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University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Thomas Vernor Smith Papers 1934-1945

© 2006 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary

Title:

Smith, Thomas Vernor. Papers

Dates:

1934-1945

Size:

6.5 linear ft. (13 boxes)

Repository:

Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.

Abstract:

Thomas Vernor Smith (1890-1964) Professor of Philosophy at the University of Chicago, Illinois State Senator (1936-1938), Congressional Representative, (1938-1940). Lieutenant Colonel (1943-45). Member, United States Educational Commission in Japan and Germany (1946). Professor, Syracuse University (1948-1959). The letters are from the years of Smith's political activity, 1934-1941. Among the other papers are reprints of some of his publications and speeches, and many mimeographed items relating to military government and problems of post-war education in the occupied countries. Arranged alphabetically in three time series, the letters contain a great deal of material on the history of the Democratic Party in the Chicago area during the period covered. Among Smith's correspondents are: Baker Brownell, Paul and Ruby Darrow, Thurman Arnold, James T. Farrell, Robert M. Hutchins, Harold Ickes, Ed. Kelly, Frank Knox, Robert A. Taft, Paul Douglas.

Information on Use

Access

No restrictions

Citation

When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Smith, Thomas Vernor. Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Thomas Vernor Smith (1890-1964) was active academically and politically in Chicago. A native of Texas, he received a B.A. from the University of Texas in 1915 and an M.A. in 1916. He taught at the University from 1919 to 1921. In 1922, he received a PhD from the University of Chicago, where he served as Professor of Philosophy, and later dean, until 1948. Smith was among the producers and moderators of the University's Round Table radio program.

During the 1930's, Smith interested himself in politics, and ran successfully for State Senator in 1935. His next campaign was in 1938, when he was elected Congressman-at-large for Illinois. In the 1940 congressional election, he was defeated. During the war, Smith was made Lieutenant Colonel (1943-1945), and conducted courses on military government for the Army. He also participated in experimental programs for re-educating German prisoners of war. In 1946, he was a member of the United States Educational Commission in Japan and Germany.

In 1948, Smith became the Maxwell Professor of Citizenship and Philosophy at the University of Syracuse, where he served until his retirement in 1959. He held visiting and lecture positions at numerous universities and published widely on philosophy, politics and public service.

Smith and his wife, Nannie Stewart had two children. He died in 1964 in Hyattsville, Maryland.

Scope Note

The letters are from the years of Smith's political activity, 1934-1941. Among the other papers are reprints of some of his publications and speeches, and many mimeographed items relating to military government and problems of post-war education in the occupied countries. Arranged alphabetically in three time series, the letters contain a great deal of material on the history of the Democratic Party in the Chicago area during the period covered. Among Smith's correspondents are: Baker Brownell, Paul and Ruby Darrow, Thurman Arnold, James T. Farrell, Robert M. Hutchins, Harold Ickes, Ed. Kelly, Frank Knox, Robert A. Taft, Paul Douglass.

Series III, Military, contains material on Military Government and Education in post-war Europe, including lectures by Smith in Army courses on military government for occupation army personnel; material prepared by him for re-educating Germans, some of which is translated into German; survey studies of the postwar situation with regard to German education; weekly bulletins of the Allied Control Commission, with reports on opinion in the occupied territory; etc

Series IV, Political Correspondence, contains a chronological file of Smith's correspondence during his term as Illinois State Senator from the 5th Congressional District, 1935-1937, with additional folders of miscellaneous writings and clippings. The papers were added to the collection in 1959 from a large group of materials acquired from a storeroom in the Social Science building. Letters, which give particular insight into the political issues of the day and/or which particularly seem to reveal the personality of Mr. Smith, were pulled to form the contents of this box. The letters deal with such political issues as public education, economic problems and reform measures associated with the depression, anxiety over communism and the accompanying question of loyalty oaths, and specific problems of the Hyde Park district. While a few letters are from well-known names in politics and education, most of the letters provide a "grass roots" insight into Illinois, and specifically Hyde Park, politics

Related Resources

The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:

http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/e/spcl/select.html

Subject Headings

INVENTORY

Series I: Letters

Box 1

Letters, 1934-1938, A-G

Box 2

Letters, 1934-1938, H-M

Box 3

Letters, 1934-1938, Mc-T

Box 4

Letters, 1934-1938, U-Z; "Requests for Speeches"; Letters, 1939-1941, A-B

Box 5

Letters, 1934-1938, C-J

Box 6

Letters, 1934-1938, K-S

Box 7

Letters, 1934-1938, T-Z; Letters, 1939-1941, second series, A-G

Box 8

Letters, 1934-1938, H-Z

Series II: Miscellaneous Political Items

Box 9   Folder 1

House of Rep., West Point

Box 9   Folder 2

Campaign material, 1936

Box 9   Folder 3

Political notes,1940

Box 9   Folder 4

City manager

Box 9   Folder 5

Misc. papers, lists of precinct captain, letter to the associated press, letters of warning and discontent, news clipping

Box 9   Folder 6

Columbia Lecture Bureau

Box 9   Folder 7

Lincoln Speech, Cooper Union, NY, 11 Feb 1940

Box 9   Folder 8

Illinois

  • Folder9 : Cooper Union Speeches
Box 9   Folder 10

Misc. letters from the summer and fall of 1939

Box 9   Folder 11

Census

Box 9   Folder 12

Illinois Legislative Council, TVS, chairman

Box 9   Folder 13

Dekalb Normal Case (Democratic Patronage)

Box 9   Folder 14

TVS publication

Box 9   Folder 15

Misc. correspondence, 1939-1940

Series III: Military

Box 10   Folder 1

W.E. Givens, "Tokyo and Return"

Box 10   Folder 2

TVS, Misc. Printed Material

Box 10   Folder 3

German Prisoners of War

Box 10   Folder 4

Lt. Col. TVS, Materials of instruction, course on Mil. Govt., May 17-June 29, 1945, Ft. Kearney, R.I.

Box 10   Folder 5

Misc. papers from the War department regarding travel and Student Interchange

Box 10   Folder 6

American History and Institutions

Box 10   Folder 7

"The Constitution" memo

Box 10   Folder 8

"The Midas Myth touched with Diabolism." Manuscript, In German with English translation, Preface, table of contents, chapter I-II.

Box 10   Folder 9

"The Midas Myth," Chapter III and IV

Box 10   Folder 10

"The Midas Myth," Chapter VI and VIII (no copies of chapters V or VII)

Box 10   Folder 11

"The Midas Myth," Appendixes, including Appendix A, An address by TVS at the opening of the University of Catania, 4 Nov 1943

Box 10   Folder 12

Books for Japan Mission

Box 11

Publication, "America from the Inside, " Lt. Col. T.V. Smith, Prepared for the Office of War Information, trans. into German by POW's

Box 11

Papers regarding Office of Military Government for Germany

Box 11

Draft of a Constitution for Wurttemberg-Baden

Box 11

Pamphlet, "Dissolution of the Nazi Party and Its affiliated organizations.

Box 11

Allied Military Government memos

Box 11

"Entwurf einer Verfassung fur Hessen," 18 June 1946

Box 11

"Second Principal Part on the State: Foundations of the State."

Box 11

Materials regarding public education in Germany and Italy

Box 11

ACC Weekly Bulletins, 1944

Box 11

Allied Control Commission Education Subcommission

Series IV: Political Correspondence

Box 12   Folder 1

Correspondence from constituents, Jan-Feb 1935

Box 12   Folder 2

Correspondence from constituents, March 1935

Box 12   Folder 3

Correspondence from constituents, April 1935

Box 12   Folder 4

Correspondence from constituents and government agencies, May 1935

Box 12   Folder 5

Correspondence from constituents and government agencies, June 1935

Box 12   Folder 6

Correspondence from constituents and government agencies, Oct 1935- Aug 1936

Box 12   Folder 7

Correspondence from constituents, Jan-June 1937

Box 12   Folder 8

Correspondence from constituents, n.d.

Box 12   Folder 9

Misc. writings by T.V.S; including, "The Tragic realm of truth, letter to T.V.S from "Stewart"

Box 12   Folder 10

Two poems and collected quotes

Box 12   Folder 11

News clippings

Series V: Addenda-Political Correspondence, 1935-1937

Box 13   Folder 1

T.V. Smith Correspondence, Jan.-Feb., 1935

Box 13   Folder 2

T.V. Smith Correspondence, March, 1935

Box 13   Folder 3

T.V. Smith Correspondence, April, 1935

Box 13   Folder 4

T.V. Smith Correspondence, May, 1935

Box 13   Folder 5

T.V. Smith Correspondence, June, 1935

Box 13   Folder 6

T.V. Smith Correspondence, Nov., 1935-Aug., 1936

Box 13   Folder 7

T.V. Smith Correspondence, Jan.-June, 1937

Box 13   Folder 8

T.V. Smith Correspondence, Undated

Box 13   Folder 9

T.V. Smith Writings

Box 13   Folder 10

Quotations

Box 13   Folder 11

Clippings