News Release

Philanthropist Andrew Carnegie comes to Life

By Elizabeth Tollefson on
Monday, January 29, 2018

Glimpse the life of Scottish-American businessman and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie in a portrayal by Jeffrey Smith, Ph. D., professor of history at Linden University in Missouri. The Chautauqua-like, one-man performance will take place on Sunday, February 11, 2018 at 3:30 p.m., at theSmith as Carnegie Carnegie Building located at 120 North Ash Street, Crookston, Minn. Admission is free and everyone is invited to attend.

The performance, sponsored by the Academic Success Center at the University of Minnesota Crookston and the Polk County Historical Society, is intended to promote study abroad to Scotland and Ireland and bring campus and community together. A second performance will take place on Monday, February 12, at 7:30 p.m. in the Carnegie Library Building in Thief River Falls, Minn.

For more information about the event, contact Stacie Varnson at 218-281-8555 or Kristina Gray at 218-281-8256.

Industrialist and philanthropist Andrew Carnegie built more than 2,500 libraries including libraries in the United States, Ireland, the United Kingdom, Canada, and others. The Carnegie Library in Crookston opened its doors to the public in 1908 and it served the community and region until 1984 when a new library was constructed adjacent to the Carnegie Building.

Biographical information on Jeffrey Smith, Ph.D.

Jeffrey Smith, Ph.D., is professor of history at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri.  He is also editor of The Confluence, a peer-reviewed regional studies journal published by the Lindenwood University Press.  

Smith has portrayed Andrew Carnegie in more than 150 venues including Cambridge University in England, Carnegie libraries, universities, and public programs. He and his wife Kris live in St. Louis. He has worked for more than a decade offering first-person portrayals of Carnegie and other historical figures such as William Clark, George Washington, and P.T. Barnum of diverse audiences.

The University of Minnesota Crookston now delivers 34 bachelor's degree programs, 22 minors, and 40 areas of emphasis on campus as well as 14 degree programs entirely online.  These degrees are offered in the areas of agriculture and natural resources; business; liberal arts and education; and math, science and technology.  With an enrollment of 1,800 undergraduates from more than 20 countries and 40 states, the Crookston campus offers a supportive, close-knit atmosphere that leads to a prestigious University of Minnesota degree.  "Small Campus. Big Degree."  To learn more, visit


Elizabeth Tollefson

University Relations


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