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Joseph W. Miller (1906-1979) Papers

 Collection
Identifier: 52/3
The Joe Miller Papers are contained in five boxes and span the years 1924-1979. The collection contains biographical information, materials relating to his early life in Ottumwa, Iowa, and two important events in his Northwestern career: the 25th Waa-Mu show in 1956, and Miller's retirement in 1975. Two scrapbooks complete the collection.

Personal Data includes biographical sketches from the Dean's office, and Miller's Waa-Mu "diploma" from 1966. Northwestern University Press Releases document Miller's appointment as Associate Dean of Students and Director of Student Affairs. Writings about Miller include a transcription of the John Evans' Club Event held in his honor in 1971, called "This is Your Life," and a rough draft of an article about Miller by Alice Snyder.

Production Materials pertain to his work both at Northwestern and in Ottumwa, including scripts of four plays.

Materials relating to Miller's work in Ottumwa include press clippings of the shows he produced there, as well as a few issues of "The Ottumwa Business Man," a local paper with which he was involved.

A large portion of this collection is comprised of correspondence to Miller in honor of Waa-Mu's 25th Anniversary. These letters are from friends, former students, and celebrities, including a signed photograph of Marilyn Monroe (Box 1, Folder 14), and are arranged alphabetically by surname of the correspondent.

In honor of his retirement, the Waa-Mu Board, chaired by Dr. J. Allen Hynek hosted a reception at the Orrington Hotel in Evanston and sent out invitations with space for personal reminiscences and comments. The returned forms are organized into regrets/attending and then alphabetically in folders by surname of respondent (Box 2, Folders 2-5). Additionally, this subseries includes other notes or Christmas cards congratulating Miller on his retirement.

One folder holds pages removed from a spiral notebook/scrapbook filled with ephemera and photographs from the 1936 Waa-Mu show. A personal scrapbook, covering the years 1921-1936, contains pictures, press clippings, and photographs of Waa-Mu from 1929-1934, as well as extensive personal articles, including a collection of photographs and the itinerary of Miller's 1936 road trip from Chicago to California and back again. This scrapbook was dismantled when it was accessioned, and the items from each page were placed in a separate folder.

Dates

  • 1924-1979

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

None

Extent

5.00 Boxes

Abstract

The Joe Miller Papers are contained in five boxes and span the years 1924-1979. The collection contains biographical information, materials relating to his early life in Ottumwa, Iowa, and two important events in his Northwestern career: the 25th Waa-Mu show in 1956, and Miller's retirement in 1975. Two scrapbooks complete the collection.

Arrangement

The Joe Miller papers are organized into: biographical information (in alphabetical order by topic); materials relating to his early life in Ottumwa, Iowa; the 25th Waa-Mu show in 1956 (organized by surname); Miller's retirement in 1975 (RSVP information, guest book, notes and Christmas cards); and scrapbooks.

Method of Acquisition

The Joseph Miller Papers were donated to the University Archives on August 3, 1976 by Thomas Roland, Director of Special Events and Associate Professor of Theater (Accession No. 80-44). Additional biographical materials were added from the University Archives' Alumni Biographical Files.

Related Materials

Joe W. Miller Alumni Biographical File, Series 51/14, Box 114; Series 52/1: Records of the Waa-Mu Show (Joe W. Miller, Director), 1929-1975; Series 52/2: Records of the Dean of Special Events (Joe W. Miller), 1929-1976.

Separated Materials

A scrapbook of photographs from the Waa-Mu Silver Jubilee Rehearsal in 1956 was dismantled and added to the University Archives Photographic Collection. Approximately 3 inches of material relating specifically to Waa-Mu productions was interfiled into the appropriate folders in Series 52/1. A few duplicate and extraneous items were discarded.

Processing Information

Shannon Elkins, June 15, 2006.
Title
Guide to the Joseph W. Miller (1906-1979) Papers
Author
Shannon Elkins
Date
03/06/2007
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Repository Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Contact:
Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US
847-491-3635