Guide to the George W. Peavy Papers

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Overview of the Collection

Creator: Peavy, George Wilcox, 1869-1951.
Title: George W. Peavy Papers
Dates: 1904-1955 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 0.77 cubic ft. (The materials are housed in three document boxes, one half-size document box and one oversize (20x24) box.)
Collection Number: Consult repository.
Summary: The Peavy Papers document the professional and civic activities of George W. Peavy, who served as the first Dean of Forestry (1913-1940) and President (1932-1940) of Oregon State College.
Repository: Oregon State University Libraries, Special Collections & Archives Research Center
Contact Information: Special Collections & Archives Research Center
121 The Valley Library
Oregon State University
Corvallis OR
Telephone: 541-737-2075
Fax: 541-737-8674
Languages: Materials in English. 
Sponsor: Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Biographical Note

George Wilcox Peavy was born 12 November 1869 in Howell, Michigan. He received his Bachelor's degree in Liberal Arts at the University of Michigan. He obtained his Master of Science degree in Forestry at his alma mater. After receiving his M.S. degree in Forestry in 1905, he entered the United States Forest Service, during which time he traveled throughout the United States and Europe, observing and writing about forestry use and practices.

In 1910 Peavy was selected to become the head of the newly created Department of Forestry at Oregon Agricultural College. In 1911, he became a member of the Oregon State Board of Forestry and served as director from 1932-1941. In 1913, the OAC Forestry Department was designated as the School of Forestry and George W. Peavy was appointed the first Dean. In 1932 he was appointed acting President of Oregon State College and in 1934 became President. In 1936, he was awarded honorary Doctoral degrees by both the University of Michigan and Willamette University. In 1940, Peavy was appointed Dean Emeritus and President Emeritus of Oregon State College. In 1947, Peavy was elected mayor of Corvallis, Oregon, and served in that capacity until his death on 24 June 1951

Content Description

Series I includes personal and official correspondence spanning the years 1934 to 1951 and relate to Peavy's service as dean of the School of Forestry and president of Oregon State College. Correspondence relating to the Oregon State Board of Forestry, forestry-related topics, and civic affairs comprise a large portion of this series. Series II contains assorted ephemera including Peavy's 1905 University of Michigan diploma, news clippings, honorary degrees and awards. Series III contains nine notebooks of research field notes and forest surveys. Eight of these date from 1904-1914 (primarily from Peavy's work with the U.S. Forest Service) and one is from 1947-1950 that consists of speech notes and lists of students and research. The two diaries in the collection contain annotated appointment schedules spanning the years 1908-1909. Articles written by and presentations given by Peavy, including KOAC radio programs, are contained in Series IV. These cover a wide-range of topics relating to the nation's forests, forest conservation, forest policies, the political situation during the 1930s and 1940s, and Oregon State College. Series V contains photographs, including one of Peavy, circa 1940, and a reproduction of an early image of Benton Hall.

Use of the Collection

Preferred Citation :  

George W. Peavy Papers, Oregon State University Archives, Corvallis, Oregon.

Administrative Information

Arrangement :

The Peavy Papers are arranged into five series: I. Correspondence; II. Ephemera; III. Notebooks; IV. Speeches and Articles; and V. Photographs. The folders are arranged chronologically within the series.

Related Materials :  

Materials relating to George W. Peavy and the School of Forestry can be found in the President's Office (RG 13); Forestry Club (RG 39); College of Forestry (RG 139) Records; and various College of Forestry publications. Photographs can be found in the Presidents of Oregon State University Photograph Collection (P 1) and Harriet's Photograph Collection #384.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I:  Correspondence, 1934-1951
1 Personal, 1934-1949
4 folders
1 State Board of Forestry, 1936-1940

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Series II:  Ephemera, 1904-1955
1 Certificates, Diplomas, and Citations, 1904-1951
1 News clippings, programs, and pamphlets, 1914-1951
4 Diplomas, Awards, and Weyerhaeuser Advertisements, 1905-1955
apx 20x24 in.

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Series III:  Notebooks, 1904-1950
1 U.S. Department of Agriculture Field Notebooks, 1904-1914
1 Diaries (Annotated appointment schedules), 1908-1909
1 Notes, 1947-1950

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Series IV:  Speeches and Articles, 1912-1949, undated
2 1912-1917
2 1925-1929
2 1931-1935
2 1936-1939
2 1940-1944
2 1945-1949
3 Undated

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Series V:  Photographs, ca. 1905-1946
5 Benton Hall, ca. 1905
5 James Burrill Angell, photogravure (?) , June 9, 1909
5 Calendar featuring " “The Lady of the Fountain , Class of 1927"" , 1927
5 “Before” Eroded hills, Seoul, Korea, Bureau of Forestry, 1945
5 “After” Flood control work, Seoul, Korea. Bureau of Forestry, June, 1946
5 George W. Peavy, standing on porch, ca. 1940s

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  • Personal Names :
  • Peavy, George Wilcox, 1869-1951.
  • Corporate Names :
  • Oregon Agricultural College. School of Forestry.
  • Oregon State Board of Forestry.
  • Oregon State College. School of Forestry
  • United States. Forest Service.
  • Subject Terms :
  • College presidents--Oregon--Corvallis.
  • Forest conservation--Oregon.
  • Forest policy--Oregon.
  • Forestry schools and education--Oregon--Corvallis.
  • Forests and forestry--Oregon.
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Photographs.

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