Oberlin
Using the Archives Contact Us Search Site Index -
College Archives
-
Home
Holdings
Published Resources
Teaching Resources
Records Management
Exhibits
Exhibits
News
Outside Links
About the Archives
-
library links
Records of the Presidential Assistants (Group 3)
[9] Papers of William F. Bohn, 1910 (1913-44) -1953, 20 ft. 6 in.

Biographical Note

William F. Bohn (1878-1947) received three degrees from Oberlin (A.B. 1900, B.D. 1905, and A.M. 1908) and an honorary doctor of divinity degree from Bates College (1921). During the administrations of Presidents Henry C. King and Ernest H. Wilkins, Bohn was secretary to the president (1905-1913) and assistant to the president (1913-1944). His primary duties were raising funds for scholarships and new buildings and strengthening the endowment through the annual-fund drive and the Capital Campaign of 1923. He helped develop several academic departments, including the Department of Physical Education for Women and the Department of Religion. Bohn was a trustee of the First Church in Oberlin and the Oberlin Shansi Memorial Association and president of the Oberlin Village Improvement Society.

Scope and Content

The Bohn papers, which primarily span three decades, are divided into eight series. Documentation on Bohn’s fund-raising activities during the administrations of King and Wilkins is found in the general files (correspondence) and the series fund raising (covering the 1923 campaign). Bohn was responsible for funds given by and in memory of such women as Mrs. Elisabeth Severance Allen Prentiss (1865-1944). Some gifts were earmarked for uses benefiting women, such as scholarships, buildings, and lecture series (e.g., the Nellie Heldt Lecture Fund). Women’s issues—including the changing role of women, segregation in dormitories, the Oberlin Shansi Memorial Association, and the Women’s Physical Education Department—are detailed in the annual reports and the correspondence series. The Bohn papers contain significant documentation on the celebration of coeducation, as well as transcripts of two chapel talks given by Mildred McAfee (b. 1900), dean of women at Oberlin at the time. (She went on to become president of Wellesley College.) There also is information on Kathryn Newell Adams (1876-1966), who was president of Constantinople Women’s College from 1924 to 1931. Other materials include lists of black graduates prominent in public affairs and education; honorary degrees given between 1911 and 1932; freshman honors lists for some years between 1911 and 1934; the percentages of men and women graduating Phi Beta Kappa, 1838-1912; an occupational distribution of graduates, 1924-1934;the number of men and women involved in missionary work, 1833-1912;and the amount of financial aid received by students, 1930-1952.

The Bohn files also contain Oberlin printed materials covering such topics as drinking, dancing, smoking, dating, and the religious attitudes of the Oberlin community. There is an article by Bohn titled “Oberlin and Suffrage” (1915).

[10] Papers of Charles Whiting Williams, 1904-1912, 5 ft. 2 in.

Biographical Note

Charles Whiting Williams (1878-1975) was awarded the A.B. degree in 1899 and the A.M. degree in 1911 from Oberlin College. He was assistant to President Henry C. King (1858-1934) from 1904 to 1912. He was named executive secretary of the Federation of Charity and Philanthropy (later the Cleveland Welfare Federation) in 1912, a position he held from 1913 to 1917. Thereafter, Williams held a variety of other posts; his experiences as an author and lecturer in the field of social work and industrial labor relations drew on this earlier work.

Scope and Content

This collection, arranged alphabetically, consists of correspondence and records pertaining to donations, organizations, and the student body. A list of donors (1908-1911) includes the names of women who funded various college needs, including scholarships for female students, the library, the art museum, the Living Endowment Fund, and different college divisions. Also included is information about the Camp Fire Girls and the YWCA. Reports concerning women include an analysis of the course work completed by the student body and a list of specific scholarship recipients.

[11] Papers of Harold S. Wood, 1942 (1944-48) -1953, 2 ft. 5 in.

Biographical Note

Harold S. Wood (b. 1898), was awarded the A.B. degree from Oberlin College in 1923, the A.M. degree from Ohio State University in 1937, and an honorary A.M. degree from Wesleyan University in 1939. Before serving as assistant to Presidents Ernest H. Wilkins (1880-1966) and William E. Stevenson (1900-1985) from 1944 to 1948, he was a member of Ohio State University’s Department of Physical Education (1926-1937) and chairman of Wesleyan University’s Department of Physical Education (1937-1944). His responsibilities at Oberlin were mainly financial, including the development of funds for new dormitories. He became a vice president at Beloit College after leaving Oberlin.

Scope and Content

The correspondence and reports in this administrative file concern gifts, residential life, postwar plans for Oberlin, and alumni. The gifts were for scholarships and money given by and for women. Residential life files include information on conditions in and regulations of women’s dormitories and on smoking legislation (1933-1946), as well as a list of women’s dormitories and the minutes of the Residences and Dining Halls Committee. The alumni reports include a list of graduates working in government service in 1943-44, statistics on blacks enrolled at different times, and a list of alumni working in the media compiled in 1953.

[12] Papers of Bayley F. Mason, 1971-1974. 4 ft. 7 in.

Biographical Note

Bayley F. Mason (b. 1930) received the A.B. degree from Harvard University in 1951. Before his appointment as administrative vice president to President Robert W. Fuller (b. 1936), Mason was employed by Harvard in various capacities. Between 1971 and 1974 his main duties at Oberlin included the development and management of college resources and the supervision and coordination of the administrative activities of the business of fice, development department, and public relations with alumni. Mason left Oberlin in 1974 to become vice president of resources at Boston University.

Scope and Content

The collection, arranged chronologically and alphabetically, contains information a number of topics, including the status of women, standards for women in higher education, affirmative action, the Oberlin Women’s Service Center, funds restricted for use by women, and student life. One file contains biographical data on participants of a program for Native American women students. The Placement and Graduate Counsel’s Report (1971-1973), the Class of 1973 Occupational Summary, and an occupational summary of College and Conservatory graduates for the years 1968 to 1973, also contain useful statistical data.

 
 
Oberlin College Seal -