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Louis C. Cramton Papers, circa 1865-1966 (majority within 1916-1965)

8 linear feet — 2 oversize volumes — 1 oversize folder

State Representative from Lapeer, Michigan; U.S. Congressman, 1913-1931, and special attorney to the Secretary of the Interior, 1931-1932; correspondence, speeches, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, photographs, campaign materials, and other items relating to his advocacy of the national park system, the concept of historic preservation, fair employment practices legislation, increased support for Howard University and all other aspects of his career.

The Louis C. Cramton papers came to the Bentley Historical Library in three separate accessions (1948-1950; 1971; 1987). The collection has been arranged into six series: Correspondence, Miscellaneous Papers, Topical Files, Newspaper clippings/Scrapbooks, Photographs, and Louis Kay Cramton Papers.


Bechtold family papers, [ca. 1847-ca. 1907 scattered dates]

0.3 linear feet

Translations of letters, 1847-1850, of Gotthardt Bechtold describing his trip to, impressions of, and settlement in America; also diary, 1861-1865, of Frederick W. Bechtold, soldier in Co. B, 12th Missouri Volunteers during the Civil War (partially in German); typescript translations of Bechtold's diary and of his letters, 1862-1864; and miscellaneous other family letters (some in German).


Natural Resources of Michigan Web Archive, 2010-2014

14 archived websites (online; multiple captures)

Web collection of websites created by various organizations whose service is to natural resources of the State of Michigan, archived by the Bentley Historical Library using the California Digital Library Web Archiving Service crawler from 2010-2015 and the Archive-It web archiving service beginning in 2015.

The Web Archive of Michigan's Natural Resources collection contains archived websites created by various organizations and movements concerned with preservation of natural resources in the State of Michigan. The websites have been archived by the Bentley Historical Library, using the California Digital Library Web Archiving Service crawler from 2010-2015 and the Archive-It web archiving service beginning in 2015. Access to all websites archived by the Bentley Historical Library is available at:

Web Archives include websites of conservation groups, environmental organizations and nature associations who call the state of Michigan home. The collection is especially strong in documenting conservation initiatives and environmental protection in Michigan.

The year that appears next to the website title in the contents list indicates the date that the website was first archived. Archived versions of the site from later dates may also be available.


John Tanton Papers, 1960-2007

25 linear feet — 1 oversize folder

Environmental, population control, and immigration reform advocate; organization and litigation files relating to his various interests and activities; includes correspondence, legal documents, memos, topical files, and miscellaneous photographs.

The papers of Dr. John Tanton consist of materials documenting his work as a political and environmental activist from 1960 through the 2000s. The portion of the collection open without restriction is divided into the following series: Personal/Biographical; Population and Immigration Organizations and Issues; Conservation Organizations and Issues; Topical Files and Activities; Correspondence; Politics and Government; and Social Issues. The portion of the collection closed to research until 2035 includes the continuation of several series: Correspondence; Personal/Biographical; Population and Immigration Organizations and Issues; Conservation Organizations and Issues; and one new series, Public Interest Organizations and Issues.


John D. Dingell Papers, 1932-1956

4 linear feet

Democratic congressman from Michigan's 15th District, 1933-1955, Dingell served on Ways and Means Committee beginning in his second term and was an ardent supporter of President Franklin D. Roosevelt and New Deal policies. He played a significant role in passage of the Social Security Act. Papers include correspondence, clippings, press releases, speeches and interviews.

The papers of John Dingell span the years 1932-1955. The papers appear to represent a portion of his congressional office file. The collection consists of correspondence (both incoming and outgoing) and clippings relating to many of the bills which Dingell introduced, and copies of press statements, speeches, and interviews. There is no personal material. There are no documents relating to his committee work or to legislation introduced by other members of the House. Nor do the files of his own bills seem complete (for instance, Dingell's anti-pollution bill is missing). By and large the correspondence is fairly routine or for public consumption. Some of the correspondence is from constituents, some from special interest groups, and some (though not much) from colleagues.


Clarence Cook Little papers, 1924-1929

14 linear feet

President of the University of Michigan, 1924-1929, educational reformer, geneticist and cancer researcher, also interested in a range of reform movement including birth control, eugenics, international peace, and immigration. Papers include correspondence, speeches and reports concerning all phases of his career as president of the University of Michigan and his civic and reform activities.

The C.C. Little papers document a wide range to topics, events, administrative actions, policy developments during Little's tenure as president of the University of Michigan. The collection contains mainly reports and replies to letters but very little incoming correspondence. However, the researcher may use these replies as clues to other collections in the library which contain the individual correspondent's papers.

The chronological ordering of the papers makes subject access somewhat difficult. To selective indexes of correspondents and subjects found in the papers provide some assistance in using the Little papers. The following discussion of the papers follows the structure of the subject index.

The growth of the university which had begun at the close of World War I continued to be felt during President Little's tenure. New buildings completed earlier were handling classroom and laboratory needs, so attention now turned to living accommodations and the athletic department's needs (Sec. II). The period of the 1920s was one of increased interest in theories of progressive education. President's Little's primary interest was in educational policy arising from such theories. Thus, academic and departmental proposals and reorganizations (Sec. III of the subject index) form a major part of his papers. He made fewer administrative changes (Sec. I of the subject index). The twenties are also remembered as a time of social ferment in the country and this was reflected in campus life, with more attention being paid to regulating student social mores and the use of alcohol and cars (see Secs. I and IV of the subject index).

Although President Little oversaw the reorganization of some administrative offices, his attention was mainly focused on educational policy, his primary interest. This is reflected in materials on admissions policy, freshman orientation, continuing education of alumni, and the re-organization of the university into two separate units.

A few months after President Little took office, the "Day Report", so named because Edmund Day, Dean of the School of Business Administration chaired the committee which drew it up, was completed. It was the result of an exhaustive study of athletics, physical education and recreation in the university and led to changes in the Board in Control of Athletics, development of women's and intramural athletics, and gave impetus to the financing and building of the stadium (opened in 1927).

President Little's concern with developing students of good moral character resulted in regulation of the use of cars and alcohol, thought to be related twin evils, and the initiation of planning for dormitories, where all students would live under university supervision.

The major building projects that came to fruition during the Little Administration were the Stadium and the Women's League Building. Construction work at the Law School and the School of Education represented on-going projects begun in earlier administrations, while plans for a natural science museum were just beginning to take shape.

During President Little's tenure, schools and departments established earlier continued to grow, while some projects, such as the Creative Arts Fellowship, were brought to a close. The financing and governance of the Lawyers' Club presented on-going difficulties. Compensation for and the role of "outside work" in Medicine, Engineering, and Education required continued attention. The university contributed to scientific research through the Hobbs Expedition to Greenland which also showed the value of the university's fledgling radio program in maintaining communication with such distant projects.

With the appointment of Samuel Trask Dana as Dean, the School of Forestry was established in the spring of 1927. At that time the state was faced with the problems of cutover lands and the collapse of the lumbering industry. In 1927 the School of Forestry provided leadership in dealing with these problems by sponsoring two conferences which brought together owners and operators in the lumbering industry, state officials, and forestry experts to consider solutions.

The School of Education continued its growth with the addition of an elementary school building. The completion of that building in 1929 enabled the School to provide K-12 education under the supervision of its faculty. Some attention was given also to providing pre-primary education, but nothing came of this during Little's tenure.

The university and its academic life did not escape the impact of the societal upheavals of the "roaring twenties". Perhaps more so at the University of Michigan because of President Little's active role in several of those issues, as is reflected in his correspondence. He was an officer in the American Eugenics Society, a vocal proponent of both population control and the "betterment of the human race", and also served as chairman of the Michigan chapter of the League of Nations Non-partisan Association.


John Bond Trevor Papers, 1921-1951

2 linear feet

New York attorney, officer of the American Coalition of Patriotic, Civic and Fraternal Societies, 1927-1950, and activist in the movement to restrict immigration into the United States. Minutes, resolutions, and other records of the American Coalition; also correspondence of Trevor with congressman Albert Johnson of Washington state relating to immigration matters.

The papers of John B. Trevor relate primarily to his association with the American Coalition of Patriotic Societies (beginning in 1929) and his association with Albert Johnson, chairman of the Committee on Immigration and Naturalization of the US House of Representatives. The collection is an important resource for the study of various immigration restriction legislation in the 1920s.


Ferdinand Northrup Menefee Papers, 1913-1962

4 linear feet

Professor of engineering mechanics at the University of Michigan. Materials concerning his interest in the St. Lawrence Seaway, his work with the American Concrete Institute's investigation of precast floor systems, and his activities with the American Society of Civil Engineers' Committee on Water Diversion; also subject files on prohibition and immigration policy in the 1920's; and photographs.

The Menefee papers documents his professional career as a teacher and as a specialist in engineering mechanics. Following a single folder of Biographical Material, the collection divides into the following series: Correspondence, Speeches, Subject Files, and Photographs.


Suomi College Finnish-American collection, 1880-1972

100 microfilms

The Finnish Collection consists of 100 reels of microfilm concerning Finnish-American Churches, Labor Societies, Temperance Organizations, and other materials from the United States and Canada. The collection is the result of a joint project between the Bentley Library, Suomi College (now Finlandia University), and the University of Turku, Finland, coordinated in 1974-75.

The Suomi College Finnish-American Collection is comprised of 100 reels of microfilm containing records from 151 separate organizations (68 of which are located in Michigan). These organizations are comprised of the following kinds of records:

  1. Church materials: 62 record groups (32 from Michigan)
  2. Labor societies: 9 record groups (0 from Michigan)
  3. Temperance materials: 61 record groups (26 from Michigan

Other organizations, including educational, relief, musical, athletic, national, historical societies, publishing companies, and some personal: 19 record groups (10 from Michigan)

Because the materials have been filmed in a random order, an index at the end of the container listing has been prepared to guide the researcher to specific kinds of records: church, temperance, etc.


Varsinais-Suomi Region immigrant letters, 1880-1966

16 microfilms

The Institute of General History at the University of Turku, Finland (Turun Yliopisto. Yleisen Historian Laitos) microfilmed thousands of letters from Varsinais-Suomi (Southwest Finland) region in 1964. The letters were written by Finnish emigrants to their families and friends in Finland.

The Varsinais-Suomi Region immigrant letters consist thousands of letters written by Finnish emigrants from Varsinais-Suomi (Southwest Finland) region to their families and friends in Finland between 1880 and 1964. There are also post cards, diaries and passports in the collection. Many letters originate from the United States and Canada, but there are also others from South America, Australia, New Zealand and the Soviet Union. The Institute of General History collected the letters between February 1 and October 31, 1966. The collected letters were organized and microfilmed in the fall of 1966.

The collection was arranged by town (also known as parishes or municipalities). Within each town the letters of each recipient were kept together. The owners of the letters are in chronological order according to the emigrating year of their correspondents.

Every subseries of letters includes a questionnaire that was completed by the letter recipient. In the upper right corner of the questionnaire there is a code that includes the abbreviation of the town and the location of the sender.

The questionnaire for collecting these America letters contained the following questions:

  1. The owner of the letters (name and address)
  2. The writer of the letters (name and last address)
  3. The relationship between the owner and the writer
  4. When left for America
  5. Who were they visiting in America
  6. Why left
  7. Home town in Finland
  8. The occupation of the parents
  9. How large was the family of the parents of the emigrant
  10. Was the emigrant married when he left Finland
  11. Did the wife and children emigrate, too
  12. Did the emigrant get married in America
  13. What year
  14. The nationality of the spouse
  15. The occupation of the emigrant when emigrated
  16. Had the emigrant ever been working outside the home town before emigrating
  17. How did the emigrant go to America (route and vehicle)
  18. The first workplace in America
  19. What kind of work
  20. Where did the emigrant live the longest time in America
  21. What kind of work
  22. Other members of the group who emigrated at the same time: name, hometown, return to Finland
  23. The later life of the emigrant: did/did not return to Finland
  24. If applicable, why did the emigrant return
  25. Return route and vehicle
  26. Occupation after return
  27. The number of the letters (photos, diaries etc.) in the enclosed questionnaire envelope
  28. The owner donates the letters/loans them only for microfilming
  29. The collector of the letters (name and address)
  30. To be filled by the Institute of General History

Documents in this collection are identified with the following abbreviations indicating the name of the town or parish from which the immigrant came.

  1. ALAS = Alastaro
  2. AURA = Aura
  3. B-DÖ = Brändö Al.
  4. D-FJÄRD = Dragsfjärd
  5. HAL = Halikko
  6. HIIT = Hiittinen
  7. HOUTS = Houtskari
  8. JOK = Jokioinen
  9. K-KERTA = Kakskerta
  10. K-TI = Kalanti
  11. K-LA = Karjala Tl.
  12. K-NA = Karuna
  13. KEM = Kemiö
  14. K-KO = Kisko
  15. K-JOKI = Kodisjoki
  16. KORP = Korpoo
  17. K-KI = Koski-Tl.
  18. K-VI = Kustavi
  19. K-TO = Kuuisto
  20. KUUS = Kuusjoki
  21. L-LA = Laitila
  22. LEMU = Lemu
  23. L-TO = Lieto
  24. LOIM = Loimaa
  25. L-TI = Lokalahti
  26. MAAR = Maaria
  27. M-LA = Marttila
  28. M-KU = Masku
  29. MERI = Merimasku
  30. MIET = Mietoinen
  31. MUUR = Muurla
  32. M-KI = Mynämäki
  33. NAAN = Naantali
  34. ORIP = Oripää
  35. PAAT = Paattinen
  36. PAIM = Paimio
  37. PAR = Parkano
  38. PER = Perniö
  39. P-LI = Pertteli
  40. PYHÄ = Phyämää
  41. RÖY = Pöytyä
  42. RYM = Rymättylä
  43. S-VO = Sauvo
  44. S-RO = Somero
  45. SUOM = Suomasjärvi
  46. T-LO = Taivassalo
  47. T-JOKI = Tarvasjoki
  48. T-KU = Turku
  49. USK = Uskela
  50. VEH = Vehmaa
  51. VEL = Belkua
  52. VÄST = Västanfjärd
  53. Y-NE = Yläne