Peter Wotton was born in Pasadena, California, in 1920. He attended Princeton University from 1938-1942, graduating with a degree in English literature. During World War II he served in the U.S. Armed Forces in the Pacific and in Europe from 1942-1946.
For the next 17 years, he worked in marketing, advertising, and public relations for a number of firms in New York and Connecticut. In 1963 he switched careers to public health administration. He received a Masters Degree in public health from Yale University in 1967. He worked as an administrator and planner in hospitals working in health education, psychiatric administration, and counseling in Connecticut until 1979 when he moved to Eugene, Oregon. In Oregon, he continued his work as an administrator in community health and senior services and as an in-home care provider.
Peter was active in the community as a member of the Unitarian Church and the Eugene Peace Choir. He served on a number of advisory committees and boards dealing with human rights, public health, senior citizens, the rights of aging, disabled services, and grief counseling. Peter was also a journalist, and from 1982 until his death in 1996, he broadcast a weekly commentary on KLCC radio in Eugene which he called “Elderberry Wine.” His commentaries focused on issues of interest to older people and the processes of living and growing older. In addition to the weekly radio broadcasts, Peter covered similar topics in the “Elderberry Wine” columns he wrote for local newspapers.
Peter married five times and was survived by his wife Carol Browne Wotton, son George, sister Mariah Marvin, and several step-daughters and step-sons. He had a heart attack in 1977 and was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 1980. He died on November 3, 1996.
The core of the Peter Wotton Papers is the scripts and audio recordings of "Elderberry Wine," a weekly commentary on KLCC-FM, the public radio station on the campus of Lane Community College. There are over 700 commentaries, which date from June 1982 until November 1996. The commentaries focused on issues of interest to older people, local events and services, local and national politics, and Wotton's reflections on the processes of living and growing older.
The collection also contains personal records such as speeches, scrapbooks, newspaper columns, and other records relating to his death.
Restrictions on Access :
The collection is open for research.Restrictions on Use :
Permission to rebroadcast or publish the commentaries must be obtained from KLCC-FM radio which holds the copyright to the commentaries.Preferred Citation :
For the collection: Peter Wotton Papers, 1933-1998 (M-003), Lane Community College Archives, Eugene, Oregon
For "Elderberry Wine" radio commentaries: Elderberry Wine Commentary ###, Peter Wotton Papers, 1933-1998 (M-003), Lane Community College Archvies, Eugene, Oregon
The collection is divided into three series.
Series A. Elderberry Wine Commentaries, Scripts, 1982-1998
Series B. Elderberry Wine Commentaries, Recordings, 1982-1996
Series C. Subject Files and Recordings, 1933-1996
Acquisition Information :
The collection was donated to the Archives by Carol Browne Wotton in several donations in 1999, 2001, and 2006.Processing Note :
The collection was processed by Elizabeth Uhlig in 1999 and 2001. All material in the several donations were merged into one colleciton.Related Materials :
Recordings of fourteen "Elderberry Wine" commentaries are on the Lane Community College Archives website. To listen to these recordings online, visit: Elderberry Wine: Selected Radio Commentaries by Peter Wotton at the Lane Community College Archives.
Contact the Lane Archives for a complete list of commentary titles as well as poems and short stories written by Peter Wotton.
Detailed Description of the Collection
The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.
This series contains the scripts of "Elderberry Wine" a weekly commentary on KLCC-FM , the public radio station on the campus of Lane Community College. There are over 700 commentaries, which date from June 1982 until November 1996. The commentaries focused on issues of interest to older people, local events and services, local and national politics, and Wotton's reflections on the processes of living and growing older. The numbered scripts are arranged chronologically by broadcast date.
The series also contains a volume titled "Elderberry Wine: Selected Radio Commentaries by Peter Wotton." One hundred commentaries were selected by Carol Browne Wotton, Peter's wife, and published in 1998 in this volume.
The series contains a copy of Peter's last commentary about his own death which was broadcast after he died.
Collection is open to the public.
Permission to publish the commentaries must be obtained from KLCC-FM radio, which holds the copyright to the commentaries.
This series contains the audio cassette recordings of the Elderberry Wine broadcasts, which are numbered and arranged chronologically by broadcast date. The series also include a recording made at Peter's 75th birthday party.
Collection is open to the public.
Permission to publish or copy the taped commentaries must be obtained from KLCC-FM radio which holds the copyright to the commentaries.
This series contains copies of monthly newspaper columns, also titled "Elderberry Wine," which were often identical to the radio broadcasts. The columns were published in a number of local newspapers such as the Phoenix Senior World, Lane County Senior News, Senior News Monthly, and the OTHER paper. The columns are contained in three scrapbooks, which also include other newspaper articles written by Peter Wotton.
The series also contains letters, photographs and copies of speeches and sermons, as well as a scrapbooks, dated c. 1948 - 1965, containing samples of advertisements which Peter produced during his career in marketing in New York and Connecticut. There are also some records form his college days at Princeton University.
The series also contains a video tape made shortly before his death and a recollection titled "Peter's Death" by his sister, Mariah Marvin.
This collection is indexed under the following headings in the online catalog. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.