Mission Statement

The Carl B. Ylvisaker Library supports the mission of the college by providing quality information resources and advancing their effective use.


Carl B. Ylvisaker was born in Robbinsdale, Minnesota, January 13, 1896, the son of Professor Johannes T. Ylvisaker and his wife Kristi.

His father was professor of New Testament exegesis at Luther Seminary of the Norwegian Synod. During Carl's early boyhood, Luther Seminary moved to the Hamline district of St. Paul and this is where he grew up. Graduating from Central High School in 1913, he entered Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, finishing in 1917. That fall he matriculated at Luther Northwestern Theological Seminary and completed his courses in the spring of 1920. He spent the fall and early winter of 1920 in graduate study at Concordia Seminary, St. Louis, Missouri.

Dr. Ylvisaker came to Concordia College in 1927 to chair the religion department and exerted a tremendous influence on the Concordia community during his 19 years here. Ylvisaker taught religion, counseled campus religious organizations, gave his summers to Bible camps, coached tennis, was the dean of men for two years and was an unforgettable teacher who was sought out by students for his gentle but firm counsel.

Dr. Ylvisaker was noted by students as being a remarkable speaker and possessing great humility and kindness. He once said, “If you train men’s minds but not their morals, you train clever devils.” Many students sought him out for advice, and he consistently provided wise counsel. In 1956, at the request of students, Concordia’s new library was named in his honor. A bronze relief of Rev. Ylvisaker greets patrons at the library’s entrance.

In 1933, Dr. Ylvisaker married Marie Sletvold (1905-1975). Their five children are all alumni of Concordia.

At his funeral in April 1945, Ylvisaker was eulogized as a teacher who possessed "a willingness to share with others in a humble and sincere way the joy he had found in Christ Jesus."

In 1955 when Concordia needed $400,000 to build a library, two members of the Board of Regents devised a creative plan to raise the money.Fargo businessmen J. Luther Jacobson and E. T. Paulson each agreed to donate $1,000 to the project, then set out to recruit 398 other people to do likewise. By 1961 they had completed their goal and were well on their way into the next project - 500 more memberships to fund construction of the administration building. Privately organized to support the work of the college, the C-400 Club has financed facility construction and renovation, student scholarships, debt reduction, and campus beautification for Concordia College, all through volunteer efforts.

One of the first of Concordia's distinctive tan brick buildings, the current library building was completed in 1956. Previously, small libraries had been located in Old Main and Grose Halls. Eventually, the library was moved to Fjelstad Hall which remained a 'temporary' library for 12 years. Students, faculty and staff assisted in the move; 'Operation Horsepack,' meant carrying 44,000 books from the basement of Fjelstad, to fill the new library shelves.

The library was designed by Edward Sovik, who also planned 10 other buildings on campus. The library, with its spacious Reference area, won the American Institute of Architects award for architectural beauty in 1957. A four-story addition to the library, also funded by the C-400 Club, was constructed in 1971. At that time, the third and fourth floors were used for classrooms and faculty offices. In 1989 the library expanded again and now uses the whole addition for its stacks and for the College's Archives. Coincidentally, the remodeling of the library addition cost $400,000, the cost of the original library building.

The library features a large Reference room, a Curriculum Center, and two computer labs. Over 300,000 books, 50 newspaper and 1,200 periodical subscriptions make up the library's collection. Concordia's materials are accessible through the library website. Collections from regional college and university libraries are available to Concordia faculty and students through Concordia's interlibrary loan service.

Several permanent works of art are displayed in the library. Inquiry, a Venetian glass mosaic by the late David J. Hetland, a 1969 Concordia graduate, graces the entrance to the library. A bust of Martin Luther, sculpted by J. Paul Ness, '73, can also be found in the entryway. Founders, a bronze sculpture by the late Paul Granlund of Gustavus Adolphus College, St. Peter, Minnesota, is in the Circulation area.

Work at the Carl B. Library

Please complete an application. The hiring process is usually complete by the third or fourth week of the semester.

The most current information is posted at the College's Office of Human Resources.

Reference Help


Monday - Friday 9:00AM-1:00PM

Academic Year

Monday - Wednesday 8:00AM-4:00PM and 6:00PM-9:00PM

Thursday - Friday 8:00AM-4:00PM

Saturday CLOSED

Sunday 6:00PM-9:00PM


Submit a question.

  • Questions are answered Monday through Friday.
  • Responses are sent within one business day.


Who staffs this service?

The Library's Ask a Librarian service is staffed by faculty librarians. We work primarily from the Reference Services Desk in Concordia College's Carl B. Ylvisaker Library where we answer questions in person, through instant messaging, and over the phone.

How does the service work?

Contact us with your library-related questions using instant messaging, your home or cell phone, e-mail, or visit us in person at the Library's Reference Desk.

Do you save transcripts?

We regularly purge the archives of all old reference interview transcripts, though we may review them from time to time as a way to evaluate our own performance and assess the service. See our privacy policy for more details.

What is Instant Messaging (IM) and how does it work?

IM refers to software such as AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), Yahoo! Messenger, ICQ or others. These programs enable live conversations (chats) over the computer. To provide better service, the Carl B. has moved to providing chat service through a widget that pops up on several of the library's web pages. Simply click on the widget and follow the on-screen instructions to chat with a Concordia librarian.

Privacy Policy

The Carl B. Ylvisaker Library staff respects our users' privacy. This policy clarifies the information collected by our IM chat service and explains how this information may be used.

The Library's IM privacy policy includes:

  • What information we collect,
  • Potential use of this information,
  • Who has access to chat information,
  • With whom chat information may be shared, and
  • Your choices regarding collection, use and distribution of chat information.

What information is collected by the chat service?

Users have an option to enter their name or a pseudonym at the time a chat is initiated. Instant message chats through the Ask a Librarian on-screen widget are visible only to the Ask a Librarian staff members.

For what purposes might the information be used?

Chat information is used to help librarians analyze the number and types of questions we are being asked. This data helps us determine appropriate staffing levels and aids in training librarians to effectively use the service.

Who has access to this information?

This information is accessible only to faculty librarians and those library staff members who are associated with the Ask a Librarian service.

With whom might the library staff share this information?

Individual chats are not shared with anyone outside of the library. Statistics generated from chat logs or anonymous excerpts may be used for reports or publications. However, information about specific individuals (e.g., IP address, e-mail address, personal name, phone number, etc.) included as part of a chat transcript will never be shared outside of Concordia College's library.

What choices do users have regarding the collection, use and distribution of their information?

Any user who wants to have a record of their chat reference interaction may opt to download a chat transcript at the termination of the chat interaction.


Concordia College supports the resources and services of the Carl B. Ylvisaker Library for the primary use of Concordia students, faculty, and staff and clergy. Members of the Fargo-Moorhead community are granted the privilege of using these resources and services on a limited basis. Priority is always given to members of the Concordia community. (July 2006)

The Carl B. Ylvisaker Library Interlibrary Loan (ILL) department requests materials from other libraries to supplement the resources available on campus.

To request materials via interlibrary loan, please follow the instructions on the Interlibrary Loan page. ILL will contact patrons via campus mail when an item has arrived. If Interlibrary Loan staff members are unable to fill a request, an email with a description of the problem will be sent to the patron.

Because of the many costs associated with providing interlibrary loan services, the following policies will be followed.

  • Interlibrary loan is available to current students, staff and faculty, and emeriti faculty. Limited interlibrary loan services are available for patrons holding clergy borrowing cards.
  • Patrons are limited to the number of active requests they may have one time. Students may have 20, faculty and staff may have 100, and clergy borrowers may have three.
  • Interlibrary loan staff members request materials from the least expensive source. If charges are incurred, the library will pay the first $20 for student requests and $50 for faculty requests. If total charges exceed these limits, the patron will be contacted and asked to pay the remaining charges. Clergy borrowers will be asked to pay all fees associated with their requests. No charges will be accepted without prior patron approval.

Loan Period

Most items obtained through interlibrary loan may be checked out for 2-3 weeks with one renewal possible. Each lending library determines lending policies and may or may not allow renewals.

Electronic Delivery

When requesting articles through interlibrary loan, patrons may indicate a preference for electronic delivery. The lending library will determine the method of delivery.

If a request is filled electronically, the patron will receive an e-mail frommedd@othello.minitex.umn.edu with the subject line Your Interlibrary Loan Request and the following message:

Your requested material is available for pickup at http://medd.minitex.umn.edu. Login with the following information: your e-mail address and PIN (a four digit number that will be given in the message). Your material will be available on the Web site for 5 viewings or 7 days after e-mail notification, which ever comes first.

As the e-mail notification states, the article may only be accessed 5 times. Click on the link only once and contact ILL if there is a problem with access.

This information is provided for interlibrary loan staff members from libraries wishing to request materials from Concordia College. Please contact us if your question is not answered below.

Submitting Requests

Concordia accepts requests submitted via OCLC and PALS. We also accept requests through U.S. mail, Ariel, e-mail, or fax. We do not accept requests from individual patrons. Contact your local library if you would like to borrow material from our collection.


  • Standard: There is a $15.00 charge for books and photocopies for libraries that do not belong to LVIS, MINITEX, or participate in other reciprocal agreements.
  • Rush orders: We will fill rush orders for an additional fee of $15.00. This charge applies to all rush orders, including loans to members of LVIS or libraries participating in reciprocal agreements.
  • Lost item: If an item is lost, charges will be for replacement cost of the item plus a $10.00 processing fee.

Loan Period

All returnable items are loaned for 28 days. One renewal will be granted for books from our general collection. No renewals will be granted for items from our curriculum collection or for AV materials. Exceptions may apply under special circumstances.

Non-Circulating Materials

The following items are not available for interlibrary loan.

  • Periodicals
  • Reference
  • Reserves
  • Microfilm
  • Selected videos
  • Selected Curriculum Professional materials
  • Special collections
  • Archives (exceptions may be made on an individual basis.)


  • Items loaned to Minnesota libraries will be sent though the MINITEX (MII) courier unless otherwise noted.
  • Items loaned to libraries in other states will be sent via library mail. Please return videos, CDs and other AV items in a box rather than a jiffy bag.
  • Copies will be sent via Ariel if an Ariel IP is provided. Other copies will be sent U.S. mail. Fax delivery is available upon request (additional charges may apply). If there are problems with article transmission, please notify us as soon as possible. We keep articles on file for five days and will refill the original request within that time period. If more than five days have passed since the original fill, please place a new request.

Contact Us

Interlibrary Loan staff members are available from 7:45AM until 3:45PM, Monday through Friday.

OCLC symbol: CKK

Memberships: IFM, LVIS

Library Liaisons Directory

Click here for more.

Staff Resources

These resources are for current employees of the Carl B. Ylvisaker Library.  Please use the following links to locate policies and procedures relating to your position.