John Walter Beattie (1885-1962) Papers
Scope and Contents
The John Walter Beattie Papers are arranged in five main categories: biographical material; correspondence; material related to the American Singer; a collection of songs and the related correspondence; and his writings.
The biographical material includes an Appreciation (May 15, 1950) from District 75, Evanston Public Schools; his diploma for the Doctor of Music degree from Denison University (June 11, 1934); a hand-written journal recording his trips in 1911, 1914, and 1930; and accounts, with photographs, postcards, and other items, of the trips in 1932, 1934, 1954, and 1955.
The correspondence is primarily concerned with the American Book Company, the publisher of American Singer, and with the records for that series. It provides an interesting view of the preparation and marketing of a music series for elementary schools and of some of the problems associated with city and state adoptions of such a series. The American Singer material includes drafts and revisions of the text and the songs and related correspondence and comments.
The collection of songs and related correspondence consists mostly of material for The World's Children project, although there is also a large number of individual songs, in manuscript or print, from throughout the world.
His writings include the manuscript and typed versions of several articles and reports (including his final report as Dean of the School of Music), manuscript and typed versions of some of Beattie's poems and songs, and two of his printed addresses dealing with music education.
The one volume addition to the John W. Beattie Papers is a book entitled: Letters to Dean John. W. Beattie from Alumni and Friends (1950-1951). The book contains three sections, one is "Alumni Letters" of appreciation sent in by former students upon Dean Beattie's retirement. Some of the letters include photographs of alumni and their families, news clippings, and programs from musical events they were involved in. The letters span the dates May 1950-May 1951 and are arranged alphabetically by the student's last name.
A second section of letters of appreciation were written by Beattie's colleagues and former colleagues at Northwestern. These are arranged alphabetically by the correspondent's last name and span the dates October 1950-May 1951. The third section was written by Beattie's Music School colleagues and their families. These letters span the dates, March-May 1951 and are also arranged alphabetically by the correspondent's last name.
Box 5 also contains photographs of Music School Alumni: Jane Ashlock, N.U. 1947. E. Lawrence Barr Alice S. Beer Erhardt Bergstrosser Zelia N. Breaux Given Brackmiller Eugene Bohrnstedt Willis E. Buettner Ruth Seigel and Morrie Durham, N.U. 1941 and 1940, 1946 Walter Duerkson Mollie DeFreitas Kenneth Fite Ann (Betty) Freeman, N.U. 1932 Sten (?) G. Halfvorson Howard Hansen, N.U. 1940, 1945 Ruth Hansen, N.U. 1940 Gloria Dawson Harper Robert Hayden Jane Heinemann, N.U. 1940 Lindsey Heining L. Margueritle House James Monaliss Kabrin Grace Kloess Hosier Vivian Kronenberg L. John Lambros Joe and Zenobia Martin Emily Wendt Mathis Betty Meacham, N.U. 1935 Ruth Miller Genevieve Rystram More, N.U. 1935 Virginia Cleaveland Murdock, N.U. 1934 Jean and Jo McWethy Mary Frances Gregg Page, N.U. 1926 Don Pash Elba V. Pierson Mary Agnes Graham Roberts, N.U. 1943 G. Russell Ross Janet Schnell, N.U. 1950 Helen Bailey Schiano Ada Snyder Kubis Elaine Ackerson Soderberg Mary Reid Spring and Harling Spring, N.U. 1932 and 1931 Mae Sisler Stemple Edna Stone Vernon H. Taylor Paul Todd, N.U. 1950 Donald C. Todd Catherine Moore Walker Rose Wilcox Lelia Kay Wright, N.U. 1931 Nelle Yoder
This six folder addition to the John W. Beattie Papers contains correspondence and concert programs accumulated by Beattie. The Correspondence consists primarily of contracts and royalty invoices from three publishers of books Beattie wrote for use in music education. The books mentioned in this correspondence include American Singer, The Gray Book of Favorite Songs, Melodies to Play and Sing, and Music in the Junior High School, among others. However, there is an additional folder containing correspondence from Music School Dean Carl Beecher to John Beattie during the years when Beattie was transitioning into Beecher's former job. Topics include faculty members, Beecher's course load, and general personal matters.
The Public School Concert Programs, ranging in date from about 1921-1942, were collected during and after Beattie's tenure as the supervisor of music schools of Grand Rapids (1912 to 1924) and as State Supervisor of Music (1924 to 1925). The majority of the programs are from schools in Michigan, but there are examples from Nebraska, New Jersey and other states. Many of the programs are beautiful examples of the artwork and musical selections popular during this time.
Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is stored at a remote campus location and requires two business days advance notice for retrieval. Please contact the McCormick Library at email@example.com or 847-491-3635 for more information or to schedule an appointment to view the collection.
Language of Materials
John Walter Beattie served as the Dean of the School of Music at Northwestern from 1934 until his retirement in 1951. The John Walter Beattie Papers are arranged in five main categories: biographical material; correspondence; material related to American Singer; a collection of songs and the related correspondence; and his writings. And addition contains correspondence and concert programs accumulated by Beattie.
The John Walter Beattie Papers are arranged in five main categories: biographical material; correspondence (arranged by date); material related to the American Singer; a collection of songs and the related correspondence; and his writings. An addition contains more correspondence, and concert programs.
Method of Acquisition
Transferred to the University Archives from the School of Music, Summer, 1977. The first addition was transferred to the University Archives by Thomas Miller, Dean of the School of Music on August 10, 1978 (Accession #78-39). The second addition was separated from the Records of the Dean of the Music School, 1923-1936 (Series 19/1/3).
(1) Wooden Conducting Wand (Location: Gal II)
William K. Beatty. Addition processed by Elisabeth Wittman, August 1978. Addition processed by Sarah Rose; July 2003.
- Guide to the John Walter Beattie (1885-1962) Papers
- William K. Beatty
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository
Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US