The records of President Emil C. Danenberg document the administrative functions of the office of the President, including preparing the annual budget, making recommendations to the Board of Trustees, approving personnel actions, engaging in committee work, communicating with academic departments and administrative offices, fundraising, addressing meetings, and serving as outside representative of the college. The records here described, concentrated in the period 1973 to 1983, were separated from several accessions representing the administrations of presidents William E. Stevenson (1946-59), Robert Kenneth Carr (1960-70), Robert Works Fuller (1970-73), Emil Charles Danenberg (1975-81), and two Acting Presidents, Ellsworth C. Carlson (1974-75) and James L. Powell (1981-83). As a result of the frequent changes in personnel, presidential files passed from one administration to the next instead of being transferred to the Archives, a practice facilitated by the files' alphabetical arrangement. Thus, in the papers of President Danenberg, the researcher will find a small amount of material from earlier and succeeding administrations, often present within a single file. The bulk of the papers of Danenberg's immediate successor, Acting President James L. Powell, is housed in Series XIII. Researchers are advised to consult the presidential papers of presidents Carr (2/9), Fuller (2/10), and Starr (2/12) to supplement information available in the Danenberg papers.
Records are arranged into the following series: I. Annual Reports and Memoranda to the Board; II. Appointment Books; III. President's Council and Cabinet Files; IV. Budgetary Records; V. Correspondence; VI. Files Relating to Academic Departments, Programs, and Administrative Offices; VII. Board of Trustees and General Faculty Committees;VIII. Personnel Records; IX. Talks and Addresses of Emil C. Danenberg; X. External Organizations' Files; XI. Funds, Grants, and Foundation Files; XII. General Files; and XIII. Administrative Files of Acting President James L. Powell. Within series, records are typically arranged either alphabetically by topic or type of material or chronologically. Later accretions comprise Series XIV. Non-Textual Records; Series XV. Personal Papers; Series XVI. Board of Trustees – Name Files; and Series XVII. Memorials and Gifts.
The two annual reports (1978, 1979) submitted by President Danenberg to the Board of Trustees are retrospective accounts of the periods 1974-78 and 1975-79; these are housed in Series I. Both annual reports summarize Danenberg's vision of Oberlin and his role as President. The files of Acting President Powell in Series XIII contain Powell's 1981 and 1983 reports to the Board. The 1983 report, his last, offers Powell's interpretation of the Finney Compact and the Board's role in the governance of Oberlin College.
Administrative files created and received by the office of President Danenberg, housed in Series II and III, include the president's appointment books (1975-81), an incomplete set of minutes of the meetings of the President's Cabinet (1974-75) and Council (1975-78), records of expenditures from the President's Fund (1970-83), and miscellaneous papers relating to the social engagements hosted by the President and Mrs. Danenberg known as the President's Weekend (1976-81), at which the President sought counsel and information from students, faculty, alumni, and other guests. Drafts and ms. notes of talks and addresses given by Danenberg while President are located in Series IX.
The President's voluminous administrative correspondence (1970-83) with various donors, colleagues, and alumni, housed in Series V, reflects his assiduous cultivation of Oberlin's widely scattered friends. College budgetary reports, statistics, and projections (1974-83) are those sent to the President for his review and approval. Series VIII includes extensive records relating to various personnel issues in which Danenberg had a special interest. Files include routine memoranda announcing appointments, tenure, or resignations; personnel search files; statements of policy on retirement (1974-82), faculty leaves (1972-83), faculty and staff salaries (1972-81), and the slot allocation controversy (1974-83); documentation (1970-76) on the institution of the faculty grievance procedures approved in 1975; and files on faculty members Diane Dippold, Kuregiy Hedymara, Doris Mayes, Tommie Smith, and Regina Turner, who filed grievances against the college; access to these files is restricted. A more complete record of the Doris Mayes cases is available in Record Group 10, the Conservatory of Music. Inactive faculty and staff files (1968-81) include routine correspondence relating to promotion and salary and are available for research use by permission of the Archivist.
Danenberg's committee work is well documented by Series VII, Board of Trustees and General Faculty Committee Records. Board of Trustees committees on which Danenberg served or from which he received recommendations include the Honorary Degrees committee (1975-81), the Salary Policy Review Committee (1979), the Long-Range Planning Committee (1976-78), the College Investment Advisory Committee (1975-83) and the Investment Committee (1976-83). Records of the last two committees document policy developments regarding the college's investments in companies doing business in South Africa. Other records relating to the South Africa controversy, in which Danenberg assumed a leading role, are located in Series VIII, General Files under the headings "Investments" and "South Africa". Included in Series VII, Faculty Committee Records, is the 1974 report of the Committee on Faculty Service, of which Emil Danenberg (as Dean of the Conservatory of Music) was a member. The report was commissioned to study tenure, faculty career development, and early retirement and reached the conclusion that no tenure quota be established at Oberlin College.
The remainder of the collection prior to the late accretions includes interoffice memoranda (1962, 1967-83) between the President and various academic departments, programs, and offices pertaining to position allocations, funding, and curriculum development. Also present in the collection are files (1961-83) relating to a variety of external educational organizations to which Danenberg belonged by virtue of his presidential post. These files, housed in Series X, contain incoming and outgoing correspondence, minutes, reports, and printed miscellany regarding upcoming meetings, programs, and funding for higher education. Well represented are the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities of Ohio, the Great Lakes Colleges Association, and the Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges. Present in Series XI are files documenting the application for and receipt of faculty teaching, travel, and research grants, as well as the President's solicitation of named funds and foundations that resulted in monetary gifts to the college. Series XII, General Files, consists of an alphabetical run of files of a miscellaneous character. These files document college buildings, scholarships, honor societies, minority recruitment, commencement, the South Africa divestment question, policies on handicapped students at Oberlin, student activities, and the Oberlin community.
Outline of the Arrangement
Series I. Annual Reports
Series II. Appointment Books
Series III. President's Council and Cabinet Files
Series IV. Budgetary Records
Series V. Correspondence
Series VI. Files Relating to Academic Departments, Programs, and Administrative Offices
Series VII. Board of Trustees and General Faculty Committees
Series VIII. Personnel Records
Series IX. Talks and Addresses of Emil C. Danenberg
Series X. External Organizations' Files
Series XI. Funds, Grants, and Foundation Files
Series XII. General Files
Series XIII. Administrative Files of Acting President James L. Powell
Series XIV. Non-Textual
Series XV. Personal Papers
Series XVI. Board of Trustees – Name Files
Series XVII. Memorials and Gifts
Series I. Annual Reports, 1974-83 (1.40 l.f.)
Annual reports of the President, reports received by the President, memoranda of the President to the Board of Trustees, and interoffice memoranda on Trustee matters are found here. Series I is arranged into two subseries: 1. Annual Reports and Memoranda to the Board, and 2. Annual Reports received by the President. Thereunder, subseries are arranged chronologically.
Series II. Appointment Books, 1975-81 (12 vols.) (0.4 l.f.)
Spiral appointment books, kept mainly by the President's secretary. Arranged chronologically.
Series III. President's Cabinet and Council Files, 1974-81 (0.4 l.f.)
Minutes, memoranda, ms. notes, and guest lists, arranged alphabetically by type of material and thereunder chronologically.
Series IV. Budgetary Records, 1974-83 (1.2 l.f.)
Reports, statistics, and interoffice memoranda relating to the college budget and to the President's Fund expenditures. Arranged chronologically, with college budgetary records preceding those of the President's Fund.
Series V. Correspondence, 1970-83 (8.4 l.f.)
Incoming and outgoing correspondence of President Danenberg, arranged alphabetically by correspondent. Filed under "Danenberg" are the President's letters of reference for students and colleagues.
Series VI. Files Relating to Academic Departments, Programs, and Administrative Offices, 1962, 1967-83 (6.25 l.f.)
Correspondence, memoranda, and reports, organized into two subseries: 1. Academic Departments and Programs, and 2. Administrative Offices. Within subseries, records are arranged alphabetically by name of department, program, or office. Records of the Carr and Fuller administrations are present in this series.
Series VII. Board of Trustees and General Faculty Committee Files, 1974-83 (4.50 l.f.)
Correspondence, memoranda, studies, financial audits, and other committee records, arranged into two subseries: 1. Board of Trustee Committee Files; and 2. General Faculty Committee Files. Within subseries, materials are arranged alphabetically by committee name. Subseries 1 also contains documentation of two Trustee meetings and an outside survey of the Board.
Series VIII. Personnel Records, 1968-83 (8.95 l.f.)
Correspondence, memoranda, policy statements, reports, data tables, copies of legal documents relating to grievances filed, staff evaluation procedures, and files on individual faculty and staff. Files relating to administrative and professional staff precede those relating to faculty. Thereunder, files are alphabetically arranged by type of material. Consult the archivist for permission to consult grievance and inactive faculty and staff files.
Series IX. Talks and Addresses of Emil C. Danenberg, 1975-81 (0.8 l.f.)
Manuscript typescript drafts and typescript notes (4 x 6 cards) for talks given by President Danenberg during his presidency. Arranged alphabetically by type of material. Box 3 came as a late accretion of talk drafts, 1975-76.
Series X. External Organizations' Files, 1961, 1966-83 (4.60 l.f.)
Incoming and outgoing correspondence, minutes, reports, brochures, and other miscellaneous printed material, arranged alphabetically by name of organization and thereunder chronologically.
Series XI. Funds, Grants, and Foundation Files, 1962-83 (2.4 l.f.)
Correspondence and interoffice memoranda, arranged into three subseries: 1. Faculty Grants; 2. Named Funds and Grants; and 3. Foundations. Within subseries, records are arranged alphabetically by type of grant (Subseries 1) or by fund, grant, or foundation name (Subseries 2-3).
Series XII. General Files, 1954, 1959-83 (6.25 l.f.)
Incoming and outgoing correspondence, memoranda, studies and reports, publicity, and miscellaneous printed materials, arranged alphabetically.
Series XIII. Administrative Files of Acting President James C. Powell, 1977, 1981-83 (4.0 l.f.)
Administrative files organized into seven subseries by type of material: 1. Annual Reports; 2. Minutes; 3. Board of Trustees Files; 4. Committee Files; 5. External Organizations' Files; 6. Foundation Files; 7. General Files. Within subseries, records are arranged alphabetically by topic or type of material and thereunder chronologically.
Series XIV. Non-Textual Records, ca. 1981, n.d. (1.47 l.f.)
Consists of plaques received by Emil C. Danenberg and one mounted photograph and signature panel, ca. 1981.
Series XV. Personal Papers (late accretions), 1944, 1950, 1967, 1973, 1975, 1977-79, 1981-82, n.d. (0.2 l.f.)
Personal correspondence received by Emil C. and Mary Ann Danenberg.
Series XVI. Board of Trustees Name Files, 1951-84 (0.4 l.f.)
Consists of files relating to trustees during Danenberg’s time as president.
Series XVII. Memorials and Gifts (1.47 l.f.) [2004/017]
Small collection of materials in memory of Emil C. Danenberg immediately after his death, including an oversize tribute in Chinese calligraphy from Shansi.