William Proxmire Papers, 1938-2004 (bulk 1957-1980)

Container Title
John White's File, 1953-1966
Quantity: 5 boxes 
Scope and Content Note

John White's presidential files are not as voluminous (5 boxes for eleven years) or informative as one would expect. In fact, they are downright disappointing. Their paucity is no doubt due to: weeding performed by NET secretaries; retention of files for James Day's use; possible documentation of some of White's activities in other NET files or in a personal file which he still has in his possession; and the certainty that much of his work was performed over the telephone or in personal conferences.

About 50% of this file is correspondence; the other half is comprised of annotated printed and near-print matter, reports, scripts, clippings, lists, statistics, speeches, articles, notes, etc. The bulk of the material pertains to the period 1962-1964, although there is some material passed on to him from Newburn, and thus the early inclusive date of 1953. Part of the file arrived loose and separate from the rest without clear indications as to the original filing arrangement, but there were evidences that it was alphabetical, so such an arrangement was used.

There is very little information herein on the internal operation or events of NET; rather, the files relate to White's personal activities, such as speech making, chairing committees, etc., and his professional activities as head of NET. It is not easy to distinguish between the two. As can be seen from the container list, most of the files pertain to organizations, institutions and events outside NET, such as NAEB, NITL, JCET, U.S.-H.E.W., BBC, etc. Rather than being a criticism of the paucity of presidential files, this observation is probably an accurate indicator of the functions of the president's office during the years White occupied it, consisting mostly of outside promotion and fundraising work, educating others about ETV, and working out policies and long-range plans for a growing TV network, while the day-to-day business of producing and distributing television programming was left to others. Newburn was deeply involved in the day-to-day administration of the Center and in satisfying the immediate needs of the stations, while White increasingly wore the cloak and filled the sophisticated role of good-will ambassador at large on behalf of ETV.

However, White did involve himself in the actual production work from time to time. Such a program was “Championship Debate”, produced by Larry Pickard, where most of the pre-production correspondence was conducted by White. In fact, the 1962-63 folder of correspondence in Pickard's file was really White's file, but was apparently given to Pickard by White for the former's use, as it arrived at the SHSW among Pickard's files. (See 8E/1/5)

Box   11
Folder   1
“A” General
Box   11
Folder   2
Affiliates, 1963-1966
Box   11
Folder   3
American Council on Education, 1962-1964
Box   11
Folder   4
American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, Agreement, 1964-1967
Box   11
Folder   5
Ampex Corporation, 1959-1963
Box   11
Folder   6
“B” General
Box   11
Folder   7
Board Meeting and Annual Reports, 1961
Box   11
Folder   8
British Broadcasting Corporation, 1959-1963
Box   11
Folder   9
“C” General
Box   11
Folder   10
Clippings, 1964-1965
Box   11
Folder   11
Conference on Quality and Equality in Education, 1965
Department Annual Reports
Box   11
Folder   12
1960
Box   11
Folder   13
1961
Box   12
Folder   1
“D” and “E” General
Box   12
Folder   2
Eastern Education Network, 1961-1964
Box   12
Folder   3
“F” General
Box   12
Folder   4
Federal Communications Commission, 1954-1965
F.C.C. - State of New Jersey et al. vs. F.C.C.
Box   12
Folder   5
1959, 1961 May-August
Box   12
Folder   6
1961 September-October
Box   12
Folder   7
1961 November-December
Box   12
Folder   8
“G” and “H” General
Box   12
Folder   9
Greater Washington Educational Television Association, 1961-1964
Box   12
Folder   10
“I” General
Box   12
Folder   11
Instructional television materials
International Cooperation Year
Box   12
Folder   12
1965 March-August
Box   13
Folder   1
1965 September-1966 September
Box   13
Folder   2
Intertel, 1962-1964
Box   13
Folder   3
J.C.E.T. correspondence and printed materials, 1958-1961
J.C.E.B. , 1961-1963
Box   13
Folder   4
Correspondence
Box   13
Folder   5
Printed materials
Box   13
Folder   6
“K-L-M” General
Box   13
Folder   7
Legal, 1957-1965
Box   13
Folder   8
“N” General, 1961-1966
National Association of Educational Broadcasters (NAEB)
Box   13
Folder   9
General, 1965-1967
Box   13
Folder   10
Meetings, 1958-1959
Box   14
Folder   1
NETRC merger, 1959-1960
Box   14
Folder   2
Radio seminar, 1960
National Instructional Television Library (NITL)
Box   14
Folder   3
1962-1964
Box   14
Folder   4
Proposal (with appendices), 1964
Box   14
Folder   5
Learning Resources Institute, 1959-1965
Box   14
Folder   6
New York: city and state
Box   14
Folder   7
Population Series, 1962-1966
Box   14
Folder   8
Programming
Box   14
Folder   9
“P-R-S” General
Box   15
Folder   1
“T” General
Box   15
Folder   2
Tocqueville Project, 1960-1964
Box   15
Folder   3
“U-V” General
U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare
Box   15
Folder   4
1953-1959
Box   15
Folder   5
1960-1965
Box   15
Folder   6
U.S. - Japan Television Exchange, 1963-1966
Box   15
Folder   7
University of the State of New York, 1954-1965
Box   15
Folder   8
WGBH-TV, Channel 2, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1961-1966
Box   15
Folder   9
“W-Y” General
Box   15
Folder   10
Yale University, 1965-1966