Browse Exhibits (5 total)

In honorem: Dr. Richard P. Heitzenrater


Originally exhibited May 16–August 22, 2014
Entry Hall


This exhibition honors the work of Dr. Richard P. Heitzenrater, recipient of the degree of Doctor of Humane Letters, honoris causa, from Southern Methodist University in May 2014. Dr. Heitzenrater is the William Kellon Quick Professor Emeritus of Church History and Wesley Studies at Duke University Divinity School and was a member of the Perkins School of Theology faculty from 1977 to 1993 as the Albert Cook Outler Chair in Wesleyan Studies and the Director of the Center for Methodist Studies. He also had a close connection to Bridwell Library, twice serving as Acting Director (May–October 1980 and June 1992–May 1993).

Renowned for his research and writing in the area of Wesleyan studies, Dr. Heitzenrater has the distinction of being the person who broke the shorthand code of John Wesley’s diaries. Dr. Heitzenrater has utilized rare books and manuscripts held by Bridwell Library throughout his distinguished career. Pairing works written by Dr. Heitzenrater with items from Bridwell Library Special Collections, the exhibition highlights the long-term relationship between researcher and library.

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Remembering Alfredo Náñez y Clotilde Falcón de Náñez


Originally exhibited May 20, 2016 – August 7, 2016
Entry Hall

Recuerdos de Alfredo Náñez y Clotilde Falcón de Náñez

Por más de cinco décadas, los graduados de Southern Methodist University (SMU) Alfredo Náñez (1902–1986) y Clotilde Falcón de Náñez (1908–1998) siguieron una vida compartiendo su ministerio como líderes de la iglesia, educadores, autores, traductores, y abogando por un entendimiento intercultural. Alfredo Náñez fue ordenado como ministro de la Iglesia Metodista Unida y sirvió como pastor y Superintendente del Distrito en la conferencia anual Río Grande. Un educador y administrador talentoso, Náñez sirvió como presidente de la Institución Lydia Patterson y también como el fundador y director del programa México-Americano en Perkins School of Theology. Clotilde Falcón de Náñez fue una profesora muy respetada, educadora Cristiana, autora y traductora la cual llevó a cabo posiciones de liderazgo dentro de la Sociedad Femenil de Servicio Cristiano. Desde 1964 hasta 1968 servió en la División de Mujeres de la Junta de Misiones de la Iglesia Metodista.

Esta exhibición honra la memoria de dos figuras significativas en el Metodismo de Tejas y la historia México Americana Metodista presentando evidencia de sus vidas la cual se conserva archivada en la Biblioteca Bridwell.

Traducido por Betsy Careaga.

Se procesaron los papeles de Alfredo Náñez y Clotilde Falcón de Náñez en 2016. Una guía a la colección puede consultarse en línea en

Remembering Alfredo Náñez y Clotilde Falcón de Náñez

For more than five decades, Southern Methodist University graduates Alfredo Náñez (1902–1986) and Clotilde Falcón de Náñez (1908–1998) pursued a life of shared ministry as church leaders, educators, authors, and advocates of cross-cultural understanding. Alfredo Náñez was an ordained United Methodist minister who served as a Pastor and District Superintendent in the Rio Grande Annual Conference. A gifted educator and administrator, Náñez served as President of the Lydia Patterson Institute and as the founding director of the Mexican American program at Perkins School of Theology. Clotilde Falcón de Náñez was a respected teacher, Christian Educator, author, and translator. She held many leadership positions in the Woman’s Society of Christian Service and served on the Women’s Division of the Board of Missions of the Methodist Church from 1964 to 1968.

This exhibition honors the memory of two significant figures in Texas Methodist and Mexican American Methodist history by presenting evidence of their lives as preserved in the archives at Bridwell Library.

The papers of Alfredo Náñez and Clotilde Falcón de Náñez were arranged and described in 2016. A finding aid to the collection can be accessed online at

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The Albert Cook Outler Papers


Originally exhibited February 2 – May 1, 2015
The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries


The Albert Cook Outler Papers comprise the largest and one of the most significant archival collections at Bridwell Library. Dr. Outler (1908–1989) was a world-renowned theologian and Wesley scholar who served on the faculties of Duke University (1938–1945), Yale University (1945–1951), Perkins School of Theology (1951–1979; professor emeritus 1979–1989), and Texas Wesleyan University (1983–1984).

Outler’s professional library and personal papers were donated to Bridwell Library through the advocacy of Rev. Bob W. Parrott. From 2010 through 2014 library staff processed the Albert Cook Outler Papers in order to make the collection more accessible to the public.  Archival processing includes arranging materials into thematic or format-based units called series; removing redundant and out-of-scope materials; addressing preservation needs; and publishing a finding aid that describes the collection’s subject, history, arrangement, and contents.

Through this exhibition Bridwell Library is bringing Albert Outler’s intellectual legacy to the attention of a new generation of scholars and church leaders.

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The First African American Graduates of Perkins School of Theology


Originally exhibited April 28–August 21, 2015
Entry Hall


On May 30, 1955 A. Cecil Williams, James V. Lyles, James A. Hawkins, John W. Elliott, and Negail R. Riley made history by becoming the first African Americans to graduate from Perkins School of Theology and Southern Methodist University. This sixtieth-anniversary exhibition highlights their accomplishments after seminary as distinguished church and community leaders.

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Virtual and Real


Originally exhibited February 3 – May 17, 2014
The Elizabeth Perkins Prothro Galleries


Since the founding of Bridwell Library in 1951, staff members have promoted the use of special collections and archives by curating exhibitions and hosting public events. During the 1990s the Library also began providing internet access to selected exhibitions, collection inventories, and images of important volumes and artifacts. In 2010 Bridwell Library published its first set of digital images as part of the SMU Digital Collections online database. Today the Library offers numerous digital collections containing more than 4,000 high-quality images, audio files, and videos.

Providing remote access to rare and unique print, manuscript, photographic, audio, and video materials helps Bridwell Library fulfill its educational mission. Each month thousands of patrons view these virtual representations of real objects. The purpose of this exhibition is to bring the virtual and the real together in the same place at the same time so that both can be studied and enjoyed.

“Virtual and Real” presents fifty-six items representing twelve digital collections. All twelve featured collections relate to the history of the United Methodist Church or Perkins School of Theology. Throughout the exhibition visitors are encouraged to scan the Quick Response (QR) codes and explore the linked images and metadata while viewing the artifacts. To view installation photographs, follow this link.

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