A black and white image of five men working on printing presses in an underground room

Spurlock Museum Third Thursday Series: “The Evolution of a Vision: Reflections on the University of Illinois Press at 100”

The University of Illinois Press was established in 1918 as a crucial part of President Edmund J. James’s larger vision for fostering scholarly achievement and raising the University’s international profile and academic prestige. Under the leadership of just six directors over the last century, the Press has sought to fulfill this vision, working to establish and maintain an intellectual and physical presence on the Urbana-Champaign campus while adjusting as needed to dramatic changes in academic publishing.

Drawing on archival research and oral histories, Julie Laut will reflect on the challenges and successes of fulfilling James’s vision with particular focus on the people and the spaces that have created and sustained the University of Illinois Press since 1918.

Julie Laut earned her PhD in History at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2016. She works for the University of Illinois Press in outreach and development.

This talk is part of the Third Thursday Series and is held in conjunction with the Spurlock Museum’s temporary exhibit Knowledge at Work: The University of Illinois at 150. This exhibit explores the history of campus as a community of educators, researchers, and students engaged in learning, research, and public service. Learn about the contributions of a wide variety of people and groups to campus history and ways the University has changed how it relates to the people it serves. The exhibit runs through December 21, 2018.

Image courtesy of University of Illinois Archives.


For further information on this event, contact Beth Watkins at or (217) 265-5485

All participants are welcome. To request disability-related accommodations for this event, please contact Brian Cudiamat at or (217) 244-5586.