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Resident publishes book on Oxford

OXFORD - Everyone can now get an inside look at Oxford College.

Recently, the college published "Cornerstone and Grove: A Portrait in Architecture and Landscape of Emory's Birthplace in Oxford, Georgia," which gives a history of the campus that began in 1836 and surrounding town.

The book was written by Erik Oliver, an Oxford College graduate and former employee and an Oxford native and current resident.

"I have a background in history, and I grew up in Oxford and have a long association with Oxford College," said Oliver. "The book follows the history of the college and town from the beginning through buildings and landscape."

He began research on the book in late 2008 after Oxford College Dean Stephen Bowen assigned it as a special project.

"There is a special affection that everyone associated with Oxford, especially our alumni, feel for its beautiful campus and its historic buildings," Bowen said in a press release. "We have long wanted to chronicle the development of Oxford's sense of place and to tell the story of its architecture, past and present. We are delighted to make this beautiful and informative book available."

Oliver collected information from primary and secondary sources such as minutes from board of trustee meetings, old college publications, family papers from people who worked for the college, Emory archives and old city documents.

"It's mostly history, but it comes up to present day," said Oliver, adding that it also includes educational pleas for the future.

This is Oliver's first published book. He wants to continue with other works like this with other small cities, such as Porterdale and other areas around Georgia.

"It's been a very rewarding experience," he said.

Oliver plans to hold several book signing events around Newton County later this year.

The book also is available at the Oxford College bookstore, the Oxford College Financial Services office in room 107 of Seney Hall, the Arts Association in Newton County at 1106 Washington St. in Covington or for order by visiting www.oxford.emory.edu/cornerstone.

Michelle Floyd can be reached at michelle.floyd@newtoncitizen.com.