A donation by the Kaysville Rotary Club and matching grant from a national foundation have enabled the Kaysville Library to buy a 60-volume collection of writings of major American authors.
The club donated $500 to the library, marking the local Rotary group's 50th anniversary in June, which was matched by a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to buy the "Library of America" series.American Heritage magazine has called the series "the most ambitious effort ever undertaken to put the best of American literature into the hands of the general reader."
Rotary president Michael Waggoner recently presented the check to Kaysville head librarian Joan Christiansen.
Kaysville is the only city in Davis County that maintains its own city library, not a part of the county's tax-supported library district. The facility is housed in the old Kaysville City Hall, which over the last two years has undergone a major renovation and expansion.
The Kaysville library is one of more than 1,000 across the country to participate in the Library of America program through the Mellon Foundation. The local library will receive the 36 volumes already in print soon, with the remaining 24 shipped at the rate of about five volumes per year over the next five years.
The Library of America is a non-profit publishing program begun in 1982 to preserve America's literary heritage by publishing the collected work of the nation's major authors in a uniform, hardcover series.
Seed money for the publishing venture was provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Ford Foundation.
Each volume published contains a number of works by a single author, running between 1,000 and 1,600 pages. Texts are accurate, unabridged and authoritative, and the books are printed on acid-free paper with sewn bindings covered in cloth.
The volumes are available in bookstores at $27.50 each, except for the works of Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and Francis Parkman, which are $30. They are available by subscription for $21.95 each.
Besides those three authors, the books in print include the works of Henry Adams, Willa Cather, James Fenimore Cooper, Stephen Crane, Theodore Dreiser, W.E.B. DuBois, Ralph Waldo Emerson, William Faulkner, Nathaniel Hawthorne, William Dean Howells, Washington Irving, Henry James, Jack London, Herman Melville, Frank Norris, Edgar Allan Poe, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Henry David Thoreau, Mark Twain, Edith Wharton and Walt Whitman.