Office of the President: Fletcher P. Homan records
1902-1923 ( inclusive )
1908-1914 ( bulk )
1 linear foot (2 boxes)
Location of Collection:
Mark O. Hatfield Library
The primary portion of the collection documents Reverend Fletcher Homan’s
tenure as President of Willamette University from 1908 to 1914. The correspondence in the collection includes
materials dated 1902 to1923. The records consist of incoming and outgoing correspondence, financial records,
Board of Trustee meeting minutes, newspaper articles, a copy of Willamette University’s original charter and the
original specifications for Eaton Hall.
University Archives and Special Collections
Reverend Fletcher Homan, D.D. was the eleventh president of Willamette University, serving from 1908 to 1914.
He was born in Iowa in 1868 and received both his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts from Simpson College in
Indianola, Iowa. He later earned a Bachelor of Sacred Theology from the Garrett Biblical Institute in Evanston,
Illinois. Before becoming a Methodist minister in 1898, Homan spent several years in the mercantile business.
When offered the position at Willamette, he was acting as the Vice President of Simpson College, his alma mater,
and his primary responsibilities were financial affairs. Homan’s predecessor at Willamette University, J.H.
Coleman initiated an endowment campaign to ensure that, for the first time, the university would have a solid
financial backing. Under Homan’s guidance, the endowment reached its $500,000 goal. In addition to the completion
of the endowment campaign, Homan’s tenure saw the construction of Eaton Hall, the liberal arts building funded by
a donation from A.E. Eaton, proprietor of the Union Woolen Mills and a prominent Methodist in Oregon. Despite
Homan’s accomplishments for the university, his approach to running its daily operations caused friction between
imself and the students and faculty. He resigned his position as university president in June of 1914 and was
offered a one-year, paid leave of absence.
The primary portion of the collection documents Reverend Fletcher Homan’s tenure as President of
Willamette University from 1908 to 1914. The correspondence in the collection includes materials
dated 1902 to1923. The records consist of incoming and outgoing correspondence, financial records,
Board of Trustee meeting minutes, newspaper articles, a copy of Willamette University’s original
charter and the original specifications for Eaton Hall. Folders contain both typed and handwritten
letters as well as carbon copies. The folder list below provides specific details of the contents of the folders.
Topics addressed in this collection include faculty salaries, commencement exercises,
details about operation of the Board of Trustees and university financial matters that provide
insight into Homan’s role as administrator and fund raiser. Details about the endowment campaign
and the construction of Eaton Hall can also be found in the collection.
Use of the Collection
Restrictions on Use :
Library acts as “fair use” reproduction agent.
For further information, see the section on copyright in the Regulations and Procedures
of the Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library.
Copyright Information: Before material from collections at Willamette University Archives and
Special Collections may be quoted in print, or otherwise reproduced, in whole or in part,
in any publication, permission must be obtained from (1) the owner of the physical property,
and (2) the holder of the copyright. It is the particular responsibility of the researcher to obtain
both sets of permission. Persons wishing to quote from materials in any collections held by
University Archives and Special Collections should consult the University Archivist.
Reproduction of any item must contain a complete citation to the original.
Preferred Citation :
[Identification of item], Office of the President: Fletcher P. Homan records, Archives and Special Collections, Mark O. Hatfield Library, Willamette University.
The organization reflects original order and is arranged chronologically by folder title.
Gatke, Robert Moulton. 1943. Chronicles of Willamette :The pioneer university of the west. Portland, Or.: Binfords and Mort.
Detailed Description of the Collection
Series I: Fletcher P. Homan records, 1905-1920
Booth, Senator R.A.
[Oregon State Senator, 1900 to 1908, Robert Asbury Booth served as a member of
the Board of Trustees for Willamette University and was a major contributor to the
endowment campaign. Booth also provided funding to bring Francis Hoyt, the first
president of Willamette University, to give the 1911 commencement address. The
correspondence shows that Homan relied on Booth for advice on many issues
related to Willamette University including the endowment campaign, the Willamette
University’s Board of Trustees, and the restructuring of the university campus. The
folder also includes a letter from F.S. Hoyt thanking Booth for his generosity.]
[John Hamline Coleman was the president of Willamette University from 1902 to 1908.
Correspondence includes discussion of the Medical College of Willamette
University , the donation of funds and preliminary
plans for Eaton Hall, the beginnings of the endowment campaign, and the impact of the
Panama Canal on Oregon institutions of higher education.]
Daily Oregon Statesman
[An article detailing the progress of the endowment campaign.]
April 1, 1908
Dohse, Mellie E.
[Dohse worked for the Department of Interior, United States Indian Service at the
Chemawa Indian School. Correspondence is in regard to a former Chemawa
student who transferred to the Willamette Academy.]
Eaton, Mr. E.A.
[Abel E. Eaton was a member of the Board of Trustees and the donor who funded the
construction of Eaton Hall. Main topic of correspondence is the construction of Eaton
Hall, including discussion of plans and specifications, the laying of the cornerstone, payment
of workers, the dedication ceremony, and other related topics.]
1908 - 1910
Eaton Hall Specifications
[Folder contains the guarantee of the original heating plant contractors,
Steiner & Berger signed in 1909 and the specifications for
refitting the heating work of Eaton Hall, drawn up by A.E.
Doyle, Architect of Portland, Oregon in 1923.]
1908 - 1909, 1923
[Correspondence on a variety of subjects including courses taught at
Willamette University, institutional history, current and prospective
students, fund raising efforts, and the endowment campaign.]
[U. S. Congressman, 1907 to 1932, Willis C. Hawley held a variety of positions with
Willamette University, including university president from 1891 to 1902 and a member
of the Board of Trustees. Folder includes general correspondence regarding Eaton Hall,
politics, and university finances.]
[Heritage was the Dean of College of Music. Correspondence
is in regard to general business of the College of Music, and
allegations about Heritage’s moral character and conduct, which ultimately
resulted in his removal as Dean.]
[Francis Hoyt was the first president of Willamette University from
1853 to 1860. The letters are regarding his travel arrangements from
Cincinnati to Salem in order to give the commencement address of 1911.]
[Correspondence related to the organization of an inter-collegiate athletic league.]
[McDaniel served as the president of the Board of Trustees. Noteworthy topics in the correspondence
are the Orphan Scholarship Fund and the endowment campaign.]
[Frederic S. Mendenhall was the Dean of the College of Music from 1909 to 1914.
Correspondence includes notice of election as Dean and subsequent letter
of acceptance, descriptions of the College of Music, including equipment, students
and classes, and a brief biography of Mendenhall.]
1908 - 1912
[Folder includes a petition to “The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of
Teaching,” minutes from Board of Trustees meetings, and a supplement to
the original articles of incorporation of Willamette University.]
[Folder includes a copy of the original charter given to Willamette University by the
House of Representatives and the Counsel of the State of Oregon on January 12, 1853,
minutes of a September, 1856 meeting on revising the Willamette University Constitution,
report of an audit conducted in 1906, information about the proposed construction of Kimball
School of Theology, annual reports from President Homan to the Board of Trustees and the
Oregon Conference, the financial statement of the university for the year ending June 15, 1911,
and further information regarding the petition to “The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement
[Nicholson was the Corresponding Secretary for the Board of Education of the Methodist
Episcopal Church. Correspondence is about university funding, including student loans
from the “Children’s Day Fund”, and the endowment campaign.]
1908 - 1912
[Minutes from a Board of Trustees meeting includes annual reports
from the President and Dean, Willamette University Articles of Incorporation, and financial affairs.]
[Peck established the biology program at Willamette University in 1908. Contains correspondence
regarding Peck’s nomination for the position of Professor of Biology. Also includes his telegraphed
message accepting employment at Willamette University.]
Rader, Daniel L.
[Rader was the editor of the Pacific Christian
Advocate newspaper. Folder contains correspondence about Willamette University’s
advertising and publicity and Rader’s desire to receive an honorary Doctorate from Willamette University.]
[Rankin was the President of Willamette University’s Board of Trustees when J.H.
Coleman retired as President of Willamette University. Correspondence is about finances,
faculty, construction on campus, and related topics.]
Smith, Mr. A.M.
[Correspondence with Amedee M. Smith related to the construction of Eaton Hall.]
Sweetland, Dr. G.J.
[Sweetland was the Athletic Director of Willamette University. Topics of correspondence
include salary, description of responsibilities, plans for athletic teams and facilities,
and opportunities to study medicine.]
[Tillman was a professor of Chemistry at Willamette University.
General correspondence regards department finances and payment of salary.]
[Tourtellotte was the architect of Eaton Hall. Contains original, signed set
of “Specification of the material and labor to be used in the erection of a Liberal
Arts Building “Eaton Hall,” and correspondence related to its design and construction.]
Transcontinental Passenger Association
[Correspondence regarding reduced fares for parochial schools.]
Von Eschen, Professor Florian
[Von Eschen was a professor of Chemistry and Physics at Willamette University.
Correspondence includes his letter accepting the position, general facts about
Willamette University, salary, books to be ordered for classes, and other related topics.]
This collection is indexed under the following headings for information purposes. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or
places should use these names and subject terms as search terms.