|RG 5 -
Office of the Secretary
|Scope and Content
The records of the Office of the Secretary document the duties
and functions of the office beginning with the creation of the office
in 1899. The records also include documents prior to the organization
of the Office of the Secretary. The majority of these records are
located in the historical file. The records illustrate the gradual
growth of the Office of the Secretary, from an ancillary offshoot
of the Office of the Treasurer, to an administrative office overseeing
the functions of the faculty councils, the Board of Trustees, alumni
affairs, and student life. The records also reflect the gradual
loss of power and redistribution of power after the office reached
its nadir of power in 1960.
The records of the Office of the Secretary are centered on the
tenures of George M. Jones, secretary from 1899 to 1938, and Donald
M. Love, his successor who served from 1938 to 1962. These two secretaries
shaped the office and influenced the College as a result. Between
1962 and 1980 the Office of the Secretary went through a period
of down-sizing and transition. Under the Starr administration, pre-1962
duties were gradually restored to the Office of Secretary.
The Office of the Secretary records are arranged around nine subgroups.
The subgroups are representative of the functional responsibility
of the Office of the Secretary: I. Administrative Records (General);
II. Administrative Records of Departments and Units; III. Board
of Trustees Records; IV. Alumni Affairs; V. Athletics and Athletic
Associations; VI. Campus Functions and Special Events; VII. Scholarship
and Loan Records; VIII. Student Life Records; IX. Historical Files;
and X. Miscellaneous Personal and Real Property Records.
The records found in the first two administrative subgroups, Administrative
Records (General) and Administrative Records of Departments and
Offices, are the most voluminous. These subgroups belie the broad
operational base of the Office of the Secretary. The first subgroup,
Administrative Records (General) is comprised of records generally
reflecting the routine functioning of the office. The accrediting
materials offer valuable insight into the operation of the College
as an institution. The accrediting records include institutional
profiles and self-studies, prepared for the North Central Association,
which provide a detailed record of how the college perceived itself
and the extent to which it adhered to its mission and kept pace
with peer institutions. The subject files offer evidence of the
wide supervisory scope exercised by the Office of the Secretary.
The files also give evidence of the sensitive relationship between
town and gown, such as records of bills owed to merchants by students.
It also illustrates the cooperative spirit in which the town and
college have shared buildings and facilities. Other items in this
subgroup include the secretarys files of the physical plant, building
and grounds and developmental studies. These are general files,
and are more modest than the building and grounds records found
in record group (6/4/3).
The second administrative subgroup documents the Academic Departments
and Administrative Offices. Records of academic departments
consist of materials received by the secretary from the departments
as well as board and council vote excerpts related to the departments.
The records of administrative offices mirror the duties once performed
by the secretary. The admissions records contain proceedings from
the Committee on Admissions up to 1928 when a director of admissions
was hired and the duties transferred from the secretary. Items from
the development office include valuable records relating to the
bequest of Charles Martin Hall (1863-1914). In addition to background
material on Hall and his bequest, the files include correspondence
with the college, their lawyers and the executors of the estate,
Homer Johnson (1862-1960) and Arthur Vining Davis (1867-1962). The
printed testimony of college officials is included as part of the
record from the 1940 monopoly litigation of U.S.A. v. ALCOA et
al. Included is a run of annual reports submitted to the secretary
by various department heads between 1903 and 1951. The annual reports
received offers a rich source of information on the curriculum and
course offerings. The earlier reports are hand written reports from
campus luminaries such as Edward Increase Bosworth (1861-1927) and
Hope Hibbard (1893-1988).
The Records of the Board of Trustees in subgroup III represent
the core function of the Office of the Secretary. Facilitating Board
functions and preserving and indexing their minutes has been the
central function of the secretary. This subseries represent a fraction
of the extant records of the Board of Trustees. (A more complete
run of records is found in record group 1 as well as the records
currently administered by the Office of the Secretary in the vault
in the Cox Administration Building.) The records found in this subgroup
document the election of trustees from the ranks of the alumni,
note changes and amendments to the charter and by laws and includes
general records of the proceeding of early Board meetings.
Subgroup IV, Alumni Records represents records created and
received by the Office of the Secretary between 1900 and 1960. Charged
with maintaining the records of alumni and preparing catalogs, the
secretary maintained vast indexes of former students, staff and
faculty. The master index, a comprehensive record of names from
the founding of the college in 1833 was prepared between 1906 and
1979. In 1988 these records were filmed onto microfiche allowing
the original documentation to be stored off-site. Other valuable
records in this series are the indexes of minority students. An
index of negro students from 1835 to 1970 contains individual cards
for each student enrolled at Oberlin for that period. It is particularly
useful in reconstructing trends in minority student enrollment.
Reunion records, dating back to 1856, are also part of this subgroup
which includes files on the class of 1894 (Secretary Jones class)
and the reunion of 1900. In 1964 the alumni records duties were
transferred to the Office of Development and Alumni Affairs.
Another early function performed by Secretary George Jones is evidenced
in the Athletics and Athletic Association Records. These
records organized in subgroup V are largely the result of Jones
prior interest in athletics as a graduate manager for athletics
before his appointment as secretary. Jones served as an officer
in several early athletic associations, including the Oberlin Athletic
Association and the Ohio Athletic Conference. The records of these
associations include minutes, correspondence, and results of athletic
events. These records are a valuable source of history on the early
years of athletic associations and conferences in Ohio. Early scorebooks
and programs are also housed within this series, including one baseball
scorebook documenting the play of Moses Fleetwood Walker (1856-1924),
the first black player to play in the major leagues. The secretarys
responsibilities for retaining athletic records ended upon the retirement
of George M. Jones in 1938.
The organizational duties of the secretary are illustrated in subgroup
VI, Campus Functions and Special Events. Included are records
of centennials, conferences, presidential inaugurations and commencement
ceremonies held at Oberlin. Centennial records include organizational
records and publicity from the centennial of the founding of the
town and College in 1833, and two scrapbooks from the Centennial
of Coeducation in 1937. Documents about Charles Martin Hall and
his aluminum discoveries are found along with the records from the
semi-centennial and centennial of his discovery. Records of conferences
include programs and brochures from early religious conferences
held in Oberlin, including the American Board of Commissioners for
Foreign Missions and a number of national congregational church
conferences. Invitations and responses to invitations comprise the
bulk of the records of the inauguration records from the installation
of Ernest Hatch Wilkins (1880-1966) and William E. Stevenson (1900-1985)
as the seventh and eighth presidents of Oberlin College, respectively.
The bulk of the records pertain to commencement ceremonies, ranging
from distribution of commencement tickets, to academic processions
and program printing. (Other commencement records can be found in
the College General record group (0/0).
The Scholarship and Loan Records found in subgroup VII document
the secretarys functions prior to the creation of the Office of
Financial Aid. The records include indexes of scholarship and loan
funds and the amounts borrowed. Annual reports prepared by the secretary
provide the balances and principle available on loans. Auditors
lists of outstanding loans give account of the number of unpaid
loans, listing the loan fund and the borrower. The subgroup also
includes several ledgers compiled to record transactions as well
as a fragment of scholarship applications for student names beginning
with B-J from 1917-26.
The files organized around Student Life Records in subgroup VIII
document the secretarys involvement in coordinating campus activities
and student organizations prior to the creation of The Dean of Students
position. Included are copies of chapel talks presented by faculty
members and guests to campus assemblies in the chapel. These speeches
provide a remarkable record of political and social thought at Oberlin
for the years 1933 to 1955. Also housed here are records of freshman
honor lists compiled from 1905 to 1943 and various lectures and
programs presented to and by students. Among the visiting lecturers
were Admiral Richard E. Byrd and Will Rogers. General files of student
organizations and publications include constitutions and some minutes
from student organizations, many of which are now defunct such as
the Ladies Board, Oberlin Peace Society and Angels Flight, the womens
The final subgroup, Historical Files, underscores the role
played by the secretary as unofficial archivist prior to the appointment
of an archivist in 1966. Documents include miscellaneous early historical
records dating back to 1833. These miscellaneous records include
several important documents such as Adelia Field Johnstons (1837-1910)
report on the Ladies Department from 1871. An index to early historic
records references Board of Trustee and Prudential Committee records
for the first thirty years of the institutions existence. Additionally,
the subgroup contains reminiscences of early graduates compiled
between 1918 and 1920 as well as general files on historical topics
and people. The war service and activities series offers a particularly
rich source of documentation on Oberlins reaction and involvement
in World War I, World War II, and the Korean War. Records include
lists of Oberlin graduates in the service and the records of military
training programs on campus, the Student Officer Training Corps
(S.A.T.C.) in World War I and the Navy V-12 program in World War
II. Records of the Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies
provides a glimpse of Oberlin on the eve of the Second World War.
The subgroup concludes with artifacts. The artifacts consist of
the items removed from the Warner Hall cornerstone upon the demolition
of the building in 1962. The items were interred in the cornerstone
in 1884 and include hymnals, catalogs and newspapers from 1852 to
1884. The materials are in pristine condition, demonstrating the
benefits of sealed storage.
The records are arranged as follows:
- Subgroup I. Administrative Records (General)
- Series 1. Account Books and Datebooks
- Series 2. Accreditation and Accrediting Bodies
- Series 3. Buildings and Grounds Records
- Series 4. Committee Files
- Series 5. Faculty and Personnel Records
- Series 6. Subject Files
- Subgroup II. Administrative Records of Departments and Offices
- Series 1. Academic Departments and Programs
- Series 2. Administrative Offices
- Series 3. Annual Reports Received of Departments
- Series 4. Microfilm
(* some files restricted)
- Subgroup III. Records of the Board of Trustees
- Series 1. Alumni Trustee Elections
- Series 2. Attendance Rosters
- Series 3. Charter and By-Laws
- Series 4. Committee Files
- Series 5. Financial Records
- Series 6. Individual Trustee Files
- Series 7. Trustee Meeting Records
- Subgroup IV. Alumni Records
- Series 1. Alumni Catalog Records
- Series 2. General Files
- Series 3. Minority Student Records
- Series 4. Necrology Files
- Series 5. Reunion and Class Records
- Subgroup V. Athletics and Athletic Association Records
- Series 1. Athletic Associations
- Series 2. General Records
- Series 3. Programs and Scorebooks
- Series 4. Scrapbooks and Clippings
- Subgroup VI. Campus Functions and Special Events
- Series 1. Centennials
- Series 2. Conferences in Oberlin
- Series 3. Commencement Records
- Series 4. Presidential Inaugurations
- Subgroup VII. Scholarship and Loan Records
- Series 1. Annual Reports
- Series 2. Auditors Lists
- Series 3. Index and Record of Loans
- Series 4. Scholarship Applications
- Series 5. Scholarships and Loans
- Series 6. Scholarship Funds
- Series 7. Scholarship Ledgers
- Series 8. Scholarship Cards
- Subgroup VIII. Student Life Records
- Series 1. Chapel Files
- Series 2. Honors and Honors Day Records
- Series 3. Student Organization Files
- Series 4. Student Publications Files
- Series 5. Subject Files (* some files restricted)
- Subgroup IX. Historical File
- Series 1. Early Miscellaneous Records
- Series 2. Index to Early College Records
- Series 3. Reminiscences
- Series 4. Scrapbooks and Clippings
- Series 5. Topical Files
- Series 6. War Service and Activities
- Series 7. Artifacts
- Subgroup X. Miscellaneous Personal and Real Property Records
- Series 1. Files Relating to Agreements, Contracts, and Leases
- Series 2. Files Relating to Bequests, Donations, Endowments,
Estates, Funds, Gifts, and Scholarships
- Series 3. Deeds and Property Files
- Series 4. Gifts (Personalty and Realty) to Oberlin College
- Series 5. Mortgage Gift Files.
I. Administrative Records (General), 1833-1998, n.d. (28.6 lin. ft.)
Subgroup I contains the general administrative records pertaining
to the routine operation of the College as performed by the Office
of the Secretary. The subgroup is arranged alphabetically into six
series: 1. account books and datebooks; 2. accreditation and accrediting
bodies; 3. buildings and grounds; 4. committee files; 5. faculty
and personnel; and 6. subject files.
Series 1. Account Books and Datebooks, 1836-96, 1910-66 (1.2
Consists of 21 account books for general bookkeeping in the Office
of the Secretary, account ledgers of office payroll and supply
expenditures, and three ledger calendars which record chapel rental
and campus event. The materials follow a general chronological
Series 2. Accrediting and Accrediting Bodies, 1898-1988 (2.25
Contains the records of agencies involved in certification and
accrediting, including the North Central Association which first
visited Oberlin in 1913. The accrediting bodies are arranged alphabetically
as a subseries, and the accrediting reports and related materials
are arranged chronologically by date of the on-site visit. See
also the papers of Nancy S. Dye (2/13) for accreditation reports,
Series 3. Buildings and Grounds, 1886-1968 (4.6 lin. ft.)
Comprised of records relating to the physical plant of Oberlin
College, the records are divided into two subseries. The first
subseries contains files on buildings and grounds owned and operated
by Oberlin College. The records are arranged alphabetically by
building or property. The second subseries, general records, includes
building surveys and studies, campus development plans, and fire
insurance surveys. The files are arranged alphabetically.
Series 4. Committee Files, 1894-1976 (4.95 lin. ft.)
The committee files series consists of records of college-wide
committees maintained by the Office of the Secretary. The records
include excerpts from Board of Trustees decisions relating to
the committees as well as committee minutes and reports. The records
are arranged alphabetically by committee.
Series 5. Faculty and Personnel, 1833-1998 (9.0 lin. ft.)
Containing both general records relating to faculty and personnel,
and salary and benefits, the series is further subdivided into
5 subseries: 1. faculty; 2. personnel; 3. pensions and benefits;
4. salary; and 5. individual faculty/staff files . The records
are arranged alphabetically.
Series 6. Subject Files, 1890-1992, n.d. (6.6 lin. ft.)
Subgroup II. Administrative Records of Departments and Offices,
1862-1994, n.d. (19.4 lin. ft.)
Subject files consist of general files maintained by the secretary.
The files are comprised of excerpts from the Board of Trustee
minutes, clippings, correspondence and printed material. The topics
are broadly based and include subjects ranging from academic freedom
to zoning ordinances. The files are arranged alphabetically by
subject, with personal name files arranged after topical files.
Less general than subgroup I, the records in subgroup II consist
of records of the academic departments and programs, administrative
offices and units, and annual reports submitted to the Office of
the Secretary by department heads. The records are arranged alphabetically
in three series: 1. academic departments and programs; 2. administrative
offices; and 3. annual reports received.
Series 1. Academic Departments and Programs, 1889-1992, n.d.
(1.6 lin. ft.)
Contains the records of the academic departments as received
and compiled by the Office of the Secretary. The records are arranged
in four subseries by division: 1. College of Arts and Sciences;
2. Conservatory of Music; 3. Graduate School of Theology; and
4. Schauffler College. Both departments and programs are represented
in this series. The records are arranged alphabetically by department
Series 2. Administrative Offices, 1862-1974, 1984-94 (8.2 lin.
This series contains the records of administrative offices. The
records are arranged alphabetically by office. Quantity-wise,
the bulk of the records are found in offices which were once under
the auspices of the Office of the Secretary. The largest units
are admissions, development, and Oberlin College News Bureau (predecessor
of public relations and later the Office of Communications). The
development records contain valuable material relating to Charles
Martin Hall (1863-1914) and the ongoing struggle over his bequest
to Oberlin College. Also found here is the testimony from the
1940 trial U.S.A. vs. ALCOA et al.
Series 3. Annual Reports Received, 1903-51 (9.2 lin. ft.)
Consists of annual reports received by the Office of the Secretary.
The reports were prepared by the heads of the academic departments
and administrative units for the president. The reports are generally
filed alphabetically within each year by the report authors
name although in a few instances the reports are filed under the
department or office name when the report is unsigned. The reports
detail the curriculum and activities of each department or office.
Series 4. Microfilm,
c.1890s-1966 (0.4 l.f.; 33 rolls)
Subgroup III. Records of the Board of Trustees, 1834-1971, 1991
(8.8 lin. ft.)
(* Some files restricted due to confidential information)
This series consists of microfilm of financial ledgers (1937-57)
and academic records (c.1890s-1966) for the College of Arts and
Sciences, Conservatory of Music, and Graduate School of Theology.
Academic records are restricted; permission of the Archivist is
The history of the Office of the Secretary is centered around the
records of the Board of Trustees and the Prudential Committee because
this officer is secretary of the corporation. The records are arranged
into seven series: 1. alumni trustee elections; 2. attendance rosters;
3. charter and by laws; 4. committees; 5. financial records; 6.
individual trustee files; 7. trustee meeting files. The series are
arranged alphabetically. For more complete trustee records the researcher
is advised to consult Record Group 1.
Series 1. Alumni Trustee Elections, 1870-1968 (1.0 lin. ft.)
This series consists of records from the annual alumni trustee
elections in which an alumnus is elected for a term on the Board
of Trustees. The records consist of preliminary ballots, vote
tallies and final results. The records are arranged chronologically.
Series 2. Attendance Registers, 1834-1969 (1.4 lin. ft.)
Consists of registers of trustee attendance at meetings. The
series contains two oversized ledgers with entries for each trustee
and meeting dates, and a register of attendance from 1834 to 1969.
Series 3. Charter and By Laws, 1892-1968 (1.8 lin. ft.)
Contains printed copies and revisions of the charter and by laws
of Oberlin College as administered and approved by the Board of
Trustees. Copies of the charter and by laws as amended from 1892
to 1968 are present in the series and are arranged chronologically.
Series 4. Committee Files, 1903-63 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Includes the records of trustee committees. Committees include
the Trustee Committee on Location, Plans, and Construction of
College Buildings and the Special Trustee Committee on Oberlin
Shansi Relations. The committees are arranged alphabetically.
Series 5. Financial Records, 1928-63 (0.6 lin. ft.)
Financial records consist of financial reports and auditors
reports submitted to the Board of Trustees by Ernst & Ernst and
by Arthur Anderson & Company of Cleveland. The reports are arranged
Series 6. Individual Trustee Files, 1900-1969 (2.4 lin. ft.)
Included in this series are files of trustees who served between
1900 and 1913 and Trustee-Secretary correspondence files from
1900 to 1960. The files contain correspondence primarily regarding
attendance and announcement of meetings. A file of index cards
also exists containing biographical information on several early
trustees and others from the late 1960s. The records are arranged
alphabetically by trustee.
Series 7. Trustee Records, 1859-1971, 1991 (1.2 lin. ft.)
Subgroup IV. Alumni Records, 1834-1979 (10.0 lin. ft.)
Trustee records consist of correspondence, reports, and records
of meetings. Included in the records are items on the Avery Fund
from 1859 to 1892. The bulk of the records date from 1900 to 1938,
although records from a 1971 meeting are included as part of the
Subgroup IV, Alumni Records, reflects the duties performed by the
Office of the Secretary from its inception through 1960. The secretary
was responsible for handling alumni relations and producing catalogues
and directories of alumni. The office also handled necrology records
and class reunions. The five series reflect the secretarys
duties: 1. alumni catalog records; 2. general files; 3. minority
student records; 4. necrology; and 5. reunion and class records.
Series 1. Alumni Catalog Records, 1834-1979 (4.4 lin. ft.)
Alumni catalog records primarily consist of the records created
and complied during the preparation of alumni registers. Items
include day books of graduates arranged by class year and annotated
with changes in address or class year, and microfiche records
of nearly 100,000 files from the master index of faculty(?), staff(?),
and students compiled from 1906 to 1979. Also includes ledgers
listing graduates with associated alumni catalog entries. The
material is arranged alphabetically.
Series 2. General Files, 1837-1967 (0.8 lin. ft.)
Comprised of general subject files pertaining to alumni and and
alumni associations, the records contain several interesting and
unusual items such as alumni impersonators and the oldest alumni.
The records are arranged alphabetically.
Series 3. Minority Student Records,
1834-1973 (1.6 lin. ft.)
Consists of records maintained on minority students at Oberlin
College from 1834 to 1973. The records mainly relate to negro
students, and include an index of names from 1834 to 1970 compiled
on 3x5 index cards. Also includes index cards of Chinese students,
1885 to 1955. The records are arranged alphabetically.
Series 4. Necrology Files, 1892-1967 (1.6 lin. ft.)
The necrology series consists of material used to generate the
printed record of deceased alumni, as well as the printed copy
of the document. The necrology records are arranged by year and
alphabetically within the year.
Series 5. Reunion and Class Records, 1856-1944 (1.6 lin. ft.)
Subgroup V. Athletic and Athletic Association Records, 1881-1937
(5.6 lin. ft.)
Reunion and class records include registers from 1856 to 1900,
as well as correspondence from members of classes 1838 through
1900. The majority of the records focus on the turn-of-the-century
reunion of 1900. These records are arranged chronologically. A
file of class records for the class of 1894 was maintained by
the first secretary, George M. Jones, a member of the class of
1894. The file consists of individual folders for each class member
Subgroup V, Athletic Records, documents the earlier functions of
the secretary in this area. George M. Jones, the first secretary
served as graduate manager for athletic teams at Oberlin during
the 1890s and 1910s. Jones also served as the secretary to several
athletic associations both internal and external, and his office
compiled records of these associations as well as scrapbooks of
clippings on Oberlin athletics. The subgroup is arranged in four
series: 1. athletic associations; 2. general records; 3. programs
and scorebooks; and 4. scrapbooks and clippings.
Series 1. Athletic Associations, 1889-1936 (3.0 lin. ft.)
Consists of records of the athletic associations formed at Oberlin
and those associations to which Oberlin College was a member.
Many of the records are the result of George M. Jones work
as an officer in these organizations. Records include correspondence
from other colleges, ledgers and financial accounts, and results
of several athletic contests and meets. The athletic associations
are arranged alphabetically in three subseries: 1. Oberlin College
Athletic Association; 2. Ohio Athletic Conference; and 3. Ohio
Intercollegiate Athletic Association.
Series 2. General Records, 1894-1937 (0.8 lin. ft.)
General records include documents on the advisory board of athletics,
the design of the Oberlin O and construction of the
new athletic field and stadium in 1924 and 1925. The records are
Series 3. Programs and Scorebooks, 1881-1929 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Contains athletic programs and scorebooks retained by the secretary.
The records are arranged chronologically. An early baseball scorebook
which includes box scores of games played by catcher Moses Fleetwood
Walker in 1881 is significant.
Series 4. Scrapbooks and Clippings, 1900-25 (1.4 lin. ft.)
Subgroup VI. Campus Functions and Special Events, 1900-73 (6.0
Comprised of newspaper clippings of athletic events mounted scrapbook
style, the documents are arranged chronologically. All sports
are covered from 1900 through 1925.Some sports are arranged in
separate scrapbooks for particular years.
Subgroup VI is made up of records representing the functional duties
of the secretary in regard to organizing special events such as
centennials, presidential inaugurations, and annual events like
commencement. The bulk of the records relate to commencement activities
and organization. The subgroup is divided into four series: 1. centennials;
2. conferences in Oberlin; 3. commencement records; and 4. presidential
inaugurations. The series are alphabetically arranged.
Series 1. Centennial Celebrations, 1928-1986 (1.4 lin. ft.)
Centennials and semi-centennials celebrated in Oberlins
history include the following: the centennial of the founding
of the college and town in 1933, the centennial of coeducation
in 1937, and various anniversaries and centennials of Charles
Martin Halls discoveries in the aluminum field. Records
from these celebrations include planning materials, correspondence,
and printed publicity. Two scrapbooks from the 1933 centennial
are found within the series. The records are arranged alphabetically.
Series 2. Conferences in Oberlin, 1902-63 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Oberlin has been the scene of several conferences on education,
peace and religion. Records of these conferences held on the Oberlin
College Campus include the American Board of Commissioners for
Foreign Missions in 1902, and various Congregational conferences.
The records are arranged alphabetically by conference.
Series 3. Commencement Records, 1900-73 (3.4 lin. ft.)
Commencement records illustrate the organization and planning
entailed in the commencement ceremony. Items include academic
procession lists, seating plans, ticket distribution, and the
awarding of degrees. Also included are commencement registers
signed by alumni from 1905-46, and a special golden register
signed by alumni who graduated 50 or more years ago. The series
is arranged in five subseries: 1. academic procession lists; 2.
commencement files; 3. commencement registers; 4. commencement
ticket distribution; and 5. degrees and diplomas. The records
are arranged chronologically.
Series 4. Presidential Inaugurations, 1927-47 (0.8 lin. ft.)
Subgroup VII. Scholarship and Loan Records, 1853-1867, 1880-1967
(9.1 lin. ft.)
Consists of records from the inauguration ceremonies held for
Ernest Hatch Wilkins in 1927, and his successor William Edward
Stevenson in 1946. The documents are primarily correspondence
accepting or rejecting invitations to attend the ceremonies. The
records are arranged in alphabetical order.
Subgroup VII, Scholarship and Loan Records, contain records of
transactions presently performed by the Office of Financial Aid
under current organizational charts. Administering scholarship funds
was another of the early secretarys myriad duties. The records
in this subgroup contain annual reports of student loan funds, ledgers
of loan transactions and balances, scholarship applications and
general records. The subgroup is formed around seven series: 1.
annual reports of student loan funds; 2. auditors lists of
outstanding loans; 3. index and record of loans; 4. scholarship
applications; 5. scholarships and loans; 6. scholarship funds; and
7. scholarship ledgers.
Series 1. Annual Reports of Student Loan Funds, 1942-61 (0.2
Consists of annual reports of loan balances as prepared by the
secretary. The reports are arranged chronologically.
Series 2. Auditors Lists of Outstanding Loans, 1939-42
(0.2 lin. ft.)
Contains a listing of outstanding and delinquent loans organized
by loan fund name and borrower. The reports are arranged chronologically.
Series 3. Index and Record of Loans, 1853-1867, 1880-1950 (0.4
Index cards prepared by the Office of the Secretary. The index
cards are alphabetically arranged by loan fund and include the
amounts loaned from 1880 to 1950. Also includes bound volume entitled
Loan Register, 1853-67. (Acc. 1995/121) See also the
Records of the Office of the Treasurer
(RG 7) for a student loan ledger, 1952-58.
Series 4. Scholarship Applications, 1917-26 (1.2 lin. ft.)
Consists of scholarship application from 1917-26. The applications
are arranged alphabetically although only records for the letters
B-J are present. The other records are apparently missing.
Series 5. Scholarships and Loans, 1903-67 (1.4 lin. ft.)
Primarily comprised of general files on scholarships and loans.
Materials include correspondence, loan guidelines and loan summaries.
Also includes a volume titled Scholarship Decisions
listing students awarded scholarships, 1951-61. Material regarding
outside scholarships awarded to Oberlin students represents a
sampling of these files. Items are arranged chronologically.
Series 6. Scholarship Funds, 1950-62 (2.8 lin. ft.)
Consists of general records of scholarship funds. Items include
correspondence and account balances. Among the specific funds
are the Miller Loan Funds (both Etta Frazer Miller and Amos and
Jennine Miller loan funds), and the LaVerne Noyes Scholarship
for descendants of World War I veterans. The records are arranged
Series 7. Scholarship Ledgers, 1902-63 (2.8 lin. ft.)
Consists of ledgers maintained by the secretary. The ledgers
include transfer balances, interest, principle statements and
records of transactions. Generally chronological.
Series 8. Scholarship Cards, c. 1915 (0.1 lin. ft.)
Subgroup VIII. Student Life Files, 1897-1995, n.d. (6.6 lin. ft.)
Series consists of index cards (3" x 5") which individually list
the scholarships available to students. Each card details the
name of the scholarship, its value, how it was founded, and eligibility
requirements for applicants. Arrangement is alphabetical by scholarship
Subgroup VII, student life is made up of the records relating to
student life at Oberlin. Material in this subgroup includes files
of student organizations, student activities, and programs and events
designed for students. The subgroup is arranged in five series:
1. chapel files; 2. honors and Honors Day; 3. student organizations;
4. student publications; and 5. subject files.
Series 1. Chapel Files, 1909, 1933-66 (2.8 lin. ft.)
Subseries 2. Chapel Talks, 1933-55, 1960, 1966 (1.2 lin. ft.)
This series contains the printed copies of speeches and talks
given to student assemblies in the college chapel. The presentations
range from religion to science and address topics of the day
including several presentations on neutrality and the impending
Second World War. The talks are arranged chronologically, and
a listing of the talks and speakers has been prepared.
Series 2. Honors and Honors Day, 1905-62 (0.6 lin. ft.)
Consists of freshman honors lists from 1905 to 1943, and the
organization of Honors Day from 1939 to 1962. The documents are
Series 3. Student Organization Files, 1897-1974, n.d. (0.8 lin.
Includes files of student organizations on campus, including
the Oberlin Peace Society, Progressive Student League, and Seminary
Union. The majority of these organizations are now defunct. The
records consist of excerpts from Board of Trustee minutes, correspondence,
and several organizational constitutions. The files are arranged
Series 4. Student Publications: Files Related to, 1929-63, n.d.
(0.2 lin. ft.)
General files about student publications as retained by the secretary.
The records include excerpts of Board of Trustee minutes and correspondence.
The files are arranged alphabetically by publication.
Series 5. Subject Files, 1914-95, n.d. (2.2 lin. ft.)
Subgroup IX. Historical File, 1833-1970 (10.6 lin. ft.)
(* some files restricted due to confidential information)
Contains general records relating to student life and campus
activities. Among the topics represented are visiting lecturers
and programs, and mock conventions. The files are arranged alphabetically.
Subject files received in accession 2000/61 were not interfiled
and are arranged alphabetically at the end. Some of these files
are restricted as noted on the inventory, and permission of the
Archivist is required.
This subgroup is comprised of historical records and historical
files. The records are the result of the secretarys early
duties as unofficial archivist and preserver of the institutional
memory. Items include early college records, indexes
to college records from 1833 to 1866, general subject files on Oberlin
history and artifacts. The subgroup is arranged in seven series:
1. index to early college records; 2 miscellaneous early records;
3. reminiscences; 4. scrapbooks and clippings; 5. subject files;
6. war service and activities; and 7. artifacts.
Series 1. Index to Early College Records, 1833-1905 (1.2 lin.
Consists of index cards prepared by secretary George M. Jones.
The cards primarily cover the first thirty years of the college
from 1833 to 1866. Originally there were over 11,300 cards made,
but many were redistributed or destroyed in the mid 1950s. These
remaining cards cover buildings, faculty, and funds as referenced
in the Board of Trustees and Prudential Committee minutes and
other early sources. The index cards are arranged alphabetically.
Series 2. Miscellaneous Early Records, 1833-93 (0.4 lin. ft.)
A list has been prepared for this series which includes a variety
of early college records. Among the papers are a lease for land
rented by Oberlins first president, Asa Mahan, various agreements,
manual labor chits, and a report from Adelia Field Johnston on
the Ladies Department in 1871. The records follow a rough chronological
Series 3. Reminiscences, 1918-20 (0.2 lin. ft.)
Comprised of reminiscences of alumni contacted by Philip D. Sherman,
English professor as he worked to gather material for a history
of Oberlin College. The reminiscences were written between 1918
and 1920, and include the reminiscences of students as far back
as the 1850s. Both originals and transcripts exist for the reminiscences.
Series 4. Scrapbooks and Clippings, 1900-20 (2.4 lin. ft.)
Mounted clippings make up this series which includes items of
general historical interest. The series also includes printed
works from the college mounted in scrapbooks. The items are filed
Series 5. Subject Files, 1861-1966 (2.4 lin. ft.)
Consist of subject files on historical topics as maintained by
the secretary. Subjects include biographical material on John
Frederic Oberlin, First Church in Oberlin, coeducation, and public
schools. A chronological outline of Oberlin history is also located
here. Files are alphabetically arranged.
Series 6. War Service and College Activities, 1916-57 (3.6 lin.
Documents relating to the First and Second World Wars at Oberlin
comprise this series. The series illustrates the impact of war
on Oberlin. The series is further subdivided into three subseries:
1. World War I; 2. World War II; and 3. Korean War. The World
War I material includes the records of the Student Army Training
Corps (S.A.T.C.), the ambulance corps and the Oberlin War Chest
Association. World War II records include files from the Committee
to Defend America by Aiding the Allies (C.D.A.) of which secretary
Donald Love was an officer. Records of the Navy V-12 program at
Oberlin are also found here. Korean War material consists of index
cards listing Oberlin alumni who served in the war. General chronology.
Series 7. Artifacts, 1852-84 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Subgroup X. Miscellaneous Personal and Real Property Records, 1835-1970,
n.d. (6.8 l.f.)
The artifacts in this series are the items that were sealed in
the cornerstone of Warner Hall in 1884. The items were removed
in 1964. Items include hymnals, catalogues and campus publications.
A listing of cornerstone contents is housed along with the documents.
Subgroup X contains documents received under accession #1995/121.
The triangular relationship between the corporate secretary, the
board of trustees, and the treasurer is evident in this series comprised
of financial and property-related records. Transactions are authorized
by the board, and recorded by the secretary. This subgroup is arranged
in three series: 1. agreements, contracts, and leases; 2. bequests,
donations, endowments, estates, funds, gifts, scholarships; 3. deeds
and property files.
Series 1. Files Relating to Agreements, Contracts, and Leases,
1864-1964 (1.2 lin. ft.)
Spanning a century, this series contains agreements, contracts,
and leases for building projects, maintenance, utilities, rent
collection, purchases, and services. Folders are arranged alphabetically
by folder title.
Series 2. Files Relating to Bequests, Donations, Endowments,
Estates, Funds, Gifts, and Scholarships, 1844-1970, n.d. (2.4 lin.
Consisting of papers relating to bequests, donations, endowments,
estates, funds, gifts, and scholarships, this series of records
is arranged alphabetically by folder title, and is often therefore
under the donors last name.
Series 3. Deeds and Property Files, 1835-1967, n.d. (2.4 lin.ft.)
The purchase and sale of properties by Oberlin College was authorized
by the Prudential Committee of the Board of Trustees until 1962.
This series contains the abstracts, correspondence, deeds, and
titles associated with these properties. As documented by the
secretary, the treasurer and the president were participants in
these property transactions. Alphabetically arranged, this series
documents the ownership history of numerous houses and building
sites in Oberlin, Ohio.
Series 4. Gifts (personalty and realty) to Oberlin College (card
file), c. 1901-1918 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Series consists of printed index cards (5" x 8") which detail
gifts (personalty and realty) to Oberlin College. Mortgage information,
interest increases, and moneys accrued from stocks and bonds are
recorded here. Cards are arranged alphabetically by name.
Series 5. Mortgage Gift Files, 1927-30 (0.4 lin. ft.)
Mortgage slips as issued by the Chicago Title and Trust Company
document mortgages placed in trust with Oberlin College. Slips
identify name of the mortgagor, the financial value of the mortgage,
accrued funds, and a description of mortgaged property. Arrangement
is alphabetical by mortgagor.
|The records of
the Office of the Secretary were received in twenty separate lots
since 1967. The most significant accessions occurred in 1967 (over
100 boxes) and 1978 (48 boxes).
materials the researcher is advised to consult the following collections
in the Oberlin College Archives: Board of Trustees (1); Presidential
Papers, (2/5-2/12); Business and Finance (6); Buildings and Grounds
(6/4/3); Office of the Treasurer (7);
Library (16); Alumni Records (28/3); and the personal papers of secretary
Donald M. Love (30/91).