Margaret Libby Barr was born September 8, 1904 in Harriman, Tennessee. She was the daughter of Dr. Orin G. Libby and Eva Cory Libby. Dr. Libby was chair of the history department at the University of North Dakota (UND) from 1902 to 1945. Margaret graduated from UND with a bachelor of science degree in commerce in 1926 and taught in the Bemidji, Minnesota, school system.
She moved back to Grand Forks after marrying Paul E. Barr on June 8, 1932. Paul Barr was head of the art department at UND for 25 years, from 1928 to 1953. She assisted with the publication of his book, North Dakota Artists, in 1953. Paul Barr died December 22, 1953. They had two children: Robert and Martha.
After her husband's death, Margaret became an associate professor of Business and Vocational Education at UND from 1954 until 1975. She added a master of science degree in education from UND in 1956. In 1974, she was awarded the Charles DeBruyn Kops award for excellence in teaching and loyal service to UND. She co-authored the 1977 book University of North Dakota Pottery: the Cable Years, with her son Robert Barr and UND art professor Donald H. Miller. In 1987, she was presented with the Elwyn B. Robinson award for preservation of North Dakota history. This award was given because of her establishment of the Cable Pottery Collection at the UND's Hughes Fine Arts Center. During that same year, she was bestowed with the President's Award for outstanding service to UND.
She was also active in several Grand Forks organizations: Chapter D of the P.E.O. Sisterhood, Franklin Club, Round Table Club, Business and Professional Women, UND Faculty Wives, Alpha Phi and was an active member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church. She was chair of the publications committee, which published Windows of St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 1880-1980.
Margaret Libby Barr died May 16, 1988, in Grand Forks.
Charles Cory Libby was born October 10 1910, in Grand Forks. He was the son of Dr. Orin G. Libby and Eva Cory Libby. Charles graduated from UND with a B.S. in electrical engineering in 1931. He attended graduate school at the University of Cincinnati, where he obtained a M.S. in electrical engineering in 1933. Charles married Florence Mentnech, a nurse in training, on September 7, 1934. Charles and Florence had two children: a daughter, Donna, born August 19, 1940, and a son, Ross, born August 13, 1943. Upon graduation, Charles worked for the Electric (motor) Division of Fairbanks Morse for the next 25 years in numerous cities including Chicago, New York City, Glen Rock, NJ, and Freeport, IL.
In 1960, Charles wrote a book titled "Motor Selection and Application." After the Electrical Division was dropped at Fairbanks Morse, Charles moved to Mansfield, Ohio and worked for Ideal Electric, a motor manufacturer. In 1962, Charles moved to Columbus, Ohio, and worked for The Ohio State University for ten years doing research and teaching electrical engineering as applied to welding engineering. Charles was voted a recipient of the McQuigg Award for excellence in teaching by the students, before retiring in 1972 as Assistant Professor. Charles continued to live in Columbus after retirement until his death on August 28, 1996.
Six items (letters and poetry) that were the original materials of the Charles Libby Papers (formerly OGLMC 224) were deposited about 1973. Additions to this former collection were made by Charles Libby in 1993 (93-1883) and 1994 (94-2004).
Original materials for the Margaret Libby Barr Papers (formerly OGLMC 652) were transferred from the UND biographical file in November 1981 (81-803). Additional items were donated by Margaret Libby Barr in March 1985 (85-1364).
These two former collections were transferred into the Libby Family Papers in 2021.