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Traveling Exhibit on the Life and Career of Senator Robert C. Byrd coming to Marshall

April 10 lecture, panel discussion and reception planned

HUNTINGTON,, W.Va.  – Marshall University Libraries and the Robert C. Byrd Institute welcome the community to the opening of a traveling exhibit celebrating the life and career of Senator Robert C. Byrd at 10 a.m. Monday, April 10, in Marshall University’s John Deaver Drinko Library.

Honoring the 100th Anniversary of the birth of Senator Robert C. Byrd, the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education has created a major traveling exhibit, “Robert C. Byrd: Senator, Statesman, West Virginian” which debuted at Shepherd University in April 2016.

The exhibit is touring the state of West Virginia to culminate with a celebration of Senator Byrd’s 100th birthday in November at the state capitol.

“We are thrilled to have an opportunity to showcase Senator Byrd’s vast body of work and important contributions in an educational setting that is easily accessible to the Marshall students, faculty and the Huntington community,” said Dr. Monica Brooks, associate vice president of libraries and online learning. “Drinko Library is open more than any other building on campus and the perfect place to serve as a hub during this part of the exhibit’s statewide tour.”

The exhibit is based on documents and photographs from Senator Byrd’s extensive archive of 60 years of public service and includes images as widely varied as Senator Byrd’s childhood drawings to photographs of him meeting with presidents, said Ray Smock, director of the Byrd Center.

“For any West Virginian who remembers Senator Byrd, the exhibit will bring back memories of what he has done for this state and the nation,” Smock said. “Everywhere we have taken the exhibit we have heard personal stories from those who had encounters with Senator Byrd or who remember how he impacted their lives.

“One of the most popular features of the exhibit is a large map of West Virginia showing all the federal projects Senator Byrd helped to bring to the state. We are still adding up the amount of such funding but so far it exceeds 10 billion dollars for roads, highways, schools, flood control projects, coal miner benefits and federal agencies located in West Virginia.”

An exhibit preview will coincide with a panel discussion on Senator Robert C. Byrd’s life and legacy.  Dr. Kevin Barksdale, associate professor of American History at Marshall University, will moderate the panel.  The panel will begin at 10 a.m. in the Drinko Auditorium, Room 402.

Panelists include Dr. Raymond Smock, director of the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education; Dr. C. Damien Arthur, assistant professor of public administration and policy at Marshall University, and Dr. Jay Wyatt, director of programs and research at the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education.

A wine and cheese reception is being held from 4-6 p.m. in the Drinko Atrium adjacent to the exhibit for invited guests. The public is encouraged to attend the panel discussion, reception and exhibit opening.

The exhibit will be on display at the John Deaver Drinko Library through May 15. Area schools are invited to tour the facility and view the display. More information about the traveling exhibit is available at

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About the Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education:  The mission of the Robert C. Byrd Center is to advance representative democracy by promoting a better understanding of the United States Congress and the Constitution through programs and research that engage citizens in the history of Congress The Center is the home of the Robert C. Byrd Archive containing the papers and records of the Senator’s long career.  More can be found at

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