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Austin W. Curtis Papers, 1896-1971

2 linear feet — 1 oversize volume — 1 oversize folder

Assistant to George Washington Carver at Tuskegee Institute, later a Detroit, Michigan, businessman. Correspondence and other papers of G. W. Carver relating primarily to experiments with soil improvement and the discovery of new applications for the peanut and other Southern agricultural products; newspaper clippings and memos relating to Curtis' campaign for Congress in 1958 and his work with Carver; and photographs.

The Curtis collection has two parts: papers of George Washington Carver that Curtis collected while in Carver's employ; and papers of Curtis mainly relating to his business activities with A.W. Curtis Laboratories of Detroit, Michigan, and also his unsuccessful campaign for Congress in 1958. The Carver papers are of the most significance, relating to Carver's experiments with soil improvement and his discovery of new applications for the peanut and other agricultural products of the South.


Emerson R. Boyles papers, 1879-1911, 1931-1960

6 linear feet — 1 oversize folder

Charlotte, Michigan, attorney, legal advisor to Governors Frank Fitzgerald and Luren Dickinson and justice of the Michigan Supreme Court. Correspondence, newspaper clippings and other materials on Michigan politics, the Republican Party, and his association with Governor Dickinson; scrapbook, 1885-1889, compiled by Fred A. Pennington; account book, 1904-1905; day book, 1941; log book, 1942, of Beaver Island cabin; and miscellaneous notebooks and photograph albums.

The Emerson Boyles papers consist of correspondence, newspaper clippings and other materials on Michigan politics, the Republican Party, and his association with Governor Dickinson; a scrapbook, 1885-1889, compiled by Fred A. Pennington; account book, 1904-1905; day book, 1941; log book, 1942, of Beaver Island cabin; and miscellaneous notebooks and photograph albums. The collection has been arranged into three series: Correspondence and other papers; Miscellaneous personal and family; and Photographs.


Floyd Starr papers, 1933-1970

4 microfilms — 2 folders

Founder and president of the Starr Commonwealth for Boys in Albion, Michigan. The scrapbooks contain clippings, articles, and other printed matter relating to the work of Starr Commonwealth and the activities of its boys. There are also scattered original photographs.

The Floyd Starr scrapbooks were microfilmed in 1978 with the permission of Starr Commonwealth for Boys (SCB). After filming was completed the books were returned to Starr Commonwealth. The scrapbooks were microfilmed selectively, approximately ninety-five percent of the original material finding its way into this microfilm edition.

The scrapbooks were divided into three series for filming. The first series -- Floyd Starr Scrapbooks - consisted of twelve books containing material created between 1933 and 1963, as well as one additional book of fundraising material dated from 1958 to 1970. Arranged chronologically, this series was created as a conscious attempt to preserve the history of SCB, and the people associated with it. It ranges broadly in subject and type of material. The school itself, Floyd Starr personally, former students, staff members, benefactors, and even persons who at one time spent a few days at SCB are all subjects for inclusion. Newspaper clippings are the most common type of material found, but mimeographed material, photographs, manuscript items and even autographs all have found their way into these volumes.

A second series consists almost exclusively of newspaper articles written about Starr Commonwealth by Myrtle B. Brown, covering the years 1948 to 1962. Brown, in charge of the school's public relations department, was responsible for writing a weekly column for the Albion Evening Recorder describing activities at SCB.

Within the miscellaneous scrapbooks series, there is a volume created for the school's 35th anniversary in 1948. The other two volumes, covering the years 1947 to 1955, seem to have been maintained by the school's Women's Auxiliary. The group's function was fundraising, primarily by means of benefit fashion shows. Most of the material contained in these two books duplicates information found in the Floyd Starr series.

The collection also includes a few original items, mainly scattered photographs of Starr alone or with some of the Starr Commonwealth boys. There is also a mounted time-line of Starr Commonwealth history located in the Starr Room of the Bentley Historical Library.


Shirley Wheeler Smith Papers, 1881-1959

15 linear feet — 1 oversize folder

Vice-president and secretary of the University of Michigan; correspondence; research materials for his biographies of university presidents; files relating to activities on the Ann Arbor City Council; course notes from classes at the University of Michigan; and photographs.

The Shirley Wheeler Smith papers include a combination of personal and professional materials. Much of Smith's career with the U-M is documented in the official records of the University, most notably in the records of the Secretary's Office and the papers of the presidents under whom he served (Angell, Hutchins, Burton, Little, and Ruthven). Even so, these papers contain much material relating to the business affairs of the U-M. The extensive correspondence files (with partial index) demonstrate wide influence in all phases of University operations as he corresponded with presidents, faculty, members of the board of regents, and other university personnel. Also documented in the collection is Smith's activities with the city of Ann Arbor and with other community organizations.

The collection has been arranged into the following series: Correspondence; Research for writings; Topical files; Ann Arbor City Council; Papers (by date); Personal and miscellaneous; and Photographs.


Starr Commonwealth records, 1916-2015 (majority within 1950-2000)

150.4 linear feet (157 boxes) — 1.65 GB — 50 oversize boxes

Organization dedicated to outreach, education, and intervention for troubled youth located in Albion, Michigan. The collection includes materials related to Floyd Starr, Foundtaion's administrative and development records, historic and promotional photographs, analog and digital audio-visual recordings, marketing materials, as well as publications.

The Starr Commonwealth Records collection contains 150.4 linear feet (157 boxes), 1.65 GB, and 52 oversize boxes of the records from the main administrative office of the Starr Commonwealth organization. It also includes historical records from the Starr Commonwealth School for Boys and records from the organization's branch facilities located across Michigan and Ohio. The collection also contains a substantial amount of material related to Floyd Starr, the founder and first president of the organization. Materials include correspondence, records, publications, videocassettes, audiocassettes, digital files, photographs, scrapbooks. The collection highlights the life and work of Floyd Starr, the administrative work of Starr Commonwealth, and the impact of the organization on local communities in Michigan and Ohio.

The Starr Commonwealth records have been organized into seven series: the Floyd Starr series, the Visitors series, the Administrative records series, the Marketing records series, the Development records series, the Publications series, and the Visual materials and Artifacts series.

The Floyd Starr series contains correspondence, papers and audiovisual materials about the life of Starr Commonwealth's founder.

The Visitors series contains correspondence, speech transcripts, photographs, and clippings from the visits of influential individuals to Starr Commonwealth. The series highlights materials from the trips of George Washington Carver and Helen Keller to Starr Commonwealth to visit with the students and deliver inspiring speeches.

The Administrative records series contains records, notes, correspondence, clippings, audiovisual materials and photographs from the central administrative offices of Starr Commonwealth. The series also includes materials from the Starr Commonwealth Public Relations department and the Chapel-in-the-Woods religious facility on the Albion campus.

The Marketing records series contains records, photographs and audiovisual materials that illustrate publicity projects and strategies for the organization.

The Development records series contains records, publications, and photographs from fundraising and donor activities. These records highlight some of Starr Commonwealth's major fundraising strategies and activities.

The Publications series contains published materials produced by Starr's Albion, Van Wert and Columbus campuses. Publications include annual reports, student and faculty newsletters, student handbooks, and scholarly publications from Starr Commonwealth leadership.

The Visual Materials and Artifacts series contains a collection of scrapbooks, photographs, photograph albums, and slides. It also contains materials and artifacts from Bruecker Museum on the Albion campus. These materials provide a visual representation of the students, faculty, buildings and major events at Starr Commonwealth throughout its history.