Scope and Content of Collection
Call Number: SC0277
Stolz, Lois Meek, 1891-1984.
Title: Lois Meek Stolz psychology case interviews
7.5 Linear feet
Summary: These papers contain transcripts and summary files of 41 interviews of parents, done in 1957 and 1958.
Language(s): The materials are in English.
Department of Special Collections and University Archives
557 Escondido Mall
Stanford, CA 94305-6064
Phone: (650) 725-1022
Information about Access
Collection is open for research; materials must be requested at least 24 hours in advance of intended use.
Ownership & Copyright
Property rights reside with the repository. Literary rights reside with the creators of the documents or their heirs. To obtain
permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Public Services Librarian of the Dept. of Special Collections.
Lois Meek Stolz Psychology Case Interviews (SC0277). Department of Special Collections and University Archives, Stanford University
Libraries, Stanford, Calif.
Born in Washington, D.C. in 1891, Lois Meek Stolz attended public schools, graduating from Washington Normal Schools in 1912.
She taught school in the primary grades and attended George Washington University, graduating with an A.B. cum laude in 1921.
Following that she earned her Ph.D. in 1925 at Columbia University, studying psychology under John Dewey among others. In
1924 she was recruited by the American Association of University Women to serve as Education Secretary and develop a national
program of adult education. In 1929, she returned to Columbia as Professor of Education at Teachers College and also as Associate
Director of the Child Development Institute, quickly becoming the Director. During this period Columbia Teachers College was
the pre-eminent center in the field of education. Many of her doctoral students rose to positions of leadership in the field
of child development. In 1938 she married Dr. Herbert Rowell Stolz and moved to Oakland, California. Herbert Stolz graduated
from Stanford Medical School in 1914. He held administrative positions for the state of California and at the University of
California, Berkeley where he was the first director of the Institute of Child Welfare. Lois joined the Institute in the late
1930s. They co-authored Somatic Development of Adolescent Boys, a classic in its field. During World War II, Lois worked for
Kaiser Shipyards in Portland as Director of Child Service Centers. In 1947, she came to Stanford as a professor of psychology
and started the doctoral program in child development in the School of Education. She authored Father Relations of War-Born
Children in 1954. She received many awards and was honored many times by her peers and students. After becoming emeritus in
1957, Dr. Stolz worked on the Communication and Child Care Project at Stanford, culminating in the book, Influences on Parent
Behavior, published in 1967. She died in Palo Alto on October 24, 1984 at the age of 93.
Scope and Content of Collection
These papers contain transcripts and summary files of 41 interviews of parents, done in 1957 and 1958. The families interviewed
were in the Palo Alto area and were selected for their diversity of economic and cultural backgrounds. Each family had two
parents and one or more children under the age of 9. Lois Stolz used the contents of these interviews as the source material
for the book, Influences on Parent Behavior. The interviewers were faculty or graduate students from the Psychology Department
at Stanford. There was an initial interview with the mother and father in their home or apartment, usually without the children.
After that interviews were scheduled with the mother and father separately, typically 4 interviews of an hour each. Overall
it varied from a low of 1 interview to a high of 6 interviews. The interviewer started out in the first interview with the
parent asking about their children. They would direct the parent to describe each child. From there they tried to determine
the roles the mother and father played in the raising of the children. The interviewer didn't discourage the parent from deviating
from the question as long as the parent was revealing their attitudes toward child rearing. Often the interview would bring
out problems with the children and marriage. The interviews could become quite emotional. The purpose of the interview was
to gather the parent's attitudes and beliefs to child rearing. The taped interviews were transcribed and typed. No names were
used to preserve the anonymity of the interviewees and each interview was given a case number. Upon conclusion of the interviews
the interviewer wrote up a summary of their impressions of both the father and mother. After the initial interview, the interviewer
prepared an "Initial Contact" form. This form contained information about the parents, how many children, background of parents,
and observations on the parent's attitude and home.
Parent and child