Five College Archives and Manuscript Collections
Karl R. Wallace Papers, 1898-1976 (Bulk: 1925-1973)
28 boxes (14.50 linear ft.)
Collection number: RG 40/11 Wallace

Abstract:
Educator, rhetorician, author, President of the Speech Association of America in 1954, and Professor of Speech at the University of Massachusetts Amherst from 1968-1973. Includes the accumulated research notes and materials written and used by Wallace in his career as a teacher and author; drafts, reprints, and proofs of his speeches, papers, articles, and books, both published and unpublished, often with accompanying correspondence, research notes, and/or contracts; lecture notes and classroom materials dating from his years as a student through those as a teacher; drafts and reprints of papers and articles by students and colleagues; correspondence; the reports, memoranda, correspondence, resolutions, agenda, notes on meetings, minutes, committee recommendations, position papers, newsletters, audit reports, budget recommendations, membership lists, itineraries, and programs indicative of his leadership and active participation in the Speech Association of America and other professional organizations, conferences, and university committees.

Terms of Access and Use:

The collection is open for research.

Special Collections and University Archives, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Biographical Note
Professional Activities:
  • Speech Association of America. President, 1954; Executive Council, 1945-1960; Chairman, Committee on Nature of Field of Speech, 1963; Member, Wingspread Conference, Jan.25-27, 1970; Chairman, Finance Board; Member, Administrative Committee; Editor, Quarterly Journal of Speech, 1945-1947.
  • Member, Eastern Speech Association, Southern Speech Association, central States Speech Association, Western Speech Association, Massachusetts Speech Association, New England Speech Association.
  • American Association of University Professors. President, Illinois Chapter, 1957-1958.
  • National Council of Teachers of English. College Conference on Composition; NCTE-SAA Committee on Rhetoric and the Teaching Thereof, 1964-1968.
  • The Renaissance Society of America.
  • Philosophy and Rhetoric, Editorial Board, 1968-1973.
Author of:
  • Francis Bacon on Communication and Rhetoric, 1943.
  • Studies in Speech and Drama in Honor of Alexander M. Drummond, Eds. D.C. Bryant, B.W. Hewitt, K.R. Wallace, and H.A. Wichelns., 1944.
  • Fundamentals of Public Speaking, with D.C.Bryant, 1947, 1953, 1960, 1969, 1974.
  • Oral Communication, with D.C. Bryant, 1948, 1954, 1962.
  • Background Studies in the History of Speech Education in America, Editor-in-Chief, 1954.
  • Francis Bacon on the Nature of Man: The Faculties of Man's Soul, 1967.
  • An Historical Anthology of Select British Speeches, Eds. D.C. Bryant, C.C. Arnold, F.W. Haberman, R. Murphy, K.R. Wallace, 1967.
  • Understanding Discourse: The Speech Act and Rhetorical Action, 1970.
  • Lectures Concerning Oratory by John Lawson, Ed. with E. Neal Claussen, 1972.

For further bibliographic information on these books and for a list of the many articles by Wallace see the Biography folder in Box 1.

Biographical Note
1905 Born November 10, Hubbardsville, New York. Parents Lew and Rena (Dart) W.
1923 Graduated Westfield, Pennsylvania, High School.
1927 B.A. Cornell University in English and Public Speaking.
1927-1930 Instructor, Assistant Professor of Speech, Iowa State College.
1929 Married Dorothy M. Pierce, August 27.
1931 M.A. Cornell University in Rhetoric, Drama.
1931-1933 Assistant and Instructor in Public Speaking, Cornell University.
1933 Ph.D. Cornell University in Rhetoric and Public Address, Drama and English History.
1933-1936 Assistant Professor of Speech, Iowa State College.
1933, 1934 (summers) Assistant Professor of English, University of Missouri.
1936-1937 Assistant Professor of English in Charge of Speech, Washington University, St. Louis.
1937-1947 Associate Professor, Professor of Speech; Chairman, School of Speech, 1937-44; Chairman, School of Speech and Drama, 1944-47, University of Virginia.
1947-1968 Professor of Speech; Head, Department of Speech and Theater, University of Illinois.
1954 President, Speech Association of America.
1954 (summer) Professor of Speech, University of Michigan.
1956-1972 Advisory editor in Speech, Dodd, Mead and Company.
1968-1973 Professor of Speech, University of Massachusetts Amherst.
1973 Died October 1973, Amherst, Massachusetts.
Scope and Contents of the Collection

Papers consist of the accumulated research notes and materials made and used by Wallace in his career as a teacher and author; drafts, reprints, and proofs of Wallace speeches, papers, articles, and books, both published and unpublished, often with accompanying correspondence, research notes, and/or contracts; lecture notes and classroom materials dating from his years as a student through those as a teacher; drafts and reprints of papers and articles by students and colleagues; correspondence; the reports, memoranda, correspondence, resolutions, agenda, notes on meetings, minutes, committee recommendations, position papers, newsletters, audit reports, budget recommendations, membership lists, itineraries, and programs documenting his leadership and active participation in professional organizations, conferences, and university committees.

Wallace's chief academic interests were in Francis Bacon, especially as a theorist, but also as a practitioner; and in classical rhetorical theory, particularly Greek. His professional impact was a product of his commitment to both pedagogy and the development of the lot of the teacher of rhetoric. This came at a time when the field was undergoing great change. In addition he contributed substantially to the refinement of contemporary rhetorical theory. Wallace's students were exposed to a teacher with "...emphasis on the primacy of substance and ideas; ... concern for the ethical grounding of discourse; ... vision of rhetorical man as the whole 'person." (See "Karl R. Wallace: The Giver of Good Reasons", by Jane Blankenship in the Biography folder filed at the front of Box 1.)

After the papers were received by the Library from Wallace's widow, Dorothy Wallace, they were arranged into series much as they now stand by Wallace's former student, Jane Blankenship, Professor of Communication Studies, University of Massachusetts, Amherst. In addition, Professor Blankenship gave to the collection tapes of lectures Wallace gave shortly before his death; of a panel discussion he participated in; and of a meeting of the Rhetorical Society at which his Understanding Discourse was discussed.

When the materials are identified as a time period, the general arrangement is chronological, with folders in subseries regarding individuals or topics being arranged alphabetically. For the most part, subject headings on folders are those designated by Wallace himself. In Series 3, Speeches and Writings, the speeches are arranged alphabetically by title or by topic if no title had been assigned when the papers were received; the manuscript and typed papers by Wallace are also arranged alphabetically by title, but the reprints of his articles are arranged chronologically. The materials by others are arranged alphabetically by author. Within individual folders in the collection the order of materials is: Correspondence; typed and handwritten research notes and lecture notes; classroom notes; typed and carbon copies of papers by Wallace, then others; proofs; mimeographed or duplicated material; photocopied material; clippings.

Many of the reprints of articles by colleagues are autographed with personal messages to Wallace.

About one foot of Wallace's papers (1940-1968) is in the University of Illinois Archives (Urbana). Included are correspondence, lectures, publications and reports relating to the American Association of University Professors, the Speech Association of America, aspects of administration and the centennial observance at the University of Illinois, professional ethics, public address, rhetorical theory, and speech education.

In addition, a group of papers relating to the Speech and Drama Department at Cornell University (1964-1967) and some of Wallace's student notes taken on the classes of Lane Cooper and other eminent faculty members are in the Cornell University Archives.

A group of dissertations in speech directed by Professor Wallace at this and other universities was given to the University of Massachusetts Library in 1974 by Mrs. Wallace. The dissertations are cataloged in the general Library collection.

A folder of biographical information is filed as the first folder in Box 1. A dissertation on Wallace by James E. Yarbrough of Louisiana State University, The Rhetorical Theory of Karl Wallace, appeared in 1978. See first folder in Box 1 for an abstract.

See also the National Debate Tournament collection (MS 17) for Wallace-related material.

The papers are arranged in series and subseries identified by Jane Blankenship as areas of interest to scholars of Rhetoric and Communication.

This collection is organized into seven series:

  • Series 1. History of Rhetorical Theory, 1925-1973
  • Series 2. Notes on British and American Oratory, 1898-1970
  • Series 3. Speeches and Writings, 1932-1973
  • Series 4. General Education and the Relation of Rhetoric to Other Studies, 1939-1969
  • Series 5. Communication Pedagogy, 1927-1972
  • Series 6. Professional Organizations, 1952-1973
  • Series 8. Miscellaneous Materials, 1932-1972

When the materials are identified as a time period, the general arrangement is chronological, with folders in subseries regarding individuals or topics being arranged alphabetically. For the most part, subject headings on folders are those designated by Wallace himself. In Series 3, Speeches and Writings, the speeches are arranged alphabetically by title or by topic if no title had been assigned when the papers were received; the manuscript and typed papers by Wallace are also arranged alphabetically by title, but the reprints of his articles are arranged chronologically. The materials by others are arranged alphabetically by author. Within individual folders in the collection the order of materials is: Correspondence; typed and handwritten research notes and lecture notes; classroom notes; typed and carbon copies of papers by Wallace, then others; proofs; mimeographed or duplicated material; photocopied material; clippings.


Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation

Cite as: Karl R. Wallace Papers (RG 40/11 Wallace). Special Collections and University Archives, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, University of Massachusetts Amherst.

History of the Collection

Acquired from Dorothy Wallace in 1974 and Jane Blankenship from 1974 to 1982.

Processing Information

Processed by Linda Seidman, January 1983.


Additional Information
Contact Information
Special Collections and University Archives
W.E.B. Du Bois Library
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, MA 01003-9275

Phone: (413) 545-2780
Fax: (413) 577-1399
Language
English