George S. May papers
Scope and Contents
The George S. May papers date from 1966-1988 and include materials related to his committee work, notices and publications. Materials are arranged into three series of the same names.
The Committees series includes alphabetically arranged files for his service on University committees, service to a variety of Historical agencies in Michigan, and service related to organizing grants and workshops on a variety of topics. The most extensive records in this series are related to the work he did for the University with a variety of committees from the Faculty Council Greivance committee, an advisory committee to the Historic Preservation curriculum, establishment of the University Archives, and the Student Publications committee.
Notices are a collection of memorandums and correspondence collected by May. There are three files for Campus notices from a variety of administrators, Faculty notices primarily from Faculty Council (now known as Faculty Senate), and a file for Union notices when the AAUP was organizing on campus. The bulk of this series are the Department notices that are arranged chronologically and were donated annually to the Univeristy Archives by May with one gap in this subseries of materials for the year that May was on sabbatical.
Publications and Writing series primarily includes articles written by May both prior to and during his tenure at Eastern Michigan University. Most are in relation to Michigan History with a few from his time in Iowa. Included in this series is his sabbatical report submitted to the Unversity as well as a draft of his Automotive History a text he continued to work on in his retirement.
The collection does not contain any materials related to the teaching May did while at EMU.
- 1955 - 1988
- Nelson, Bruce K. (Author, Person)
Conditions Governing Access
Researchers are asked to request materials 24 hours prior to visiting the the University Archives.
George Smith May was born in 1924 in Ironwood, Michigan. His grandparents immigrated from Cornwall, England in the late 1880s attracted to work in the iron ore mines. His father worked as a chemist for the Oliver Iron Mining Company for almost 50 years. May attended Luther L. Wright High School and graduated in 1943 as a member of the National Honor Society. He attended Gogebic Junior college before transferring first to the Michigan College of Mining and Technology (now known as Michigan Technological University) and then to the University of Michigan in the spring of 1945. Graduating with distinction in 1947 with a bachelor degree in History, May continued his studies at the Universtiy of Michigan obtaining both his master and doctoral degrees (1948, 1954). He taught for two years as an instructor at the Allegheny College in Meadville, Pennsylvania between degrees from 1948-1950.
From 1954-56, May held the position of research associate for the State Historical Society of Iowa and then returned to Michigan where he worked for the Michigan Historical Commission as a historic site specialist and research archivists from 1956-66. He was appointed to the faculty at Eastern Michigan University in February of 1966 to teach courses in Michigan and American history. He served on the editorical board of the Michigan History quarterly and Detroit in Perspective quarterly and wrote a number of texts on Michigan History while on faculty and after his retirement from Eastern Michigan University in 1988.
Professor May was consulted for the formation of a Historic Preservation curriculum, spearheaded the effort to establish and archival program at EMU, served on the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) Regional Repository review committee, and gave his time to countless committees both for the University as well as the state of Michigan.
May continued to research and write after his retirement. He died in Holland, Michigan October 17, 2003.
2.6 Linear Feet (2 record center cartons, 1 archive box, 1 halfsize archive box)
Language of Materials
George S. May taught Michigan and American History in the History Department at Eastern Michigan University from 1966 until his retirement in 1988. May had a particular interest in the history of the automotive industry, the automobile and the Upper Penninsula of Michigan and his publications and research reflect this. The George S. May papers includes files kept by May during his time on faculty at Eastern Michigan University related to his committee work both for the University and for affiliate organizations; Notices from the faculty union and faculty council, those distributed to the wider campus community and notices specifically for the history department (this last set being the most complete); and Publications and writings completed prior to joining the faculty in 1966 as well as during his tenure. The Notices series is the most complete group of records from a department on campus, with a singular year missing from the series when May was on sabbatical. Professor May was consulted for the formation of a Historic Preservation curriculum, spearheaded the effort to establish and archival program at EMU, served on the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) Regional Repository review committee, and gave his time to countless committees both for the University as well as the state of Michigan.
- George S. May papers
- Alexis Braun Marks, CA
- 2016 June 9
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- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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