Friends of the Marriott Library

For more than 40 years the Friends of the Marriott Library have helped the Marriott Library serve the University of Utah and our Intermountain community. The Friends have helped the library to acquire important collection materials and to encourage others to enjoy and appreciate the excellent materials and resources of the library through a series of annual events. The Friends also have developed a fund to support the Floyd O'Neil Marriott Library Research Fellowship, an annual research grant to encourage scholars' use of the special resources of the Marriott Library’s Special Collections holdings.

The Friends of the Marriott Library have been on a hiatus since 2020. The library anticipates re-integrating Friends initiatives in Spring 2024.

Friends of the Marriott Library Mission

  • To provide for enrichment of learning, promote the public welfare and cultural opportunities through library programs.
  • To sponsor lectures, informal discussion groups, exhibits, and other means for people to become acquainted and share their enthusiasm for learning, books, and other library media.
  • To organize alumni and other friends of the University of Utah to participate in efforts to broaden public understanding and appreciation of the facilities, collections, work, and activities of the Marriott Library.
  • To assist in expanding the resources of the library by encouraging monetary gifts, bequests and memorials, and the donation of collections and other library materials.
  • To acquire unique publications and to publish significant works based on unusual holdings in possession of the Marriott Library.

Friends of the Marriott Library Board 

Sarah Shreeves, Alice Sheets Marriott Dean of Libraries
Michael Homer, Boards Chair
Todd Samuelson, Associate Dean for Special Collections
Dan Donahoe                                                                                        
Mark Edlund
Juli Hinz
Linda Keiter
Ann Staples
John Sillito
Gregory C. Thompson
Kent Tschanz 

About the Fellowship

The goal of the annual Floyd O'Neil Marriott Library Research Fellowship is to promote scholarly research utilizing the outstanding resources of the Special Collections Department at the J. Willard Marriott Library.
A $3,500 fellowship will be awarded by the Marriott Library to a qualified applicant desiring to use the resources of the Marriott Library's Special Collections Department to research topics suitable and relevant to the collections. Special Collections consists of several divisions housing a wide variety of unique and valuable research materials including:

  • The Manuscript/Multimedia Divisions hol often original, unique, and unpublished collections offering the opportunity to hear the voices of the past and see historic scenes and artistic visions come to life; 
  • The Western Americana Division features books, maps, periodicals, and newspapers on Utah and the Intermountain region;
  • The Rare Books/Book Arts Division has assembled over 80,000 rare books  and maps, and one of the finest Book Arts collections in the country;
  • The Aziz S. Atiya Middle East Library, one of the largest in the United States, covers material ranging from rare papyrus, manuscript, and paper documents dating from as early as the 9th century AD to modern Middle East publications.

Additional information about these collections can be found on the Special Collections webpage.

How to Apply

Deadline: May 3, 2024 | Applicants will be notified via email by May 24, 2024.

To apply, submit the following via online application:

  • A project proposal, including a budget, timeline, and explanation as to how the materials in Special Collections will be utilized
  • Resume or CV
  • Two references

Selection Criteria:

  • A comprehensive research proposal delineating clear objectives and methodology.
  • Research that will result in a meaningful contribution to scholarship.
  • Research plan that lays out how Marriott Library Special Collections will support the project.
  • Strong supporting references related to the proposal.
  • Additional emphasis on any specific content that distinguishes one proposal from other competitive applications.

Following the completion of the fellowship, the awardee will submit a research report detailing their findings on Special Collections in the Marriott Library. If this material is published, we would appreciate a copy for the Special Collections archives.

Application materials should be submitted online by May 3, 2024. If you have any questions, please email Mallory at


Dr. Floyd A. O'Neil

Floyd O'Neil

The fellowship is named in honor of Dr. Floyd A. O’Neil (1927-2018), former director of the American West Center (AWC) from 1966-1977. With his intimate understanding of native peoples, stemming from his  upbringing on the Ute Reservation, O'Neil directed the Center's focus towards oral histories. He spearheaded numerous  projects dedicated to highlighting native voices and under his guidance, the AWC became a hub for oral history projects spanning topics such as native peoples, land management, and veterans' experiences.

Many of these projects are now accessible through the Marriott Library's Special Collections Department, preserving crucial insights into the American West's history and culture. Upon retiring, O'Neil joined the Friends of the Marriott Library Board, where he proposed the establishment of the Friends of the Marriott Library Fellowship. The fellowship has since been renamed in his recognitionas the Floyd O'Neil Marriott Library Research Fellowship.

An Inference Regarding the Expedition of Lewis and Clark
by Bernard DeVoto.(2003)

Names on the Land
Powell, Stegner, & the Colorado Plateau.(2002)

Utah's Pioneer Skiers.(2001)

Flagship In The Desert: A Chonology of the University of Utah.(2000)

Utah, the Mormons, and the California Gold Rush.(1999)

Flagship In The Desert: A Chronology of the University of Utah.(1998)

A Review, Written by Luke Cosgrave,
Pictured by Le Conte Stewart.(1997)

"The Mentholatum Company map of Utah - Nevada
by Robert T. Aitchison" a facsimile of a map published in 1940. (1996)

"Transitions & Transformations: Bits & Bytes of Marriott Library History," by Dr. William Mulder. (1995)

"The Book and the Great Community," by Wallace Stegner. (1994)

The Pride of the Market, facsimile of playbill of first
Salt Lake Theatre production, March 8, 1862. (1993)

"In Celebration," a poem by Mark Strand. (1992)

A Leaf from an old Coptic Lectionary. (1991)

"Sketches from [a] Church Block," Block Development
in Salt Lake City one hundred years ago. (1990)

Territory of Utah, Proclamation by the Governor, April 23, 1853. (1989)

"O My Father," a facsimile of a booklet published in 1909. (1987)

Arthur Shepard, From His Scrapbook. he helped
organize the Utah Symphony. (1975)

A reproduction of "Ben Holladay Stagecoach" timetable,
Denver, 1862. (1974)

Facsimile of an invitation to a Military Ball in 1860,
attended by Sir Richard Burton. (1974)

"City of Corinne" - a broadside of its maiden voyage. (1973)

The Friends of the Libraries at the University of Utah periodically issue a keepsake of some historical or aesthetic interest as a token of appreciation for patron support of the Library and as a reminder of the treasures in Special Collections. The following list contains a brief description and images scanned directly from the original keepsakes found in the Marriott Library's Special Collections Manuscripts Collection. Manuscript number; MS 415

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