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HIST 420. Indiana Normal School during World War One. Introduction to Public History. Spring 2016: Dr. Keith and the Indiana Normal School

Resources

Mary Keith Scrapbook. The Mary Keith scrapbook contained a lot of information regarding the culture on campus related to student organizations and events. She kept many newspaper cutouts related to the events in the town and the normal school. She specifically kept mementos related to her personal life such as a Western Union Telegram from a young man in her school as well as cut outs of newspaper badges related to the Depot Brigade and the Y.M.C.A.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 3, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.   There are various documents related to the war effort including the introduction of the S.A.T.C. program on campus as well as the Good Shoe Drive effort coordinated by the Y.W.C.A. There are also documents related to the lack of finances on campus, the need for chemists for the war effort, lack of faculty, lack of resources necessary for the school including coal and general school supplies. There is also a significant amount of late fee notices addressed to the normal school and Dr. Keith for outstanding bills. Dr. Keith also addresses the conditions brought on by the war that has caused low attendance at the Normal School in response to a request to advertise a local business. He also mentions his anticipation of the Towner Bill in a letter to Mr. J. N. Adee in La Rochelle, France and his filed a letter received from the Grade Teachers Union regarding the bill and the consequence of the war on teacher salary.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 4, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  Dr. Keith mentions that war conditions have slowed the publishing of the school’s catalogues as printers had become scarce. Transportation was also slowed as stated in the Milton Bradley Company of Philadelphia Pa’s letter to Dr. Keith stating that railways were refusing to accept shipments until embargoes were lifted. The Indiana Normal school is feeling the effects of the war through low attendance which did not bring in the normal revenue for the school therefore they were not able to pay bills on time. A letter from the Kansas state normal school reports the same conditions as they were 25% below their high mark in 1916. Dr. Keith also says in a letter to Mr. H. H. Parish of Harrisburg that due to the failure of the bill that proposed increase in salaries or normal school teachers, he said he believed it wise to revise the salary schedule at that time.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 5, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  The war is present within various realms of the schools events and activities. The alumni banquet planned by the Normal School is highly related to the war effort as there are toasts dedicated to the “Normal Boys in the Service,” the “Normal Girls in the Service” and the “Boys and Girls in the Normal Service” by Dr. Keith. The Towner Bill is also extensively mentioned by Dr. Keith and his colleagues due to the nature of the pressure that is felt within Normal Schools throughout the country. Dr. Keith is especially passionate about the bill as he sent a copy of the the bill to other Normal Schools for review such as the Edinboro State Normal School.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 20, Special Collections and  Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  The Board of Education is reporting that their graduation numbers have been down due to students dropping out or not graduating to join the war effort and not being able to afford studying at the Normal School. The war has also infiltrated all aspects of life for example the war tax is mentioned in a letter from Dr. Keith in regards to fraternity pins. There are also papers related to budget cuts that include advertisements and coal expenses. There is mention of the emergency deficiency appropriation bill related to the indebtedness of the Normal School. The S.A.T.C. is also sending notice to students and the community of Indiana that the minimum requirement to join is 13 units of high school work. The Towner Bill is also facing Congress and heavy scrutiny from various Normal School affiliates as Dr. Keith continues to send letters in passionate reports and updates about the education bill.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 6, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  The primary focus of this folder is the various number of financial issues that the Normal School was experiencing in 1919 because of a loss of students and staff.  Specific documents illustrate that Keith reached out to Harrisburg for assistance for emergency assistance to keep the school afloat during the school year.  Additionally, other documents showed the Normal School recover towards the end of the year when students, other institutes and books sellers began to inquire about the school.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 7, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  A large majority of the documents present are correspondence between Keith and other administrators, who offer him advice or assistance when looking for new teachers.   It would appear that Keith additionally reached out to agencies in an attempt to acquire new faculty with various skills.  As well, some documents illustrate the financial issues that the Normal School was facing on and off throughout the year.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 3, Folder 15, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  This folder consists of a small number of letters which are correspondences between Keith, potential new teacher and someone within the military.  Their conversations mostly center on establishing meetings and figuring out times that suit all those involved.   Additionally, a letter going into detail about the financial struggles of the Normal School, which Keith implies is because of a lack of students and government assistance.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 8, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  A majority of these documents are related to the establishment of the Department of Education, as well as emergency funds for schools in debt.  It would appear that Keith went to educational conferences to talk to other college presidents and teachers about having a more useful and regulated educational system.  One item of interest was a correspondence informing Keith of the return of a library of piano music, which was incorrectly returned to the John Church Company.  There is no follow information if the school had the music returned to their possession.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 3, Folder 17, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  The bulk of this folder content has to do with the Normal School’s involvement in the war effort, specifically in reference to the young men, and sometimes women, they were training to send out.  Several documents indicate Keith being proud of his school’s involvement, but also indicate the financial issues he faces with the loss of students.  The remainder of the folder is largely administration work, such as dealing with the state blocking school funding and the Department of the Interior wanting statics on the school.  All the documents illustrate the difficult that Keith experienced while assisting in the war effort. 

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 3, Folder 9, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania. There are only two documents present within this folder, the first one being a detailed explanation about the importance of geography and map-making while developing military bases.  It explains in detail the usefulness of highly detailed maps, specifically when it comes to creating supply lines, defenses and sending soldiers out.  The second document is a letter from Keith to a Lieutenant Clapp asking for a donation of $10 for the United War Work Campaign.  It is not clear if this individual forgot to previously donate or was being asked to do so again.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 10, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  All contents of this folder are correspondence between Keith and other individuals, but with the exception of one piece, are all of Keith’s replies.  The one item that is different is letter from the Department of the Interior looking into why faculty have been leaving normal schools for other careers.  The letter implies the writer wants to understand if teachers and other faculty are not being paid or taken care of enough.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 11, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  More than half of the documents in this folder directly relate to the ongoing war effort that most American schools were involved with in 1919.  The communications between Keith and those in charge of the S.A.T.C. illustrate the seemingly never ending need to recruit more students into serving in the war.  The remainder of documents focus on teachers’ salaries and attempting to have legislation passed that would be more beneficial towards Normal Schools and public institutions.

Presidents Office Correspondence, 1919, RG11, Box 4, Folder 12, Special Collections and Archives, Stapleton Library, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  The content of this folder appears to mostly focus on Keith’s involvement with the developing Smith-Towner Bill, which in 1919 was being through Congress and the Senate.  The last three documents specifically go into details about the Bill, as well as the individuals supporting it, such as Keith.  Other documents, not written by Keith, show the pros and cons of the Smith-Towner Bill if it were to be passed.  The remainder of this folder is correspondence between Keith and a various number of individuals looking for work or attempting to communicate in detail about the war effort.

Dr. Keith and Indiana State Normal School Work Group

Kylie Nolan

Jordan Spivak

Amanda Telep