January 16, 2022

Big Dollars in Durham: Duke U. Libraries Receive $13.6 Million Rubenstein Gift

From a Duke U. Announcement:

Duke University trustee David M. Rubenstein will give $13.6 million to the Duke University Libraries in support of the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library, President Richard H. Brodhead announced Wednesday.

[Emphasis Ours] The donation is the largest ever to the libraries. In recognition of Rubenstein’s gift, the special collections library will be renamed the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, following approval by the Board of Trustees.


The Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library is central to Duke’s teaching and research mission. Its collections, which range from ancient papyri to the records of modern advertising agencies, number more than 350,000 printed volumes and more than 20 million items in manuscript and archival collections. All told, its holdings document more than 20 centuries of human history and culture. Like all Duke libraries, it is open to the public.


“The Rubenstein Library will be a distinguished, enduring institution that will collect, protect and make accessible rare and unique documents, satisfy intellectual curiosity, stimulate learning and facilitate the creation of new scholarship,” said Deborah Jakubs, the Rita DiGiallonardo Holloway University Librarian and vice provost for library affairs. “David Rubenstein’s generosity enables us to create the kind of home for special collections that Duke deserves, designed with the students and scholars of today in mind. Researchers well beyond our campus will also benefit from this gift.”

[Our Emphasis] “Libraries are at the heart of any great educational institution,” said Rubenstein. “This renovation and modernization program will help ensure that the Rare Book and Manuscript library’s priceless collection is preserved and accessible to scholars and the public for decades to come.

A Lot More Info in the Complete News Release

See Also: The Foundation for the National Archives Names Philanthropist David M. Rubenstein as Recipient of 2011 Records of Achievement Award (July, 2011)

See Also: Conservation Challenge: The Magna Carta (via AOTUS Blog)

See Also: In 2009, Mr. Rubenstein Loaned His Copy of the Magna Carta to the National Archives (U.S.)



About Gary Price

Gary Price (gprice@mediasourceinc.com) is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at Ask.com, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.