Monday’s (June 12) historic milestone set by West Virginia Sen. Robert C. Byrd as the longest-serving member of the U.S. Senate is expected to spur more sales of the senator’s autobiographyalready a West Virginia University Press bestseller, said Press Director Patrick W. Conner.

�€?Robert C. Byrd: Child of the Appalachian Coalfields�€? is one of the four top bestselling books put out by the WVU Press, Conner noted.

It was launched by the senator on June 20, 2005, at WVU and on June 21, 2005, at the National Archives in Washington , D.C.

�€?The work Sen. Byrd has done for both the state and the nation clearly need to be articulated in his own terms to give future biographers a foundation for properly evaluating this outstanding American’s contribution,�€? Conner said of the 800-page work.

The book recounts the senator’s life experiences from growing up in Stotesbury , W.Va. , in the early 1920s to his election to an unprecedented eighth U.S. Senate term in 2000.

Other titles that have sold well for the WVU Press include �€?Mountain Memories�€? by Jim Clark, a collection primarily of West Virginia photographs; �€?Crum,�€? a controversial coming-of-age novel by Lee Maynard; and �€?The Inside Pitch,�€? by Gene Budig, a study of baseball today by the last president of the American league and former WVU president.

The WVU Press recently audited its titles to determine how well each had sold at the request of a member of the Association of American University Presses.

�€?We’re certainly holding our own compared to other university presses,�€? said Conner �€?in the kinds of books we’re representing, but it’s Senator Byrd’s book we’re most proud of today.�€?

The book is priced at $35 and can be ordered by contacting the WVU Press toll-free at 1-866-WVUPRESS, or by