Woodson Research Center, Rice University

Guide to the Thomas Lindsey Blayney papers, 1893-2004 MS 064

creator Blayney, Thomas Lindsey
Title: Thomas Lindsey Blayney papers
Dates: 1893-2004
Abstract: Papers of Thomas Lindsey Blayney, a founding member of the faculty of Rice Institute (now University) and Professor of German there from 1912- 1924; materials include records of his military service during World War I (1917-1919), and later appointments as president of Texas State Women’s College (1924-26) and dean of Carleton College (1926-46); also included are family memoirs, correspondence, photographs, news clippings, and memorabilia.
Identification: MS 064
Quantity: 17 Linear Feet(23 boxes)
Language: English
Repository: Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas

Biographical Note

Thomas Lindsey Blayney was born in Lebanon, Kentucky, on December 3, 1874. He spent his early childhood in Albany, New York, and after the death of his mother in 1881 moved with his father and younger brother to Frankfort, Kentucky, where his father served as a Presbyterian minister. Blayney graduated from Centre College in Danville, Kentucky, in 1894, and went on to Europe for graduate studies, where he studied philology and comparative literature at Heidelberg University and received M.A. and Ph.D. degrees with honor in 1904.

In 1912 he became one of the founding faculty members of the newly-established Rice Institute in Houston, Texas (later Rice University). During his twelve years on the faculty there (1912-1924), Blayney was also much involved in the expanding civic and cultural life of Houston, particularly in the establishment of what was to become Houston’s Museum of Fine Arts, and in activities as a participant and lecturer in various community organizations. He was among the first faculty members at Rice to volunteer for military service during World War I and served from 1917 to 1919, during which time he was awarded the French Croix de Guerre among other honors. He returned to Rice after the war but left in 1924 to become president of Texas State Women’s College.

In 1926 he went on to become dean of Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, serving in this capacity until his retirement in 1946. His first wife, Gertrude South Blayney, died in 1945; they had two sons, James M. Blayney and Lindsey Blayney, Jr. He later married Ida Walz, and after his retirement moved to Marine-on-St.-Croix, Minnesota, where he died March 13, 1971.

Scope and Contents

The Thomas Lindsey Blayney Papers, dating from 1893 to 2004, include an autobiographical letter written by Blayney to his sons, from which much information may be obtained about Blayney’s academic and community activities and his military service during World War I. Of special interest also are photographs of Blayney during his service in World War I, the Croix de Guerre medal awarded to him by the French, and the numerous newspaper clippings concerning his academic activities as a faculty member at the Rice Institute (1912-1924) and his role in the expanding cultural life of Houston during this period.


Access Restrictions

This material is open for research. Stored off-site at the Library Service Center. Please request this material via woodson@rice.edu or call 713-348-2586.

Restrictions on Use

Permission to publish material from the Blayney papers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center.

Index Terms

World War (1914-1918)
biographies (documents)
World War (1939-1945)
genealogies (histories)
manuscripts (document genre)
clippings (information artifacts)
black-and-white photographs
American Legion
Houston Art League
Carleton College (Northfield, Minn.)
Blayney, Thomas Lindsey
Rice University

Related Material

See also other early Rice Institute material, including the campus newspaper and yearbook (the Rice type="simple" href="" render="italic">Thresher and Rice type="simple" href="" render="italic">Campanile, respectively), photographs, and alumni scrapbooks.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Thomas Lindsey Blayney Papers, 1893-2004, MS 64, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University.

Acquisition Information

The Thomas Lindsey Blayney Papers were a gift from David Blayney, received February 6 and March 30, 2004. Deanna Costanzo made a subsequent gift received in June 2009.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I: Biographical Materials

Box Folder
1 1 "The Blayney and Allied Families," compiled by Chester Oliver Blayney; Columbus, Ohio
2 Genealogical Material
3 Genealogical Material
4 Biographical Material
5 Autobiographical Letter to his sons, February, 10, 1959

Series II: Correspondence, 1893-1974

Correspondence, Military
Box Folder
1 6 American Legion, 1910 - 1921
7 U.S. War Department, 1920s
8 Application for Retirement Benefits; Office of Veterans Affairs
9 Col. Lucien Beckner, 1961 - 1962
10 First Officers Training Camp Association, 1970
Correspondence, Personal
Box Folder
1 11 1920 - 1927
12 Lac La Croix, 1930s - 1940s
13 Gertrude Blayney (wife), illness and death, 1945
14 1959 and Undated
15 1945 (wife Gertrude's death and to his son at college)
16 Poetry, 1960s
17 1960s
18 Christmas Cards, 1960s - 1970s
19 Christmas Inscriptions, 1965
20 1970 and Undated
21 Final Illness, 1971
Box Folder
2 1 Ida Walz Blayney, Issue of Carleton Alumni Publication, Lindsey Blayney: A Strong Man," 1972
2 Death, Funeral, Letters from Ida Blayney, 1970s
3 "Operation Identification" for Personal Possessions, 1974
4 Invitations and Clubs
Correspondence, Education and Presentations
Box Folder
2 5 Undated
6 Committee on the Teaching of the History of Art in Colleges, 1910-1912 and Undated
7 Publication of Art History Book with G.P. Putnam Sons, 1910
8 1920s RE: Presidents and Secretaries Conference, Portland, Oregon
9 1922 Defense of Thesis
10 Kuno Franke Volume, 1924 - 1925
11 Texas Superintendent Position, 1926
12 Royal Geographic Society, 1931-1932
13 Radio Forum; St. Olaf Public Addresses by Dean Blayney, 1939 - 1940
14 Speeches and Presentations, 1938
15 Houston Art League, Letters to Judge Garwood, 1940s
16 1940 - 1944
17 Contents of Leather Binder 1960s
18 Presentation to Lyndon Baines Johnson (Leather Binder)
19 Presentation to Mrs. Lyndon "Lady Bird" Johnson (Leather Binder)
20 Correspondence, 1965 - 1972
Correspondence, Carleton College
Box Folder
3 1 Carleton College, 1920 - 1927
2 Teachers' Insurance and Annuity Association, 1927 - 1940
3 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1927 - 1928
4 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1928 - 1929
5 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1929 - 1930
6 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1930 - 1931
7 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1931 - 1932
8 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1932 - 1933
9 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1933 - 1934
10 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1934 - 1935
11 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1935 - 1936
12 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1936 - 1937
13 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1937 - 1938
14 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1938 - 1939
15 President Donald J. Cowling, Carleton College, 1940 - 1941
16 Frank Shigemura, 1940s
17 "Report on the Year 1945 - 1946 at Carleton College [Ida Walz Kubitz]
18 Army Specialized Training Program (ASTP), 1940s
Correspondence, Postcards from Album "Grusse aus der Ferne"
Box Folder
3 19 Postcards, 1893, Undated
20 Postcards, 1897
21 Postcards, 1898, 1899
22 Postcards, 1901, 1902
23 Postcards, 1903-1905; 1913-1914

Series III: Writings

Writings, Education
Box Folder
4 1 Education, Undated
2 "The Renascence [sic] of the Liberal Art College," 1912; "The Liberal Arts College and the New South," 1912
3 "History of Art as a College Discipline," 1910; "Our Colleges and Literary Disciplines," 1924; "Modern Language as Cultural College Discipline," 1911
4 Draft of Transcript "Why Teach?" Undated
5 Draft of "American Ideals vs. American Education," Undated
6 "American Ideals and Education," Undated
7 "American Ideals and Traditions," Published 1922 in The North American Review
8 Frank Shigemura, 1945
9 Programs from Speeches Given by Blayney
Box Folder
5 1 Poetry and Prose (Including "A Nation Awaits," "A Noble Edifice," "A Star of Hope," "A Strange Story," "An Enlightened Land," "Belongingness," and "Moon of St. Croix")
2 Speeches and Notes, 1920s - 1940s
3 Typescript: The German Spirit, I - III
4 Typescript: The German Spirit, IV - VII
5 Typescript: The German Spirit, VIII
6 Typescript: The German Spirit, IX
7 Typescript: The German Spirit, X
8 Typescript: The German Spirit, XI
9 "Every Man Rises: The Temple of the Nation's Soul," 1920s
10 Blayney's National Geographic article "A Journey in Morocco: 'The Land of the Moors'"
11 "Our Administration of the Philippine Islands"
12 "Chinese Art and Ideals," Undated
13 "The Art of Japan," Undated
14 "Impressions of Indian Art and Idealism," Undated
15 Typescript: Synopses of Tosca, Lohengrin, and Tannhauser
16 Unidentified, Undated
17 Programs from Presentations by Blayney

Series IV: Newspaper Clippings and Obituaries

Newspaper Clippings
Box Folder
6 1 1910 - 1920s
2 1910 - 1919
3 1920 - 1929
4 1920 - 1929
Newspaper Clippings and Obituaries
Box Folder
7 1 Sir Aukland Geddes, British Ambassador, at Rice Institute following his address to the students, May 12, 1921
2 Tribute in Texas Outlook, 1923
3 1930 - 1939
4 1940 - 1949
5 1950 - 1959
6 1960 - 1969
7 1970 - 1979
8 Undated
9 "Quotable"
10 Comments from School
11 Funeral/Memorial Book

Series V: Photographs

Family, Friends, and School
Box Folder
8 1 Blayney Portraits and Solo Images
2 Blayney at Boy's Academy in Kentucky
3 Blayney with Wife; Wife Portraits and Solo Images
4 Family Photographs
5 Family and Friends
6 Homes, Including: Danville and Northfield
7 Outdoor Activities: Canoeing, Camping, Fishing
8 Carleton College
9 Rice, Houston Museum, "Rice - Lovett," and "Our Lounge"
World War I, World War II, Military Service
Box Folder
8 10 World War I and World War II
11 Paris, including Peace Conference
12 World War I Military Service
13 Blayney with his Unit
14 Europe: Germany, Paris; World War I Era
Travel - United States, Canada, Europe
Box Folder
9 1 Travel, United States
2 Travel, Canada
3 Travel, Unidentified "Overseas"
4 Travel, Various: Algeria, Rome, Greece, Italy, Naples, Morocco, Africa
5 Travel, Various: Switzerland, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Serbia
6 Travel, England and Holland; KAHN Fellowship
7 Travel, Heidelberg, Germany
8 Travel, India
Travel and Extras
Box Folder
10 1 Travel, Asia
2 Travel, Japan and China
3 Travel, Macedonia
4 Travel, Philippines
5 Travel, Philippines
6 Unidentified People, Photo Cards, and Scenery
7 Slides: Illuminated Manuscripts and "Home" (Lac La Croix?), 1962 - 1963; 1965
8 Negatives
9 Copies of Photos
10 Photocopies of Photos with Information

Series VI: Memorabilia

11 Wooden Case with Cavalry Horse Tack
12 Military Regalia: Hats (2)
13 Military Regalia, Cavalry Uniform Jacket, tan (stored separately from collection; see separation sheet)
14 Military Regalia, Cavalry Uniform Jacket, olive
15 Military Regalia: Hats (2); Academic Regalia: Mortarboards (2)
Assorted Personal Memorabilia and Oversized Items
Box Folder
23 1 Carleton College Brochure
2 Honorarium from the Texas State College for Women
3 Booklet, Goethe
4 Postcards and Cards
5 Blayney Coat of Arms, Notepaper, Military Officer Cards
6 Croix de Guerre Medal; Letter Explaining Provenance
7 Assorted Keepsakes
8 Thomas Flaxman Scholarship honoring Dr. Blayney
9 Scroll of Appreciation written by Dr. Blayney after Rice University's Semi-centennial Celebration, 1962
10 Personal Stationery
11 Photographs: Lindsey Blayney Jr. and Family
12 Photographs: Family Photos and Portraits
13 Photographs: Camping, Canoeing, Fishing
14 Photographs: Travel
15 Photographs: Military Service
16 Photographs: Academia
17 Documents: Blayney Honorarium, Frank Shigemura Memorial
16 Honorarium (clock, cup)
17 Academic Memorabilia: Stoles (3)
18 Academic and Personal Memorabilia: Yearbook, Briefcase, Nameplate, Wallet
19 Personal Memorabilia: Top Hat
20 Personal Memorabilia: Hats (2)
21 Scrapbooks with Postcards (2)
22 Blue banners with Ivory Fringe (6)