Step Back in Time at Sherratt Library Gala

Published: October 05, 2010 | Read Time: 2 minutes

The Gerald R. Sherratt Library at Southern Utah University is a lot more than just shelves of books. Through its Special Collections reserve, the Sherratt Library is home to pioneers, Paiutes and even a few outlaws with holdings that capture the region’s history in diary entries and letters, newspaper clippings and published works, paintings and artifacts.

As part of an ongoing effort to increase the regional awareness of the library’s varied resources, the Friends of the Gerald R. Sherratt Library are sponsoring the second annual “An Evening with Friends Gala” on Friday, October 8, from 6:30-9 p.m.

The evening will spotlight the Dr. William Rees and Kate Vilate Isom Palmer Collection of Paiute artifacts, including photographs that document the activities of the Paiutes during 1900-1960 as well as beaded work and baskets.

Dr. Palmer became a friend and advocate to the Coal Creek Band of Paiutes in the 1930s. As a token of gratitude for helping the tribe regain land and obtain housing, he was adopted into their tribe and permitted to hear their legends around the campfire.

The Paiutes allowed Dr. Palmer to tell these stories to local school children, and many listeners became friends of the tribe. Later they allowed him to write and publish the stories in his book, Why the North Star Stands Still and other Indian Legends.

Along with the Palmer collection, guests attending the gala will enjoy live music as well as displays, exhibits and readings by SUU faculty authors.

Hors d’oeuvres, a tasters’ buffet and a variety of desserts and beverages will be peppered throughout the library, with music provided by string quartets, pianists and the SUU Jazz Band.

Demonstrations will highlight three new online historical resources: the Iron County Record, a weekly newspaper from the region’s early years; the Deseret Iron Company ledger, a record of the region’s mining history; and Family Photoloom, a free Web site that assists in organizing family photos and documents.

Recently published books, artwork and other creative endeavors from the SUU faculty will also be highlighted throughout the evening.

A limited number of tickets for the event are still available and can be obtained by contacting Ellen Chalmers at 435-865-8172 or

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