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This collection was processed with support from the Randleigh Foundation Trust.
|Size||3.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 2400 items)|
|Abstract||Walter Smith Spearman (1908-1987) taught journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1937-1978, wrote plays and short stories, wrote for numerous newspapers, and was an amatuer actor for over forty years. The collection is material chiefly documenting the work of Walter S. Spearman as journalist, educator, and writer. Correspondence is largely letters from former journalism students of Spearman's, from writers of works he had reviewed, and from fellow journalists. Correspondents include playwright Paul Green, writer Gail Godwin, and journalists Jonathan Daniels and Charles Kuralt. Writings consist chiefly of stories, plays, speeches, and fragments of stories. Subject files consist chiefly of material collected by Spearman for use in journalism classes and writing workshops.|
The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.
Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.
Walter Smith Spearman was born in Newberry, S.C., 9 January 1908. He attended school in Silverstreet, S.C., and in Charlotte, N.C., at Central High School. Spearman was married first to Mary Elizabeth Dale Spearman (d. 1966), then to Jean Johnson Spearman. Spearman had two children, Robert W. and Mary Lindsay, and two stepchildren, David Wells Herring and Stephen Herring.
Spearman studied at the University of North Carolina, 1925 1929. During his college career, he was editor of the Daily Tar Heel, associate editor of Yackety Yack, president of the North Carolina Collegiate Press, an actor with the Carolina Playmakers, and winner of the Best College Editor in North Carolina award. After receiving his A.B. in 1929, Spearman attended the University of Lyon as a Franco-American Exchange Scholar. He then worked, 1930-1935, as a reporter, drama critic, and book editor for The Charlotte News. In 1935, he entered graduate school in dramatic arts at the University of North Carolina, where he also began teaching journalism. In 1937, he received a master of arts degree.
Spearman began writing "The Literary Lantern," a book review column, in 1947, and continued writing it for the rest of his life. While teaching at the University of North Carolina, Spearman also served as an editorial writer for the New Orleans (LA) Item (summer 1955) and the Greensboro (N.C.) Observer (summer 1965). Beginning in 1948, he served as moderator of the Town Meeting on Books held annually in Greensboro, N.C. From 1958 to 1961, he directed the Chautauqua Writers' Workshop in Chautauqua, N.Y.
Spearman wrote Racial Crisis and the Press (1960), The Carolina Playmakers: The First Fifty Years (1970); plays including Death of the Swan, Transient, and Dead Man's Bluff; and numerous articles and book reviews.
Spearman first acted with the Carolina Playmakers while an undergraduate and continued to perform with the Playmakers, as well as with such groups as the Raleigh Little Theater and the Purefoy Players, throughout his career at the University of North Carolina. He performed approximately 85 roles, including several on television. While in Charlotte, he directed the Charlotte Little Theater Workshop.
While a journalism professor at the University of North Carolina, Spearman received Tanner and Valkyrie awards for teaching. He taught until 1978, when he retired and was appointed professor emeritus. Spearman died in Chapel Hill, N.C., 24 February 1987.Back to Top
The collection is material chiefly documenting the work of Walter Spearman as journalist, professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and writer. Correspondence is largely letters from former journalism students of Spearman's, from writers of works he had reviewed, and from fellow journalists. Correspondents include playwright Paul Green, writer Gail Godwin, and journalists Jonathan Daniels and Charles Kuralt. Writings consist chiefly of stories, plays, speeches, and fragments of stories. Subject files consist chiefly of material collected by Spearman for use in journalism classes and writing workshops.
Some overlap will be found within these series. For instance, a play filed in Series 2 may have a small amount of correspondence with a potential publisher attached to it.Back to Top
Letters chiefly from former journalism students of Spearman's, writers whose works Spearman had reviewed, and fellow journalists and writers. Such notable North Carolina writers and journalists as Jonathan Daniels, Paul Green, and Charles Kuralt appear. Letters relate to writers' and journalists' professional work, personal matters, and reviews by Spearman. Letters from publishers document Spearman's activities as a book reviewer. There are very few letters from Spearman.
Chiefly plays, short stories, speeches, notes for stories, and fragments of plays and short stories.
Subject files produced by Spearman to be used chiefly for journalism classes and writing workshops. Many files reflect Spearman's activities within the North Carolina literary community. Original folder titles have, for the most part, been retained.
Pictures chiefly of Spearman in groups or theatrical productions.
|Oversize Image OP-P-4484/1|
|Oversize Image OP-P-4484/2|
|Photograph Album PA-4484/1|
Processed by: Mark Beasley, David Webber, Michael Van Cott, 1987-1988; Roslyn Holdzkom, 2007, August 2007
Encoded by: Roslyn Holdzkom, August 2007
This collection was processed with support from the Randleigh Foundation Trust.Back to Top