Guide to the Lawrence T. Wyly (1893-1981) Papers

Collection Title: Lawrence T. Wyly (1893-1981) Papers
Dates: 1904-1980
Identification: 22/4/3
Creator: Wyly, L. T. (Lawrence Theodore), 1893-1981
Extent: 18 Boxes
Language of Materials: English
Abstract: In 1938 Wyly came to Northwestern University as an assistant professor of civil engineering. He was promoted to associate professor in 1941. The Lawrence T. Wyly Papers fill eighteen boxes including five dropfront storage boxes and are arranged in ten subseries: biographical materials, correspondence, army-related materials, teaching files, administrative files, research and consulting files, professional societies files, papers presented at professional meetings, publications, and miscellaneous materials.
Acquisition Information: The Lawrence T. Wyly Papers were donated to the University Archives by the Laura S. Wyly Estate, Donald C. Farley, administrator, on July 20, 1982, as Accession #82-130.
Processing Information: William B. Beatty; February-July, 1984.
Separated Materials: A substantial amount of material - textual, diagrammatic, and photographic - has been separated from the Wyly Papers. The photographs have been transferred to the University Archives photograph collection. Textual and diagrammatic oversized sheets (approximately 900 items) have been filed in five dropfront storage boxes. The oversized items consist primarily of graphs, details of bridges, bolts, and other engineering structures, and tabular records of both proposed and completed research projects.
Conditions Governing Access: None.
Repository: Northwestern University Archives
Deering Library, Room 110
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston, IL, 60208-2300
URL: http://www.library.northwestern.edu/archives
Email: archives@northwestern.edu
Phone: 847-491-3354

Biographical/Historical Information

Lawrence Theodore Wyly was born in Cardington, Ohio, on July 6, 1893. He received his B.A. from Oberlin College in 1916. During World War I he saw combat as a pilot for which he was awarded the Distinguished Service Cross. Wyly earned his BSCE (1920) and CE (1938) degrees at the University of Minnesota. He joined the civil engineering faculty of Northwestern University in 1938.

From 1920 to 1938 Wyly worked in industry, primarily designing and supervising construction of railway and highway bridges. In 1938 he came to Northwestern University as an assistant professor of civil engineering. He was promoted to associate professor in 1941. In 1946 he moved to Purdue as professor of structural engineering and department head. Wyly left Purdue in 1955 and returned to Northwestern as professor of civil engineering and as director of the model truss bridge research project. A dispute with Dean Harold Gotaas of the Technological Institute led to Wyly's removal as director of the bridge project in 1959. He retired from the university in 1961.

Wyly married Laura Shoemaker in 1921; the couple had no children. Wyly died on January 23, 1981.

Scope and Content

The Lawrence T. Wyly Papers fill eighteen boxes and are arranged in ten subseries: biographical materials, correspondence, army-related materials, teaching files, administrative files, research and consulting files, professional societies files, papers presented at professional meetings, publications, and miscellaneous materials.

A small amount of biographical materials include several vitae, clippings, programs, news releases, certificates, and some records of expenses. They also include two diaries (1938, 1940) kept by Mrs. J.H. Shoemaker, Wyly's mother-in-law, and deal mainly with her own life and those of her family and friends.

Correspondence, filling more than three boxes is broken down into general, family, and subject categories. The general correspondence pertains to a wide variety of topics centering on social issues, engineering, and education. Family correspondence includes round-robin letters from Wyly's father-in-law as well as letters from other relatives to Wyly and additional family members. Much of this correspondence concerns routine family matters although social issues also are discussed. Subject correspondence, foldered and arranged alphabetically by topical headings, relates primarily to issues that aroused Wyly's strong sense of justice and fairness, such as the war in Viet Nam, the use of television for public debates and education, and the dangers of the House Un-American Activities Committee. Correspondence between Wyly and his colleagues and former students is foldered and arranged alphabetically according to individuals' surnames.

One folder of Army materials includes Wyly's accounts of and records pertaining to his service in World War I. Photocopies of pertinent pages from a history of the aerosquadron in which he served are also included.

The teaching files (4 1/2 boxes) consist primarily of rough notes, lecture and class materials, student assignments, exams, and grade and attendance records.

Wyly served on a few university and organizational committees. The three administrative files that document this service illuminate some of his individual contributions.

Wyly's research and consulting files (8 boxes) form the largest component of the collection. Two major projects directed by Wyly, the model bridge project and the riveted and bolted joints project, are represented by substantial amounts of records, reports, correspondence, and notes. As noted earlier, Wyly's second term at Northwestern was marked by controversy. Wyly's point of view is amply documented by his white paper (Box 4, Folders 2-3), correspondence and other related materials. The balance of the materials in the research and consulting files relate to several of Wyly's consulting assignments and other engineering matters.

A small amount of correspondence and related materials pertaining to professional societies document Wyly's occasional work in connection with these organizations.

Wyly infrequently gave papers at professional meetings. Accordingly, his activities in connection with these meetings are documented by only a few drafts of papers and some correspondence.

Wyly's publications are represented by only a few isolated reprints. Where possible, reprints have been filed with the notes for and drafts of corresponding articles. A folder containing Wyly's memoir on George Maney, one of his senior colleagues, also includes several letters from Mrs. Maney. Preliminary materials relating to a proposed history of the methods of science, with special emphasis on the controlled experiment, also are filed here.

The miscellaneous files pertain to various issues that sparked Wyly's social conscience. Most of the materials found here are in the form of notes and drafts of letters.

Arrangement of Materials

The Lawrence T. Wyly Papers are arranged in ten subseries: biographical materials, correspondence, army-related materials, teaching files, administrative files, research and consulting files, professional societies files, papers presented at professional meetings, publications, and miscellaneous materials.

Subjects

Corporate Name

Northwestern University (Evanston, Ill.)--Faculty

Personal Name

Wyly, L. T. (Lawrence Theodore), 1893-1981--Correspondence

Subjects

Civil engineering--Study and teaching


Container List / Contents

  • Biographical Materials
    • Personal Data, 1912 - 1961Box 1, Folder 1
    • Clippings, Programs, 1955 - 1971Box 1, Folder 2
    • Certificates, 1919 - 1964Box 1, Folder 3
    • Diaries (Mrs. J.H. Shoemaker), 1938, 1940Box 1, Folder 4
    • Expenses, 1948 - 1976Box 1, Folder 5
    • Miscellaneous, n.d.Box 1, Folder 6
  • Correspondence
    • General, 1921 - 1939Box 1, Folder 7
    • General, 1940 - 1945Box 1, Folder 8
    • General, 1946Box 1, Folder 9
    • General, 1947Box 1, Folder 10
    • General, 1948Box 1, Folder 11
    • General, 1949Box 1, Folder 12
    • General, 1950 - 1954Box 1, Folder 13
    • General, 1955Box 1, Folder 14
    • General, 1956Box 2, Folder 1
    • General, 1957Box 2, Folder 2
    • General, 1958Box 2, Folder 3
    • General, 1959Box 2, Folder 4
    • General, 1960Box 2, Folder 5
    • General, 1961Box 2, Folder 6
    • General, 1962Box 2, Folder 7
    • General, 1963Box 2, Folder 8
    • General, 1964Box 2, Folder 9
    • General, 1965Box 2, Folder 10
    • General, 1966Box 2, Folder 11
    • General, 1967Box 3, Folder 1
    • General, 1968Box 3, Folder 2
    • General, 1969Box 3, Folder 3
    • General, 1970 - 1973Box 3, Folder 4
    • General, 1974 - 1976Box 3, Folder 5
    • General, 1977 - 1980Box 3, Folder 6
    • General, n.d.Box 3, Folder 7
    • Baker, Joseph E., 1968Box 3, Folder 8
    • Bell, Carlos G., 1958 - 1961Box 3, Folder 9
    • Engineer's Council for Professional Development, 1958 - 1959Box 3, Folder 10
    • Family, 1904 - 1939Box 3, Folder 11
    • Family, 1940 - 1949Box 3, Folder 12
    • Family, 1950Box 3, Folder 13
    • Family, 1951Box 3, Folder 14
    • Family, 1952 - 1976Box 3, Folder 15
    • Family, n.d.Box 3, Folder 16
    • First Congregational Church, Wilmette, Illinois, 1960 - 1965Box 3, Folder 17
    • First Congregational Church, Wilmette, Illinois, 1960 - 1965Box 4, Folder 1
    • First Congregational Church, Wilmette, Illinois, 1960 - 1965Box 4, Folder 2
    • Hall, Howard P., 1959 - 1960Box 4, Folder 3
    • Hayes, John M., 1956 - 1961Box 4, Folder 4
    • House Un-American Activities Committee, 1961 - 1965Box 4, Folder 5
    • Kennedy, John F., Death of, 1963 - 1974Box 4, Folder 6
    • Lagaard, Maurice N., 1958 - 1961Box 4, Folder 7
    • Leroy, Herbert, 1957 - 1962Box 4, Folder 8
    • Nelson, Elroy, 1959 - 1962Box 4, Folder 9
    • Recommendations, 1947 - 1962Box 4, Folder 10
    • Television Programs, 1960 - 1967Box 4, Folder 11
    • Television Programs, 1965 - 1967Box 4, Folder 12
    • Viet Nam, 1966Box 4, Folder 13
  • Army
    • World War I, 1918 - 1923Box 5, Folder 1
  • Teaching Files
    • B16, 1955 - 1956Box 5, Folder 2
    • B16, 1956 - 1957Box 5, Folder 3
    • B16, 1957 - 1958Box 5, Folder 4
    • B16, 1958 - 1959Box 5, Folder 5
    • B16, 1959 - 1960Box 5, Folder 6
    • B16, Student Problems, 1959 - 1960Box 5, Folder 7
    • B16, 1960 - 1961Box 5, Folder 8
    • B20, 1954 - 1960Box 5, Folder 9
    • B21, 1956 - 1959Box 5, Folder 10
    • B22, 1959 - 1960Box 5, Folder 11
    • B23, 1956Box 5, Folder 12
    • B25, 1950 - 1957Box 5, Folder 13
    • B25, 1950 - 1957Box 6, Folder 1
    • B77, 1956Box 6, Folder 2
    • C25, 1957Box 6, Folder 3
    • CE4, CE9 (U.S. Navy V12 Program), 1938 - 1945Box 6, Folder 4
    • CE302, 1942 - 1943Box 6, Folder 5
    • CE321-322, 1950 - 1955Box 6, Folder 6
    • D20, 1956 - 1959Box 6, Folder 7
    • D20, 1956 - 1959Box 6, Folder 8
    • D21, 1955 - 1956Box 6, Folder 9
    • D21, 1955 - 1956Box 6, Folder 10
    • D21, 1955 - 1956Box 7, Folder 1
    • D26, 1955 - 1956Box 7, Folder 2
    • Approximation for Variables, 1954 - 1958Box 7, Folder 3
    • Axial Loads, n.d.Box 7, Folder 4
    • Books and Supplies, 1943 - 1944, 1961Box 7, Folder 5
    • Constants by Plastic Center, 1958 - 1961Box 7, Folder 6
    • Correspondence, 1955 - 1957Box 7, Folder 7
    • Shear Deflection, 1957 - 1958Box 7, Folder 8
    • Theory for Structural Members, n.d.Box 7, Folder 9
    • Graduate Students: C., B.B., 1955 - 1956Box 7, Folder 10
    • C., P.E., 1955 - 1956Box 7, Folder 11
    • G., R.W., 1956 - 1957Box 7, Folder 12
    • L., T.M. and W., T.M., 1957Box 7, Folder 13
    • L., T-J., 1958 - 1964Box 7, Folder 14
    • N., E., 1958 - 1961Box 7, Folder 15
    • R., T.M., 1956Box 7, Folder 16
    • R., W.H., 1956 - 1957Box 7, Folder 17
    • S., B.P., Jr., 1955 - 1956Box 7, Folder 18
    • T., Lin, 1958 - 1959Box 7, Folder 19
    • T., H., 1957 - 1958Box 7, Folder 20
    • Miscellaneous, 1955 - 1957Box 7, Folder 21
    • Miscellaneous, 1959 - 1960Box 7, Folder 22
    • Purdue, CE71, 1946 - 1951Box 7, Folder 23
    • Purdue, CE78, 1949 - 1953Box 7, Folder 24
    • Purdue, CE175, n.d.Box 7, Folder 25
    • Purdue, CE177, 1946Box 7, Folder 26
    • Purdue, CE198, 1946Box 7, Folder 27
    • Purdue, CE272, 1947 - 1953Box 7, Folder 28
    • Purdue, CE273, 1946 - 1952Box 8, Folder 1
    • Purdue, CE276, 1947 - 1953Box 8, Folder 2
    • Purdue, CE478, 1954Box 8, Folder 3
    • Purdue, CE671-2, 1946 - 1953Box 8, Folder 4
    • Purdue CE673, 1951 - 1955Box 8, Folder 5
    • Purdue CE675-6, 697, 1953 - 1954Box 8, Folder 6
    • Axial Loads, 1951 - 1952Box 8, Folder 7
    • Building Plans, 1946 - 1949Box 8, Folder 8
    • Correspondence, Carydis, 1947 - 1949Box 8, Folder 9
    • Course Books and Supplies, 1946 - 1948Box 8, Folder 10
    • Equipment, 1947 - 1952Box 8, Folder 11
    • Exams, 1952 - 1953Box 8, Folder 12
    • Exams, 1942 - 1955Box 9, Folder 1
    • Graduate Students, 1948 - 1950Box 9, Folder 2
    • Laboratories, 1946 - 1950Box 9, Folder 3
    • Pin Vibration Investigation, 1954Box 9, Folder 4
    • Strains, 1954Box 9, Folder 5
    • Stress Fatigue, 1948 - 1953Box 9, Folder 6
    • Miscellaneous, 1948 - 1949Box 9, Folder 7
  • Administrative
    • Committee on the Structure of the Engineering Curriculum, 1955 - 1958Box 9, Folder 8
    • Committees, miscellaneous, 1940 - 1961Box 9, Folder 9
    • Purdue, miscellaneous, n.d.Box 9, Folder 10
  • Research and Consulting
    • Accidental Eccentricities of Columns, 1942 - 1968Box 9, Folder 11
    • Analytical Bulletin 302, U. of Illinois, Summarization, 1948Box 9, Folder 12
    • Ballistics Test, 1940 - 1941Box 9, Folder 13
    • Bolts, 1951 - 1963Box 9, Folder 14
    • Bolts, 1951 - 1963Box 10, Folder 1
    • Bridge Collapses, Quebec, 1967 - 1969Box 10, Folder 2
    • Bridge Collapse, Vancouver, 1959 - 1963Box 10, Folder 3
    • Bridge Hangars, 1947 - 1957Box 10, Folder 4
    • Bridge Hangars, 1947 - 1957Box 10, Folder 5
    • Chicago Sanitary and Ship Canal Bridge, 1962 - 1968Box 10, Folder 6
    • Columns, Perforated, 1954 - 1963Box 10, Folder 7
    • Columns, Perforated, 1954 - 1963Box 10, Folder 8
    • East St. Louis Veterans Memorial Bridge, 1935 - 1951Box 11, Folder 1
    • Encyclopedia Britannica Films Building, 1962Box 11, Folder 2
    • Erie, Kansas, AAR-MKT Bridge Test, 1948 - 1961Box 11, Folder 3
    • Erie, Kansas, AAR-MKT Bridge Test, 1948 - 1961Box 11, Folder 4
    • Expenses, 1945 - 1946, 1965Box 11, Folder 5
    • History of Fatigue, 1955Box 11, Folder 6
    • Illinois Tollway Bridges, 1961Box 11, Folder 7
    • Industry, 1927Box 11, Folder 8
    • Laced Columns, 1943Box 11, Folder 9
    • Lehigh Test Columns, 1957 - 1959Box 11, Folder 10
    • Model Bridge, Army Report, 1957 - 1958Box 11, Folder 11
    • Model Bridge, Bowman Committee, 1958 - 1961Box 11, Folder 12
    • Model Bridge, Budgets and Reports, 1955 - 1963Box 12, Folder 1
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1963Box 12, Folder 2
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1963Box 12, Folder 3
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1963Box 12, Folder 4
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1963Box 12, Folder 5
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1963Box 13, Folder 1
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence: Bissell, Clayton, 1958 - 1962Box 13, Folder 2
    • Carter, Jack, 1957 - 1962Box 13, Folder 3
    • Cox, John, 1956 - 1962Box 13, Folder 4
    • Lenzen, Kenneth, 1957 - 1971Box 13, Folder 5
    • Loughridge, Donald, 1957 - 1962Box 13, Folder 6
    • McCammon, Lewis, 1955 - 1963Box 13, Folder 7
    • Obert, Edward, 1957 - 1963Box 13, Folder 8
    • Spence, B.J., 1957 - 1963Box 13, Folder 9
    • Wieboldt, 1957 - 1961Box 13, Folder 10
    • Model Bridge, Hydraulic Loading, 1957 - 1963Box 13, Folder 11
    • Model Bridge, Hydraulic Loading, 1957 - 1963Box 13, Folder 12
    • Model Bridge, Project Activities and Organization Chart, 1958Box 13, Folder 13
    • Model Bridge, Purdue, 1952 - 1955Box 13, Folder 14
    • Model Bridge, Strain Gage Readings, n.d.Box 14, Folder 1
    • Model Bridge, White Paper, 1955 - 1959Box 14, Folder 2
    • Model Bridge, White Paper, 1955 - 1959Box 14, Folder 3
    • Model Bridge, AAUP Investigation, 1955 - 1964Box 14, Folder 4
    • Model Bridge, AAUP Investigation, 1955 - 1964Box 14, Folder 5
    • Model Bridge, AAUP Investigation, 1955 - 1964Box 14, Folder 6
    • Model Bridge, AAUP Investigation, 1955 - 1964Box 14, Folder 7
    • Model Bridges, Perforated Cover Plates, Budgets, and Reports, 1946 - 1957Box 15, Folder 1
    • Model Bridge, Perforated Cover Plates, Budgets, and Reports, 1946 - 1957Box 15, Folder 2
    • Model Bridge, Perforated Cover Plates, Budgets, and Reports, 1946 - 1957Box 15, Folder 3
    • Model Bridge, Correspondence and Records, 1949 - 1961Box 15, Folder 4
    • Northern Pacific Bridges, 1916 - 1921Box 15, Folder 5
    • Oregon Bridge, 1955 - 1956Box 15, Folder 6
    • Philosophy of Research, 1955 - 1957Box 16, Folder 1
    • Purdue, Physics Building, 1954Box 16, Folder 2
    • Purdue, Residence Hall, 1952Box 16, Folder 3
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Budgets, and Reports, 1954 - 1958Box 16, Folder 4
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Budgets, and Reports, 1954 - 1958Box 16, Folder 5
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1960Box 16, Folder 6
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1960Box 16, Folder 7
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Correspondence and Records, 1955 - 1960Box 17, Folder 1
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Washers, 1955 - 1957Box 17, Folder 2
    • Riveted and Bolted Joints, Washers, 1955 - 1957Box 17, Folder 3
    • Riveted Joints, 1943Box 17, Folder 4
    • Suspension Bridge, 1944 - 1946Box 17, Folder 5
    • Swift and Lunt Fire, 1942Box 17, Folder 6
    • Whittemore Strain Gage Collection, 1950 - 1951Box 17, Folder 7
    • Miscellaneous, n.d.Box 17, Folder 8
  • Professional Societies
    • American Railway Engineering Association, 1942 - 1964Box 17, Folder 9
    • Sigma Xi, Purdue, 1949 - 1953Box 17, Folder 10
    • Western Society of Engineers, 1942 - 1963Box 17, Folder 11
    • Miscellaneous, 1947 - 1964Box 17, Folder 12
  • Papers Before Professional Societies
    • “The Truss Bridge Research Project,” American Railway Engineering Association, 1958Box 17, Folder 13
    • “The General Form of the Slope Deflection Method,” Illinois Highway Bureau of Bridges, 1937Box 17, Folder 14
    • “The Truss Bridge Research Project,” Railway Supply Group, Union League of Chicago, 1957 - 1958Box 17, Folder 15
    • “The Collapse of the Quebec Bridge,” Technical Society of Chicago, 1965Box 17, Folder 16
  • Publications
    • “Fatigue in Riveted and Bolted Single Lap Joints,” Cross Medal Winner, 1956Box 18, Folder 1
    • “Fatigue Studies on Structural Joints”, 1957Box 18, Folder 2
    • “Large Fatigue Testing Machine”, n.d.Box 18, Folder 3
    • Money Memoir, 1947 - 1950Box 18, Folder 4
    • Book Proposal, 1962 - 1965Box 18, Folder 5
    • Reprints, 1940 - 1952Box 18, Folder 6
  • Miscellaneous
    • Great Books Discussions, 1964 - 1965Box 18, Folder 7
    • Krebiozen, 1962 - 1969Box 18, Folder 8
    • Mississippi Summer Project, 1964Box 18, Folder 9
    • Social Issues, Notes, 1968 - 1972Box 18, Folder 10
    • Social Issues, Notes, 1968 - 1972Box 18, Folder 11
    • Wilmette, Illinois Election, 1969Box 18, Folder 12