The Popular Culture Library Receives a New Name, a Raven Award, and Unique Donations!

Nancy Down, Reference Librarian and Cataloger

Our New Name.
The Popular Culture Library was renamed during the Fall semester in honor of scholars Ray B. and Pat Browne, whose visionary efforts launched the campaign to preserve and provide access to materials documenting American popular culture. The BGSU Board of Trustees voted on October 3, 2003, to name this special collection the Ray and Pat Browne Library for Popular Culture Studies in recognition of the Brownes’ long-time support, generous donations, and pioneering role in the growth of popular culture studies at BGSU.

On Receiving a Raven
The Mystery Writers of America have recognized the Ray and Pat Browne Library for Popular Culture Studies with a Raven Award for its commitment to preserving mystery fiction through a formidable and constantly growing collection of detective-mystery novels and manuscripts. This rich detective-mystery collection contains the works of all major authors in the genre, including classic sleuth stories, hardboiled private eye novels, and spy thrillers. Holdings also include 43 letters of Ellery Queen and manuscripts by Marcia Muller and Bill Pronzini; juvenile series fiction, including Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys; and a unique collection of vintage paperbacks, including early Avon, Popular Library, and Fawcett Gold Medal mystery paperbacks.

image of A Dell Mystery image of Ellery Queen novel

Dr. Lorraine Haricombe, Dean of University Libraries and librarian Dr. Nancy Down received the Raven Award on April 29, 2004, at the Mystery Writers of America 58th Annual Edgar Awards Gala in New York City.

Growing the Collections
The Ray and Pat Browne Library for Popular Culture Studies has received unique materials to add to its collections from April Kihlstrom, who donated her notes, publicity material, and manuscripts for many of her Regency romance novels. Additional acquisitions of story papers, nickel weeklies, and dime novels have enhanced the popular literature collection. The story papers date from the early 20th century and include titles such as Youth’s Companion, Beadle’s Frontier, and Deadwood Dick Library. Also of unique interest are the recently acquired original art works painted by silent film actress Alice Faye. For more information about the Ray and Pat Browne Library for Popular Culture Studies visit