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Henry Merritt Wriston Presidential Papers

Overview

Abstract

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Biographical materials and photographs

Correspondence, incoming and outgoing

Selection and inauguration

Publications

Speeches

Statements



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Henry Merritt Wriston Presidential Papers, 1925-2006 | Lawrence University Archives

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Collection Overview

Title: Henry Merritt Wriston Presidential Papers, 1925-2006View associated digital content.

ID: LU-RG03/005

Primary Creator: Wriston, Henry M. (Henry Merritt) (1889-1978)

Other Creators: Office of the President

Extent: 5.6 Linear Feet. More info below.

Arrangement: The collection is arranged alphabetically by type of material. General correspondence is arranged chronologically. Correspondence with organizations and people that resulted in numerous letters between Wriston and the organization is arranged alphabetically.

Subjects: Alexander Gymnasium II, Education, higher -- Administration

Forms of Material: sound recordings, speeches

Languages: English

Abstract

This collection is composed of the papers that document the presidency of Henry Merritt Wriston, president of Lawrence University from 1925 to 1937. Materials include both incoming and outgoing correspondence, speeches and statements Wriston gave while at Lawrence University, and publications he wrote during his presidency. Correspondence between Wriston and Lawrence after his presidency is also included. The inauguration of Wriston is documented through programs and correspondence from other colleges welcoming Wriston to the presidency. Biographical materials are also included.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

This collection is composed of the papers that document the presidency of Henry Merritt Wriston, president of Lawrence University from 1925 to 1937. Materials include both incoming and outgoing correspondence, speeches and statements Wriston gave while at Lawrence University, and publications he wrote during his presidency. Correspondence between Wriston and Lawrence after his presidency is also included. The inauguration of Wriston is documented through programs and correspondence from other colleges welcoming Wriston to the presidency. Biographical materials are also included.

The correspondence arranged chronologically consists of letters sent to Wriston and Wriston’s reply to the sender of the letter. Letters are from other colleges and presidents of other colleges, parents of current and prospective students, and committees and organizations of which Wriston was a part. The correspondence covers a variety of topics, including programs at Lawrence, speeches and public appearances of Wirston’s, new buildings at Lawrence, including Alexander Gymnasium, and reports on buildings such as the Carnegie Library. Correspondence also includes invitations for Wriston to attend public events, and in some cases, serve as the speaker of the event.

Correspondence between art exhibitors and Wriston discusses paintings and catalogues, and exhibits held at other institutions. Wriston also discusses the purchase of pieces of art to add to Lawrence’s art collection and discusses the importance of stimulating the interest of art at Lawrence. Wriston also discusses Lawrence joining art organizations throughout the country and also arranges for art exhibits to be brought to Lawrence from off-campus organizations.

Collection Historical Note

Henry Merritt Wriston, president of Lawrence University from 1925-1937, was born in Laramie, Wyoming, in 1889. The son of a Massachusetts Methodist minister, he received both a Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts degree from Wesleyan University and received a doctorate in political science from Harvard University. He taught history at Wesleyan University and became the head of that history department.

In 1925, Wriston accepted the presidency at Lawrence University at the age of 36. During his tenure as president at Lawrence, Wriston worked to define the purpose of the college and raise its academic standards, revised the curriculum, expanded the library, and increased the number of faculty members. Wriston implemented a mandatory retirement policy at age 65 for faculty. In reshaping the curriculum, Wriston did away with courses he believed were incompatible with a liberal arts college, including bookkeeping, accounting, and business administration. Wriston also founded and became the first director of the Institute of Paper Chemistry, an institution of research and graduate study supported by the paper industry.

Wriston was the first Lawrence president who was not a Methodist minister and severed the ties the Methodist church had with Lawrence by removing the Board of Visitors, a group of Methodists, from the Board of Trustees. He allowed social activities on campus that had been frowned upon by the Methodists and even attended the first dances held on campus. Wriston also wrote a book, The Nature of a Liberal College, which was published in 1937. New buildings were also added to the campus during Wriston’s time, including Alexander Gymnasium. Wriston was also a strong supporter of the Conservatory of Music at a time when the Board of Trustees wanted to abandon it. He was very pro-active in building the college’s art collection, and his goal was to build a center for the arts. This goal did not happen during his presidency due to the Great Depression that was occurring at the time. Wriston’s work at Lawrence and establishment of standards for what a liberal arts college should be set a precedent that has been followed to the present.

Wriston left Lawrence in 1937 to become the President of Brown University, a position he held until 1955. He then became executive director, president, and chairman of the American Assembly from which he retired in 1965. He died on March 8, 1978, in New York, New York.

Subject/Index Terms

Alexander Gymnasium II
Education, higher -- Administration

Administrative Information

Repository: Lawrence University Archives

Alternate Extent Statement: 6 boxes

Access Restrictions: Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions: Property rights reside with Lawrence University.  Literary rights are retained by the creators of the records and their heirs.  For permissions to reproduce or to publish, please contact the University Archivist.

Acquisition Method: The donor and date the collection was transferred to the University Archives are unknown.

Preferred Citation: Henry Merritt Wriston Presidential Papers.  LU-RG03-005.  Lawrence University Archives, Seeley G. Mudd Library, Appleton, Wisconsin.

Processing Information: Preliminary processing done prior to 2005, date and processor unknown. Processed by Julia Stringfellow, 2006.


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Biographical materials and photographs, 1925-1991],
[Series 2: Correspondence, incoming and outgoing, 1925-1971],
[Series 3: Selection and inauguration, 1921-1925],
[Series 4: Publications, 1927-1966],
[Series 5: Speeches, 1928-1972],
[Series 6: Statements, circa 1925-1937],
[All]

Series 2: Correspondence, incoming and outgoing, 1925-1971
Sub-Series 1: By date
Box 1
Folder 2: June, 1925-June, 1934View associated digital content.
Extent: 109 folders
Box 2
Folder 1: July, 1934-1937View associated digital content.
Extent: 31 folders
Folder 32: 1938-1971, Wriston's correspondence with Lawrence after he left to become president of Brown University
Sub-Series 2: By subject
Box 2
Folder 33: Albion College, 1926-1936
Correspondence discusses the Educational Association of the Methodist Episcopal Church of which the two schools were members and also covers other issues both colleges were facing at the time.
Extent: 2 folders
Folder 35: Alumni Reading Service of Lawrence College, 1929-1932View associated digital content.
Folder 36: American College Bureau, 1934-1936
Folder 37: American Council of Education, 1926-1936
Folder 38: American Foundation, 1926-1933
Folder 39: Appleton Public Schools, 1933-1936
Folder 40: Appointments of new faculty, 1934-1936
Folder 41: Art collection acquisition, 1931-1935
Folder 42: Art collection rentals, 1931-1935
Folder 43: Art exhibits and memberships, 1927-1936
Folder 44: Ashe, W.F., Thilmany Pulp and Paper Company, 1926-1936
Folder 45: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 46: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 47: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 48: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 49: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 50: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 51: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 52: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 53: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 54: Association of American Colleges, 1929-1936
Folder 55: Beloit College, 1925-1936
Folder 56: Boslough, A.W., 1928-1930
Folder 57: Brown, Rollo Walter, recipient of honorary degree in 1927, 1926-1933
Folder 58: Buck, Glen, recipient of honorary degree in 1929, 1929-1932
Folder 59: Carleton College, 1933-1936
Folder 60: Carnegie Corporation, 1925-1936
Box 3
Folder 1: Carnegie Foundation of the Advancement of Teaching, 1929-1936
Folder 2: Carroll College, 1926-1936
Folder 3: Coe College, 1933-1936
Folder 4: Columbia University, 1934-1935
Folder 5: Cookson, Samuel, 1925-1931
Folder 6: Cornell College, 1933-1936
Folder 7: Council of Church Board of Education, 1935-1936
Folder 8: Curriculum at Lawrence University and other colleges, 1925-1932
Folder 9: DePauw University, 1935-1937
Folder 10: Development and fund raising at Lawrence University, 1933-1934
Folder 11: Evans, Horace James, donor of scientific apparatus and graduate of Lawrence 1879, 1928-1929
Folder 12: General Education Board, 1925-1934
Folder 13: Gifts to Lawrence, 1933-1937
Folder 13a: Gifts to Lawrence, Mary A. Goldsmith will, 1936
Folder 14: Griffith, Albert, collector of Lincoln materials that were possibly donated to Lawrence, 1929-1934
Folder 15: Grinnell College, 1934-1935
Folder 16: Humphrey, Edward, regarding donation of photographs of the class of 1859, 1928-1929
Folder 17: Investments of Lawrence, First Trust and Savings Bank, 1929-1930
Folder 18: Investments of Lawrence, First Trust Company of Appleton, 1926-1933
Folder 19: Investments of Lawrence, General information, 1926-1931
Folder 20: Investments of Lawrence, Harris Trust and Savings Bank, 1930-1931
Folder 21: Investments of Lawrence, Kasten, Walter, Board of Trustees, treasurer, First Wisconsin National Bank, 1931-1934
Folder 22: Investments of Lawrence, MacFarlane, Henry, Lawrence graduate 1921, National Republic Company, 1929
Folder 23: Investments of Lawrence, Nash, Francis, Lawrence graduate 1904, E.E. MacCrone and Company, 1929-1931
Folder 24: Investments of Lawrence, Northern Bond and Mortgage Company, 1928-1929
Folder 25: Investments of Lawrence, Rasey, Lee, Lawrence graduate 1913, 1927-1932
Folder 26: Investments of Lawrence, White, Richard, Lawrence graduate 1913, First Investment Company, 1929-1931
Folder 27: Investments of Lawrence, W.M.L. Ross and Company, Incorporated, 1927-1932
Folder 28: Iowa Wesleyan College, 1933
Folder 29: Knox College, 1933-1936
Folder 30: Locke, Charles Edward, Methodist Episcopal Church bishop, 1925-1928
Folder 31: Matriculation Convocation, 1933
Folder 32: Memos between Wriston and Ralph Watts, business manager of Lawrence University, 1926-1936View associated digital content.
Extent: 3 folders
Folder 35: Methodist Church, Board of Directors, 1933-1934
Folder 36: Methodist Church, Board of Education, 1925-1937
Extent: 4 folders
Folder 40: Methodist Church, Board of Education, Committee on the Utilization of the Survey, 1933
Folder 41: Methodist Church, Board of Education, inspections of colleges, 1932-1934
Folder 42: Methodist Church, Board of Education, survey, 1930
Folder 43: Methodist Church, Board of Visitors members, 1933-1935
Folder 44: Methodist Church, Conferences, 1934-1939
Folder 45: Methodist Church, Sesquicentennial, 1932-1934
Folder 46: Midwest College conference, 1934-1937
Extent: 6 folders
Box 4
Folder 1: Milwaukee-Downer College, correspondence with president Lucia Briggs, 1926-1936View associated digital content.
Folder 2: Milwaukee Public Schools, 1934-1936
Folder 3: National Collegiate Athletic Association, 1935-1936
Folder 4: National Interfraternity Conference, 1934-1936
Folder 5: National Interfraternity Conference, 1934-1936
Folder 6: Nepco Tri-City Flying Service Incorporated, 1929-1930
Folder 7: North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, 1927-1935
Extent: 3 folders
Folder 10: North Central Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, Athletics and Physical Education Committee, 1928-1932
Folder 11: Parents of Lawrence students, 1935View associated digital content.
Folder 12: Presidents of Lawrence, Knight, Douglas, 1955-1962
Folder 13: Presidents of Lawrence, Smith, Thomas, 1974-1978
Folder 14: Presidents of Lawrence, Tarr, Curtis, 1963-1969View associated digital content.
Folder 15: Presidential portrait of Wriston fund, 1941-1969
Folder 16: Recommendations for Lawrence faculty and students, 1927-1931
Folder 17: Rhodes Scholarship Trust, 1926-1933
Folder 18: Ripon College, 1925-1936
Folder 19: Saint Norbert College, 1933-1938
Folder 20: Schneller, Frank, Lawrence graduate 1902, 1926-1932
Folder 21: Shattuck, S. Frank and Ruth, 1929-1933
S. Frank Shattuck was a Board of Trustee member at Lawrence from 1904-1910 and Ruth Harwood Shattuck was a Lawrence graduate of 1906.
Folder 22: Steele, Westbrook, 1928-1929
Folder 22a: Student grades, 1925-1928
Folder 23: Student protest and peace march at Lawrence, 1936View associated digital content.
Folder 24: Student publications, Ariel, 1934-1936
Folder 25: Student publications, Lawrentian, 1933-1935
Folder 26: Students attending Lawrence and alumni, 1933-1937
Folder 27: Teachers Insurance and Annuity Association of America, 1933-1935
Folder 28: Telling, Elizabeth, regarding Colman bookplate, 1929
Folder 29: Thompson, Mary Dartt, 1928-1929
Folder 30: Titus, W.A., 1930
Folder 31: Tutorial on teaching International Relations at Lawrence, 1934-1936
Folder 32: United States Federal Emergency Relief Administration, 1933-1935
Folder 33: United States Office of Education, Department of the Interior, 1933-1936
Folder 34: United States Society, 1932-1934
Folder 35: University of Chicago, 1933-1936
Folder 36: University of Wisconsin, 1926-1936
Extent: 2 folders
Folder 38: Weismiller, Luverne, secretary 1926-1931, 1927-1930
Folder 39: Weston, Arthur, Lawrence professor of Classics, 1927-1936
Correspondence discusses Lawrence course catalog and academic calendar
Folder 40: Whiting, George, art museum building, 1930
Folder 41: Wisconsin Citizens' Committee on Unemployment, 1930-1931
Folder 42: Wisconsin Committee on Educational Programs for the Unemployed, 1930
Folder 43: Wisconsin Conference of Social Work, 1927-1936
Folder 44: Wisconsin Council of Education, Committee on Entrance Requirements, 1933-1934
Folder 45: Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, 1936
Folder 46: Wisconsin Industrial Commission, 1934
Folder 47: Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance, 1933
Folder 48: Wisconsin Teacher Training Council, Department of Public Instruction, 1929
Folder 49: Young Men's Christian Association (Y.M.C.A.), 1925-1936
Extent: 3 folders

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Biographical materials and photographs, 1925-1991],
[Series 2: Correspondence, incoming and outgoing, 1925-1971],
[Series 3: Selection and inauguration, 1921-1925],
[Series 4: Publications, 1927-1966],
[Series 5: Speeches, 1928-1972],
[Series 6: Statements, circa 1925-1937],
[All]


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