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James R. Breakey, Jr. collection

Identifier: 010.JRB

Scope and Contents

The James R. Breakey collection contains material created and collected by James R. Breakey, Jr. The collection is arranged into two series and two subseries. The BIOGRAPHICAL series contains information relating to Breaky's personal life and education. This includes graduate course information, information on his first wife, Marguerite Jaqua Breakey, and news clippings. The MUSIC series contains materials related to Breakey's years of teaching and instruction at Eastern Michigan University, then Michigan State Normal College (MSNC), Breakey's performance programs, perforamce programs by his students, and programs collected from attending MSNC, state, and national performances. There are files related to research on composers, as well as a post card collection of composers.


  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1900 - 1969


Conditions Governing Access

Researchers are asked to request materials 24 hours prior to visiting the University Archives.

Biographical / Historical

James R. Breakey, Jr. was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan on January 28, 1900. His family moved to Wisconsin, where they lived until 1915, when they moved back to Michigan and took up residence in the city of Ypsilanti. Breakey graduated from Ypsilanti High School in 1917 and began attending Eastern Michigan University, then Michigan State Normal College (MSNC), in 1917. He served in World War I, and then returned to MSNC to obtain a degree in Education in 1921. He then received an A.B. from the University of Michigan later that year. He obtained his MAster of Arts degree in 1925 and his Law degree four years later, both from the University of Michigan.

Breakey was an instructor in piano at MSNC from 1921-1930. He began his law practice in Ypsilanti and Detroit in 1929. In 1945, he was appointed by Governor Harry F. L. Kelly to complete the unexpired term of the late Judge W. Sample of the 22nd Judicial District (Washtenaw County, Michigan). Breakey held this position until his death in April of 1969

Breakey served as President of the Michigan Judges Associaiton and the Portage TRails Council of the Boy Scouts. He was married to Marguerite Jaqua, a piano teacher at MSNC, from 1929 until her death in 1957. Breakey married Evelyn Westin and they were together until his death.


2 Linear Feet (1 record center carton, 1 flat box)

Language of Materials


James R. Beakey, Jr. Collection
Brooke Boyst
2021 March 8
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Eastern Michigan University Archives Repository

Bruce T. Halle Library, Room 310
955 West Circle Drive
Ypsilanti Michigan 48197