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Richard L. Funkhouser book chapter

 Collection — Box: Communal Collections 45, Placement: 07
Identifier: MSF 462

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of the following: The Richard L. Funkhouser book chapter; “The P.K. Kelkar Library: the first ten years and the collaboration with the Purdue University Libraries.” (2009; 0.1 cubic feet) documents the history of The P.K. Kelkar Library. 


  • 2009


Language of Materials

Collection material is in English.

Access Information

This collection is open for research.

Copyright and Use Information

Copyright held by Purdue University.

Biographical Information

Richard L. Funkhouser was born in 1934. Funkhouser was one of four Purdue librarians who spent time at Kanpur, India, developing the P.K. Kelkar Library. Funkhouser was librarian in residence there from 1964-1966. Richard L. Funkhouser died in 2017.


0.025 Cubic Feet (One folder)

Acquisition Information

Collection materials were donated by Richard L. Funkhouser 2010-06-05.

Other Descriptive Information

History of the P.K. Kelkar Library

The development of the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur was a joint project of the Government of India and the United States Agency for International Development (U.S. A.I.D.).  The aim was to build a world-recognized, doctoral degree granting, research university of the highest quality.  An organization named the Kanpur Indo-American Program was established to manage the collaborative effort under the direction of Educational Services Incorporated, the U.S. A.I.D. administrator for the project.  Educational Services Inc. later became the Educational Development Center.  Nine United States universities – the University of California at Berkeley, the California Institute of Technology, the Carnegie Institute of Technology (now Carnegie Mellon University), the Case Institute of Technology (now Case Western Reserve University), the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (M.I.T.), the University of Michigan, The Ohio State University, Princeton University, and Purdue University, all prominent in science and engineering higher education in the United States – were selected to provide visiting faculty and support staff as advisors.

The Library Development Plan:

Professor Oliver Dunn, Purdue University’s Associate Director of Libraries and Professor George Meluch, also from Purdue University Libraries, arrived at the Institute in the summer of 1962 to prepare a plan, for the development of the Institute’s Central Library as it was then known.  At the Institute, they met with the Director, Dr. P.K. Kelkar, the Institute’s Library Committee and groups of faculty members from each department, who described their views of library services needed by Institute students and faculty.  Professors Dunn and Meluch also spent two weeks visiting other IITs and academic libraries in Calcutta, Kharagpur, Madras, Bangalore, Bombay and New Delhi.

Dr. Kelkar hoped that the new Institute would depart in important respects from established practices in scientific and technological educational institutions in India.  In the new atmosphere that he planned to create, a more active role for the library was essential.  In “The Library at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur,” Professor Dunn wrote: “The libraries of other educational institutions in India did not seem to Dr. Kelkar and Professor Dahl (the first KIAP Program Leader) to offer adequate models for planning the future development of the library at Kanpur; other Indian university libraries generally played a negligible part in institutional plans and educational programs.  Dr. Kelkar hoped that the Institute’s library would depart in important respects from generally established Indian library practices.  He also felt that the library must play a central role in the new Institute from the beginning.  Such a role required a much more generous provision for books, space and staff than was customary.”

At the end of six weeks, A Library Development Plan for the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur was completed.  It recommended the establishment of the library as one of the academic departments of the Institute, not a part of the administration.  Responsibility for library matters should be delegated to the Librarian, and the professional staff should be members of the Institute’s academic staff.  It stressed an operational emphasis on library services and instruction for students and faculty and that all in the Institute should strive to maximize the use of the library’s collections with convenient, relatively unhampered access to them.  The plan proposed that the books and journals collection reach 130,000 volumes in ten years at a cost of $150,000 per year.  A building holding 150,000 to 200,000 volumes and seating 400 to 500 users was suggested.

On November 27, 1962, the plan was accepted by all groups involved, and discussions began on achieving its objectives.  It was recognized that accomplishing the rapid growth proposed for the collection would be difficult for the Institute’s library staff and faculty to do alone.  An agreement was made whereby the Purdue University Libraries would provide major assistance.  While the other consortium universities provided support in various areas of the Institute, albeit not a specific one, Purdue University was given explicit responsibility for the library.

Source: Taken from Richard L. Funkhouser’s chapter, “The P.K. Kelkar Library: the first ten years and the collaboration with the Purdue University Libraries.”

Processing Information

All material has been housed in acid-free folders and acid-free boxes.
Richard L. Funkhouser book chapter
Mary A. Sego
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
Second edition. Collection description first completed 2011-04-03 by Mary Sego.

Revision Statements

  • 2020-04-20: Collection description updated by Amanda Rumba to align with data entry standards.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States