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Oral History Project

Identifier: Sub-Series 2

Scope and Contents

From the Collection:

The Richard Schwarzlose Papers fill thirty-one and one-half boxes and span the period 1955 to 2003. The papers are divided into six categories: approximately three and one-half boxes of biographical materials, two and one-half boxes of general correspondence, ten boxes of academic career materials, one box of professional files, one box of research files and thirteen and one-half boxes of writings, publications, and speeches.

The biographical materials cover Schwarzlose's education, employment and other general matters. Among the items included are citations from awards received and publications clippings concerning or citing Schwarzlose. Also included are student papers Schwarzlose wrote while earning his B.S. degree in journalism from the University of Illinois along with correspondence, minutes and notes from a term as president of his college fraternity, Alpha Kappa Lamda. Materials relating to his graduate education, including notes and papers from various classes and his master's degree thesis and doctoral dissertation are found here. Employment information includes notes from Schwarzlose's occupational searches, files about several jobs he held during graduate school and resumes from throughout his career.

The general correspondence contains cards, letters and e-mail texts arranged in folders according to surname of correspondent or by name of organization, institution or topic. Folders are alphabetically arranged by heading or by correspondents' surnames. Items within each folder are arranged in chronological order.

The academic career materials contain a small number of files from Schwarzlose's teaching jobs at the University of Illinois and Purdue University and a larger volume relating to his employment at Northwestern University. Materials concerning Schwarzlose's Northwestern work are arranged alphabetically by topical headings with major groupings of folders in the following categories: committees, correspondence, diversity issues, fellowships and grants, international visitors and travel. Of particular interest are minutes and notes from several Medill and Northwestern committees, including information from the Medill dean's searches of 1989 and 1996-1997. The correspondence files include letters between Schwarzlose and other Northwestern professors and administrators such as Ken Bode, Loren Ghiglione, Mike Janeway and John Lavine, as well as nine folders of general correspondence chronologically arranged. The international visitors and travel files chronicle Schwarzlose's interest in freedom of the press in other countries, especially nations of the former Soviet Bloc and Yugoslavia. Teaching materials include notes, syllabi, handouts, examinations and some student work from two Northwestern residential college tutorials and several Medill undergraduate courses that Schwarzlose taught including history and issues of journalism, copy editing, and government and news media, later known as history, law and ethics of journalism. There are also several folders covering the oral history project Schwarzlose launched with some of his classes in an effort to conduct and record interviews with influential Chicago journalists.

Professional files contain information relating to Schwarzlose's work outside of Medill. One folder holds correspondence, flyers and notes relating to his membership in the Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication and to that organization's annual convention. More extensive are files detailing Schwarlose's work as a reviewer and author for several publishers and publications, including Oxford University Press, Prentice-Hall, The Quill, and the San Diego Union. Finally, there are files relating to Schwarzlose's work as an editor for the World Book and for Gift O' the Sea, a history of the Rust-Oleum Corporation.

Research files reflect Schwarzlose's work in journalism ethics and on the history of the wire services. The folders relating to ethics research include correspondence and notes on the attempt to create an ethics, law and history department at Northwestern, the creation of the Medill Honor Pledge, the Northwestern University Center for Professional Ethics, and problems or situational exercises relating to ethics in journalism. One folder of correspondence concerns Schwarzlose's two-volume history of the American wire services through 1920, The Nation's Newsbrokers.

A significant volume of material relates to publications, speeches and appearances by Schwarzlose. The files include articles written for scholarly and popular publications; texts of speeches delivered before at Northwestern, alumni, civic and professional events; items pertaining to television and radio appearances; conference papers; panelist information; and books. Drafts, correspondence, reviews and related material pertaining to The Nation's Newsbrokers and to Newspapers: A Reference Guide, form a significant portion of this subseries. The manuscript of an unfinished book, Sensationalized News: Journalism at the Crossroads is also found here. Many of Schwarzlose's speeches deal with the topic of journalism ethics, focusing on issues from campaign coverage to hyped stories to freedom of the press abroad. The publications, speeches and appearances files contain not only texts of Schwarzlose's articles or speeches but often correspondence and notes concerning the engagements or publications at or through which they were presented.

Addition, Boxes 33-34 Several folders of curricular materials further documenting Schwarzlose's career as a teacher have been added to the series. The materials date from the period circa 1982-2003 and pertain largely to undergraduate and graduate courses taught at Northwestern University. Included are syllabi, examinations, notes, and course handouts relating to Medill School of Journalism courses as well as to courses offered through the Alumnae of Northwestern University and through the National High School Institute. The curricular materials are arranged in folders alphabetically by course title or by name of sponsoring organization.


  • 1955-2003


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is stored off-site and requires two business days advance notice for retrieval. Please contact the McCormick Library at or 847-491-3635 for more information or to schedule an appointment to view the collection.


From the Collection: 34.00 Boxes

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English

Library Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US