Office of Religious Affairs records
Scope and Contents
The Office of Religious Affairs records are organized into four series. The first series, Speakers and Performances, contains files relating to speakers and performers brought to campus by the Office of Religious Affairs. The files are organized alphabetically by last name of the speaker or performer, or by title of the performance. This series also contains two subseries for files pertaining to the Festival of Lessons and Carols and files of musical performances, such as orchestra performances. These two subseries are organized chronologically by the year in which they occurred.
The second series, Groups and Meetings, contains files about groups and meetings organized or supervised by the Office of Religious Affairs. This includes the records of the Association for the Coordination of University Religious Affairs (ACURA), such as materials from conferences this group attended as well as various administrative records. This series also contains files on Chapter 1, a freshman camp and council on religious organizations, as well as multiple smaller student organizations housed in this office.
The third series, Administrative Files, contains administrative files from the Office. This includes budget files and ledgers and receipts as well as records pertaining to the remodel of Starkweather Hall. These files are organized alphabetically by topic.
The final series, Charles Minneman papers, contains some of the personal items of Director Charles Minneman. This includes appointment books and cards as well as a scrapbook he kept during his time as director.
The collection contains a comprehensive look at this campus office, but does not document the years prior to Minneman's directorship.
- 1953 - 1979
- Minneman, Charles E. (Other, Person)
Conditions Governing Access
Researchers are asked to request materials 24 hours prior to visiting the the University Archives.
Charles E. Minneman was born November 24, 1929 in Brookville, Indiana to Eli and Julia Peterson Minneman. In 1951, Minneman earned his bachelor's degree from Capital University and went on to earn a second bachelor's in divinity from Trinity Seminary in Indiana. In 1956, Minneman graduated from Yale Divinity School with a master's degree in sacred theology. He then worked as the assistant chaplain at Pennsylvania State University, before coming to Eastern Michigan University where he served as Director of Religious Affairs from 1959-1976, a post he took over from Margaret Menzie. After the Office of Religious Affairs was dissolved in 1976, he stayed at the university, serving as Director of Campus Concert and Lecture Events, Assistant Dean of the Graduate School, and Director of United Ministries in Higher Education. Minneman died March 2, 2006 at age 76 at his home in Oxford, Ohio.
Administrative History note
The Office of Religious Affairs was organized after the Student Christian Association was disbanded in the 1920s. The office was housed in Starkweather Hall until it was dissolved in 1976 and was operated under the leadership of Margaret Menzie and then Charles Minneman, who was the director from 1959 until the program ended. The Office supervised and organized various student groups and oversaw the planning of many speeches and performances on campus. After the dissolution of the office in 1976, certain groups that were formerly housed under the office, such as ACURA, continued to operate until 1979. The overall purpose of the Office was to provide a place for religious students to come and interact with their university and fellow religious peers. Though the main religion on campus was Christianity, the performances and activities attempted to educate participants in religions from around the globe, and therefore sought to include the entirety of the University's student body.
20.8 Linear Feet (14 record center cartons, 1 archives box, 1 halfsize archives box, 4 oversize boxes, 1 oversize folder)
Language of Materials
The Office of Religious Affairs records date from 1960 to 1979 when the office operated out of Starkweather Hall on the campus of Eastern Michigan University. The collection, organized into four series: Speaker and Performances, Groups and Meetings, Administrative Files, and Charles Minneman papers, is a comprehensive history of the Office during this timespan. The personal belongings of director Charles Minneman includes detailed appointment cards and books, and a scrapbook. The Office of Religious Affairs was organized after the Student Christian Association was disbanded in the 1920s and supervised and organized various student groups, oversaw the planning of many speeches and performances on campus, provided a place for religious students to come and interact with their university and fellow religious peers, and to educate participants in religions from around the globe. The Office was disbanded in 1976, but some student organizations continued operating through the end of the decade and these last three years are documented in the collection.
- Office of Religious Affairs records
- Chloe Pare and Alexis Braun Marks, CA
- 2014 January 27
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
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