MsC 296


Manuscript Register



Collection Dates: 1933 -- 1971

(Bulk dates: 1956 -- 1965)

7 linear ft.


This document describes a collection of materials held by the
Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1420
Phone: 319-335-5921
Fax: 319-335-5900


Posted to Internet: May 2002


Acquisition Note: These papers were donated to the University by James C. Wright in 1974.


Access and Restrictions: This collection is open for research.


Photographs: Box 14


Digital Surrogates: Except where indicated, this document describes but does not reproduce the actual text, images and objects which make up this collection. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department.


Copyright:  Please read The University of Iowa Libraries' statement on "Property Rights, Copyright Law, and Permissions to Use Unpublished Materials"


Use of Collections:  The University of Iowa Libraries supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted by their fragile condition or by contractual agreement with donors, and it may not be possible at all times to provide appropriate machinery for reading, viewing or accessing non-paper-based materials. Please read our Use of Manuscripts Statement.


Abbreviations: For an explanation of the abbreviation and dating conventions used in the finding aids, see Abbreviations.


Biographical Note


Educator James Claude Wright was born in Kansas in 1903. He received his B.A. from Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, and his M.A. from the University of Iowa. He spent twenty-seven years in the Keokuk school system, first as a teacher and coach, then as the high school principal, and finally as the superintendent of schools. In 1955, Wright was appointed State Superintendent of Public Instruction in Iowa. He was responsible for closing many small town schools and reorganizing many Iowa school districts. Because of these and other controversial actions, he was not reappointed in 1960. Moving to Washington, D.C. in 1961, he became secretary of the Committee for the Advancement of School Administration. In 1963, he accepted the position of director of education in American Samoa. Returning to the continental United States, he became a professor of education at Northeast Missouri State Teachers College in Kirksville, Missouri. He remained there until his retirement.


Scope and Contents


The papers of James C. Wright measure seven linear feet and date from 1933 to 1971. His career as an educator is documented with correspondence, speeches, clippings, articles, and subject files. The correspondence fills almost four boxes and spans nearly forty years. Subject files exist on a wide variety of topics relating to education. These include school district reorganization in Iowa, the Iowa Department of Public Instruction, the Committee for the Advancement of School Administration, education in American Samoa, the Iowa Schoolmasters Walt Whitman Club, and education in Keokuk, Iowa. There are also folders of his speeches and articles, and a box of photographs.  


Box List


Box 1

Correspondence, 1933 --1956 (5 folders)

Box 2

Correspondence, 1957 -- May, 1960 (4 folders)

Box 3

Correspondence, June 1960 -- 1964 (5 folders)

Box 4

Correspondence, 1965 -- 1971

Correspondence, Undated

Congratulatory letters on becoming State Superintendent in 1954

Articles by J. C. Wright

Biographical information on J. C. Wright

Box 5

Speeches,.1942 -- 1963 (2 folders)

Newspaper clippings, 1936 -- 1959 (2 folders)

Box 6

Newspaper clippings, 1960 -- 1970 (3 folders)

American Samoa, Daily Bulletin, Pago Pago

Box 7

American Samoa Educational Specifications

American Samoa Educational Television

American Samoa Miscellaneous (3 folders)

Box 8

American Samoa News of the Day

----- Newspapers

----- Protestant Community Church

----- Samoan Shark

----- Telephone directories

----- Textbooks

Box 9

Committee for the Advancement of School Administration (2 folders)

Department of Public Instruction (2 folders)

Box 10

Department of Public Instruction (11 folders)

General material on education (1 folder)

Box 11

General material on education (2 folders)

Home room program for senior high school

Keokuk schools subject file

Box 12

Keokuk schools subject file, II

Northwestern University Summer Workshop, 1939 -- 1940 (2 folders)

School district reorganization, 1954 -- 1960 (2 folders)

Box 13

School district reorganization, 1961 -- 1962

State Board of Public Instruction Minutes, 1960 -- 1963

State Board of Public Instruction Weekly News Releases

Walt Whitman Club of Iowa Schoolmasters

Workshop at Minnesota, 1947

Box 14



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