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RG 30/255 - J. Clayton Miller (1909-1997)
Scope and Content

The papers of J. Clayton Miller primarily document Miller's time in China as a Shansi Representative from 1930 to 1932. Series I contains letters from Miller to his parents during his stay in China. Series III includes Chinese Maps collected in China. Motion picture film (not viewed by the Archives staff) documents Miller’s student missionary work in Shansi, China in the early 1930s. Miller’s insights into the situation in China and Japan during the 1930s are illustrated in his writings found in Series II. The writings in this series focus on topics such as Anti-Japanese Propaganda, Japan’s China versus China’s China, and military strategy in Northern China on the Hopei-Shansi-Chahar Border. Of particular interest are two letters written to the editors of Cleveland newspapers in 1938, in which Miller uses his first-hand experience to explain how Japan’s control over Chinese land was a strain on the Japanese Government, and how communism was not part of the Japanese restructuring plan in China. Also included are files concerning the history of the K’ung Bell and bell-stand, and the bell ringing ceremony on May 27, 1995 at the Allen Memorial Art Museum.

The collection is divided into eight series: 1. Correspondence; 2. Writings by J. Clayton Miller; 3. Maps; 4. Book Reviews; 5. Miscellaneous; 6. Files related to the K’ung Bell; 7. Diplomas and Certificates; and, 8. Moving Images.

Series Descriptions

Series I. Correspondence, 1930-31, 1938 (2 Folders)

Contains letters from J. Clayton Miller to his parents while he was in China from July 1930 - September 1931. Also included is a letter to the editor of the Cleveland News and a letter to the editor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer. Both letters concern Japanese control of land in China during the 1930s.

Series II. Writings by J. Clayton Miller, 1936-38, 1984-86, (1 Folder)

The writings include newspaper articles and journal articles concerning the Chinese Government, Japanese control in China, and military strategy in China during the 1930s. Also included is an article concerning the Oberlin Alumni Association and its constitution (Miller was president of the Association, 1985-1986), and an article concerning contests sponsored by the Alumni Association. A complete list of the titles is included in the inventory. In addition, a draft of a report issued by the Hoover Commission and its Foreign Affairs Task Force is included.

Series III. Maps, n.d (1 Folder)

These maps (5 total) are of areas in China, including Hangzhon, Hobei Province, Shansi, Peking, and Yenching University.

Series IV. Book Reviews, 1937, 1941 (1 Folder)

Included are J. Clayton Miller’s reviews of Ghengis Khan (1936) by Ralph Fox, The Struggle for North China by George E. Taylor, and Le Droit Chinos by Jean Escarra.

Series V. Miscellaneous, 1937 (1 Folder)

This series contains notes taken by J. Clayton Miller during a trip through the 8th Rte. Army area (China) in the Fall of 1937. Also included is an Oberlin College pennant.

Series VI. Files related to the K’ung Bell, 1994-97, n.d. (2 Folders, 1 Scrapbook)

This series documents the history of the K’ung Bell, the bell-stand, and its placement in the Allen Memorial Art Museum. Included is a scrapbook of photographs, letters, and printed matter that documents the history of the bell-stand and the Ringing Celebration of Longevity on May 27, 1995.

Series VII. Diplomas and Certificates, 1930, 1933, 1949, 1966 (1 folder, 4 items)

Includes Miller's B.A. (1930) and A.M. (1933) diplomas from Oberlin College, Masters of Science in Public Administration diploma from Syracuse University (1949), and Pi Sigma Alpha Initiation Certificate (14 May 1966).

Series VIII. Films & Videotapes, c. 1930s (14 film reels, 4 VHS duplicates, 4 DVD duplicates, 4 DBeta duplicates)

The motion picture films (16mm) in this series document Miller’s student missionary work in Shansi, China, and travels in Japan, China, Korea, Europe, Argentina, and Brazil, ca. 1930s. Included are 4 VHS videotapes that contain copies of parts of the films, with chapter headings. Films dealing with Miller's work in the Far East, as well as the VHS tapes, were copied to 4 DBeta tapes and 4 DVDs in 2009 (additional reference DVDs made in 2010). See the report from the film transfer vendor, Scene Savers (Covington, KY) on the content of the reels of film and videotapes that were copied.

Provenance

Provenance

Related Materials

The records of the Oberlin Shansi Memorial Association, 1881-1998 (including accessions 1993/023 and 1994/079); and, the College Archives Museum Collection, RG 35 (accessions 1993/116 and 1994/079).

 
 
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