Jump to Content

Collection Guide
Collection Title:
Collection Number:
Get Items:
Finding Aid to the Bill Henry Collection COL-056
View entire collection guide What's This?
PDF (253.25 Kb) HTML
Search this collection
Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Scope and Contents
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Biographical Note
  • Preferred Citation
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Publication rights
  • Arrangement
  • Related Archival Materials
  • Separated Materials

  • Title: Bill Henry Collection
    Identifier/Call Number: COL-056
    Contributing Institution: Occidental College Library
    Language of Material: English
    Physical Description: 45.0 Linear feet 75 boxes, approximately 460 monographs and journal titles, and assorted objects
    Date (bulk): Bulk, 1910-1970
    Date (inclusive): 1888-1976
    Language of Materials: English French German
    Location: The Bill Henry Collection is located in the Bill Henry Room (room 359), on the 3rd floor of the Occidental College Library.
    Abstract: Bill Henry (1890-1970) was an American writer and journalist who lived and worked in Los Angeles, California from 1907-1970. His professional interests focused on sports, automobiles, aviation, and presidential politics. This collection consists of his writings, research materials, correspondence, and memorabilia relating to sports and American diplomacy during the 20th century.
    General Physical Description: Materials stored in box 57 are isolated due to mold. While they have been treated, and any remaining evidence of mold is inactive, they are stored in a separate box to protect the rest of the collection.
    creator: Henry, William Mellors, 1890-1970

    Scope and Contents

    This collection consists of the writings and professional files of Bill Henry. Included are correspondence, photographs, newspaper clippings, memorabilia, and other materials he gathered in relation to his activities as a reporter, author, and civic leader. Also included in the collection are approximately 460 books, journals, and other publications relating to the history of the Olympic Games and sports in general, American diplomacy, and U.S. politics.

    Conditions Governing Access

    Collection is open for research.

    Biographical Note

    William Mellors "Bill" Henry (1890-1970) was an American writer and journalist who lived and worked in Los Angeles, California from 1907-1970. Primarily known for his newspaper column, By the Way, which appeared daily in the Los Angeles Times from 1939-1971, Henry also reported on sports and automobiles for the Times from 1920-1939, served as technical director for 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games, and authored An Approved History of the Olympic Games (G.P. Putnam's Sons, 1948.)
    Henry worked as a war correspondent for the Los Angeles Times from 1939-1942, and reported on sports, political conventions, and presidential travel as a news broadcaster for Mutual Broadcasting System (MBS), Columbia Broadcasting System (CBS), National Broadcasting Company (NBC), and the Times throughout his career. He served as president of the Radio Correspondents' Association from 1947-1948, and chairman of the Political Conventions Committee of the Radio-Television Correspondents Association from 1952-1968. He was an aviation enthusiast, and assisted Donald Douglas in establishing the Douglas Aircraft Company in Los Angeles in 1920. Henry also served as editor of Touring Topics, a membership magazine produced by the Automobile Club of Southern California, from 1920-1926. After graduating from Occidental College in 1914, he married Corinne Stanton, with whom he fathered three daughters. Los Angeles civic leader and member of several social and athletic clubs, Henry continued to write for the Times until his death in 1970 at age 80.
    Also see the exhibit, Bill Henry and the News , and the Bill Henry Digital Collection , both produced by Occidental College.

    Preferred Citation

    Suggested citation of records contained in this collection is: [Identification of item], Bill Henry Collection, Special Collections Department, Occidental College Library, Occidental College.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    The Bill Henry Collection was gifted to the Occidental College Library in 1970 by Bill Henry, along with an endowment to maintain both the collection and to establish the Bill Henry Room. Several items were subsequently donated by his daughter, Patricia Henry Yeomans, and other members of the Henry family in 1972, 1984, 1999, and 2012.

    Publication rights

    All requests for permission to publish or quote from holdings must be submitted in writing to the Special Collections Department. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.


    This collection is arranged into the following series:
    This collection was processed by several librarians at multiple points from 1970 to the early 2000s. Arrangement was generally characterized by alphabetical, item-level organization, which is particularly evident in the Research Files and Professional Correspondence series. When the collection was re-processed in 2012, efforts were made to maintain the existing arrangement structure for materials already processed, but to arrange all other materials in original order.

    Related Archival Materials

    Related archival collections:
    The Automobile Club of Southern California Digital Archive  (University of Southern California)
    Collection of Material About the 1932 Los Angeles Olympic Games  (University of California Los Angeles)
    Los Angeles Times Photographic Archives, ca. 1918-1990  (University of California Los Angeles)
    CBS Inc. Film and Television Collection 1955-1991  (University of California Los Angeles)
    Olympic Games Collection, 1932, 1960, 1964, 1984  (Pasadena Museum of History)
    Douglas Aircraft Company photographs, 1938-1969  (Harvard University Libraries)
    Glen L. Martin Papers  (Library of Congress Manuscripts Division)
    The LA84 Foundation  maintains a sports research library that includes materials related to Bill Henry and the Olympics.

    Separated Materials

    The following items were separated from the collection and discarded due to severe mold damage:
    The Battle of Supplies. London: Hodder & Stoughton (1942); The Olympic Games, B.C. 776-A.D. 1896. New York, N.Y.: American Olympic Committee (1896-1897); Official Souvenir Book of the Olympic Winder Games at Lake Placid, New York. (1932).; The Leaves of Wesley Heights: Summer: Spring Valley. Vol. 33, No. 11. (November, 1959); Full text of the official reports concerning the attack on Pearl Harbor. Washington, U.S. News Pub. Corp. (1945); Britian Today. No. 69-70. The British Library of Information, New York. (1942); National Aircraft Collection. United States National Museum. (1947); Sevareid, Eric. Not So Wild A Dream. New York: Atheneum. (1976).
    The following items were determined to be out of scope, and were discarded:
    Clippings from, and whole sections of, nationally published newspapers such as the Los Angeles Times and the New York Times, circa 1940-1970, including clippings of Bill Henry's By the Way column from 1943-1969. This material is extremely brittle, and cannot be preserved for research use. Additionally, these newspapers are publically available for free online through the Occidental College Library via ProQuest Historical Newspapers, as well as on microform. (Go to oasys.lib.oxy.edu , and search for Los Angeles Times.) It is also available online and for free through the LA Public Library.
    Approximatley 470 books and journals were determined to be out of scope, and were separated from the collection. Please contact Occidental Special Collections for a detailed listing.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Yeomans, Patricia Henry
    Aircraft industry--California, Southern
    CBS Broadcasting Inc.
    Los Angeles (Calif.)
    Los Angeles Times (Firm)
    Newspapers--History--20th century
    Radio--History--20th century
    Sports--California--Los Angeles--History--20th century.