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Jim Hughes Collection, 1917, 2011, and undated

1.5 cubic feet (in 2 boxes, 1 Ov. folder)

The collection, 1917, 2011 and undated, includes materials created by Hughes documenting his life and radio career, as well as material he collected on topics of interest to him, such as radio and aspects of Michigan history. Of particular note are materials documenting his correspondence and subsequent citations in newspaper articles about his SQL with Jonestown, Guyana.

The collection, 1917, 2011 and undated, includes materials created by Hughes documenting his life and radio career, as well as material he collected on topics of interest to him, such as radio and aspects of Michigan history. Of particular note are materials documenting his correspondence and subsequent citations in newspaper articles about his SQL with Jonestown, Guyana, in August-September 1978.

Materials documenting Hughes’ life include biographical materials (obituaries), his communication with Michigan radio stations, his funeral visitors book, honors, correspondence and some (not general tourism) materials of the Grand Hotel (Mackinac Island, Mich.), communications with his niece, Pat Potter, photographs, plaques, radio scripts, reports (his on cassette), and his World War II service medals and photograph. Oversized materials include biographical and legal materials, and honors (certificates).

Michigan historical materials include: general Michigan history materials, placemats, and postcards, a compilation of police badges, and photographs of Mount Pleasant Schools. The photographs include: Old Kinney School, second grade, 1917-1918, Miss Carey, teacher; Mount Pleasant High School, 6th grade, 1921-1922, Miss May O’Hara, teacher; and the Mount Pleasant High School Golf Team, 1950. Some of the people in these photographs are identified. Also included is his official letter donating centennial newspaper editions to the Clarke in 1975.

In August 1978 Hughes and some other radio enthusiasts were at the Isabella County Fair when they contacted Guyana and talked to a man named Wes in the medical unit of an agricultural project. Soon afterwards, Hughes received a postcard stamped Peoples Temple Agricultural/Medical Project noting "Thanks for the QSL. This is a very beautiful country. The people are very friendly to the USA. They are doing a great job and appreciate whatever encouragement offered. Best wishes to you and yours." Albert Touchette, Jonestown, Guyana, WB6 M1D/8R3. Tochette noted "letter follows."

The follow-up letter, on Peoples Temple letterhead, dated September 11, 1978, was sent to Hughes by Richard D. Tropp, Staff Assistant. In the letter, Tropp hoped the QSL was received. He enclosed some brochures (no longer with the collection, which Hughes photocopied) and hoped they provide good reading. Tropp noted their founder was the Rev. Jim Jones. Tropp thanked Hughes for his interest in their work and noted amateur radio operators had saved lives there and contributed to their success. Tropp closed by wishing Hughes good luck.

On November 18, 1978, 918 people including 304 children under the age of eighteen, died in or near Jonestown. Jones' staff killed U.S. Congressman Leo J. Ryan, three news people and a disenchanted member of the Temple who had sought, with others, to leave with the help of the Ryan. Then, Jones and over 900 of his followers killed themselves.

After the mass suicide/murder, Hughes realized the significance of his connection and was interviewed for an article published in the Morning Sun, November 21, 1978. The story was picked up by the Associated Press on November 20th and CMLife on December 4th. Copies of the articles are in the collection.

For more information and primary and secondary sources about the tragic event, the aftermath, see Alternative Considerations of Jonestown and Peoples Temple, a website compiled by San Diego State University at According to the site, Tropp, a teacher age 36, and his sister, and Albert, age 24, who was in charge of the radio room, Albert's mother, siblings and part of his maternal extended family all died at Jonestown.

Processing Note: During processing 2.5 cubic feet of material was withdrawn including duplicates, mass produced and out-of-state or out-of-scope radio station materials and publications. A lot of this material was correspondence noting someone had turned in and communicated with or information about non-Michigan radio stations. Duplicates of the Mount Pleasant High School yearbooks were donated to Mount Pleasant High School. Five items were separately cataloged.


Mount Pleasant Area Diversity Group (Mich.) Organizational Records, 1976-2014, and undated

2 boxes (1 cubic feet)

Mount Pleasant Area Diversity Group (Mich.) Organizational records, 1951-2009, and undated, include mostly meeting minutes, related reports, and historical documentation of the group's activities and events to fight racism and discrimination and foster multiculturalism.

The collection consists of paper organizational records of the MPADG, 1976-2014, and undated. It collection is organized alphabetically and chronologically. Important records include Articles of Incorporation, Mission Statement, By-laws, and Tax-Exempt Status papers. There is a complete set of Meeting Minutes with agendas and related materials, 1993-2011, and a few 2012 meeting minutes, as well as meeting minutes from 1992 of the local ministerial association. Other information documenting the group includes correspondence, activities and events materials, conference materials, the group’s history, marketing plan, newspaper clippings (copies), treasurer’s reports, grant requests, and meeting minutes of MPADG Trustees, and reports, 2009-2010.

Of particular interest to researchers will be documentation of incidents in Mount Pleasant and Michigan, 1996-2005, specifically the incidents at Mount Pleasant High School and the communication and plans of actions to address them and collected materials on how Michigan police dealt with juveniles and youth, 1991-2000, undated. Related to this are two folders of materials, agendas, meetings minutes, and a Mount Pleasant High School student survey of the Mount Pleasant Parents of Color, 1993-1997. Also related is the Mount Pleasant School District Strategy 7 Committee Meeting Minutes, Related Materials [multi-cultural education] folder, 2000-2001.

There are also two reports of interest: Isabella County Human Rights Committee Report to the Isabella County Board of Commissioners, July 21, 2009, and Overview of a Project to Explore Racial/Ethnic Diversity at CMU … presented to MPADG, by Mary S. Senter, Sept. 20, 2007.

MPADG also collected Michigan non-discrimination ordinances and information on how to file complaints, 1976-2010 (Scattered).

In 2000 Central Michigan University President Mike Rao asked for the MPADG’s list of efforts for a study on diversity related activities in the Mount Pleasant community. His letter and CMU’s plan are included in the collection.

Lastly, there is a compilation of information entitled Dr. Merze Tate: A Brief Review of a Groundbreaking Career, by Daniel L. Shaw, 2004.


Mount Pleasant High School (Mount Pleasant, Mich.) Collection, 1934-1969, and undated

.75 cubic feet (in 2 boxes)

Collection contains dedication program, invitations, faculty minutes, pageant materials, Student Council materials, and term papers from Mount Pleasant High School.

The collection was the property of Miss Constance M. Stenenga, a high school English teacher at Mount Pleasant High School, who compiled a history of the high school with three high school seniors Sue Brown Morrow, Delores Conkright, and Faye Lou Brasington in 1955/1956. A copy of the printed history is in the collection.

The collection consists of miscellaneous materials relating to the high school, the student council, homecoming, and school pageant, term papers on the history of the school, student newspapers, commencement programs, 1956-1969, and some newspaper clippings (copies). A 1957 program for the dedication of the new high school is included.


Our Town Hall (Mount Pleasant, Mich.) Organizational records, 1946-1954, and undated

.5 cubic feet (in 1 box, 1 Oversized volume)

The collection includes a constitution, correspondence, meeting minutes, financial, and other organizational records.

The collection of various organizational records, includes: bank books, statements, receipts and bills; a constitution; correspondence; an evaluation of Mount Pleasant High School, 1950; membership cards; a questionnaire; lists of meeting attendances; meeting minutes and related materials, 1946-1951; and miscellaneous. The scrapbook includes newspaper clippings and other materials.


Richard Owen Harris, Harris Family and Milling Company Collection, 1880, 2018, and undated

1 cubic foot (in 3 boxes, 2 Oversized folders)

This collection contains papers, publications, and information concerning the Harris family and Milling Company.

This collection contains papers, publications, and information concerning the Harris family and Milling Company. Boxes 1-2 include legal-size materials and Box 3 includes letter-size materials. There are three series in this collection; Harris business, personal, and Minnie Vroman Papers. Most of the materials were produced or collected by Richard O. Harris. The materials include adverting materials, inventories, price lists, product information, company publications, photographic materials, insurance and stock information, board of directors meeting minutes, correspondence, and company records and ledgers. The collection is organized by size, alphabetically and chronologically. Both boxes are legal-size.

Of special note are the Articles of Merger and Merger Agreement detailing how the Harris Milling Company was subsumed by the Nebraska Consolidated Mills Company, a badly damaged daguerreotype of an unknown white woman with a broach, who may be Jane Daniel Fulbright (see the last letter in Personal Correspondence folder), and papers for a milling course Richard O. completed.

Also in the collection are illustrative materials, including photographs and sketches of plans for transport trucks with the Harris Milling Company/FAMO logo in watercolor.

Related family materials include: miscellaneous items documenting Richard O. Harris’ daughter Mary Jane Harris (later Waterhouse)’s involvement with local stage events; papers of Minnie Vroman including a 1909 Chicago x-ray receipt and bills related to a week spent at the Battle Creek Sanitarium in 1917 for gastic issues. There are also papers and a photograph (with unidentified people, probably a Boy Scouts troop and leader) atop a submarine at the Beacon Institute of U.S. Submarine Base New London, Connecticut to which an unknown member of the Harris family was affiliated.

A 2019 addition (Box 3) includes a 1938 Central State Teachers College (CSTC) football schedule of home games on a football shaped program, and a CSTC lecture course season ticket for Kathleen Ordway. Mount Pleasant High School materials include: a 1925 student and staff photograph by T. T. Mock, Battle Creek, Michigan, outside the old high school (photocopy 8 pp.); a 1925 commencement program, a black and white photograph of the 50th reunion of the class of 1925 in 1975; and acidic blue line revision drawings (4 pp.), each of which measures 18x24 inches, of the new Mount Pleasant High School by Louis C. Kingscott and Associates, Inc, Kalamazoo (architects and engineers), April 20, 1953 including a presentation drawing, floor plans for the English, Social Science and Language unit, a floor plan for the science unit with a sectional view of the unit, and a floor plan of the commercial unit (in 1 Oversized Folder). Also included is the October 27, 2000 invitation to the historic marker dedication for Harris Mill. Last is John A. Harris materials including his Civil War service records (copies, 10 pp.), a photograph (copy), presentation reading notes of Anne Harris Hunnewell for the Pasadena Civil War Round Table about John Harris (4 pp.), and letter and envelope (copy) about the John A. Harris materials from Anne Harris Hunnewell to her Grandpa Richard. Also included are 1999 copies from the Internet of a list of John’s unit members (4 pp.), and a map of Eureka, Michigan (1 p.).

Processing Note:

Much of this collection was heavily damaged and was infested with stinkbugs. The archivist and processing student met with the university insect exterminator and determined these bugs were not a threat to the collection. All stinkbugs were contained and removed from the collection. Items with mold, mildew, water, or fire damage, as well as acidic papers were photocopied and withdrawn from the collection during processing, about 1 cubic foot total. Also, during processing one general Mount Pleasant item was added to the Vertical Files.

Three-dimensional items transferred to the CMU Museum in February 2019 where they can receive expert curatorial care include: keychain, patch, matchbooks, product cards, dog food and flour bags, Harris Milling Company FAMO Dairy Feed 100 lbs Bag Sketches (24% and 16%, each measures 18x12 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO Broiler Ration 25 lbs Bag Sketches (1 is 20%, the other has no % indicated), each measures 18x12 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO 16% Dairy Feed 100 lbs White Bag Sketch, measures 18x12 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO Self-rising Bleached Flour Cloth 10lbs Bag, stamped “Emergency Quality Milled Under Gov’t. Order W.F.O. 144,” measures 16.5x10 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO Self-rising Bleached Flour Cloth 10lbs Bag, measures 17x10 inches, undated; Martha White’s FAMO Self-rising Enriched Bleached Flour .5lbs Bags, (1 plain, 1 with images), each measures 11.5x5.5 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO Self-rising Bleached Flour Paper 10lbs Bag, stamped “Emergency Quality Milled Under Gov’t. Order W.F.O. 144,” measures 19.25x10 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company Hi-Value Dog Food Paper 25lbs Bag, measures 31x11 inches, undated; Harris Milling Company FAMO Beef Builder Paper 50lbs Bag, measures 34.5x16 inches, undated; Harris Milling Sample Bag (linen) and Harris Ranch Almond Bag (cotton), undated; and a booklet: Michigan. Dept. of Agriculture. Selection…, 1961.