The Ames Library to Display Work of Bible Scholars

October 4, 2005

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – The writings of James W. Bennett, class of ’64, and the late Charles Merrill Smith will be recognized with a book signing and display of the Charles Merrill Smith papers in The Ames Library’s John Wesley Powell Rot unda (1 Ames Plaza, Bloomington) on Oct. 7 from 2-4 p.m.

Smith, who died in 1985, was a member of the Illinois Wesleyan Board of Trustees.  He was also a United Methodist minister who served in the Bloomington-Normal community and the author of How to Become a Bishop without Being Religious, When the Saints Go Marching Out, and the Reverend Randollph mystery series. 

Smith’s family donated his working papers as well as other professional papers, including original manuscripts, letters about interviews, fan mail and a screenplay script based on one of his works, to the Tate Archives & Special Collections of The Ames Library. 

A longtime friend of Smith’s, Bennett recently completed How the Bible was Built, which is based on one of Smith’s manuscripts and was recently published by Eerdmans Press. Bennett, who will be available to sign copies of the new book, is the award-winning author of several young adult novels, including Old Hoss and The Squared Circle, and the spiritual work A Quiet Desperation.

For additional information, contact Meg Miner at  (309)556-1538 or

Contact: Meg Dubuque, (309) 556-3181