office; photographs of the Senators' wives with the First Ladies, an extensive collection of campaign memorabilia, newspapers clippings and photos of official occasions, dinners, etc.

The FSU Archives, on the fourth floor of the Lewis J. Ort Library, are also home to the William Price and Harry Stegmaier Railroad Collection containing thousands of photographs, transparencies and film footage of primarily East Coast railroads; and the George A. Meyers Collection of literature relating to the Lonaconing, Md., native's nearly 40 years as Labor Secretary of the Communist Party, USA.

Some area civic groups have already expressed interest in touring the Beall Archives, which are open daily from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. by appointment. For more information, call (301) 687-3014.

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of News and Media Services
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-3171
Fax: 301-687-7589
E-mail: news@frostburg.edu