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Recollections of Lawrence Clark Powell, 
Librarian, Teacher, and V/rlter 

Interviewed by James V. Mink 


Completed under the auspices 

of the 

Oral History Program 

University of California 

Los Angeles 

Copyright (c) 1973 
The Regents of the University of California 

This manuscript Is hereby made available for research 
purposes only. All literary rights in the manuscript, 
including the right to publication, are reserved to the 
University Library of the University of California at 
Los Angeles. No part of the manuscript may be quoted 
for publication without the written permission of the 
University Librarian of the University of California 
at Los Angeles. 


TAPE NUMBER: VII, Side Two (November 11, I969). . . 359 

Concept of branch libraries — Engineering 
Library — Johanna Tallman — Biomedical: Louise 
Darling — Industrial Relations: John E. Smith 
--Gordon Williams, collection builder — 
V/illiams at the Chemistry Library — Planning 
Research Library — Fighting for capital funds 

TAPE NUMBER: VIII, Side One (November 19, 1969). . . 386 

Establishing the Friends of the UCLA Library 
--Seeking alumni support — Gold Shield 
assistance--!'/. V/. Robinson--Buildlng Special 
Collections--Relations with faculty and 
chancellors--Franklin Murphy — Appointment of 
Alice Humiston — Ben Custer — Catalog Department 

TAPE NUMBER: VIII, Side Two (November 19, 1969). . . ^l6 

Law Library — Aid of J.A.C. Grant — Problems 
with Dale Coffman--Tom Dabagh — Acquisitions: 
Richard 0'Brien--Betty Rosenberg — Ray Swank 
survey--Elizabeth Bradstreet 

TAPE NUMBER: IX, Side One (December 1, I969). . • • ^^3 

Teaching library administration--Theory of 
administration--Administrators : Ray Swank 
— Nathan Van Patten — Ed Castagna--Librarians ' 
Association--Librarians and faculty status-- 
California State Llbrary--Mabel Gillis — Ed 

TAPE NUMBER: IX, Side Two (February 17, 19 70). . . .^72 

Irving Stone — Henry Miller — Richard Aldington 
— Literary friendships — Zeltlin's bookstore 
as cultural center--Irving Stone collection 
— Robert Payne--Harold Lamb — Writing on the 
Southv/est — Arizona Highways — Westvjays — 
Bibliography on writers of the Southv;est-- 
Southwest Broadsides — Influence of UCLA 


TAPE NUMBER: X, Side One (February 2^1, 1970). . . . 504 

Cultivating authors — Commitment to 
literature — Importance of Southwest studies 

[Second Part] (June 5, 1970) 513 

Southwest Broadsides— Comfort's "A Man is 
at His Best"— Pat Paylore's Up in Coconino 
County — Frank Dobie — Haniel Long — "Pao Por 
Aqui" by Mary Austin — Henry Fountain Ashurst 
— Lummis report 

TAPE NUMBER: X, Side Two (February 2'4, 1970). . . . 529 

Southwest Broadsides — Lavender's Bent 's 
Fort — Dobie 's Vaguero of the Brush Country 
— Harvey Fergusson — Paul Horgan — Inscription 

TAPE NUMBER: XI, Side One (March 10, 1970) 5^^ 

Creative writings — Influence of literary 
critics — Importance of travel and reading 
— Early poetry — Ward Ritchie — First novel-- 
Novella: A Personal Record — Critical writing 
— Quintet — Letter from Henry Miller 

TAPE NUMBER: XI, Side Two (March 10, 1970) 570 

Quint et --Unfini shed novels — Criticism of 
the novels 

TAPE NUMBER: XII, Side One (April 23, 1970) 58l 

UCLA School of Library Service — Composition 
of faculty — Seymour Lubetzky — Barbara Boyd 
— Tenured' appointments — Robert Hayes — 
Recruitment of faculty— Teaching methods-- 
Perry Danton 

TAPE NUMBER: XII, Side Two (April 23, 1970). . . 

Danton-~Accreditation of the library school 
— ALA Accrediting Committee — Retirement 
from the deanship — Relations with Vosper— 
With Gustave Arlt--Foster Sherwood--Inf luence 
of wife. Fay 



TAPE NUMBER: XIII, Side One (June 25, 1970) 63^1 

After retirement — Writing — Office in Powell 
Library — Trip to England, Wales > Ireland, 
Yugoslavia--Travels in California on 
Guggenheim Fellowship — Fellowship at Wesleyan 
— Neal Harlow — Drive to New England--Center 
for Advanced Studies at Wesleyan — Teaching a 
seminar on the Southwest — Students' projects 
— Visit with Neal Harlow 

TAPE NUMBER: XIII, Side Two (June 25, 1970) 663 

Trip to father's birthplace — Visiting the 
Hockings in Maine--Teaching at Simmons 
College — Course at Loughborough, England-- 
Writing projects — Selection of Los Angeles 
City Librarian — Future plans: professorship at 
the University of Arizona — Postscript 

Index 680 

Errata: p. 679a exists to correct the pagination 

NOVEMBER 11, I969 

MINK: In the late 1940s there came along the beginning 
of the branch libraries, and I suspect that in some de- 
gree this was due to the student explosion after the 
war, students coming back and the need for additional 
collections in various areas. Could you discuss for 
a minute the concept of the branch library and when you 
first began to realize the need for it? Of course, the 
Engineering Library was the first official branch li- 

POWELL: Was it? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Didn't chemistry become one earlier? Or did 
we still call it a departmental? 

MINK: I think it was still a departmental library at 
this point. The Engineering Library opened on July 1, 
1946 to become the first official branch library with 
Johanna Allerding Tallman as the head. 

POWELL: Yes. Well, departmental meant that the depart- 
ments, that is, chemistry and agriculture, paid the ex- 
penses of maintaining it. A branch library by definition 
meant that the library assumed all the costs of staffing 
and equipment and additions. And chemistry and agriculture 


both were interested in becoming branch libraries for 
the simple reason that they could unload the budget costs 
on me. 

MINK: You had to resist this. 

POWELL: Well, I thought, "If they're happy--in a sense 
they've got the books they want--let them pay for them." 
I suppose I did resist them. But when engineering came, 
there was a total new budget that everybody could dip 
into and Boelter, the new dean, apparently had all that 
he could do in staffing and instructing and researching, 
and he was willing that I should assume responsibility 
for the library. 

MINK: Were your relationships with Boelter cordial? 
Did you find him an easy man to work with? 
POWELL: They were always cordial, I think, although 
sometimes slightly strained, because all through his 
administration he kept making noises about seceding from 
the library system and having an independent engineering 
library; his faculty did not want this and voted him 
down time and again. We met in a jovial sort of banter- 
ing way, and I knew that I had the balance of power be- 
cause his faculty wanted what I wanted and I had Johanna 

Now she was a classmate of mine at library school. 
We were at Berkeley together. When she read in the 


newspaper about 19^5 that an Engineering School had been 
established at UCLA, she either phoned or wrote me and 
applied for the job. She came out to see me. We didn't 
have the job yet, because the school existed only on 
paper. But I had a half-time job, as I recall, in the 
reference department, and I appointed Jo Tallman to that 
job, half time, and her other half time was to be spent 
in planning an engineering library. You'd have to inter- 
view her for the details of this, and she'd remember 
them right down to the last toothpick. She's never for- 
gotten anything; I'm a little fuzzy about it. But es- 
sentially this is what happened; and Jo worked here on 
the reference desk and also with Dean Boelter. 

Now, our success in this area was due to Jo, not 
to me, because Jo was German, Boelter was German, and 
they understood each other perfectly. That is, Jo was 
born in Hamburg, as I remember, and she has all the vir- 
tues and vices of the North German square-head--tenacious, 
stubborn, humorless, dynamic. And Boelter found in her 
an ideal person, just as Staff Warren found in Louise 
Darling the ideal person to carry out his wishes. But 
he didn't reckon, I think, in the beginning, with Jo's 
also very deep and strong sense of loyalty. I'd appointed 
her, and therefore her basic loyalty was to me, v;as to 
the University Librarian. She never swerved from this. 


A weaker woman would have been seduced by Boelter, as 
some of the later weaker appointments in some of the 
professional fields did, and they would have attempted 
to connive with him in pulling the library out of the 

MINK: Would you say that the same situation pertained 
to Louise, or would you say that with her it was more 
loyalty to the UCLA Medical School over the years? 
POWELL: Oh, no, no, no. I never questioned her loyalty 
to me, and there was never any question of pulling out. 
Staff Warren wouldn't have wanted it. 
MINK: He wouldn't have wanted an autonomous medical 
school library? 

POWELL: No. Louise had a passionate devotion to the 
medical school; but, my God, she was always, as far as 
I can determine, completely loyal to me and to what I 
stood for. Oh, they were both marvelous girls in dif- 
ferent ways. 

MINK: Well, it was said that when Mr. Vosper became li- 
brarian in 1961, then he had to do a little wing-clipping 
on Louise. 

POWELL: Well, this could be. 

MINK: There was a little more control over her budget. 
POWELL: Yes, this could be. I know my last two years, 
I put a hell of a lot of time in fighting for Louise's 


position, to break it out of the classification and 
make it a separate position called the biomedical li- 
brarian, in order that we could pay her a higher scale 
than librarian V, which she was in. Now this was impor- 
tant, Jim, to me and to Page Ackerman. She and I did 
this together because Louise was getting offers from 
other medical schools. She'd risen up to the top in 
the country as one of the leading medical librarians, 
and she also would bring in salary scales for other 
medical librarians showing how far behind we were. It 
was very important. Just as doctors and professors in 
the medical school were on a different scale than the 
ordinary faculty, she argued that the biomedical librar- 
ian should be. And by God, I had to fight this through 
the personnel office. 

MINK: Where did you get the most static? 
POWELL: From the personnel office at Berkeley. 
MINK: Nothing comparable in the system. 
POWELL: There was nothing comparable in the system, 
because at the other medical library at San Francisco 
the librarian was Dr. J. B. de C. M. Saunders, and 
the librarian, Carmenina Toramassini, was simply a fig- 
urehead, paid probably L-III scale. And I kept pointing 
out to the personnel office that Louise Darling did for 
the Biomedical Library at UCLA what John Saunders did 


for the San Francisco one--set policy and v/as the key 
person. They couldn't correlate her with Carmenina 
Tommassini, but they wanted to. They always wanted to 
have this kind of parity, you see. 

And, Christ, I went to Berkeley, and Page Ackerman 
and I drove from Sacramento to Berkeley at the time of 
the CLA conference to keep an appointment with the per- 
sonnel officer. We had a university car and drove all 
the way down, and we had really a stirring meeting there 
with the Berkeley personnel officer. It wasn't Boynton 
Kayser, it was some woman in the office. This was the 
last big fight I ever waged in the personnel office, and 
I waged it along with Page because it needed my prestige 
and my office to do this, and we won it finally. Well, 
I suppose Vosper came in then and inherited Louise just 
as she'd been reclassified, and she had big ideas. But 
I left a lot of other problems for him, too, didn't I? 
Well, Goodwin left them for me! 
MINK: Sure. 

POWELL: This is the old chain of problems. 
MINK: About the same time, the Institute of Industrial 
Relations more or less became a branch library. It was 
originally located in the main library, and I believe 
John E. Smith was the first industrial relations li- 
brarian. How did John come to the staff? 


POWELL: Well, here again, wasn't he one of Debbie King's 
proteges in the Reserve Book Room as an undergraduate? 
He went on to library school, went into the Portland 
Public Library, the Army, came out of the Army, went to 
work for Ralph Shaw In the [United States] Department 
of Agriculture, decided he wanted to come back where the 
oranges hang on the boughs, and he came to see me one 
Wednesday at the Clark Library. I interviewed him there 
in the drawing room, and I hired him back. What the hell 
did he come back for--I think as agriculture librarian, 
was it? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Betty Rosenberg moved over to the Acquisitions 
Department, and John came in, I think, and was agricul- 
ture librarian, or departmental librarian in agriculture. 
Is that right , Jim? Do the records show this? 
MINK: I believe that's correct; and eventually he went 
into the IIR. 

POWELL: He went into IIR because, God knov7s v;hy, it was 
a promotion. And Paul Dodd had ha.d John as an under- 
graduate student. Paul Dodd was running it in the be- 
ginning; he was the first director, I think. And John 
moved into it, and then, of course, Helen Schumacher 
succeeded Vosper as head of acquisitions, and when Helen 
left, her Army husband took her to Japan. I think John 


moved in from industrial relations to head of acquisi- 

MINK: Did you feel at that time that he was qualified 
to become head of the Acquisitions Department? 
POWELL: Jesus J I don't know, Jim. I think he was a 
likely candidate because he had had experience buying 
for agriculture, for IIR, and he'd worked in order v;ork, 
I think, in the USDA, and he was lively and personable 
and aggressive. What more could you ask? 
MINK: Did he get along with the faculty in his appoint- 
ment? This is the essential thing for the acquisitions 

POWELL: Hell, I don't know. Why don't you ask John? 
[laughter] He'd say yes. I don't know; I never had 
anybody come in and say get rid of that son of a bitch, 
I don't think. I think he probably stepped on more toes 
than Bob Vosper did. He wasn't Bob's equal in tact. 
You're leading up, I know, to ask me why John ended up 
as librarian of the Santa Barbara Public Library. 
MINK: Okay, why did he? [laughter] 
POWELL: Well, I'll give you. . . 
MINK: Shall we close the windows? 
POWELL: No, I'll give you an honest answer. 
MINK: Remember that any of this that you want sealed 
can be sealed. 


POWELL: Yes. No, I don't think I should give you any- 
thing but honest answers all the way through. I'm very 
fond of John and his wife Lucille. We used to see them 
socially, and I found something in John that probably 
reminded me of myself before I'd gone on the wagon. In 
other words, under the influence of alcohol, I, in the 
early years, and John as I observed him socially, be- 
came indiscreet. I was a little concerned about this. 
And he got wild at times at parties and talked too much. 
At parties, I guess, when I wasn't there, John was given 
to even wilder talk about how he was on the way up, and 
if Powell ever left, why, he was cinch to succeed him. 
This came back to me, and I didn't like it. This of- 
fended me, not personally, but just that a person would 
get so out of line and talk this way publicly in a sense. 
It was wrong. And besides, I knew it wasn't true, that 
it wouldn't happen. John wasn't of university librarian 
caliber on this campus as I saw it. This would never 
happen. Well, it set me to thinking a little. I was 
always interested in seeing young men advance; if they 
wanted to be head librarian and it didn't seem likely 
here, then they ought to be encouraged to be head li- 
brarian somewhere else. I suppose that's the way my bene- 
volent little mind worked, and at the same time I was 
in touch, for one reason or another, with Monroe Deutsch 


the former. . . 
MINK: Provost at Berkeley. 

POWELL: . . .provost, but he had retired and was living 
in Santa Barbara and had become chairman, I think, of a 
citizens' committee on the Santa Barbara Public Library 
and its future. We were in touch through things I'd 
written, I guess, or maybe I had met him up there at a 
Library Council meeting when he came in, sitting in as 
an invited guest at a council meeting. Anyway, he came 
to see me, I think, down here at UCLA once, and he said, 
"Powell, we need a public librarian. Have you got a bright 
young man who would qualify for this job?" My little 
computer mind thought, "Well, John Smith. Here's a 
chance for John." He'd been in the public library in 
Portland. That's all I could find in the way of quali- 
fied experience; but he was personable and democratic 
and lively. 

I think I called him in and left him and Monroe 
Deutsch together in my office. And that's the way it 
happened. John got the job and he did well. He stayed 
eight or nine years in Santa Barbara. He was very active 
in civic groups and in politics as a good Democrat. I 
think he did a hell of a lot of good things for the 
public library that he wasn't able to do here because 
the job was too narrov;. He was a good politician. He 


left there, I think, for the same reason that some others 
have left Santa Barbara--the future was nailed dovm tight 
on them. They were classified along with the chief of 
police and the fire captain. There was just no future 
there, and then the ambivalence of the community between 
the rich and the poor, I think, began to get on John's 
nerves. And you remember he went away twice overseas-- 
once to Iran and once to Pakistan as library specialist. 
That led finally, I think, to his appointment at Irvine. 
MINX: Right. Did you have anything to do with his ap- 
pointment at Irvine at all? 

POWELL: I think I had a little something to do. I think 
the chancellor, Dan Aldrich, talked to me about this, and 
I think John had expressed interest in leaving Santa 
Barbara when he was in Pakistan. I may have recommended 
him for some other things, too; I don't remember. I 
didn't play the same kind of role that I did in his go- 
ing to Santa Barbara, but I did have something to do with 
it. And I think he's been a good person and done well, 
as far as I know, at Irvine. 

MINK: Did your philosophy of collection building coin- 
cide with his, or did he have a philosophy that he ex- 

POVffiLL: I don't remember, or at least he didn't have it 
in the same way that Vosper had. He wasn't a collection 


builder in the Vosper sense. He was more of a--don't 
misunderstand! --chief clerk and operational man in keep- 
ing the machinery going. Now keep in mind that at the 
time he was head of acquisltionsj wasn't Vosper the as- 
sociate librarian? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Well, you see, this had led to a little static 
between me and Helen Schumacher when I promoted Vosper 
to assistant librarian. To justify that job and to get 
it approved statewide, we pulled collection building and 
that responsibility with it off of Acquisitions Department 
into the assistant librarianship. In other words, it 
enhanced the new position and it decreased the old po- 
sition. Now, acquisitions under Vosper was classified 
L-IV, which was the top classification then. Then Helen 
Schumacher, who had been his assistant head, I appointed 
to be head acquisitions librarian, and when she got her 
paper work on it she saw herself classified as Librarian 
III. My God, she came into my office in tears and said, 
"Well why aren't I an L-IV the same as Mr. Vosper?" And 
I said, "Well, my dear girl, first of all, you haven't 
the qualifications." (I transferred her from Reference 
Department, I think, to have that job.) "And in the 
second place, the job isn't the same as when Mr. Vosper 
had it. He's creamed off that job, now. You're an L-III, 


and don't forget it, sister." And she was in a real pet, 
"but I was absolutely right, and she had to reconcile 
herself to this. 

Well, Smith came into that L-III, but v/e were able 
then, because the whole library program had grown so, to 
build up the position again to L-IV after a year or two 
with John. But the real collection policy v/as carried 
by Vosper. And when he left, he was succeeded first of 
all by Neal, but then Gordon Williams really took that, 
and Williams was the collection policy man for the li- 
brary as assistant librarian. So, this is the way you 
created new positions. 

Keep in mind, Jim, it was not easy to get additional 
administrative positions because always statewide per- 
sonnel looked at Berkeley--what do they have? We had 
to go through this time and again; it had to look like 
what Berkeley had. I was developing positions that were 
entirely different in concept from Berkeley's. My assis- 
tant librarians (we ended up with two and then finally 
three) did things that Berkeley's didn't do, because I 
gave them responsibilities that Coney never relinquished. 
His assistant librarians were by and large a bunch of 
cheap clerks a lot of the time. But here they were peo- 
ple of stature, and we had to sell this to personnel. 
MINK: Hard to do. 


POWELL: Damn right, it was hard to do. 
MINK: Now, when Mr. Williams came in, what qualifica- 
tions did you feel he had for assuming the role of col- 
lections builder in the library. 

POWELL: Well, he was a bookman. I found him on the 
curb, literally on the curb downtown at Brentano's which 
he'd been managing. Brentano's bookstore had closed up. 
They had a close-out sale. They had been run out of 
business by Broadway's, Bullock's, and Robinson's book 

MINK: They really had been run out of business; Williams 
didn't run them out? 

POWELL: No, no, it was the old cruncher by them. They 
were undercutting and Brentano's never--no, it wasn't 
Gordon's fault; it was a sinking ship, I think, when 
he came. But I went down on the last day, and I'd met 
him in the bookshops at Dawson's and at Zeitlin's. I 
sensed in him a very bookish person, and I said to him 
as we stood out in front of the shop, "Have you ever 
thought of library work?" "No," he said, "but I'd be 
interested." "Well," I said, "the only thing I can 
offer you is a job on hourly wages in the periodicals 
department of the Reference Department." So he came out 
as a clerical, as I remember, at whatever v^e paid an 
hour. It wasn't very much then. V/hen was this, Jim, 


in 1948 or 1949? 

MINK: Yes, it'd be 1948, 1949, or 1950. 
POWELL: Yes, well he came out and worked then as a 
clerical assistant and became interested. This was a 
trial to see if he was interested in library work, and 
he showed a flair and he got a fellowship and he went 
to Chicago to take his library degree. And when Vosper 
left (when I came back from Europe and Vosper went to 
Kansas), this meant that Horn moved up, and I needed 
an assistant librarian then under Horn, wasn't it, that 
would be in charge of acquisitions. And everything that 
Williams had done at Chicago was in this line, because 
he'd worked all through his studies in the John Crerar 
Library. He was assistant to Herman Henkle. And he 
was doing collection work for the Crerar Library in 

Keep in mind Gordon's original major at Stanford 
was in psychology and behavioral sciences. He had a 
master's degree in one of the sciences--I guess, psycho- 
logy from Stanford. This was a new area in collection 
building that no one in the administrative echelon had 
covered. They'd been humanists and classicists or his- 
torians--that is, Harlow and Horn and Vosper and myself, 
Gordon bringing in from Crerar, from Stanford, from his 
own flair, some responsibility working v^ith the science 


departments in acquisitions^ collection, filling out, and 
so forth. 

So I persuaded him to come, and of course I got in- 
to the same kind of hassle then that I got in with Har- 
low. Herman Henkle tried to hire Williams to stay full 
time at Crerar after Gordon had accepted the job from 
me, and I had to push Henkle 's teeth down his throat and 
tell the son of a bitch to stay out, that Williams had 
already agreed, and this was unethical in the highest 
degree to come in after Gordon had accepted my position. 
Gordon was firm; he said, "You're right." And Henkle 
backed down. I never liked Henkle; I think he was a 
slippery son of a bitch, just to look at him. 

At any rate, Gordon came out. Now you see, the as- 
sistant librarian in charge of collections always was my 
liaison with the Library Committee. He acted as secre- 
tary of the Library Committee; he met with the Senate 
Library Committee, and he did all the paper work for 
the Library Committee. This was Williams' flair, this 
and the building programming. But he didn't have, as 
you know better than I, this rapport with staff, 
MINK: How well was he able to work with the science 

POWELL: Well, he handled a terribly hot one with psycho- 
logy, I knov/. They were raising hell with me. They 


wanted a branch library. They're a bunch of crooks, 
anyway, those psychologists, Jim; they stole from each 
other. The graduate students are the most dishonest, 
I think, next to theology students in the entire aca- 
demic world. They stole and destroyed and mutilated, 
and they weren't to be trusted. You gave them a jour- 
nal file over there in their department and the graduate 
students ripped it to bits. It's strange that they 
draw to them a very unethical type of person. Gordon 
handled this with [Howard] Gilhousen and with--oh hell, 
I don't remember who else was in the psychology depart- 
ment; but he went over there and faced them and negotia- 
ted and manipulated and kept the bastards from taking 
over and shelving in the department everything that we 
had, which is what they wanted to do. And I knew that 
was sending it down the drain. We told them to buy 
their stuff out of departmental funds and butcher their 
own stuff, but leave the main library's material alone. 
He was effective in this kind of thing; he was a hard- 
nosed negotiator. 

The reason he didn't have staff rapport--I knew 
perfectly well what it was. It was not a lack of feeling 
for people; it was a blindness of concentration on what 
he was doing. He got so wrapped up in what he was doing 
that he never saw anyone else. He'd v;alk by you on campus 


I used to walk with him and with other staff members 
across campus^ one place to another, and I think if I 
had any gift it was for recognizing people and greet- 
ing them, no matter who I was with. If I was with the 
Lord himself, and I was walking across campus and old 
Billy McKeown, my binder and custodian, passed me, I'd 
say hello to Bill. I'd see him! Gordon, v;hen he v/as 
walking with someone else, never saw anybody that passed 
him, and he would snub unconsciously all kinds of people 
that would resent this. Not only on campus, but in the 
library building, when we'd walk through the building, 
he wouldn't see his colleagues and they didn't like this. 
And I suppose, he tended to be a little ex cathedra in 
his pronouncements. Well, you know better than I, Jim; 
you worked with him. 

MINK: What about the Chemistry Library then? 
POWELL: I don't know--what about the Chemistry Library? 
Let me interview you. 

MINK: Well, the understanding I had was that when he 
was brought to the Chemistry Library for the first time 
and saw it, the chairman of the department v;as along and 
he said, "Well, this is nothing like in the John Crerar," 
and so-and-so and so-and-so. And the chairman got turned 
off. Did you get any flack from there? 
P0V7ELL: I don't remember if I did, but I think this was 


probably characteristic of Gordon. He'd just come from 
the Crerar, and it was one of the great science libraries 
of the country, but he shouldn't have told the chairman 
of the chemistry department at UCLA this. Yes, he could 
be tactless; I'm sure this is true. 

MINK: I think maybe that's the word that would best de- 
scribe Gordon--a lack of tact. 

MINK: And then his demeanor in conferences was very in- 
formal, like putting his feet up on your desk. 
POWELL: Yes, this burned women on the staff; I got com- 
plaints about this in acquisitions and in reference. Of 
course, Debbie hated him. He was oversupervising her, 
and she was always raving, "He didn't know what he was 
talking about." He probably didn't! 
MINK: Is this why we lost Debbie's successor? 
POWELL: Stubblefield? Possibly, but I think primarily 
we lost Louise Stubblefield because she was just not 
tough enough to follow into that place that chews people 
up, really, in circulation work; it's a rough deal, and 
she was a lady. 

MINK: But wasn't it true, though, that this word "over- 
supervising" might again be applied to this situation? 
POWELL: I don't kjiow, Jim, but I think probably you're 
right. But that was a complex situation because there 


were members of the staff there and particularly the 
stack supervisor. 
MINK: Don Wilson. 

POWELL: He was still very loyal to Debbie, and he and 
maybe one or two others were still reporting to Debbie, 
and Debbie was meddling, too; she didn't pull out really 
in the total sense. Stubblefield had an impossible situa- 
tion from that point of view. 

MINK: Did Debbie approve of Miss Stubblefield as a suc- 
. cessor? 

POWELL: I don't know; I never asked her. I never ap- 
pointed people with the approval of the ones they were 
to succeed; you just can't operate that way. 
MINK: No, you can't. 

POWELL: I appointed her because I'd been at Columbia 
that semester in 195'^. 

MINK: You got acquainted with her there? 
POWELL: I got acquainted with her; she was head of the 
loan department at Columbia. I saw her at work, and I 
saw her supervising students, and I saw her running it. 
Second, Ardis Lodge, who had worked a year at Columbia, 
had been her roommate, lived with Miss Stubblefield, and 
Ardis recommended her highly; so I appointed her on the 
basis of those qualifications. But she never made it. 
Now, on Gordon, yes, I think that I've said that 


his great contribution here was the Research Library, 
and I've given him credit for that (I don't know that 
anybody else has around here). But the credit for that 
new Research Library, its nature and its location, are 
entirely Gordon's. We were trying then, you remember, 
to enlarge this building, to put another wing, a south 
wing, or an additional building out there on that slope 
between the west side and the gym. Those were the plans 
that we'd always had. 

MINK: You were trying, too--were you not? --to utilize 
existing space in other ways than it had been. 
POWELL: That's right. And the A[rchitects] & E[ngineers] 
did two or three trial runs on this, on developing and 
on articulating old and new construction. God knows how 
much we spent on making preliminary drawings. And every 
time they failed; they just weren't workable. Then we 
found that plans for developing south of the library 
would not give us space there. The other buildings--the 
cyclotron and the history department and social sciences, 
which had planned to build a building where the physics 
extension is, where Knudsen Hall is now--were squeezed 
out by physics, and the physical sciences got a higher 
priority on that land. 

All right, that also weakened the claim for develop- 
ing the Research Library in that area and extending it 


out in that area. We realized we couldn't build and 
articulate out on this slope to the gym. The A & E 
wanted to keep that a green space. Social sciences then v;e 
found all of a sudden had emigrated to the north campus 
over there with humanities, with arts, v;ith business 
administration. And I don't know, one morning, I think, 
Gordon came in with his drawing board and said, "Well, 
why don't we follow them? Why don't we build a nev/ re- 
search library over in that area which would serve hu- 
manities and social sciences?" Well, that was opening 
Pandora's box. Jesus, everybody was against it. At the 
heads' meeting, or whatever we were having, they all 
talked him down. But Gordon was stubborn about this and 
kept developing ideas, and A & E got interested. We won 
over the library staff, as I remember, and then we had 
the problem of winning over the schools and faculties. 
We had a whole series of meetings with divisional deans, 
with letters and science, Franklin Rolfe, with departments 
of all kinds. And Gordon and I generally attended those 
together, and he carried the argument. And by God, he 
did it well. 

MINK: What were the major objections that v;ere raised 
by the professional schools? 

POVJELL: Well, for engineering, for example, it would 
take out of the Research Library here and place v;ay over 


on the north campus the key classifications, the T's 
and various things, and the life sciences v;ould lose 
the Q's. They thought that the research collection 
should stay in the center of the campus, you see, and 
be within the College Library, but not go over to the 
north. Those were their primary objections: that it 
would force them to develop T's and Q's in their own 
locations. Well, we said, good, all right, this was 
to our advantage, because it meant more library resour- 
ces in more places. We were not going to give them all 
the T's and the Q's out of the Research Library. We 
wanted a lot of those for general service. 

All right, so there was that argument. Then there 
was the other argument. The chief spokesman of it was 
Franklin Rolfe, that this would fragment the collections, 
There would be a collection here and a collection there, 
and they would have to walk back and forth. Rolfe never 
gave up; he fought down to the last. VJe met on it right 
up to the highest level. Gordon and I met, as I recall, 
with the chancellor's Committee of Deans, presenting 
this argument, McElvey with us. 

Then we had the problem of funding it. Oh, and 
then we really got screwed. We went up to Sacramento, 
Gordon and I, I guess; and Tom Jacobs, I think (the 
chemist) was chairman of the Library Committee, or it 


might have been Tom Jenkin, the political scientist. 
Anyway, it was some Tom--an Uncle Tom. And we went 
up to argue this capital improvements item for a new 
research library and the remodeling of this before the 
California House Assembly Ways and Means Committee, at 
which the state architect was present, Jim Corley, vice- 
president in charge of lobbying. Paul Miles, not Gor- 
don Williams, went up with me. We flew up in rain, and 
we had an evening meeting in the capitol. And the thing 
that really screwed us, Jim, was when they asked me, 
"Why do you need more library resources at UCLA?" I 
said, "Well, because we're far more than a campus ser- 
vice now. We're serving the whole southern community, 
including USC graduate students." I didn't know it, 
but I learned it mighty quick, that the chief architect 
of the state with the engineering department was a USC 
graduate. Oh, he burned up then. He said, "What do 
you mean you're serving USC? We've got libraries; we're 
doing our own work. Don't try to ride on our coattails." 
He lit into me, Jesus! 

Well, we went down the drain; we all adjourned then 
to the Hotel Senator bar. Jim Corley, Paul Miles, Tom 
Jacobs. Corley set up drinks for everybody, even me 
and my tonic water, and they all toasted Powell who went 
down nobly, talking to the last. (You ought to interview 


Paul Miles on this. He was there and he could give you 
a blow-by-blow account of it.) Anyway, we were screwed 
but good. That was cut out. 

Then the problerr was to justify this capital expan- 
sion, and I then "ate crow" and asked to come back to 
UCLA a man that I was h xving a kind of a running fight 
with in the Associatio.i of Research Libraries, none other 
than Keyes Metcalf. I'd always been troubled with him in 
ARL, because we were both on the advisory committee at 
the same time. And Keyes was always saying, "ARL should 
have special conferences and get special consultants and 
do all kinds of special things." And I said, "Well, why 
don't we do it ourselves." I was always saying, "We're 
the specialists." So we never agreed. I thought he was 
kind of a glorified housekeeper, and I said so. He wasn't 
interested in books, and he gave a seminar at Rutgers on 
library management and they didn't talk about books, and 
this pissed me off. 

MINK: So Keyes was really one of the many people you 
had this running confrontation on library managers ver- 
sus bookmen. 

POWELL: Yes, that's right. He was always the guy I was 
shooting at. So I end up kissing his ass. And I did it 
with. . .■ 
MINK: Finesse. 


POWELL: . . .great finesse. I did it with finesse! And 
I got him on the phone and asked him if he'd come out as 
a consultant on this building program, and he said, "Of 
course I will." He said, "I always like a dirty job. 
I understand this is a mean one, and I need a chapter 
in my book on a dirty job." And he did. Well, then I 
had trouble getting the university to agree to it. I 
had a stormy meeting with the A & E and the chancellor 
and Bill Young, the vice-chancellor in charge of build- 
ing development, who said that it was nonsense. 
MINK: I'll have to ask him why, because I'm interview- 
ing him. 

POWELL: Well, interview the son of a bitch! At one 
time in the Administration Building I said, "Look, you 
either agree to what I want on this, or you get another 
university librarian." I said, "This is that important 
to me. If you don't do this, I quit." I was so mad at 
them, and they agreed. And we got him out here in 1959 
or i960, I guess. I know I was in Tokyo on that trip 
around the world for the Air Force, and Page Ackerman 
phoned me and said, "Bill Young's trying to sabotage this 
VJhat's your understanding?" I straightened it out on 
the telephone. 

Keyes came, and he really brought it off by his 
authority and his quiet way. V/e had meetings here in 


this building and over in the Administration Building 
with the state architect, with the whole Sacramento 
echelon, on this capital improvement item. Paul Miles 
and Keyes Metcalf led all these buggers on a tour through 
the old library. They ended up getting lost, and that 
finally convinced the state people that it was imprac- 
tical to spend any more money on the old building. At 
the end of the tour, when we finally emerged alive in- 
to daylight, the big Sacramento wheel said, "Powell, 
you win. Go ahead and build your goddamn research 
library on the north campus." And we did! 


NOVEMBER 19, 1969 

MINK: One of the things that appeared in the ten-cent 
notebook had to do with the idea of establishing some 
sort of a friends organization. 

MINK: And I noticed that in 19^5, right at the outset 
of your administration, you appointed an Alumni Commit- 
tee to look toward the establishment of the Friends of 
the UCLA Library. Friends organizations at that time 
didn't exist as far as I know anywhere in the United 
States. Do you think this was a unique thing with you? 
POWELL: No, there were friends groups, weren't there? 
There were the Yale Associates. 
MINK: Yes, but are they the same really? 
POWELL: Well, their object is the same--to get the stuff 

MINK: I suppose. 

POWELL: Well, I think, I was not pressured, but approached 
by John B. Jackson, who was secretary of the UCLA Alumni, 
as you know, and I'd done an article for him in the UCLA 
Magazine on exhibits. And we'd gotten acquainted, and 
he thought it would be great if there was a friends group. 
So I said, "Well, it's too early." It's just like Dickson 


who wanted the library school right away, I think Jack- 
son v;anted a friends group right away. I said, "Give 
me a little time; but in the meantime, let's have a com- 
mittee with you and Hansena Frederickson and Ann Sumner." 
And I think Gold Shield--I recognized Barbara Lloyd, 
Theresa Long, who had been Ernest Carroll Moore's secre- 
tary, and Margaret Duguid Michel. You notice they v/ere 
all pretty girls. 
MINK: Ah, yes, that kind. 

POWELL: Yes, there were some pretty ones at the time. 
I think Margaret Michel was one of the prettiest. 
MINK: Ann Sumner was no slouch. 

POWELL: Ann Sumner was a pretty girl and Hansena had a 
lot of "it." They were a swell group. Theresa Long 
with her wonderful copper-red hair. Well, they were a 
fine group, and Johnny and I used to meet quarterly with 
them, and go through the library and have lunch. And I 
was trying to arouse interest and enhance the library 
image with the alumni, which I'd started to do in that 
magazine article. I went out and talked to Bruin Clubs; 
I talked to the Westwood Bruin Club every year. I went 
out to Covina. I went over to Hollywood and did a lot 
of outside v;ork when Johnny would set it up. I didn't 
mention any of this in my book and it's important. 
MINK: This is sort of grass-roots support then. . . 


POWELL: That's right. 

MINK: . . .for the library among the alumni. 
POWELL: I said it would take some time and v;e would 
have to counteract the "little-red-schoolhouse" kind 
of propaganda. Of course, I didn't help it any when 
I turned out to be a Red; but they knew I wasn't really. 
I was really a dyed-in-the-wool, rock-ribbed Republican. 
MINK: Were these addresses you gave to the Bruin Clubs 
prepared addresses, or were they extemporaneous talks? 
POWELL: Well, both. I always had notes. I don't think 
they were manuscript affairs, but they were from notes 
on what we were trying to do--on the building program, 
on the collecting program, on some of the things that 
we had. They were great fun to do, because I found the 
alumni eager, 

I'm going to talk next month out at Riverside, I 
think I told you, at their 500,000th volume ceremony. 
Ivan Hinderaker and Tom Jenkin asked me to speak. And, 
as you know, their new librarian there is Don Wilson. 
I'm going to speak about the importance of the library 
being carried to the alumni and to the community. 

Now in the 1950s and early 1960s, every year the 
university sent out a team of its faculty to tour the 
state--it was an annual tour, wasn't it? --and I spoke 
time and again to Sproul and to Clark Kerr that a library 


spokesman should be included. Of course, I probably 
meant myself. I would have been willing to do it if 
I'd been asked, but I never was. 
MINK: What would they say? 

POWELL: They said, "Great idea." But they never did 
anything. They sent around physicists and agronomists 
and anthropologists and a lot of distinguished men, chief- 
ly from Berkeley. But I thought it was great opportunity 
to present the library program to the people. I'm going 
to say at Riverside next month that this should be done 
now. There should be a library spokesman go out, because 
cyclotrons go obsolete, but the library never does. Ath- 
letics are ephemeral; the library is lasting. So I was 
trying to do this, I suppose, for UCLA; and, by God, I 

I carried the word, and I found the alumni tremen- 
dously responsive. Fred[erick F.] Houser, who was lieu- 
tenant governor, John Canaday, who is a regent now, and 
Paul Hutchinson and Frank Balthis were excellent. We 
always invited the alumni president of a given year out 
to lunch, and we recognized Gold Shield and the Affiliates. 
And remember, at the Clark Library Founder's Day, v/e com- 
bined it the first year with the Alumni Homecoming Day. 
This is something that I felt was very important, and I 
still do. And I think Vosper has som.e of these ideas. 


but the trouble is now there's too much going [on]. It was 
simpler in our time, Jim. UCLA wasn't what it is nov;. 
It wasn't as large and complex and as demanding. 
MINK: I think that's true. Did you realize any dreams 
from these talks for the library in terms of collections, 
books and so on? 

POWELL: Well, yes. We had gifts from Gold Shield; we 
had gifts from Gold Shield later to the library school, 
a fellowship. We had an athletic fund gift, I think, 
and we had books given us. Of course, they weren't al- 
ways Gutenberg bibles, but the idea was important, not 
the actual take, but simply the idea. The word got 
around, anyway, that the UCLA Library was something. 
MINK: Did you make any contacts per se? 
POWELL: Do you mean, pretty girls? Yes, we made many 
contacts, Jim. Yes, we rubbed flesh. 
MINK: You know what I mean. [laughter] 
POWELL: I don't remember, but I must have. Yes, what's 
that print collection [Grunwald] over in the art depart- 
ment--you know, the prints and etchings and engravings. 
MINK: I know it; I can't think of it; we can get it 
in there. 

POIfELL: Well, at any rate, the man who gave that turned 
up in my office one day, Fred Grunwald. He was a rich 
shirtmaker. He turned up in my office one day and said. 


"My son is just graduating from UCLA and we've read about 
the library in the alumni magazine and we've heard you 
speak;, and I want to give a book in honor of my son's 
graduation." He was an immigrant^ mind you, either 
Polish or Czechoslovakianj who had made his fortune in 
shirts. And he said, "I have two books here that I want 
to give. I want you to choose." Well, one was--who was 
the Greek writer on medicine? Not Hippocrates, but the 
other one. Great writer on medicine. Anyway, this was 
the original text. Who is it, Jim? For God's sake, the 
Greek writer on medicine after Hippocrates. [Claudius 
Galen] We both know and we can't say. At any rate, 
here it was, an Aldine imprint, I think, in italic type, 
and a beautiful edition. The other was some lesser item, 
and I recognized of course the important, valuable book, 
and I chose it, and the man was terribly pleased. We 
have it now; it's probably in Biomed[ical Library], 
I think of another example: Ray Morrison, the 
novelist who wrote Angel' s Camp , and gave us the manu- 
script of it. I think I reached him through an alumni 
talk. I'd have to go back through my files here. There 
must be others. That led eventually to the Friends of 
the Library. You know v;e founded it in 1951j wasn't it? 
MINK: Who would you categorize, beside yourself, as a 
leading spirit in the actual founding of the Friends of 


the Library? 

POWELL: I think W. W. Robinson, the first president, 
was very much a part of It. He represented the commun- 
ity and he was willing to take on the first assignment. 
Here within the library, I think the strongest supporters 
were Neal Harlow and Bob Vosper. 

MINK: Could we talk about Robinson for a minute? When 
did you first meet Will Robinson? 

POWELL: He says that we first met when I worked at 
Jake's. He came in during 193^^ with a copy of my book 
on Jeffers. You remember Robinson was a poet in the 
beginning and published one or two books of poetry. He's 
a very interesting and complex man. And that was our 
first meeting, according to him^ but I don't remember 
him then. I remember him when we both joined the Zamo- 
rano Club at about the same time around 19^^©, and our 
friendship developed from then--from 1940 until now, 
thirty years — through a mutual interest in writing and 
in California and in libraries and in books, and then 
when he edited Hoja Volante , the quarterly of the Zamo- 
rano Club and persuaded me to write for it. Those were 
the first bookish writings I did, those essays in Hoja 
Volante which we collected into that little book called 
Islands of Books . It was my first book of essays. 

He's one of my closest and oldest friends, really. 


in the community. He still is, nov;, as he approaches 
eighty. We see each other frequently, and as you know, 
he's been good to the library all through the years in 
what he's given us. Incidentally, he just gave his col- 
lection of my books and writings to Scripps College at 
my suggestion. They didn't have many and he placed 
everything out there, but his correspondence with me 
and mine with him is here in Special Collections. 
MINK: Was he as instrumental in getting people to join 
the Friends as the library itself? Was it the library 
that went after it, or did these people like Robinson and 
others really go out and beat the bushes? 
POWELL: I think Robinson's name was important. He may 
not have done any bush-beating, but his name on the ori- 
ginal announcement carried great weight in the community. 
I think a great many people came in because of him. And 
secondly and equally important, I think, from the alumni 
was the work of John Jackson and Hansena and Ann and the 
others of the Alumni Library Committee. And then there 
was the library itself, but I think those two groups, 
Robinson and the community group and the alumni groups, 
were the chief recruiters. 

MINK: There's been a criticism leveled at the Friends 
of the Library, which may be their fault or it may be 
the fault of the library, that unlike, for example, the 


Friends of the Bancroft Library, who raise large sums for 
the purchase of distinguished collections, this group 
tends to get together every so^ often for a dinner and 
speech and does actually very little in support of the 
library in an extramural way. 
POWELL: Yes, I know it. 
MINK: Would you like to speak to that? 
POWELL: Yes, it's a problem; it ' s a real problem. I 
recognized it from the beginning. First of all, the 
matter of competition, that is in the field of Califor- 
niana (a field which we wanted to develop here and in 
which we're reasonably strong), we were outshadowed by 
the Huntington Library and by the Bancroft. We simply 
couldn't compete with them. We didn't have the prestige 
of holdings or the prestige of antiquity to compete. What 
fields did this leave us? Fine printing? Children's 
books, which I thought was a field that we could get into 
and there wouldn't be competition, has perhaps been one 
of our most successful ventures, and it started, as you 
know, with our purchase of the Olive Percival collection 
in 19'^5. I guess it was one of the first purchases I 
made here of a collection en bloc. 

Secondly, there was the problem of a general univer- 
sity library of the state going out competing for private 
funds, v;hen the headlines called attention to the size 


of its budget and the state appropriations and so on. 
Now the Bancroft is part of the state university, but 
it doesn't have special funding and it could appeal for 
private funds. Here in the University Library where we 
had very good legislative support, it's a problem going 
out and asking for private donations. Someone said, "Why 
don't you found a Friends of the Clark Library." 
MINK: Who said that, Larry? 

POWELL: Well, different members of the faculty or of 
the community or of the library staff. There our problem 
was that we're richly endowed. I thought we needed the 
private support more in the field of the general library 
than in the Clark, so we never pushed the Clark as a 
friends recipient. And finally, the success of a friends 
group inevitably depends upon the imagination and the 
energy and not necessarily the wealth of a few individuals 
Now the Bancroft had the enormous benefit of Susanna 
Dakin, who not only was an enthusiast and a talented, mag- 
netic, wonderful woman, but she was also a rich woman. 
You put all these things together and you can see what 
it did to the Bancroft. Before they had the trouble 
with him, they had the backing of Carl VJheat. They had 
George Harding. They had a number of people in the Bay 
area. They also had this rich Jewish philanthropist 
tradition in the Bay region to call on. The most 


articulate spokesman for It was James D. Hart, v/ho fi- 
nally has become director of the Bancroft. All of this 
they drew on. 

Now in Southern California, the Friends of the Hunt- 
ington were drawing not on the Jewish community neces- 
sarily, but the total cultural community was being very 
richly tapped by the Huntington, in spite of the fact 
that with their $12 million capital endowment, they still 
were bringing in thousands of dollars a year from the 
friends group, and this is a tough one to compete with. 
We had Claremont, USC, Occidental, Southwest Museum, all 
these other friends groups going. 

At UCLA, we had some distinguished presidents. We 
had Dwight Clarke; we had Viola Warren, Harold Lamb, 
Marcus Crahan. But I think the most effective and the 
best individual supporter we ever had was the late Majl 
Ewingc He did for us all the things, in a lesser way, 
that Susannah Dakln did for the Bancroft. He provided 
taste, intelligence, and money. And it's a great tra- 
gedy, Jim, that we lost Majl. If he could have survived 
Carmelita and come into a little more affluence, God 
knows what he might have done for us. One of the last 
talks I had with him was in London in I966 . He dined 
with us in Dolphin Square, and we had a long evening on 
some of his hopes and dreams for Special Collections. 


MINK: Larry, what did he propose to do? Can you remem- 
ber, because this is probably an undocumented and unre- 
corded conversation. 

POWELL: He wanted to transfer the Victorian and twenti- 
eth-century V7riters from his ovm collection, of course, 
which we have now, eventually. But he wanted to use them 
as nuclei on which to build Special Collections. He just 
wanted to see a building-to-strength program go on on a 
lot of his own collections. 

MINK: Of course, you weren't in any position at that 
point to promise him anything, because you were no longer 
the librarian. 

POWELL: I was no longer librarian, but he came to me 
as the old friends that we were. And I will say that 
he had great feeling for Bob Vosper, great affection 
for him, great belief in him, and wanted to see him flour- 
ish, and he was very fond, of course, of VJilbur, too. 
I ought to speak here of the only time that I fell out 
with Majl Ewing, and it was a tough one. It was along 
in the last years of my library administration, I guess, 
and I was under mounting pressure from the Faculty Li- 
brary Committee to achieve parity with Berkeley, to get 
more appropriations. Sam Herrick and Ivan Hinderaker, 
Tom Jenkin, John Galbraith and others on the Library 
Committee were very unhappy at the size of our acquisitions 


and our budget vls-a-vls Berkeley's. And they particu- 
larly wanted to see all spending for the library chan- 
neled through the Library Committee. They didn't approve 
of the librarian going out and getting money on the out- 
side, either from the community or from the administra- 
tion, at the expense of the appropriations to the depart- 
ments. This was a sticking point between us. I wouldn't 
agree with them. At least in the community, I thought 
I should have absolute freedom there. But as far as 
going to the president or to the chancellor and asking 
for special funding, they persuaded me that I should do 
this only with great reluctance. 

So, Majl Ewing came to me and said, "There's 
a chance that we can buy the remaining D. H. Lawrence 
manuscripts for $12,000. Will you go over and see the 
chancellor and ask for this money?" And I said, "No, 
I won't do it; it'll have to come through the Library 
Committee as a request from the Library Committee." And 
he became terribly angry with me and we had a very un- 
pleasant and stormy scene in my office, just the two 
of us. 

MINK: Well, didn't you explain to him why you were in 
this position? 

POWELL: Yes, and he said I had Just turned into a god- 
damned bureaucrat and that I should be willing always 


as the librarian to bypass the Senate Library Committee 
and go when I thought necessary and ask for special funds, 
And he'd already phoned Chancellor Ray Allen and put in 
an appeal, and when he found that I hadn't followed it 
up, he was even madder. I know Wilbur was involved in 
this, too. And as a result, Berkeley bought the D. H. 
Lawrence collection for $12,000. Well, it was a residue 
collection, which I explained to Majl. It wasn't the 
cream; it was what was left after the Frieda Lawrence 
manuscripts had been picked over. That was another rea- 
son I didn't think it was absolutely distinguished and 
worth going after. 

But Ewing, oh, he made a lot of threats, then, that 
he was going to cut UCLA and everything out of his will. 
He wasn't going to do anything more for us. He just 
raised hell; he walked up and down. I was upset, too, 
I guess, and I tried to persuade him that I was doing 
what I thought was right, and we were both of us vir- 
tually in tears with distress and anger and everything 
else. It was a real fuck-up! 

MINK: Larry, you know this brings up naturally a point, 
that Vosper has thought nothing of asking for Regent's 
Contingency Funds, for Chancellor's Emergency Funds, for 
special funding for Turkish manuscripts or the Mennevee 
collection, vfhich O'Brien found in Europe, or a number 


of other collections which are all in the record. How 
do you explain this? Did you ever discuss this with 

POWELL: Well, it's easy. . . 

MINK: Well, the problem you had with the Library Com- 

POWELL: Yes, of course we did, and he's referred to 
it, I think, particularly in the first talk he gave to 
the Friends when he came back from Kansas, a little pamph- 
let called, "A Word to the Wise and Friendly." He speaks 
of the troubles that Powell had in his closing years 
with bureaucracy, and he meant the Library Committee. 
MINK: They weren't named. 

POWELL: They weren't named, but that's what he meant, 
and I had to do all this. And the reason, Jim, is be- 
cause we had a weak chancellor, you seeo We had Ray 
Allen in those closing years of mine, who was weak, vis- 
a-vis Dykstra or Sproul or Murphy. He didn't operate 
as a strong persono Now, Vosper came in, of course, 
with an absolute fireball of a chancellor, namely Frank- 
lin Murphy, and a tradition of operating which they'd 
developed in nine years at Kansas. They simply trans- 
posed this to UCLA, and the Senate Library Committee 
recognized this, that if they didn't get tough with 
Vosper that he'd get far more in a direct relationship 


with Murphy than he would get channeling everything 
through them. 

MINK: Well, wouldn't they still continue to be resent- 
ful of what they considered support from the administra- 
tion for the library at the expense of their own depart- 

POWELL: Well, one of the smartest things Murphy did-- 
you see, I worked a year with him as librarian before 
Vosper came back. I was serving as dean of the nev; 
school and University Librarian for that year. And he 
was a smart operator. We talked about this back in the 
winter of I959-I96O, when he was considering the job 
here. He came to see me twice, and the second time I 
had breakfast with him at the Bel-Air Hotel; he was out 
here to negotiate with the regents and we talked of 
all the problems. He asked me what the problems were, 
and I said, "One of them will be the Library Committee." 
And he said, "How should I meet this, because," he said, 
"I intend to deal directly with you whenever it seems 
advisable." I said, "Well, I think one of the smartest 
things you could do would be to meet straight off with 
the Library Committee and explain that there'll be more 
for everyone if they allow him to operate v;ith the li- 
brarian." So Murphy asked the Senate Library Committee 
if he could meet with them, and this was very soon after 


he came to campus--that is, July 1, 196I. And we had 
a long session in my office. Murphy and the Library 
Committee, I can't remember who was chairman of the 
committee then. 
MINK: It's in the record. 

POWELL: Yes. Bill Lessa, perhaps, the anthropologist? 
Anyway, Murphy put all his cards out. He said, "Look, 
I want more money for everybody and I'm going to get 
it. ' He said, "I want more money for your Contingency 
.Fund, I want more money for your departments, and I want 
more money for special purchases, and I want if neces- 
sary to be able to deal directly with Larry Powell." 
One of the nice things that he told Hansena was, "Al- 
ways put Larry Powell through when he phones because 
I know it will relate to books." This was always true. 
I could always get through no matter, except in a regents' 
meeting, but anytime else. And, Lord, I played this 
for all it was worth as librarian and then in my remain- 
ing years as director of the Clark. I went to see him 
and this was with the blessing of the Library Committee. 
And he always informed them. Murphy played rough, but 
he played fair. He'd inform people what he v;as doing. 
He'd say, "Look, stand back; I'm going to hit you." He'd 
give them a chance to get ready. 

I bought a number of things for the Clark. Oh, we 


had some marvelous times, because I was buying the Eric 
Gill, then, like mad from the estate, these great op- 
portunities that came along. I remember once I went 
over to see Murphy with an offer from Bertram Rota of 
about 500 volumes, I think, from Eric Gill's own library; 
it was some $2,000 or $3,000 that we were to pay for it. 
I was waiting in the outer office to see Murphy and Vice- 
Chancellor Foster Sherv/ood came along. He says, "What 
are you up to, Larry?" I said, "I want some money from 
Murphy." "How much?" he asked. "I want about $3,000 to 
buy this collection of books." Sherwood said, "Why are 
you always running to Murphy? Why don't you come to me 
sometimes?" I said, "You mean you'd give me $3,000?" 
"Well," he says, "I'll show you." God, I walked into 
Foster's office; he called up Beverly Liss or Jerry 
Fleischmann, whoever was doing the bookkeeping work, and 
he said, "Transfer $3,000 to the Clark Library fund for 
this purchase." Foster said, "You don't need to bother 
Murphy with these chicken-shit things." So I got the 
money out of Sherwood. 

Well, this was improvising, and I didn't do it 
again; I didn't go back to Sherwood for money. I knew 
that this was a kind of a gesture on his part to enhance 
his own position and ego, and I went right along with 
it, but I didn't go thereafter every time to Sherwood 


when I wanted money. Well, Murphy was great, and of 
course he and Vosper played this to the utmost, and 
that'll be a history when you interview Vosper--what 
Murphy did for him--that'll be a story. 
MINK: Well, I hate to ask you this question, but I'm 
going to ask it anyway, because. . . 
POWELL: I hate to answer it, but I'll answer it. 
MINK: Why then at the convocation on your retirement 
as dean of the library school, as it appeared to many 
of us, that Murphy gave a rather, shall I say, down- 
grading Powell speech. Really, it shocked many of us. 
POWELL: Is that what it sounded like? I couldn't hear 
him very well, of course. 

MINK: It was a bad room. Didn't people come to you 
afterwards and express surprise? 

POWELL: No. What did he say 3 for Christ's sake, Jim? 
MINK: I can't remember in context, but it left me with 
the impression that what had gone on before was pretty 
much small potatoes, but now we can look forward to a 
great era in library development. 

POWELL: Jim, I don't think so. Of course, I'm terribly 
thick-skinned. I have a great, built-in protective 
skin, and if anybody's shafting me, it's got to be an 
awfully sharp shaft for me to feel it. But I didn't feel 
any pain. Of course, it was a kind of a euphoric day. 


And keep in mind also that Murphy was mad about two 
things: one, the lousy lunch; and two, the loudspeaker 
system which they didn't check out right. He was mad 
as hell. But he was working on the talk right then be- 
fore he began to speak. I sat with him and he was jot- 
ting things down on his little 3^5 cards and was in 
pretty good humor with me, and he asked me a couple of 
questions--when did we get this, when did we get that? 
No, I didn't have this feeling, Jim. Of course, there's 
no text, is there, to go by, and we didn't record it. 
MINK: No, we didn't; we probably should have. We've 
gone straight through here with the Friends and com- 
munity support into Murphy. 

POWELL: Let me just interrupt here while we're on this. 
If I thought any speech that day was not lukewarm but 
was not all out, it was Vesper's. That was the one 
that didn't turn me on. Remember his was an amusing 
speech about Vosper and Powell always being taken one 
for the other. It was humorous and ironic, but it ac- 
tually didn't have anything to say, really, about my 
contributions or what I had done. Nothing. But it 
was an amusing speech, and Vosper is very cagey in 
these matters. Inevitably I think it comes out of 
his deep subconscious as it does out of the subconscious 
of a number v/ho have v/orked for me; I'm thinking of 


Neal, I'm thinking of Johnny Smith, I'm not thinking of 
Andy Horn. It's a sort of subconscious resentment that 
they did work for Larry Powell, and he beat them with a 
club sometimes and chewed them out. And I suppose this 
is the way that they express this. It isn't a resent- 
ment, but it's a kind of an irritant that's in their 
system. Do you know what I mean? 
MINK: A little needling effect. 

POWELL: Yes. Maybe you feel this same way, Jim? [laugh- 
ter] I gave you trouble. 
MINK: Man, you discovered me. 

POWELL: Hell, I didn't discover you; we did it together. 
MINK: Well, I just wanted to say that this has all been 
in the way of discussion of getting funds for the library, 
and I wanted now to go back to the area where we were in 
time and ask you about the appointment of Alice Humiston 
as permanent head of the Catalog Department in 19-^5. 
And this would have been one year after you'd been here. 
You came on July 1, 19'^4, right? 

MINK: You came as University Librarian, so you immediate- 
ly appointed Miss Humiston. Did you recognize in her 
great abilities as a cataloger? y 
POWELL: Good God, no! 
MINK: Good God, no? 


POWELL: V/ell, this was simply a matter of expediency, 
Jim. First of all, she'd been acting head of the Cata- 
log Department, because Ben Custer, then head of the 
department, was on war leave. Now, Ben Custer, God bless 
him, v/as a real prick. 
MINK: That's Arlene's husband. 

POWELL: Well, I don't know that he was that kind of a 
one, but as a bachelor here he was a bad actor. He was 
always pinching the girls and fooling around with them 
in the corridors. 
MINK: Nice. 

POWELL: Yes, nice when you could get it, but they aidn't 
like it, and there was a lot of resentment against him. 
He was a mama's boy. Remember, he lived with his mother 
here. He'd had one marriage that Mother came to live 
with them, and the wife went home. This was before 
Arlene (Kern) Custer. At any rate, it was a blessing 
when Ben Custer went on war leave, and he was still on 
leave when I became librarian, and I encouraged him not 
to come back. 

MINK: How did you do that? 

POWELL: Well, he took a better job, I think. Where was 
it? It was in Washington. The correspondence would 
show this, because it's in the records . I think I wrote 
him that I couldn't help, or maybe he wrote me and asked 


if he came back as head of Catalog Department, would 
there be an advancement there for him (he was thinking 
of an assistant librarianship) , and I think I wrote 
back and said, "No. There won't be." 

MINK: Well, you'd had a chance to observe him in action, 
and what kind of an opinion had you formed of him? Is 
this what you said? 

POWELL: I thought he was good technically and a good 
worker, but he was emotionally immature--that is, he 
was a mama's boy, and he couldn't have had the respect 
of the women that were working for him. He didn't have 
it when he was here and he wouldn't have had it when he 
came back. So I encouraged him not to come back. Well, 
I had the problem of my coming in as an upstart of recog- 
nizing the old guard. And here was the old guard really, 
three of them: Miss Bryan, and Miss Coldren and Miss 

MINK: Miss Coldren. 

POWELL: Fanny Alice. There was no problem with her 
because she was competent. She was an excellent refer- 
ence librarian and her department was outstanding. Miss 
Bryan I knew we'd run into problems with eventually, but 
there was nothing to be done about it until she started 
it. But with Miss Humiston, I thought, she'd been act- 
ing head for a year and a half, and it would have been 


tad not to continue her. Second, there was no one in 
the department then who was outstanding, I think. The 
chief classifier was the brainiest person, then--Sadie 
McMurry--but she wasn't an administrator; she didn't 
want to be one. Mate McCurdy was still at the Clark 
Library. Jeannette Hagan was too young. Rudy Engelbarts 
was a Mr. Milktoast. So it seemed the expedient, rational, 
and the political thing to do was to continue Miss Humi- 
ston, but right away I saw that she'd need help--well, 
not right away, but soon thereafter. And you remember, 
I appointed what I called an Administrative Committee 
to help her run the department, and this v;as Mate McCurdy, 
who'd then been transferred from the Clark, and I think 
it was Sadie McMurry and Jeannette Hagan. 
MINK: Did she welcome this? 

POWELL: She welcomed everything that I did, at least in 
her meetings with me. God knows what she thought or 
said elsewhere, but she was discreet and cooperative. 
I don't know that I ever trusted her completely. Cer- 
tainly I never confided in her, but I told her this is 
what was going to happen. It had to; she couldn't run 
the department by herself; and so that committee really 
ran it. 

MINK: Mate McCurdy was on it. 
POWELL: Mate and Sadie McMurry and Jeannette Hagan, 


and eventually Rudy, and then that led to Rudy's suc- 
ceeding her as head cataloger. 

MINK: The spokesman for the old guard. Miss Bryan, would 
have indicated that Miss Humiston was a sell-out and 
that she supported you ; therefore, you made her head 
of the department. 

POWELL: I think that's one way of putting it. Yes, that's 
quid pro quo. 
MINK: Right. 

POWELL: And basic in administration: you never appoint 
anyone as an administrative assistant who wouldn't sup- 
port you, for God's sake. 

MINK: In other words, when you came in, there was much 
opposition to you, hut she immediately went over to your 
side and this was her reward. 

POWELL: No, that's an exaggerated statement because 
Miss Humiston never did anything in a positive way. Ev- 
erything was passive with her and she was passive. They 
all were passive--Miss Coldren, too. "Well, wait and 
see; watch and wait." They were right, Jim. Mine was 
an unprecedented appointment and a potentially dangerous 
one, I suppose, my being a man. 
MINK: They felt. 

POWELL: Yes, well, I think they were right, the appoint- 
ment of an inexperienced administrator. 


MINK: Well, did you feel that Miss Humiston carried out 
her work satisfactorily, that she did a good job in the 
Catalog Department while she was head of it? 
POWELL: She worked at it, Jim; I can say that. She 
worked long hours. She was conscientious, she reported 
regularly and in certain depth, and I felt with the as- 
sistance she had--I'm thinking of Sadie McMurry, who v/as 
a woman I respected very highly. 
MINK: Very sound. 

POWELL: Yes, very sound and who really had a tremendous 
grasp of the Library of Congress classification. You 
see, I had observed her for years when her desk was in 
the Bibliography Room between the Catalog and Acquisi- 
tions Department. I did lots of checking in there. I 
watched Sadie McMurry through those five years, at work 
in her quiet way, and I went to her many times with ques- 
tions about the collection. If she had had more adminis- 
trative get-up-and-get-at, I'd certainly made her head 
of the department, but she didn't want it; she wouldn't 
have accepted if it'd been offered to her. 
MINK: Well, I think it's a foregone conclusion that the 
catalog section of the library attracts people who are 
passive and to a certain extent introverted. It also 
may attract people from time to time who clash with one 
another. Would you think that Miss Humiston 's role v;as 


that of a peacemaker, and did you ever have that in mind 
at the time that you made the appointment? 
POWELL: Well, I thought it would be an acceptable ap- 
pointment to the department. She had their respect--and 
affection, even--and I thought she would be kind of a 
quiet catalyst. 

MINK: Were you aware of the in-fighting in the Catalog 
Department at the time? 

POWELL: I don't think I was. No, I don't think I was. 
MINK: And therefore, you did not appoint her with this 
in mind. 

MINK: That is, as a peacemaker. 

POWELL: No, because I'd never had a pipeline into that 
department in the sense that I had through Debbie or 
through my own experience in acquisitions, or in Ardis 
Lodge in the Reference Department, the way I had contacts 
with the younger staff members who were perceptive. I 
had none in the Catalog Department, since Engelbarts was 
not articulate. (Ah, there's a guy hugging a girl out 
there, Jim, that's distracting me out on the steps. 
That's one of the advantages of this location.) 
MINK: You're giving the editor a hard time, now. [laugh- 
ter ] And so am I. Well, I think that Miss Humiston did 
play this role. But let me ask you another question: 


you weren't really turned on by cataloging and really 
didn't know too much about it and weren't really in- 
terested as much in the Catalog Department as well as it 
ran--would that be a fair statement? 

POWELL: That's an absolutely fair statement , yes. This 
was true then, and it was true all the v;ay through. I 
simply didn't have the knowledge or interest, and I 
think this is true also of circulation work. I think 
Debbie used to say so. She'd say, "Well, really you're 
an acquisitions person; that's your chief interest, build- 
ing the collection." And I said, "I know it. I have 
good people like you to run the other shows." 
MINK: You really saw this as the role of the librarian 
at UCLA. 

POWELL: At that time. At that time, sure, and it was 
my bag, too. It was what I was best fitted for. In 
other words, I didn't fancy myself as a universalist, 
as another--what ' s his name in Newark? Dana--I wasn't 
another John Cotton Dana. I wasn't a universal brain 
in librarianship. I was a kind of specialist, and I 
recognized it. This was a weakness, too. I think a bad 
decision I made later in the cataloging was not to include 
subject holdings in the branch libraries in the main 
library catalog. You know that still haunts me. 
MINK: It'll haunt you, but wouldn't it be fair to say 


that this declsion--was this decision arrived at after 

much discussion in a long series of weekly head meetings? 

POWELL: Yes^ sure it was. 

MINK: So you were taking into account the advice of the 

department heads on this? 

POWELL: Yes, that's right. 

MINK: Or were they all saying, "No, no, no." And you 

supported the other side. 

POWELL: No, I think it was a consensus, as I remember 

it; the minutes would show it. But we had a survey of 

the catalog by a faculty questionnaire, and I think we had 

a task-force kind of survey of the public catalog. And 

did we have an outside consultant in? 

MINK: I don't remember if we did. 

POWELL: I don't remember. 

MINK: The records would show. 

POWELL: Not the way we had Swank. But at any rate, then 

we had a look at the general assistance budget, what we 

had for costs of maintaining and developing the catalog, 

and it just seemed that this was just one thing that we 

couldn't do, and so we didn't do it. I think a man like 

Coney at Berkeley, who was administering the Berkeley 

library, and who was much more interested in his grasp 

of cataloging and classification, might very v;ell have 

come to a different decision. I didn't have the knowledge. 


really, to either discern that they were wrong and over- 
ride them. I think it was a consensus that I went along 
with. Wasn't Gordon Williams then in charge? 
MINK: He was a very strong advocate , and he was in 
charge of technical processes. 

POWELL: That's right. I was depending on Williams' 
advice on this. And, God knows, we kicked it around 
in the heads' meeting week after week. The minutes 
would show this. There was endless discussion of this. 


NOVEMBER 19, 19^9 

POWELL: I went over what I did say in the autobiography 
with Ralph Rice, incidentally, of the lav; school. 
MINK: This is in relation to whom? 

POWELL:, Coffman, what I said about Coffman, led to his 
dismissal. We toned it down a little, x didn't want 
to get caught with a libel suit. 

MINK: Right, especially with a lawyer. Well, can we 
begin then in this discussion of the Law Library, after 
those off-the-cuff comments, with the actual establish- 
ment of the law school. Word comes dovrn that the nioney 
is being put into the coffers by the legislature, and 
in spite of Robert Gordon Sproul, the law school is 

MINK: So it's got to have a branch library. What were 
the problems as they came up on the horizon? 
POWELL: Well, I think on the horizon came J. A. C. Grant, 
professor of political science, who was, I suppose, the 
closest to a lawyer that the political science depart- 
ment had, unless it was Charles Grove Haines. Grant did 
a great deal of his research in the [Los Angeles] County 
Law Library. He was the liaison with Tom Dabagh, the 
county law librarian, and with the lawyers downtovm. 


Grant appeared in my office and said, "Here's what has 
happened--here's $50,000 to start a law library with. 
How do we do this?" 
MINK: How do we do this? 

POVffiLL: Yes. And I said, "VJell, we need a basic buying 
list." "Well, who makes it?" And how did we make it? 
I think Tom Dabagh probably in the County Lav/ Library 
was the chief helper, and Cliff Grant. They put together 
a basic list. Who was head of acquisitions then? 
MINK: Would it be Johnny Smith? 

POWELL: Yes, and we either appointed or had on the staff 
then a little gal named Molly Hollreigh. I don't know 
whether we appointed her for this job or she was here 
and we drafted her, but she was a little gal from the 
Pacific Northwest, a graduate of the University of Wash- 
ington Library School, and she had a lot of zip. She 
was a kind of a little female Johnny Smith, and we gave 
her the $50,000 and said, "Get out there and spend it." 
And that's the last I heard of it. She and Smith and 
the Acquisitions Department did a crash job. They were 
based right about where you are now, Jim, down in that 
basement corridor in one of those rooms; that's where 
the temporary law library processing was. 

And as I recall, the buying also took in mind what 
we already had, but Grant (and this v/as the advantage 


of having a member of our non-law faculty on the com- 
mittee) protected the general library in political science 
holdings and would not agree to transfer a great many 
things. He said, "We'll have to duplicate a certain 
number of things." Well^ I think then the appointment 
of the law librarian was initiated and more or less 
carried out by this steering committee on the law school. 
That would be Grant and Paul Dodd, and I don't know who 

MINK: Well, that's in the record. Were you consulted 
by this committee? 

POWELL: Yes — yes, indeed, ?nd of course Vosper was as- 
sistant librarian then and was close to the faculty and 
to Grant and to Dodd; we were consulted and warmly en- 
dorsed. Of course, because we knew Tom Dabagh. We 
knew him through Sydney Mitchell. He and the Mitchells 
were great friends, you see, because Dabagh had been 
at Berkeley as law librarian, hadn't he, before he be- 
came county law librarian. He was Boalt Hall librarian 
at Berkeley. He was a great friend of the Mitchells, 
and we knew him in the — he'd been a member of the Li- 
brarians' Chowder and Marching Society. V/e used to go 
to it and we'd see Dabagh. We were pleasant colleagues, 
and we knew Bill Stern, his foreign law librarian who 
did lots of checking out here at UCLA in our bibliographical 


sources. So that was entirely with our blessing, and 
it was a wonderful appointment initially. But of course 
what screwed it up was the dean, L. Dale Coffman, who 
was on the surface a gentleman and a scholar, but under- 
neath this he was a conniver and determined to establish 
an independent law library. 

MINK: At this point, what note would you make of the 
fact that this is traditional in the United States, in- 
dependent autonomous law libraries? 

POWELL: I knew this, and yet I think I was persuaded by 
the development at UCLA, the pattern that we'd estab- 
lished here in a new place, that is, of biomediclne and 
of engineering, that all of the emerging libraries should 
be coordinated. I think here was a chance to do it, and 
there was administrative backing to do it, and also the 
wish of the law librarian and of Professor Grant that 
this coordination be effected. In other words, I had 
everything on my side at UCLA in administration, in facul- 
ty, and in precedent to do it differently, because the 
tradition had also been true of medicine that it be 
separate, yet we were doing it effectively in a coor- 
dinated operation. So I went ahead on that premise that 
it would work. Well, it didn't. And there was a lot of 
hassling and a lot of dirty pool. I hadn't been in Eng- 
land more than a week, I guess, in September 1950, when 


I had a cable from Paul Dodd. V/hy it was from Dodd was 
because he was chairman of that committee that was run- 
ning the university. Dykstra died in May of 1950, and 
in the autumn there was. . . 

MINK: This was the interim deans' committee: Dodd^, 
Knudsen^ and Warren. 

POWELL: And Dodd cabled me, "Is it true that before 
leaving the United States you agreed with Dean Coffman 
that the Law Library should withdraw and become its ovm 
autonomous unit?" I cabled back, "Absolutely not; it's 
a damn lie. I never made any kind of an agreement." 
Well, this was the kind of tactics that Coffman follov/ed. 
He lied about it. 

MINK: He was taking advantage of the fact you were away. 
POWELL: Of my absence. Yes. But Dodd was shrewd enough 
to cable me, and of course I denied it. Well, then, it 
went on back and forth with all kinds of trouble. And 
Dabagh then became increasingly unhappy, because he 
found that Coffman did not want him to remain loyal to 
the library. He wanted Dabagh to join him, Coffman, 
and Harold Verrall, and the others in the law school 
who wanted to pull away. And Dabagh, a man of honor and 
integrity, did not want to do this. Of course, it ended 
up by Dabagh leaving, resigning, I don't remember the 
details of it, but I know it was a great loss to us. 


and Coffman's stooge, Louis Piacenza, became- -v;hat? act- 
ing law librarian. 

Oh, I had one marvelous blow-up. After Dabagh had 
left, I'd come back from Europe and I v;as in my office 
one day, and Louis Piacenza turned up with Miles Price, 
who was the law librarian of Columbia University, really 
the dean of American law librarians, and he was visiting 
UCLA for some reason or another--probably on accredita- 
tion for the Law Library kind of thing. And, of course, 
Coffman kept saying, "We won't get accredited if it isn't 
a separate institutiono " He kept saying this. 

I hadn't seen Piacenza since Dabagh had left and 
gone to Berkeley as Sproul's assistant. I just hadn't 
seen him, and there he was in my doorway with Miles Price, 
and I lost my temper. This was a very unfortunate thing 
I did because Price was a guest. I remember I said to 
Louis, "Any son of a bitch that's willing to put a knife 
in a man's back the way you did to Tom Dabagh has a hell- 
uva lot of guts to turn up in my office." I said, "If 
you want to leave Mr. Price here, I'll talk with him, but 
I won't talk with you." God, they were flabbergasted. 
They both turned on their heel and walked out. (Brady 
would verify this, because, my God, I was mad! ) 

That son-of-a-bitch Piacenza. He ran right back 
and cried to Coffman. Coffman called up Ray Allen or 


wrote him a letter and said^ "Our great visiting law li- 
brarian from Columbia has been insulted by Powell." So 
Allen called me on the carpet. I told him exactly what 
I'd done: that I was sorry that I'd made this scene in 
front of Miles Price, but I just couldn't stand the shock 
of seeing that son-of-a-bitch Piacenza, and I'd blown 
my top. And I said, "I'd do it again, I'm afraid. My 
sense of loyalty to Dabagh was outraged by the whole 
conduct." I walked up and down and Allen calmed me down. 

I didn't lose my temper very often--and Brady would 
vouch for this--one or two times, three or four, half a 
dozen maybe; but it was generally over a question of loy- 
alty. I believe in loyalty even though a son of a bitch 
is involved. If Piacenza had been loyal and still been 
a son of a bitch, I'd have forgiven him, but he was disloyal 
and a son of a bitch. I know how hurt Dabagh had been. 

Well, this had repercussions later. I turned up 
at Columbia University in 195^ as a visiting professor 
in their library school. Miles Price was on the faculty 
of the Columbia Library School, and there v;e v/ere at 
lunch and across the table from each other and I apolo- 
gized to him then. I said, "Miles, I'm sorry I lost 
my temper. This is why." He said, "Well, I understood, 
but it was a shock." So we made it up there and he came 
back and called on me later. 


And believe It or not, Jim, I made up with Louis 
Piacenza; we got back on a speaking basis. Do you know 
how it came about? In a human way, through the big Mali- 
bu fire of 1956--no, not through that, through the Bel- 
Air fire, when Louis lost his house, but he saved their 
dogs and at some hazard to himself. They're poodles, and 
they brought them up to the kennels near us, the Malibu 
kennels, where we boarded our dogs, and they told me what 
Louis and his wife (his second wife, who was a very nice 
person, incidentally) had done to save their dogs. And 
I said, "Well, God, if that guy can do this for his poodles 
he can't be such a son of a bitch," and I called him up 
and I said, "Louis, sorry you lost your house; I'm glad 
you saved your dogs." We had lunch together and we agreed 
that we'd forget all the hard times. 

Then of course when he died of cancer it was sad. 
His problem was, Jim, that he was a small peg in a big 
hole, and he knew it, you see. He had no law degree, 
he had no library degree, he was just a clerk that Tom 
Dabagh brought from the Columbia Library. Did you know 

MINK: No, I didn't. 

POWELL: Yes. He was a chief clerk in the Columbia Law 
Library that Dabagh had recruited. That's what I meant 
by a stab in the back. 


MINK: You feel then that Piacenza worked with Coffman 
to bring about Dabagh's resignation, to force it. 
POWELL: Yes, definitely. Tom told me. And the other 
snake in the grass was this Harold Verrall, a law pro- 
fessor who was chairman of the Faculty Committee on the 
Law Library. He was a rat. 

MINK: I guess I was going to ask you, did you at any 
time attempt to reason (because this is your technique) 
with Coffman, to sit down and talk to him about this, 
to try and get him to see the whole picture and to see 
how the Law Library could benefit from its liaison with 
the main library? 

POWELL: I did this, I think, chiefly through Andy Horn, 
who was associate librarian in those years, and Andy v^as 
our chief negotiator in this. I think Andy would bear 
this out. The file would bear this out. I think Andy 
negotiated with the Law Library Committee, and maybe 
with Coffman, too, but after Coffman' s attempt, when I 
was in England, to undercut me, I don't think I ever got 
together with him after that. 

MINK: Well, maybe the point here was that you were away 
in England on that first buying trip, and all of this 
occurred during that time. Had you been here, would you 
have attempted personally to negotiate with him. 
POWELL: Yes, I would have. I did with Boelter when we 


had troubles, and I didn't need to with Stafford Warren. 
But that was my nature: to go and try to put out a fire 
myself, and with whatever prestige the office had and 
whatever personal effectiveness I might wield. Of course, 
I never liked the son of a bitch--Coffman. 
MINK: Were you ever called upon to present evidence to 
the committee which was established to review Coffman's 
deanship and to determine whether or not he would be re- 

POWELL: No, I never was. My pipeline into the school 
from way back was Ralph Rice, the professor who was the 
leader of the anti-Coffman faction. He is the Connell 
Professor of Law now and one of my close friends here on 
campus, not because of that, but just because of general 
interests we have. He used to bring me up to date some- 
times on things that were going on. No, I was never 
called later to give any evidence. I don't think I was 
needed. I think there was so much evidence. 
MINK: Were you aware of the central problems through 
Rice, and what did Rice tell you? 

POWELL: I think he told of Coffman's unfortunate reac- 
tionary political and anti-Semitic utterances in class and 
his attempts to indoctrinate the students in a particu- 
lar point of view. He was of extreme right-wing politi- 
cal viewpoints, and anti-Semitic, anti-Negro^ he was a 


real John Bircher. And this was what upset Rice, I think, 
who was not a radical by any means. He's an extremely 
conservative-liberal, levelheaded guy. They couldn't 
stand this very much longer. 

MINK: Were you aware of the Cota affair? He was the law 
student who claimed he was dismissed on anti-Semitic 
grounds by grade-tampering? 

POWELL: I read this in the Bruin , I suppose. Wasn't it 
in the Bruin, it was busted open? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: That's all I knew about it. Maybe Rice talked 
to me about it, but I didn't follow it closely. I fig- 
ured the guy would hang himself. And I kept seeing Da- 
bagh, now and then; he came through campus on special 
missions for Sproul. And, of course, the wonderful re- 
tribution and return of justice in the whole thing is 
that it was Tom Dabagh who really broke through and led 
to the founding of the library school. It was the special 
committee that he headed for the raaster--what is it?-- 
the commission, or what is it called? The coordinating 

MINK: To implement the master plan. 

POWELL: Yes. Dabagh did a special task-force job for 
them, and he came to see us, and I was able to give him 
all the information that Page and Jim Cox had accumulated 


on the need for a library school. Dabagh then really 
wrote the ticket that led to the establishment of the 
library school, and not a helluva long time after that 
he died. 

One more thing on Dabagh, Jim, before we go on: 
when I withdrew in June of 1951 W candidacy for the 
state librarianship (I was looking at my files here the 
other day), I withdrew in favor of Tom Dabagh, who an- 
nounced that he would be a candidate and would have been 
a great appointment. But instead they appointed Carma 
Zimmerman. But I had great feeling for Tom that we owed 
him a great deal for what he'd done to establish the UCLA 
Law Library, and then later, of course, for what he did 
to establish the library school. 
MINK: Yes, indeed. 
POWELL: He was a sweet guy. 

MINK: Now, in the Acquisitions Department--I wonder if 
you could speak about the appointment of [Richard] O'Brien 
and the problems that developed in that area leading to 
the [Raynard] Swank survey. 

POWELL: Yes, that was a sticky one wasn't it? Well, 
let's see, Johnny Smith was head of the department, and 
we were convinced, as I said the other day, that he'd 
do better elsewhere. We were doing the things that led 
to his appointment as city librarian of Santa Barbara. 


In the meantime, we were faced with the problem of re- 
placing Bob Quinsey, I think, who was in charge of the 
undergraduate library, the developing College Library. 
Quinsey had been pulled away by Bob Vosper to go to Kan- 
sas, and Everett Moore was not too unhappy about this 
because Quinsey apparently was giving Everett trouble. 
MINK: How did he give Everett trouble? 

POWELL: Well, I think he was acting emotionally unstable, 
He was getting into maybe a little jam with his female 
student assistant. He was going to see a psychiatrist, 
and Everett didn't feel that he was stable enough to head 
this. So when Vosper took liim, everybody cheered. And 
Bob Vosper apparently never asked about any of these 
problems. Of course, they really developed when Quinsey 
was in Kansas. He had a lot of trouble there, which led 
to his leaving. At any rate, Vosper solved that one for 
us without effort on our part. 

But there I was faced, rather suddenly I think, with 
a replacement. I'd hired O'Brien originally in the class 
of 1950 from the library school, as I remember, and we 
hired him and Dave Heron, I think, in the same class, 
for the Reference Department, and O'Brien appealed to 
me. Every new appointment in reference I used to give 
a special assignment just to see how they did, and this 
was with Everett's OK. O'Brien did a couple for me that 


showed that he had a good knowledge of sources, parti- 
cularly, continental--German and French--bibliographical 
sources. And he did one job for me on a purchase of French 
newspapers that was well done. 

And then Jim Breasted, a professor who went over to 
the Los Angeles County Museum as director, remember, came 
to me once and said he needed a head of the County Museum 
library which was then both art and science and industry 
(it hadn't been separated). I didn't see any future for 
O'Brien in the Reference Department and here was a pro- 
motional opportunity, and we were always trying to bring 
these about outside the system when we couldn't do it 
within it. So we gave O'Brien to Jim Breasted as his 
librarian and he served over there very well for a couple 
of years, maybe longer. 

Breasted then, of course, got into a jam. with the 
supervisors and was fired, and O'Brien made noises to 
me that maybe he wanted out, too. Just about that time 
Quinsey left, so I suggested to O'Brien that he come 
back and be the undergraduate librarian. This would 
put him back in Everett's jurisdiction (Everett was run- 
ning that outfit). So that was going to happen. Then 
the Johnny Smith thing broke, and he went off to Santa 
Barbara, and then I had to replace the head, and I got 
the "bright idea" that O'Brien might even do better in 


acquisitions than he would In the undergraduate library. 
So I guess we offered him this choice and he took the 

Well, I don't know how he might have done if the 
department had been staffed a little differently, but 
we had a real staffing problem in there because Betty 
Rosenberg was assistant head of the department, and she 
and Barbara Kelley, who was the chief accounting clerk 
for the department, were engaged in a kind of a Jewish- 
Irish hassle, a real brannigan. It got to the point where 
they weren't speaking to each other. They hadn't spoken 
to each other for about three months, Rosenberg and 
Kelley, and there they were at adjoining desks. And it 
was an intolerable situation, a kind of a polarization 
of the department. You were either Kelley or Rosenberg. 

So here comes O'Brien walking into this. Well, I 
don't know the chronology, but at one point I got so 
mad about it that I called Kelley and Rosenberg into my 
office one morning at eight o'clock and I said, "I'm 
bloody fed up with you two gals not speaking to each 
other. It's demoralizing the department and we're not 
leaving this room until you agree to speak to each other 
and you've shaken hands and made up." And I said, "if 
you're not willing to do this, I'll have one or both of 
you fired, and you can appeal it .just as high as you want. 


but I'll make it stick. You either play ball or get out, 
and if you won't get out, I'll throw you out." 

They just sat there and looked at me. And I sat 
there and went away signing papers and v/orking at my 
desk, and about an hour passed I guess. The gals just 
sat there. Finally Betty says, "Well, I'll play ball if 
you will, Barbara." Barbara says, "All right, let's play 
ball." I said, "Well, what's your trouble? Who wants to 
talk first?" So I got them both to talk, each blaming 
the other. We were there about three hours, I think, 
and it was kind of a psychotheraputic device. [laughter] 
MINK: Did you envision yourself as a headshrinker? 
POWELL: Yes, as a headshrinker. Where's the couch, 
girls? Well, it was good. They went into all the problems 
of their authority and their position, and I got a real 
insight, of course, into what was wrong with both of them. 
Well, poor O'Brien, there he was. I pushed him into the 
middle of this. They made it up and they did speak, but 
they didn't like each other, of course. I don't know what 
the immediate problems in there were, but I know that 
O'Brien's personality was just as problematical as these 
two girls'. He was strong-minded and blind to a lot of 
his own ways. He v;as tactless in a lot of v/ays, with a 
manner that put people off, didn't it? It was a kind of 
a patronizing manner, wouldn't you call it, Jim? 


MINK: You're the one that's making the evaluation. 
POWELL: Yes, help me, chum. You knew him.. It was con- 
descending, lofty, and with a New York accent and all, 
that put people off. I brought him in a couple of times 
and chewed hell out of him. He wanted to be promoted 
to--God knows what. V/hat was he? Was he an L-III? He 
wanted to be an L-IV. I told him why I wasn't promoting 
him. And in one year I didn't give him a merit increase, 
and he came in mad as hell. I said, "Lock, chum, you're 
asking for it; I'll tell you what's wrong with you. You 
say the wrong things to people, including me and my wife 
Fay, for example." We were at a party, I think some af- 
fair on campus, and O'Brien's opening remark to Fay was, 
"Well, what are you doing here?" I said, "Goddamn it, 
don't ever ask a woman that, particularly when she's 
the librarian's wife and she's been here longer than you 
have and she's part of the university community. You 
don't ask her what she's doing here. You say, 'I'm glad 
to see you' or 'how nice you could come.'" And he said, 
"I realize that; I blurted it out, didn't I?" You see, 
if he did this to me, I fear what he did to the lower 
echelons. He must have really pissed them off. 

Well, we had the problem at the same time of Betty 
Rosenberg, who the longer she was in the department, the 
more she insisted on doing her work and everybody else's. 


too. She was a perfectionist and a revisionist. So 
she stayed after work and revised everybody else's work, 
but she couldn't keep up with it. The volume piled up 
and up and up, and the faculty orders v/ere In arrears, 
and I was getting more and more complaints from the fa- 
culty that their orders weren't being checked. And when 
they were checked, they weren't being typed; Kelley blamed 
Rosenberg and Rosenberg blamed bad checking, and I guess 
they both blamed O'Brien for being authoritarian and God 
knows what else. Who was in charge of the department-- 
Gordon Williams? 

MINK: Gordon was in charge of technical processes. 
POWELL: Yes, and Betty didn't like him because Gordon 
used to come in and put his feet on her desk and make 
her mad, and he pushed O'Brien around, and O'Brien said, 
"Well, I'm the head of the department, but Gordon's got 
all the authority and all the classification." And for 
Christ's sake, it was one of those things. 

Then, of course, I had the problems between Brad- 
street and Kelley (we ought to talk about those some 
time). This was a personal mistake I made to allow them 
to work in the same area, because they polarized everybody, 
you see. It was a mistake. I should have applied the 
husband-wife rule, that any two people living together-- 
man and a woman, or man and man, or woman and woman- - 


shouldn't be allowed to work in the same area. I think 
this was a mistake I made. And yet, the longer I vjas 
here the more I owed to Brady in the way of service and 
loyalty and devotion and protections against all the 
demands made on me that I couldn't satisfy that she di- 
verted. So 1 owed her a lot, and I suppose I rewarded 
her by allowing her to keep her roommate in the job next 
door. But it was wrong; it was a mistake--one of the 
worst mistakes I made. 

MINK: Well, since you brought it up, I'll just ask you 
one question: did you have a feeling that this situation 
created a staff morale problem in that there were many 
on the staff who felt that Bradstreet and Kelley and 
those who they were close to were a spy system for the 
University Librarian within the system? 
POWELL: Well, I don't know that. I didn't have the 
feeling that Kelley was, but certainly Brady was. She 
was ears and eyes, and I benefited, 
MINK: Your own? 

MINK: For example, for many years they rode back and 
forth with Tanya Keatinge, and then poor Tanya, bless her 
soul, was suspect. Were you aware of this staff morale 
POWELL: I vfas, and I could solve it only, I think, by 


transferring Kelley out. And if I did that I probably 
would have lost Brady. I had. . . 
MINK: A real problem. 

POWELL: I had a problem, and Brady was given to tears 
and she would crack up very easily. She was under all 
kinds of pressure. She was dominated by Kelley, and of 
course they broke up finally, which was a blessing, and 
then Brady entered into a kind of a new life. It was 
an abnormal, bad situation, with Kelley really being a 
bad person. I don't mean morally. They weren't les- 
bians. They were not, Jim, at all; there wasn't any 
sexual relationship between them. It was one of those-- 
it'd make a marvelous play--kind of symbiotic relation- 
ships in the beginning that worked, and then it went bad. 
But I was boxed in and I didn't take the steps that I 
should have early enough. At any rate, here was all 
this situation that O'Brien was in the midst of, and I'm 
only amazed that he lasted as long as he did. Well, 
those were the problems; the main problem in the depart- 
ment was that we weren't getting the orders out and we 
weren't processing the stuff. 

MINK: Well, did you come to the conclusion that this 
was more personality than it was actual work load? 
POWELL: Both. I thought the personalities were wrong 
and the system was wrong. That's when I asked Ray Swank 


to come down from Stanford and do this survey. He spent 
about a week here, and he worked quietly and I think with 
great skill. I'd seen his work and knew him. He and Ar- 
cher, I think, had been graduate students together at Chi- 
cago. He really got into that Acquisitions Department 
and didn't upset them at all. He worked quietly with them. 
He met with them individually and as a department, and 
then we all met in my office as a department and with Swank. 
We tried to communicate among us in every possible way. 
I wanted to do two things: I wanted to solve the person- 
nel situation, and I also wanted to change the routines. 
MINK: Before he began his survey was he aware, Larry, of 
the personnel situation in the department? 
POWELL: Yes. His first day here he came up to Malibu 
and dined and stayed overnight with us, and we spent the 
whole evening, Ray and I, talking about it. And of course 
Gordon Williams had talked with him earlier. So, yes, 
he was aware of everything. 
MINK: He'd have to be in order to. . . 
POWELL: That's right. 

MINK: It had to be taken into consideration. 

POliTELL: Yes, another problem with Betty Rosenberg and 

her perfectionist ways was her high professionalization. 

She didn't believe that checking could be done lower than 

the professional level. She was opposed to clericals 


and student assistant use; she wanted a high degree of 
professlonalization in the department. Of course, the 
whole trend of the Swank report was away from this; it 
was to deprofessionalize, to use more clericals and more 
graduate student, TA-type of checkers. It was also to 
create the new position for Betty Rosenberg as a biblio- 
grapher where she would be by herself in a professional 
position. We talked over the results and the recommen- 
dations that was to create a new position of bibliogra- 
phical assistant to the librarian. 

Well, it worked out from that point of view. It 
relieved the department of Betty--and I mean this in 
the best sense, because she was the wrong person in the 
wrong place--and put her in direct relationship with me. 
I was one person that she respected, as she didn't re- 
spect O'Brien or Gordon Williams. She respected me, and 
I knew more than she did, and she knew it--that is, 
about books and bibliographical matters--and she'd work 
her ass off for me, and she did. Good Lord, I used her, 
and this pleased her enormously; there was no problem. 

Well, I broke the whole thing in a departmental 
meeting; I called the whole department into my office 
and told them what we were going to do. We spent a whole 
morning talking about it. Betty spoke up and O'Brien 
spoke. Swank had gone then, I guess, but anyway, his 


written report was circulated. I think it did some good. 
But it didn't solve O'Brien's problems in the long run, 
and then they came to a head in my last years, I think, 
as librarian. He and Kelley came into real confronta- 
tions. She was insubordinate and wouldn't do what he 
wanted, and I told him that he could fire her, that I 
would back him. And, of course, he did, through a trans- 
fer to another department. We unloaded her. I don't 
know where Brady was at that point. Did I do this or 
did Vosper do this, Jim? At what point did Kelley leave 
the department? 

MINK: She left the department. . . 

POWELL: After I left the llbrarianship. Wasn't it un- 
der Vosper? 

MINK: Yes, I believe it was. 

POWELL: You see, Brady had left, so there wasn't any 
problem. It solved itself; both of them left. I couldn't 
have done it, in other words, while Brady was still here 
without losing her. 

MINK: Well, it was never said, but I assume correctly-- 
do I not? --that a sine qua non of Vesper's coming was 
Bradstreet's leaving? 

POWELL: Yes. We ought to air that and get the record 
straight. Yes it was, and Brady knew this in the begin- 
ning and recognized it 3 but as the time came for me to 


leave and him to come in, she weakened. She didn't know 
where she'd go. Mildred Foreman had been working on a 
transfer, and there wasn't anything that opened up on 
that senior administrative level. So, Brady, bless her, 
with the mistaken idea that it would work, asked me and 
asked Vosper if she could stay as Vosper's administra- 
tive assistant. In fact, both of us had the courage to 
say no to her--no, it wouldn't work; he had to have his 
own. And she was a very unhappy girl for awhile. 
MINK: Well, then he had to have his own, and yet he 
didn't have his own. 

POWELL: Well, Sue Folz had only been in for a few months, 
It was the same situation, Jim, that I inherited when 
Bradstreet, who had been with Mr. Goodwin only a year, 
came over to me. She knew enough about this system and 
was not too devoted to the incumbent. So "Vosper bene- 
fited from Sue Folz in exactly the same way that I did 
from Bradstreet. 

Well, then my real headache was that Brady didn't 
get placed, and the next thing she wanted to do was to 
go along with me to the library school. She thought that 
she'd go up there, and I was determined that I'd start 
fresh, first of all with Ellie Schuetze, who v;as Andy's 
secretary, v7ho would be mine in the beginning, and that 
eventually I'd have an administrative assistant that 


was not involved in the hassles that had been going on, 
and so I had to say no to Brady. And, of course. Page 
Ackerman was doing everything she could to get Brady a 
place. Page at one point asked me if I would reconsider 
and take Brady up to the library school, but I wouldn't 
weaken. I knew that the cycle had played out, that she'd 
fulfilled her role with me and that there wasn't any more 
to do together. We'd done itj so I never weakened and 
I wouldn't do it. 

MINK: Well, wasn't it also more or less a sine qua non 
that Andy Horn wouldn't have come as assistant dean if 
Bradstreet were to have been the administrative assistant? 
POWELL: Definitely. Yes. Andy felt just as strongly as 
I did, sure. Of course, it was a bitter blow to Brady 
eventually, when we brought Flo Williams back, the woman 
that Brady had trained but who had been out of the system 
for several years and had never been involved. I think 
Flo was a real genius for relationships. She'd never 
been partisan, had she, to any; she was always above it 
all. She still is, bless her; she's a great woman. So 
we were terribly fortunate in getting Flo to come out of 
retirement back to the library school. 

Then the little fairytale ending was Brady's coming 
into her own as administrative assistant to the dean of 
[the School of] Public Health, and she's had this great 


life. She's not only a senior administrative assistant 
now, she's an administrative planning officer, I think-- 
a higher classification. She's probably making $12,000 
or $13^000 a year and has been extremely successful and 
happy in this position with public health. So the Lord 
provided. Well, that left O'Brien for Vosper to deal 
with, and that's another interview isn't it, Jim? Vos- 
per has had problems with acquisitions. It's always been 
a problem. He replaced O'Brien with Bill. . .what's his 

MINK: Kurth. 

POWELL: Kurth, who was probably a low point in personnel 
appointments for the department. So, it's a department 
that's had its history, and I did good for it and I sup- 
pose I did bad for it. But in appointing O'Brien, I did 
the best thing that I could at the time and tried to make 
it work. I found O'Brien, in working with him with the 
Library Committee, to my point of view, extremely ef- 
ficient and organized, and he presented his data to the 
Library Committee with punctuality, with skill, with 
tact. And I think my chewing his ass a few times pro- 
bably did him some good in manners. I realized that he 
had these faults. We all need to be chewed at times. 
Of course. Fay chews me. She's my chev7er, tells me the 
bad things I'm inclined to do. Everybody needs somebody 


like this--a devil's advocate--and I was O'Brien's. I 
like to think I did him some good. I don't know how 
he's done as a bibliographer, but I would think this 
was probably his cup of tea, just as it was Betty Rosen- 
berg's. Of course, I brought Betty Rosenberg all the 
way along by taking her out of Vosper's problem mena- 
gerie up to the library school--although he knew her 
before I did because they'd been classmates at library 
school (the class of 1940), so I think Bob and Betty 
always got along. Maybe even Vosper possibly resented 
my taking her from the position that he would have had 
with her as assistant and making her lecturer in the 
library school, but I don't think so. I think I did 
everybody good by that move, and she's a great teacher 
now of acquisitions work. 



MINK: This morning we were just mentioning that you 
hadn't talked too much about your theories of adminis- 
tration, and then after all you did go out and teach it. 
First, you practiced it and then you theorized on it. 
POWELL: Well, this was by invitation. This wasn't my 
idea. This was Carl White's idea at Columbia. The 
first time I taught it Lowell Martin was on sabbatical, 
and Carl White needed a replacement to teach his course 
called "Theory of Library Administration." He asked me to 
come back to Columbia for a semester in 1954, and I took 
Martin's syllabus and redid it and taught that class and 
then taught an evening seminar once a week on problems 
in large libraries, research libraries. I had eight 
doctoral candidates and they had projects. 

It was an opportunity to examine what I'd been doing 
and thinking and to try to make it understandable to stu- 
dents. I didn't like Martin's syllabus. Theory of Library 
Administration . I had no theoryj all I had was practice. 
So I tried to find out what I'd been doing, and it wasn't 
terribly complicated, Jim., what I'd been doing. I've 
been getting people, as I've said before many times, to 
do things that I couldn't do myself and coordinate their 


activity. I did a few things myself, but by and large, 
I gathered around me a group of very capable administra- 
tive people. 

MINK: Well, by the time you went back to Columbia to 
teach in 195^^ you were pretty well marked in the library 
world as someone who had a theory, an ax to grind. . . 
POWELL: As a bookman. 

MINK: As a bookman versus someone like Coney at Berkeley, 
purely an administrator kind of a person v;ho might go 
out and run a nut-and-bolt factory. 

POWELL: Yes, well, we'd gotten into this. I'd gotten 
into a piece I wrote in the Stechert - Hafner Book News -- 
"Chief Librarian, Bookman or Administrator?" Tauber re- 
plied to it and we were off to the races. Then I did a 
program at a mid-winter meeting called, "Roasting an Old 
Chestnut," in which I had Tauber speak as a bookman and 
I spoke as an administrator. It was kind of a put-on, 
and it was great fun. Then I did--I think it was the 
best thing I did in the field of administration--that 
institute we held at UCLA in 1957, called "A New Look at 
Library Administration." Remember? Extension division 
and the library sponsored it, and we had enrollees from 
all over the country. VJe published the papers in the 
Library Journal . We had Coney and Castagna and Henderson 
and Hamill and a lot of the top administrative people 


from this area. We had Harlow, I think, and Horn. 
That was good, Jim; that was one of the best institutes 
I ever took part in--that "New Look at Library Adminis- 
tration. " 

Well, I resented, I suppose, being categorized 
simply as a book person. I was a book person, but I 
was also capable of organizing and administering and 
getting things done. I used to kid about it. I did 
another talk, I guess, at that institute called, "Adminis- 
tration in One Easy Lesson," which was a kind of absurd 
reduction of the whole nonsense of administrative theory. 
Of course. Coney saw through it all, and he teased me a 
lot about it. 

I think one of the best tributes I ever had, Jim 
(I've reached the age where I can quote my own tributes, 
can't I? if I don't overdo it), was two years ago at 
Rutgers when we went down from Wesleyan. Neal asked us 
to come down to Rutgers and speak to the graduate library 
school. I'd been told, because one of their graduates 
was working at Wesleyan, he tipped me off, and said, 
"Give them some book talk. They're fed up to the ears; 
they have nothing but administrative talk down there. 
Give them some book talk." So I did. I talked like 
mad about books, and the class president got up after- 
wards, a very doll of a girl, and said, "Oh, thank you. 


you've refreshed us." 

Ralph Blasingame got up then, who teaches adminis- 
tration in the library school^ and real cynically, he 
said, "Ah, don't be taken in by this guy Powell, talking 
about books all the time." And I thought, "He's really 
going to give me the shaft." But he said, "I was assis- 
tant state librarian in California long enough to knov/ 
that Larry Powell is also one of the best library adminis- 
trators I've ever known." Everybody cheered, and I clap- 
ped. And Blasingame was right, God damn itj I did per- 
form as an administrator and was never fired. I think 
that's the test of it. Look around the country. There 
are a hell of a lot of incompetent library administra- 
tors that are getting the sack. Well, I might have got- 
ten it, Jim, but I quit while I was ahead. I got out 
before I had to, and that's also a proof of good adminis- 
tration, isn't it? Who brought this up anyT^ay? 
MINK: I did. 

POWELL: For Christ's sake--well, what else do you want 
to know about it? 

MINK: Well, I want to know exactly what your theory of 
administration is, and don't refer me to the article in 
Stechert - Hafner . . . 

POWELL: The gospel? The gospel according to St. Lav;- 


MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Well, what do you mean theory ? 

MINK: Well, you said, of course, that Martin's syllabus 
had no theory; or you didn't like the word "theory." 
POWELL: I didn't like it. 

MINK: That's what I meant to say. So how did you go 
about teaching this course? 

POWELL: I did a lot of it with case history, I think, 
by devising problems in library administration that would 
appear in a public or an academic library and enlisting 
student participation in solving them. I did a lot of 
case history teaching there at Columbia, based on my 
experience and on what I read. Of course, the school 
that's done the most on this is Simmons. Shaffer and 
his colleagues at Simmons have published a number of 
casebooks. But I did my own, and the results--I kept 
a number of the Columbia papers, and you'll find them 
in the archives. 

MINK: Yes, the papers from your classes are in the 
archives . 

POWELL: Yes, well, a lot of those deal with library ad- 
ministration. And if you really wanted to knov;, which 
you don't of course, you're just teasing me. . . 
MINK: For the record we want to know. 
POWELL: For the record you want to know--well, God damn 


it, go and read all these papers. There's the dirty 
truth. I used Emerson as a textbook because I found that 
Emerson's essays were full of administration, of apothegms 
and all kinds of homilies that were useful in ad- 
ministration. I found it a much better textbook than a 
lot of the theoretical works that Lowell Martin had 
cited. I just junked them all and brought in Emerson. 
I haven't any theory. I'm a practitioner, Jim; I'm 
not a theoretician. 

MINK: So I don't expect that you intend to teach the 
principles of administration or the corollaries of ad- 

POWELL: God bless you, I never knew what they were. I 
never had any^ 

MINK: Well, for example, planning, organizing, staffing, 

POWELL: Well, I did it all. But I didn't do it in the 
sense that it was a theoretical framework. It was just 
common sense; you planned, you staffed, you programmed, 
you budgeted, because you jolly well had to, and that 
isn't theory, that's practice, common sense. What did 
I say in ray book? Well, I won't look it up, for God's 
sake, but there it is, a paragraph or two about library 
administration. Get good people, give them responsibil- 
ity, give them credit, and fasten your seat belt. And 


we rode out a number of storms here. I suppose I saw 
good examples around me--of Sproul, of Dykstra, of prac- 
ticing library administrators. I never liked Coney as 
an example; I thought he was a poor administrator. I 
didn't care for Swank or Van Patten or Lew Stieg or any 
of the other library administrators around the state, ex- 
cept maybe Castagna. 

MINK: Let's take them one at a time. What about Ray 
Swank, for example. What was it that you found about 
his breed of administrator that you didn't like? 
POWELL: Well, I never cared for the auspices under which 
he came to Stanford, you see. He did the survey of the 
Stanford library with Louis Round Wilson, which ended 
up eventually by Swank being made the librarian. I 
thought it was kind of coming in the back door, dumping 
Van Patten. I was a friend of Van Patten's and I didn't 
like the way they treated him. He was a poor administra- 
tor, sure, but that was no excuse for kicking him in the 
ass and chucking him in the dustbin. I was prejudiced 
against Swank because of that. I came to know him later 
and I liked him. very much as a human being. I found that 
he was a much better person than I thought. And maybe 
he was what Stanford needed at the time as a kind of 
corrective to too much Van Patten, and maybe what the 
Berkeley library school needed was a corrective to too 


much [J. Periam] Danton. 

MINK: Well, Nathan Van Patten v;as more of a bibliogra- 
pher, more of a recluse? 

MINK: Would you say he was more like John Goodwin, ex- 
cept that he had more on the ball than Goodwin had? 
POWELL: He had more in a bookish sense, but I don't 
think he had as much administrative sense. I think Good- 
win had a great deal more planning sense and personnel 
sense. He had better people around him. I will say that 
Van Patten had the wit to hire Bob Vosper away from Leupp, 
and that I had the wit to hire Bob Vosper away from Van 
Patten. I wanted to work for Van Patten when I was in 
library school. I applied to him for a Job, but they 
never had any then. They didn't pay anything. It was 
probably just as well I didn't, although I might have 
gone to Stanford and succeeded to the librarianship there, 
but I doubt it. I think the only place I could have made 
it was here at UCLA--the right person in the right place 
at the right time, and that was fate. 

MINK: What about Stieg? What is it that you have to 
criticize about his brand of administration? 
POWELL: Well, I think it was just ineffective. The whole 
use program was fuzzy, and he had terrible people work- 
ing for him, by and large. 


MINK: By choice or by inheritance? 

POWELL: Both. I think his forte is teaching. You see, 
in the beginning he was both university librarian and 
dean, and they made the great mistake of taking him out 
of the library school and leaving him full time in the 
library, when I think it should have gone the other way. 
MINK: And then they brought in Martha Boaz as dean. 
POWELL: That's right. I think Stieg is a natural 
teacher, and I employed him two summers here in library 
school, and he taught with great success. But he should 
have known better; he should have known his limitations 
and not wasted himself on administering a half-assed 
library, which is what USC ' s was and still is. It's 
a facade, really, Jim. It's a shell. 

MINK: Has Stieg ever discussed with you in any intimate 
way what are the problems? 
POWELL: Funding, I suppose, is. . . 
MINK: Funding? 

MINK: Why funding, because USC seems to ooze money? 
POWELL: Well, but it goes into the wrong things--it 
goes into biological sciences; it goes into football. 
MINK: Well, would you think maybe if there v;ere a stron- 
ger man in the post of librarian, someone v;ho would 
speak out for the library, that. . . 


POWELL: Yes J sure, if they'd had Larry Powell as librar- 
ian. There again is an institution that I tried to work 
for. In 1937 I wrote to Miss Christian Dick, the univer- 
sity librarian, and applied to her for v;ork v;hen I was 
part time at the Los Angeles Public Library. The dean 
of men at USC then, Frank Bacon, was a family friend, and 
he went to Miss Dick and said, "Hire Larry Powell." And 
Miss Dick dithered; she never could make up her mind. 
I shouldn' t say Dick went soft, [laughter] but at any 
rate, she never hired me, and I think the reason was that 
she felt that I was overqualified. She didn't want a 
young doctoral person; she wanted slave labor. 
MINK: Perhaps she felt threatened. 

POWELL: Threatened, possibly, yes. But I might have been 
over there, and I think I could have made it and done 
things for them in funding and all of that, with the zip 
I had at that time. 

Coney--well, that's another story. I admire Don 
Coney very much; I like his wit, I like his decency and 
his integrity. He has fine human qualities. He never 
went back on his word to anyone, I'm sure, and he has 
guts; but he was cold. He lacked a warm touch of dealing 
with his people. Gradually the library froze on him, 
and you know they ended up in a very bad situation. Al- 
so, he didn't hire the right kind of people. He had a 


lot of poor, mediocre administrative people there. But 
we got along very well, just, I suppose, by the attrac- 
tion of opposites. We never fell out, and I respected 
him and liked him and still do; I think he's a wonderful 
guy. He was probably the right person at the right time 
for Berkeley. 

MINK: On the other hand, you mentioned Ed Castagna, and 
you said that there was one that you really admired as 
an administrator. What did you admire, and what do you 
admire about Ed? 

POWELL: Well, I liked his human touch, I suppose. "Some- 
thing human is dearer to me than all the gold in the v;orld." 
He had a great human touch with his staff and with the 
profession, and he was also intensely bookish. And yet 
he was a very good city official. He was liberal. He 
was active in the United Nations in Long Beach when it 
was not a popular thing to do. He was interested in 
staff welfare and staff morale. Our great mistake, I 
think, was in not seeing him become state librarian. When 
I turned it down, I wish (Castagna was a candidate then; 
he was interviewed by the committee) they would have 
picked him. He would have made a great state librarian. 

We lost him as you know to the Enoch Pratt [Free 
Library, Baltimore]. I've been there two or three times. 
Fay and I have stayed v/ith the Castagnas. I've spoken 


to his staff, and I felt his presence in the Enoch Pratt, 
which to my mind is the greatest public library in the 
country. It's a tremendous public library, and Castagna 
was right on top there. 

For example, the staff gave a reception for me when 
I talked; it was the weekend of Thanksgiving. They gave 
a reception, and I talked to the staff. They had a very 
interesting staff room set-up. They had two opposite 
ends of a great long table, and at one end of the table 
they had a sign which read, "A Passion for Cider," and it 
was the cider bowl. At the other end they had a sign 
that read, "A Passion for Coffee," and in the middle of 
the table, of course, they had a sign that read, "A Pas- 
sion for Books." Well, this was a little staff fun for 
me. What I was impressed by at this staff party, which 
was attended by several hundred of the staff, was the 
way Ed Castagna knew by name every person that he ad- 
dressed. He went around the room among these hundreds 
of people introducing me to them, and he knew their names, 
and these were clericals, these v;ere librarians, these 
were Chinese, these were Negroes, they were all kinds. 
Well, this to me is good staff work and good administra- 
tion. He had a rapport with his staff; you could see they 
loved him. 
MZNX: That brings up a point in our ovm library, as 


brought out in the report that Lattitnan did (the Ph.D. 
candidate in business administration here a number of 
years ago) in which he said that one of the main causes 
of a low morale, so-called, in the library was that one 
seldom saw the university librarian or his lieutenants, 
and when they did, they didn't know their names. It's a 
problem when a library grows big. 

POWELL: ¥e talked about this the other day, Jim, and I 
saw it happening to me as the place got larger and the 
personal contacts became more difficult. But it's a chal- 
lenge. The administrative people must work harder at it 
and give more time to it and set up priorities in estab- 
lishing its importance. I tried to do this but, Jesus, 
it was hard; and my sympathy is with Vosper and Ackerman 
and Miles and Moore. But I don't think there can be any 
condoning it; you have to do this. Otherwise, you'll 
lose your staff. And if it means taking more time for 
human contacts and less time for planning and budgeting 
and traveling, then, by God, take more time. Otherwise, 
you end up a lone person with a staff looking the other 
way. It ' s a tragedy. I think this happened to Coney 
at Berkeley. 

MINK: As the staff grew larger? 

POWELL: Yes, and more militant. You've got to identify 
with them. I don't know if I could have done it in these 


latter years as the staff became, not more militant, but 
more concerned with their own welfare, whether I could 
have met the challenge. But I'd like to have tried. It'd 
be nice to start over, Jim, wouldn't it, and do all these 
things that we learn toward the end that are important 
that you don't know in the beginning. You feel your way, 
and I'm sure I made a great many mistakes from inexper- 

MINK: Well, it would be hard for you to say, maybe, how 
you would feel if confronted with, for example, the es- 
tablishment of the UCLA Librarians' Association. 
POWELL: Yes. I don't know what I'd feel, because in 
the beginning, of course, I confronted the librarian in 
the same way. Remember, there was no staff association 
in 1938* Ardis Lodge, Jens Nyholm, and I were a commit- 
tee to establish a staff association, Mr. Goodwin didn't 
like it, but we persisted. And a number of the profes- 
sional people on the staff did not want to include the 
clericals, remember, and Nyholm and I and Ardis Lodge 
insisted that it be a total staff-wide organization. Some 
of the old guard didn't like this one bit. 

I was thinking the other day of some of the programs 
we had. We put on staff association programs based often 
on the library exhibits that I did--that is, we had Jean 
Hersholt talk to the staff; we had Edgar Goodspeed talk; 


V/aldernar Westergaard talked to the staff when he came 
"back from Denmark. The staff association was very active. 
And I think Mr. Goodwin approved of this. But when we 
talked about job classification and pay plans, I don't 
think he was pleased one bit. 

MINK: The establishment of a staff welfare committee. 
POWELL: No, he didn't believe in it; he was paternalis- 
tic. And I probably would be now, too. This is an in- 
evitable part of the aging process. You get a paterna- 
listic feeling toward the kids. 

MINK: For example, how do you feel that you could cope 
with a situation where the librarians on the staff want 
a voice in reclassifications and in promotion. The in- 
cumbent librarian welcomes it as another ingredient in 
the decision-making process. 

POWELL: Well, I suppose I would have; I had a staff ad- 
visory committee, remember, for personnel problems--Jean- 
nette Hagan, Ardis Lodge, Bob Vosper. It wasn't exactly 
drawn from the depths, although Jeannette and Ardis were 
L-I's at that time. I shouldn't have had Vosper on it, 
I suppose. That would be a mistake now to put someone 
that close to you on it. It wasn't truly representative, 
was it, of the rank and file, if you had your assistant 
librarian or top department head on it. I tried in a 
limited way to have staff participation. They advised 


on the reclassification study. Ardis Lodge v;as a very 
key person in this. I suppose she took the same kind of 
interest in staff welfare and organization activity that 
someone like Jo Tallraan is taking latterly^ or yourself. 
MINK: Larry, hov/ much can you honestly say that you did 
for the development of the librarian status v/ithin the 
university community? When you became librarian^, all li- 
brarians were lumped with nonacademic employees. During 
the time that you were librarian, they remained so. It 
was only after you left that the status changed. Did you 
see yourself as having a part, a role, in this change 
that came about? 

POWELL: I don't think I did very much. I don't think 
it was in the nature of things to do very much. I sup- 
pose I thought I'd done my part in getting them a classi- 
fication of their own and getting them recognized to that 
extent, getting the L-I, II, III, IV classifications and 
getting a better pay scheme. I suppose that was my role, 
and I didn't go beyond that because it wasn't the time 
to. That was another reason why it was time for me to 
retire, you see. I knew there was more to be done and 
that I wasn't the person to do it, and I welcome what 
is done nov;. 

I believe, though, that you cannot have faculty rank 
for librarians unless it's based on the same criteria 


that gives faculty, faculty rank. VJhat I would say is 
that librarians should have rank. It should be a separ- 
ate classification with some benefits, but not identical 
and not categorized the same way. I touched on this in 
the Coulter Lecture, which is just published nov;. Grant 
Dahlstrom has just done it as a UCLA keepsake; and I say 
in there (and I remember Fay Blake didn't like it one 
bit) that "faculty rank achieved by any other means than 
the means the faculty uses--that is, by publication, re- 
search and teaching--is phony." And I know she chided 
me a little afterwards; she said, "Well, we thought you 
were one of us." 

Well, I was citing Miss Coulter as an example. She 
achieved faculty status by being faculty. And I still 
believe this. But I also believe that librarians are en- 
titled to rewards based on merit, and these rewards would 
include travel benefits, sabbatical benefits, and recog- 
nition. But I found that a great many librarians, in ray 
experience, wanted the rewards, but they didn't want to 
pay for them. They wanted the sabbaticals so they could 
have a year off. But it doesn't work that way; you have 
to do something with that year. Jim, have I answered? 
MINK: Yes, I think so. 

POWELL: The answer is, I didn't do very much. 
MINK: VJell, you said that at the outset; however, you've 


gone on to say things that you did do, and within the 
time context, perhaps, they were all that could be done. 
It seems to me that one of the problems that librarians 
face (and I'm sure that you've had librarians come and 
talk to you about this) is that with this lower status, 
it is difficult to deal with the faculty on an equal foot- 
ing. Maybe they shouldn't be dealing with the faculty on 
an equal footing. Can you cite examples of how librarians, 
during the time that you were librarian here, have felt 
about dealing with the faculty in a lower position, sta- 
tus-wise? For example, have they ever come to you and 
cried on your shoulder about it? 

POWELL: No, they didn't. The ones that achieved the 
compatibility, the rapport with the faculty were in three 
different areas, as I remember it. We had a top reference 
staff then--Hilda Gray, Ardis Lodge and Gladys Coryell 
and Helen Riley and Rob Collison--and the faculty often 
came to me and said, "These are superb people; they've 
understood what I wanted and were able to help me and 
we thanked them in our books, and we regard them as ab- 
solutely tops." VJell, this is because these librarians 
could identify v;ith the faculty and could anticipate. 
You've found it, too, in your work in archives and in the- 
sis advising. You have to put yourself in the faculty's 
place. But you're able to do this, because you did 


graduate work in an area other than librarianship. 

Now, in acquisitions it was the people who under- 
stood bibliography and the whole international network 
of bibliography. And I suppose the classic example of 
the person who achieved the deepest and closest rapport 
with the faculty was Bob Vosper. He did this from the 
beginning, as head of the Acquisitions Department in 19^4. 
He immediately was recognized by the faculty. Oh, I say 
something--let me get one of my books. Here's a paper 
I read at Chicago to the Graduate Library School Institute 
on Education for Librarians (19'^8, I think). It's called, 
"Education for Academic Libraria.nship," and it appears in 
A Passion for Books , pages 115-13^5 and Bob Vosper helped 
me on this. 

MINK: He helped you write it? 

POWELL: He helped me with data. And I remember the para- 
graph here that Vosper helped on. It reads: "The abil- 
ity of a librarian to achieve an advanced degree, or the 
mere interest in doing so, may indicate an effective con- 
cern for the essential work of the university or college 
and in the problems faced by the teaching-research facul- 
ty." I think these next two sentences were taken right 
out of Vosper' s notes for me: "a desperate deficiency is 
that of more librarians who have knowledge and interest 
and sympathy of the same kinds as the faculty. On every 


academic library staff I have an acquaintance v/ith, I 
can count on few fingers the number of persons who can 
establish intellectual camaraderie with the faculty. Un- 
til this can be done by the majority of a staff, talk of 
equal rank with the faculty is a waste of breath." 

Now that is pure Vosper, and I think it's still true. 
But here at UCLA, and I think also at other campuses of 
the university, and by and large in academic libraries 
throughout the country, there are more and more such peo- 
ple achieving this, and I think rank and recognition will 

Now, I'vc! mentioned acquisitions and reference, and 
the other area in which this kind of interlocking rela- 
tionship is established was in the branch libraries. Louise 
Darling, in biomedicine, and Jo Tallman were both given 
lectureships on the faculty of those professional schools, 
you remember. They were lecturers in medical history and 
engineering bibliography even before the library school. 
That means they had been recognized as experts by their 
own faculties. Of course, the obligation of those li- 
brarians then is to draw people around them on their staff 
who have the same kind of rapport and increase this; then 
you'd get a truly faculty-oriented library staff. Has 
this been done? You know more about the staff now than 
I do, Jim. Have we got more and more such people here? 


MINK: More people, and probably the ratio is about the 
same, wouldn't you say? 

POWELL: Yes. The few are doing it and the many want it. 
I won't say they are incapable of achieving this rapport, 
but it takes time. It brings up my old belief that to 
be a good librarian and to achieve higher status means 
giving up many things and practicing more of the things 
that will be recognized and rewarded by the faculty. I 
touched on this in that "Administration in One Easy Les- 
son." It means choosing and giving up pastimes and games 
and sports and all kinds of competing interests. 

You know that publication and research take time, 
and you have to have very understanding friends and fam- 
ily if you're going to live this way. Vosper, I think, 
and I were both very fortunate in the wives we had, hav- 
ing been married to women who were very understanding 
and adaptable. I think Loraine Vosper has been a marve- 
lous person for Bob Vosper. She's brought him a warmth 
and a humane sort of feeling for people and a social gre- 
garious feeling that he might not have had on his own. 
Fay has done, of course, that and more for me. She's 
not as social and gregarious as Loraine, but Lord, she's 
adaptable. She's made over her life to fit mine, not 
always v;lllingly. Sometimes she bucked and scream.ed, 
but she saw that it was the v;ise thing to do. 


MINK: You had said a little earlier that you might men- 
tion the ways in which she had helped you In your writing. 
POTOLL: VJell, I think she helped me more just in my liv- 
ing than in my writing-- just in my living and my v;ork, 
in affording me a background and a concern and a love 
and a home to which I could always return to. And she 
was willing to hold me on a long leash, give me a lot of 
ropej and I wandered pretty far and wide in my time, around 
the country and around the world. But she's the only 
woman I ever married and the only wife I've ever had. 
We're still together after forty years (we met forty-one 
years ago this fall), and I still think she's the inevi- 
table person in my life. 

MINK: Larry, to come back now to the contemporaries--you 
mentioned that Ed Castagna was a candidate for the posi- 
tion of state librarian when Mabel Gillis retired and al- 
so the then Carma Zimmerman, now Carma Zimmerman Leigh 
was . . . 

POWELL: She may have been a good lay, Jim, but it's 
pronounced "lee." [laughter] 

MINK: Excuse me. . .was also a candidate, and she won 
out, Howv/ouldyou say that the administration of the 
state library has been as a result of this? 
POVJELL: Well, it's been very good from one point of 
view. She's been very much oriented toward public 


librarianship. She was the State Librarian of V/ashing- 
ton. She has had a good sense of governmental relation- 
ships, and I think she's done very well in this area. 
What 1 would have done, I think, would have made the 
state librarian more an institution to serve librarian- 
ship, period , statewide and not just public librarians. 
I would have seen the state library as a scholarly place, 
and I would have, I suppose, emphasized the Californiana, 
which is its great and glorious collection dating back 
to Fremont, as you know--l851. 

I think Castagna would have done more to make the 
state library truly a statewide, all-library institution. 
But Carma has done what she's done with a good deal of 
efficiency. I think she's a cold, uninspiring woman. 
Her talks are really dull^ she can't talk worth beans. 
At district meetings at UCLA which she attends, she's 
completely uninspiring, but maybe the state needed some- 
body like this. Maybe California deserved somebody dull. 
Anyway, that's what she's been. 

MINK: Well, supposing you had to contrast her adminis- 
tration with that of Mabel Gillis' for example? 
POWELL: Mabel Gillis was much more of a human person. 
She was much more interested, I think, in history and 
in culture and in the general cultural role of the state 
library. And she was more of a human human, but still 


Mabel Gillis was not my ideal of a state librarian. I 
suppose her father, James L. Gillis, was the greatest one 
we've ever had. He combined all of these things, with a 
great deal of flair for people and personnel work. Oh, 
I'm glad I never went to that job; that would have been 
a mistake if I'd have gone to Sacramento. But I'm still 
sorry that Ed Castagna didn't. 
MINK: Did you ever meet James Gillis? 
POWELL: The father? 
MINK: Yes, the father. 

POWELL: No, he died, when? Back in the teens, Jim. I 
guess I was in the sandpile. 
MINK: Yes, that's right. 

POWELL: Milton Ferguson succeeded him and then Mabel 
Gillis, the daughter. I think the high point--well, I 
know there were two high points in my relationship with 
Mabel Gillis. One was the conference in Sacramento in 1950, 
the centennial. You were there, weren't you? Andy Horn 
was there and recorded a lot of the stuff. We had a tri- 
bute to the state library. Phil Townsend Hanna spoke in 
tribute to it. Idwal Jones spoke. That was a great meet- 
ing. Then we presented Mabel Gillis for the honorary 
doctorate here at UCLA. I'm glad we did it here, and I 
had the privilege of presenting her to President Sproul. 
We all gathered in my office, I remember, v;ith Neal Harlow 


and Andy and Bob and a lot of other people. Maybe Bob 
Vosper was gone then, I don't know; was he still here? 
Yes, we got some pictures of that. 

MINK: Is that all that you wish to say about Mrs. Gillis? 
POWELL: Jim, don't marry her off, for God's sake, she 
was an old maid. 
MINK: Yes, Miss Gillis. 

POWELL: She was a formidable old maid, too. She could 
bite nails. She was really tough. No, it isn't all I've 
got to say, but it's all I will say. [laughter] 
MINK: What about Richard Dillon? 
POVJELL: What about Dillon? 

MINK: As an administrator. How do you think he's done? 
POWELL: I don't think he has anything to administer, has 
he? The [Adolph] Sutro Library is really a joke. It ' s a 
creature, really, of Dillon's publicity. I was on a com- 
mittee the governor or somebody appointed sometime back 
to study the future of the Sutro Library, when it was in 
the basement of the San Francisco Public Library, to find 
it a new home. I think Glen Dawson, John Henderson, and 
I were the committee. I went up and spent part of a day . 
in the basement of the San Francisco Public Library look- 
ing at what was called the Sutro Library, and I nearly 
threw up. It's really a junky, messy lot of culls. The 
best of it was their seventeenth-century English pamphlets 


and the Mexican pamphlets and broadsides. But its English 
literature and its genealogy were ridiculous. So I never 
took it seriously. I thought it should have been closed 
out. Of course, the Bancroft wanted its Mexican stuff; 
it would have probably been a good thing to box it all 
and take it over to the Bancroft and cream it off and junk 
the rest. But they made the deal with the University of 
San Francisco, and of course Dillon came along and he 
found it a perfect base from which to operate as a his- 
torian and a writer. I love Dick Dillon and he's a great 
guy and he's really productive and he's a great teacher 
(I brought him here to teach one summer); but as Sutro 
librarian, it's simply ridiculous--there isn't any! He 
has a beautiful sinecure. Any more questions? 
MINK: Well, will you comment about Harold Hamill as an 

POWELL: Well, I think here again Hamill stayed too long. 
He's an example of a city librarian who was fine in the 
beginning, but the place got big, and he found it harder 
and harder to keep in touch. The city became enormous. 
He was faced with a decaying central library, and he 
should have quit five years ago and gone over to USC, as 
he's done now in teaching, and let somebody else take 
the rap. The poor guy's taken nothing but rap: the park- 
ing lot, the obsolete building, and all of these problems 


which are really insoluble. It's a wretched building to 
work in. I know from having worked there off and on for 
a year. Every year in the library school, I took my stu- 
dents down to their open house. We'd come back afterwards 
and analyze the building. They thought it was the most 
dreadful public library structure and a difficult place 
to work in, to interrelate to the departments the v;ay it's 
departmentalized . 

But to say this for Hamill, I found him always a 
man of great courage and integrity, and he always was on 
the side of the angels. When there was a dispute over 
censorship or anything else, Harold Hamill stood up and 
spoke. He had lots of guts. And in many of the contro- 
versies they had down there (some of which I joined him), 
he and John Henderson were brave and true men. Henderson 
was the better administrator of the two, I think. Oh, 
I liked Hamill; I admire him in what he did. He was a 
good person, but he stayed too long. 

MINK: About Ed Coman at Riverside--apparently Ed left 
Riverside under somewhat of a cloud, as far as I could 
gather, although this may not be true. I don't know. He 
certainly left before he v/as ready to retire. You were 
one who promoted Ed, and how do you feel that he lived 
up to your justifications as the first librarian for 
the Riverside campus? 


POWELL: I think here again he didn't have the long haul 
in him. He had a short-haul performance. He did it, and 
he probably should have left even earlier. I don't know 
what the circumstances were under which he left, but I 
know for the job that was needed, in the beginning, he 
was the right person. I brought him there. 

You see, I served as vice-president of CLA under his 
presidency, and so I knew him for two or three years on 
the board, and I saw his capabilities when he was presi- 
dent. He was a good planner, a good organizer, and a 
good bookish person. He'd been eighteen years at Stan- 
ford. He was at a dead end, and he wanted another job. 
At the same time, Gordon Watkins, the new provost at 
Riverside, came to me and said, "I need a librarian." 
And right away I though of Coman for several reasons: 
one, that he wanted another job; two, he was ready for 
another job] and three, he had a master's degree in eco- 
nomics, which was Gordon Watkins' field. He had his mas- 
ter's from Claremont, and he had business experience to 
mesh with Gordon Watkins, and this proved true. Those 
two were the only two people there in the beginning--the 
librarian and the provosto The original Riverside Li- 
brary was in the old director's home of the experiment 

Ed put it all together. He planned the basic 


collection, he planned the building, he staffed and he 
integrated it with citrus, with Margaret Buvens, the ci- 
trus librarian. I don't know Khat happened latterly, 
Jim. I think probably the job became a little too big 
for him. I know he had a lot of success in the begin- 
ning, because Watkins used him as a faculty recruiter. 
Coman went around the country interviewing faculty--not 
librarians, faculty. 

MINK: I didn't realize that. This is unusual for a li- 
brarian to be delegated authority of this nature. 
POWELL: It is; but Watkins saw that Coman had this abil- 
ity to evaluate and to establish rapport, which he'd 
gained at Stanford. He'd been a key person in the Grad- 
uate School of Business Administration at Stanford as a 
member of the faculty. And Watkins used him. So I would 
say he justified my faith in him up to "x" point. I don't 
know at which point "x" was located when it got beyond 
him. I think, by and large, his staff appointments were 
good. He seemed to take interest in staff. It's curi- 
ous, I'll be at Riverside tomorrow. I'm speaking tomor- 
row night on an Extension Division program and on Wednes- 
day at their 500,000th volume ceremony. 



POWELL: This is after about two months' vacation, isn't 


MINK: Larry, you know I was mentioning, just before we 

turned the recorder on, that it seems to me that as I 

watched you, I think the question in my mind was--and I 

know it was in the minds of others, because I've heard 

them say so--to what extent were you genuinely interested 

in your association with these people and to what extent 

were you basking, more or less, in their, you might say, 

glory, a question of reflected glory? To what extent did 

you cultivate the interest of these people to make brov;nie 

points with the administration and to what extent were 

you genuinely interested in these people as individuals? 

There's a question for you. 

POWELL: Yes. Well, I don't think I've ever cultivated 

anyone that I didn't feel attracted to. An example is 

Irving Stone. He's a man I don't like, and I never have 

cultivated him. I never got his papers here; it was done 

by Andy Horn in my absence. 

MINK: You never encouraged Andy Horn? 

POWELL: I never encouraged him in any way. This is what 

Andy did as acting librarian. Of course, he brought lots 


of trouble to himself--to Andy and to the library. 
MINK: What was it that you felt you didn't like about 
Irving Stone? 
POWELL: He's a prick. 
MINK: Wellj besides that. [laughter] 
POWELL: He's self-important ^ pompous ^ and essentially 
a journalist. 

MINK: What is your estimate of his writing? 
POWELL: Journalism. He's not a great v;riter. He's not 
even a good writer. I think he's a slick writer. 
MINK: And yet Irving Stone in the depths of the Depres- 
sion was making $150 a week writing, while other liter- 
ary people were starving. 

POWELL: Wellj I never cultivated writers for their earn- 

MINK: No, but isn't this some measure of his ability? 
POWELL: Well, it's his ability certainly as a salesman. 
I first saw Irving Stone in about I938 or 1939 when I 
happened to be walking by Mr. Goodwin's office, and I 
heard him having a dialog with Irving Stone. 
MINK: Goodwin? 

POWELL: Goodwin. Stone had come in to use the library, 
and Mr. Goodwin didn't know who the hell he was, and 
Stone blew up and he was giving Mr. Goodwin hell. He 
said, "Don't you know who I am? I wrote Lust for Life." 


Mr. Goodwin said, "Well, I'm afraid I haven't read it." 
And Stone was in a rage, and poor Mr. Goodwin--! eaves- 
dropped deliberately; this fascinated me--just took a 
tongue-lashing from Irving Stone. I suppose that pre- 
judiced me initially, the man's rudeness and crudeness. 
Of course, as writers, we all like to be known, and we're 
all hurt when people don't know us; but we control our 
feelings . 

MINK: Well, you said a minute ago that he promoted, I 
suppose, his writing to a great extent. V/hat author 
doesn't? You've promoted yours, for goodness sake. 
POWELL: Yes, but I hope I did it in a subtler way than 
Stone. Stone, for example, got Majl Ewing down on him 
here in a big way, because Stone went to Ewing, who was 
chairman of the English department then, and said that 
he wanted to give a course, sponsored by the English 
department, on the biographical novel, which form he 
had invented. And Ewing blew up at that, of course. 
He said, "You didn't invent it at all; there are exam- 
ples back through literature of the biographical novel," 
and simply that Stone had exploited it. And Stone wanted 
the library to put on a major exhibition of his work 
as the first biographical novelist. 

MINK: And at this time you were University Librarian. 
POWELL: I was librarian, and Ewing said, "If you put in 


such an exhibit, Larry, I'll come around with an ax and 
smash all the cases." He was absolutely livid with rage 
at Stone's presumption. No, Jim, I don't think that's 
true, that I ever cultivated anybody deliberately. I 
pursued them because I wanted their material, and I be- 
lieved that we gave something for it. We served them-- 
Miller, for example. You couldn't bask in Miller's re- 
putation at the time we were pursuing him, because it 
was so bad; it was running a risk all the time. 
MINK: But then again wasn't that really more Andy Horn 
in the beginning than it was you? 

POWELL: Good Lord, no; Andy'd never heard of Henry 
MINK: No? 

POWELL: No, of course not, Jim; Miller came to me in 

MINK: Is that the first time you ever met him? 
POWELL: Sure. He walked in the order department in 
1940. He was sent to me by James Laughlin of New Di- 
rections. And we started serving him; I served him all 
through those war years when he lived in Beverly Glen. 
MINK: You wrote about this in your book. 

MINK: You would bring books home to him and take them 
back to the library. 


POWELL: Sure. No, I introduced Andy to Killer^ he'd 
never heard of Miller. In fact, Andy Horn had never 
read a modern book. He didn't know what poetry was. He 
was just a goddamned history Ph.D. here and was the 
most illiterate of all the graduates. He had no famil- 
iarity at all with modern literature. Neal Harlow had 
more, but he didn't have much. They were historians; 
their interest was history; mine was literature. 
MINK: Were they interested in the idea of getting Mil- 
ler's papers, or was Horn turned off by the idea of hav- 
ing them? 

POWELL: No, I don't think Andy ever was turned off by 
any opportunity to get a collection of documentary ma- 
terial here. He was passionately interested in the amas- 
sing and arrangement and organizing of source material, 
and whether it was literature or theology it didn't really 
matter to him. Andy was more interested in the tech- 
nique and procedure than in content, which has its good 
points. You aren't blinded then, and you aren't distrac- 
ted by stopping to read. But Neal was the first one 
that became interested, and I took Neal with me up to 
Big Sur to record Miller. It was when Neal was head of 
Special Collections. 

MINK: VJhat were you going to record? Autobiographical 


POWELL: Reading the works of Lawrence Durrell; I wanted 
to bring the two together. 

MINK: Was the idea to read the works of Durrell and to 
interpret them? 

POWELL: Yes--to talk about his friendship with Durrell. 
Of course, it was a great flop initially, because we got 
up at Miller's house and found they had no electricity. 
MINK: This was before the time of battery recorders. 
POWELL: Yes. We had that Lear wire recorder and no 
juice! So we packed up in the car and drove up to Big 
Sur Lodge. We rented a cabin and plugged it in there, 
and Miller made his first recording, reading Durrell' s 
poem, "Alexandria," as I remember. I don't know, would 
they still have that? 
MINK: I believe we do. 

POWELL: Well, at any rate, he was an early one. And 
then another of the very first writers was Richard Al- 
dington. And here again, I was interested in him as a 
writer. I'd read Death of a Hero and All Men are Enemies , 
all of his works on D. H. Lawrence. I was terribly in- 
terested in him as a writer, and then when I met him as 
a man, and his wife and daughter, I liked him. We had 
a personal friendship that lasted until he died, in 19o2, 
I guess. So, most of these writers that I've gotten down 
here--Huxley, Harold Lamb, Guy Endore, Frieda Lawrence, 


Henry Miller, Bill Everson, Judy Vanderveer, Ray Brad- 
bury, Kenneth Rexroth, Idwal Jones, Harvey and Erna 
Fergusson, Haniel Long, Frank Dobie--were men and women 
that I liked personally. And I didn't deliberately cul- 
tivate them to bask in the glory of it. 
MINK: Did you ever hear anyone criticize you for this 

POWELL: No, I never have, and if I had heard it, it 
wouldn't have affected me one way or another, because I 
never was affected by criticism; I have got too thick of 
a skin, Jim. I believed only in what reinforced what I 
was doing. This is a strength and a weakness, and it's 
a kind of a monstrous form of egotism I suppose--"What 
I'm doing is right, and I'm going to do it, and I won't 
be diverted by criticism." So I never had any problem, 
really, of lying awake at night. It was a compulsion, 
you see, that m.oved me to do what I thought was right, 
come hell or high water, and I didn't care whether it 
was criticized, and I don't now. It wasn't a factor in 
my life and my work. 

MINK: Well, there were a lot of people who said that 
you spent a lot of time running around chasing after 
people and not enough time minding the store (which I've 
been criticized for recently, too). 
POWELL: Well, Vosper, too. This is always true; you do. 


I think, what's of greatest interest to you. I've found 
literature and literary associations that tied in v;ith 
the library's programs always of great interest, and 
it was my way of minding the store. 

MINK: Well, it's true, isn't it, that long before you 
ever became associated with the library in any way, you 
had pursued literary friendships and literary associa- 

POWELL: Yes, through Jake. 
MINK: Now this is one for your side. 

POWELL: Thank you, Jim. Yes, through Jake. Jake was 
a great catalyst, bringing us together, and I've been 
writing about this. In a new chapter I've got coming 
out now on Idwal Jones, I point out that there was no 
bohemian center in Los Angeles the way there was in 
San Francisco at the Bohemian Club around Sutter Street, 
other than Jake's shop. 

MINK: It was through Jake that you met Jones, of course. 
POWELL: Yes, and Hanna, Carey McWilliams, Paul Jordan- 
Smith, and all the people that came in and out of Jake's 
shop; it was a real cultural center, Remsen Bird, Bishop 
Stevens, all the Huntington Library lawyers-- Clary Crotty, 
0'Melveny--all those people used to come in and out of 
Jake' s--Estelle Doheny. 

So, blame Jake; I think he's the one that seduced 


me in the literary ways, and of course Ward, too; and it 

comes out in Ward's memoirs that I've Just been reading: 

that it was he that really drew me into an interest in 

Jeffers and into D. H. Lawrence. All of these books were 

on Ward's shelf before they were on mine. These are the 

forces that helped shape me--Ward and Jake. 

MINK: I was surprised that he didn't mention you more 

than he did. There were times when it would go for maybe 

pages and pages in which he wouldn't make any reference 

to you. 

POWELL: Well, that's because he took me for granted and 

I him. We were part of each other's lives almost in a 

very basic sense and an obvious sense, so you didn't have 

to mention someone. That's the reason. We were always 

operating on each other as we are now. And yet in the 

course of what I've been saying over these weeks, I'm 

sure that I've gone a long time without mentioning Ritchie, 

MINK: Oh, yes. 

POWELL: But, I could come back to him time and again, 

as I have to him and to Jake as being key people in my 

life, certainly. 

MINK: About Stone, to go back to Stone. 

POWELL: Oh, Stone, haven't we finished with him? 

MINK: Well, no, because. . . 

POWELL: Am I unfair? 


MINK: You left him in Goodwin's office. [laughter] 
POWELL: Oh, God, Jim, don't let me disavow John Goodwin. 
MINK: Did you feel sorry for him? 
POWELL: I felt sorry for him. 
MINK: I can imagine. 

POWELL: Yes. Well, I did. I had a human feeling for 
Mr. Goodwin. He was gentle; I'd get mad at him some- 
times, but essentially he was gentle and kind and aw- 
fully tolerant of me. He never fired me; I quit. He was 
good to me. I know it now; I didn't know it then. I 
don't know where Stone came back into the picture after 
I became librarian. I suppose he came charging in and 
wanted us to borrow stuff for him on interlibrary loan, 
and I turned him over to Esther Euler who served him 

MINK: Well, the point I think is that, for better or 
for worse. Stone has made his mark on American literature, 
and not much is recorded I don't think about him person- 
ally. I imagine as time goes on there will be. I just 
wonder how it came about--I can't remember myself--that 
we did get his collection. You said it was sort of foisted 
on us in your absence, and Andy Horn was the one that 
was sucked in. 

POWELL: I don't know how it actually was. 
MINK: Is that the straight of it? 


POWELL: Well, you would have to ask Andy, because I 
think it occurred while I was at Columbia in 195^. Andy 
was acting librarian. Andy was eager to develop the 
collections; he'd be head of Special Collections, and 
I think he saw a big whacking lot of material here. Stone, 
of course, made a deal that if he gave it to us, we would 
microfilm it. Then of course we were never able to do 
this--were we? --because of the sheer bulk of it. 
MINK: No. 

POWELL: He kept threatening to withdraw it, and Andy 
finally, I think, told him to take it and stuff it. But 
of course by then he didn't. Now, I was just talking 
the other day with Bob Vosper, and the Stone collection 
came up, and this whole matter of the new law which pre- 
vents authors from taking income-tax deduction for gifts 
of their own collection, and Bob said, "Well, this is 
really going to knock poor Stone out, because year after 
year he's been claiming enormous deductions for his con- 
tinuing gifts." I don't know if he's been challenged. 
MINK: Maybe we better go back to the beginning of that: 
do you remember that after the falling out with Stone 
over his collection, when he decided he wanted to give 
it to the university for sure, even though we hadn't 
lived up to the earlier terms that you laid dovm, the 
precise indexing, remember, that he wanted done, v/hen we 


decided to take it on the terms that at that time ap- 
pealed to him more, namely, large deductions, then he 
went to the Library of Congress, and he got a very fat 
evaluation from David Mearns, remember? 
POWELL: I don't think I knew this, but I'm following. 
MINK: At the time--I can't quote it--it was just an 
enormous sum. 

POVTELL: One hundred thousand dollars? 
MINK: It must have been like $100,000, I believe, and 
everyone was appalled at this, especially the people 
in the library, because they couldn't see that value 
in the collection. Meanwhile, he had given a swatch of 
material relating to his book. Love Is Eternal , to the 
Illinois Historical Society, isn't that correct? 
POWELL: That was the Lincoln. . . 
MINK: The Mary Todd Lincoln biography. 

MINK: Whose interview is this, anyway? [laughter] 
POWELL: Gosh, I'm enthralled. 
MINK: You were here during all this time. 
POWELL: Well, but it never got up to the rarefied level, 
or as you would say, I was probably chasing around the 
country somewhere. It was acted on farther down the 
line. I knew that there was unhappiness over our cus- 
todianship of this. 


MINK: Well, why didn't you do something about it? 
POWELL: [laughter] Well, you guys got yourselves in- 
to this; I thought you could sweat it out! I never 
asked him for his papers. He's a tremendous example 
of an American literary promoter, and he's made a great 
success of it. 

MINK: Perhaps in the future he'll be studied in that 
way by people in English. 

POWELL: Yes. This is important to document it. I 
never said burn the collection, [laughter] but I didn't 
always go after the collections, either. Nov; when 
Franz Werfel died, I called up Gustave Arlt, who was 
Werfel's translator, and I said, "We'd like those papers." 
And Arlt did all of the work on the Werfel collection, 
MINK: You never knew Werfel personally? 
POWELL: No, I never knew him. 

MINK: It never occurred to you to go after his papers. 
POWELL: Until he died. I just read it in the paper 
that he died and I called up Arlt and said, "Get them." 
MINK: That's another interesting thing that you got a 
reputation for, too--isn't it?--for being the kiss of 

POWELL: Oh, all librarian collectors get this, Jim, of 
reading the necrologies; yes, this is inevitable. But 
with Miller, for example, it hasn't v;orked that way. He 


was seventy-eight his last birthday, and is still going-- 
not strong, but going. 

MINK: Now, another thing about Stone: would you say 
that it was a pretty true evaluation of him that he was 
a brain-picker? For he went out to get ideas. I've 
heard it said, for example, that he spent a lot of time 
in the reading rooms of the Huntington Library picking 
the brains of bright young Ph.D. ' s, especially women to 
whom he was very charming, apparently. Maybe they were 
flattered by his reputation, perhaps, and also by his 
appearance, because he's not an ugly man. 
POWELL: He's a handsome man. 

MINK: And perhaps a lot of the ideas that came for his 
books actually came from young Ph.D.'s. 
POWELL: I would think they were the incidental, lesser 
important ideas; I think he was fully capable of generat- 
ing the major ideas. He was a skilled researcher, both 
in using materials and using people. I give him full 
credit, for that, Jim. 

MINK: Would you say that he was a manipulator? 
POWELL: Yes, but all researchers are. Good Lord, I've 
been manipulating my way around the state for two years 
now, getting material on this California book, but I've 
not gone to young Ph.D.'s. I've gone to the survivors 
of the authors that I was writing about, their descendants 


and their colleagues, getting oral reminiscences and 
leads to collections. That's what I've been doing. But 
I give Stone credit for certainly doing his fieldwork and 
his homework, too. He's a worker; there's no doubt about 
it. I Just didn't like him personally, in the way, for 
example, that I liked Harold Lamb, the historical nove- 
list. You remember him, Jim, that sweet. . . 
MINK: Lamb was a very gentle man. 

POWELL: Sweet, gentle, unassuming. He didn't promote 
his own work openly, and yet sooner or later you got 
around to talking about his work with him, because he was 
so passionately interested in it. I think he's just a 
beautiful example of the opposite end of the spectrum 
from Irving Stone. Lamb in his way was just as success- 
ful financially, I believe. His books were serialized 
and sold--Book-of-the-Month [Club], Literary Guild. I 
think he made lots out of them. 
MINK: Some of them were screenplays. 
POWELL: Screenplays. But he is a better v^riter than 
Stone. He has more craft and more style, and I think 
more historical integrity. I remember the time I took 
Robert Payne--and we ought to talk about Payne, the young 
English writer. I became interested in Payne, I think, 
as a poet. He published a good deal, and I have told 
the story somewhere of how he turned up in my office once 


in the forties--a very slight^ diffident, unprepossessing 
young man with a broad English accent. And I didn't re- 
late him to this writer Payne that I'd been reading. I'd 
been reading his anthology of Chinese poetry. The White 
Pony , translated into English. I was terribly impressed 
by it as being a very good anthology that Richard Alding- 
ton had put me onto. 

Payne then formed the habit of coming into my office 
in the late afternoons. He would sleep all day and work 
all night. He used to get up in the middle of the after- 
noon, bring two suitcases full of return books back to 
UCLA and take out two full suitcases of charge-outs. 
He'd come into my office about four-thirty or five when 
the secretarial staff were leaving, and he and I would 
talk generally until six o'clock. Of course, he was a 
prodigious writer and researcher. I've written a chap- 
ter on him in one of my books, called "The Prolific Rob- 
ert Payne." 

MINK: Well, what would be the gist of these conversations, 

POWELL: Books and writers and the books that he planned 
to do. They were always about him and his v;ork; we didn't 
talk about me . 
MINK: Yes? [laughter] 
POWELL: But I found v;hat he was doing terribly interesting. 


because he was sooner or later going to write a book, 
biography or a critical study on every major figure in 
Western civilization, and he's well on the way to doing 
it. I remember once I said, "How many books have you 
written, Robert?" He said, "Well, I don't know; my 
mother's really the only one that's kept count. We 
could go out to the card catalog and see." So we went 
out to the catalog and checked his titles, and he was 
very pleased that we had them all. I think it came to 
sixty-three, and he was then only forty years old. 

And we recorded him. I think we, Neal and I, took 
the recorder over to the San Fernando Valley and recor- 
ded him in his home there. He was living v;ith a woman 
who had a little baby, and the baby kept squalling all 
through the recording. Payne then found that I knew 
and was serving Harold Lamb. He said, "I'd like very 
much to meet Mr. Lamb and to see his library., I under- 
stand he has a good library on seventeenth-century English 
exploration." "Well," I said, "I think we can arrange 

So I did; and I took Robert Payne to Harold Lamb's 
home one afternoon, five o'clock or so, for tea. Ruth 
Lamb greeted us and served tea to us. Payne and Lamb 
were immediately compatible over the book collection. I 
talked with Mrs. Lamb and drank tea, and these two writers 


got into a furious conversation; you can never think of 
Harold Lamb as speaking furiously. He got excited when 
he talked about books. Payne wanted to see what Lamb 
had on early English descriptions of India, and Lamb had 
all the key books of travels and descriptions of the 
Indian empire in the seventeenth-eighteenth centuries. 
And there was one folio that interested Lamb and 
Payne in particular; it was [Jean de] Thevenot's Travels 
in India , translated into English, and Payne went through 
it very excitedly I think, looking at the pictures and 
leafing through it all. Well, good Lord, in another 
six months Payne came out with a novel called Blood Royal , 
which was an account of the moguls in the seventeenth 
century, based on Thevenot. And maybe he'd gotten the 
whole conception of this book--before he came, but cer- 
tainly it crystallized in that hour or two we spent with 
Harold Lamb. 

MINK: My immediate reaction was: what was Lamb's reac- 
tion to this? Was he excited, pleased, annoyed? 
POWELL: When the thing came--no. Lamb was never annoyed; 
he was generous, and anybody that used his material or he 
could help, he was pleased. You know how he v/as, Jim; 
he was a real Christian, none of these wicked ulterior 
motives that you and I have so strongly. I liked the 
whole picture of writers at work using books; I think 


this is what always interested me and what I like to see 
and like to further and like to encourage and like to 

MINK: Maybe that's why you were not too pleased with 
Stone. Did you see him using a lot of the books in the 
library? Did you see him using the library so much for 
his writing? 

POWELL: No, not really; he was using people in the li- 
brary to do work for him. 

MINK: He had research assistants. He didn't come him- 
self and do the work. 

POWELL: No, it was more of a machine operation. Payne, 
on the other hand, did it himself; he had no help; he 
credited himself with getting so much done because he 
had this work schedule that Paul Jordan-Smith has--sleep 
in the day and work at night. There's no interruption. 
It's a great thing if you can turn your life around this 
way. Those marvelous night hours, Jim, when the phone 
doesn't ring and when there's no distraction. 
MINK: You've never been able to do this, have you? 
POVJELL: No, you can't combine it really with married 
life, with family life, or with a job, a daytime job-- 
all of these reasons. I work in the early morning; I 
get up at five to six. And those hours from five or 
six to eight, when I used to leave for work, those were 


always great productive times for me. And in the early 
years I was up until ten or eleven at nighty but I al- 
ways slept from either ten or eleven until five or six. 
Well, that brings in some of the writers that I wanted 
to talk about. The whole picture of writers in the South- 
west is another story, and my travels in Arizona and 
New Mexico. 

MINK: Well, that brings up a good question, in a way, 
maybe, of introducing the subject of the Southwestern 
people if we're going to talk about that for a while. 
It's been said, and I think I mentioned this to you off 
the tape, that it was thought--well, I think that maybe 
this is a product of how staff people react to a proli- 
fic librarian: Vosper doesn't publish much and people 
don't talk about him; you did, and they used to talk 
about it. 

POWELL: Did they? I never knew it, Jim. 
MINK: [laughter] You never knew it. 

POWELL: Well, in the sense we can talk about it now. 
MINK: No, but you know that everyone would say, "Well, 
why is Larry Powell on this Southwest kick? It's a 
big promotional scheme. He's writing about these people. 
He's writing about VJilla Gather; he's talking about 
Willa Gather. He's talking about Frieda Lawrence; he's 
writing about Frieda Lawrence. He's really doing this. 


you know, to promote himself and, incidentally , the UCLA 
Library and possibly to promote the collecting of South- 
west material." I remember at one point you said, "Oh, 
well, now our major collecting area is the entire South- 
west, which would be in competition with a lot of other 
libraries, not only in this region but in the Southwest 
region itself." 

POWELL: Yes, it was overly ambitious, wasn't it? 
MINK: Do you feel so now in retrospect? 
POWELL: Yes. It was overly ambitious. We didn't have 
the resources to do it in the sense that the Bancroft 
has or the Huntington. 

MINK: The in-depth collecting that went on in the early 
part of this century and, incidentally, in the latter 
part of the nineteenth century in some cases. 
POWELL: We started too late, and we didn't have the 
resources to compete. So what we did was hit the high 
points and some of the dramatic peaks and some of the 
contemporary literary archives that we were able to pick 
up. But it was a product of enthusiasm, and I suppose 
I just liked to travel, Jim, and I loved the country and 
the people that I met. Writing for Arizona Highways v/as 
always an excuse to travel, and the talks--I gave many 
talks in Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. 
MINK: I'm not sure I can recall how it vras that you first 


became associated with Arizona Hlghvjays and were asked 
to write for them. 

POWELL: Well, it was this talk I gave in 1953, I think, 
to the Arizona Library Association, called, "This Dry 
and Wrinkled Land." 
MINK: Yes, yes. 

POWELL: Remember? Carlson, the editor of Arizona High - 
ways , read it and said, "Will you write something for me 
on the theme of books in Arizona?" Then when I published 
something in Southwest Review on New Mexico, a travel 
piece on New Mexico, Carlson wrote and said, "Will you 
do a travel itinerary?" In other words, everything I 
wrote for Arizona Highways was asked for by Carlson, and 
the bibliographies, both Heart £f the Southwest and South - 
western Century, appeared in Arizona Highways as a re- 
sult of Carlson's interest. The work on Martha Summer- 
hayes--he asked me to go over her whole itinerary, taking 
the book with me, and write about how it looked today. 
Well, these had nothing whatsoever to do with adminis- 
tering the UCLA Library. 

MINK: Yes, but Books of the Southwest , the bibliography, 
came out under the imprimatur of the UCLA Library, and 
Betty Rosenberg did most of the work on that, didn't she-- 

most of the editorial work? 

POWELL: No, she did the makeup. I did most of the 


annotating, and she put It together. We were a natural 
team, and she did a great deal of leg work on all of my 
bibliographies . 

MINK: Yes, but why that? I mean why that bibliography? 
POWELL: Well, I'll tell you. West ways , that I'd been 
writing for since 193'^j "Books of the West," which brought 
the literature to me every month, either from publishers 
or from Westways ' office, and it became more and more 
difficult to find space in the magazine to cover every- 
thing. And Phil Hanna, the editor, and then Pat Manahan 
said, "We can't cover the whole literature, Larry; what 
we want you to do in your column is to write more about 
fewer books, the outstanding books." And I said, "Well, 
what can we do with all the other books that we should 
mention?" And she said, "That's your problem," 

So that's when I conceived the idea of a checklist 
that would cover all the things that we couldn't include 
in the magazine » And if you'll read back in my column 
in Westways when we announced this, I think we gave the 
reason for it and said, "We've run out of space in the 
magazine. Therefore, we're going to have a monthly check- 
list. Please send two dollars." 
MINK: I remember that. 

POWELL: That's the way it started; and I did it all in 
the first six months, I guess--the makeup and everything 


else. I think Everett Moore helped, and then Betty came 
in about that time. This was in 1957 ji I think, that we 
started it. Betty came in as my bibliographical assis- 
tant after the survey, remember, that Swank made. Natur- 
ally, we were looking for jobs for Betty, for her job 
description. She had to be given new assignments, and 
this was a natural one. So I put her name on the mast- 
head--Betty ' s. Have we talked about her in this series? 
MINK: Some, I think. 

POWELL: She was extraordinary, really, a powerhouse. 
She could do double work in half the time because of her 
energy and drive and her understanding. When I said, 
"Betty, I'm going to do a bibliography of 100 books on 
the Southwest, and I want to get 500 in here from which 
to make the selection, you go out and--here's the general 
area that we want to cover--pull in 500 books." And 
within twenty -four hours, the books would be on trucks 
in my office. Then I'd make the selection, but Betty 
was always great at rounding up the work to be done and 
presenting it. She was an indispensable person, really, 
for me and everything I did; with all her prejudices and 
her brusqueness, roughness, she was a rare person. 
MINK: Well, another example of the Southwest kick are 
some of the broadsides that were done. 



MINK: The Southwest Broadsides. 
POWELL: That's a nice one, that Horgan. 
MINK: What prompted that? 

POWELL: Well, Jim, I always liked to keep the local 
printers busy doing something that was really outside 
of their commercial run, that is, taking a text and mak- 
ing a fine printing of it. This isn't benevolence on 
my part; they didn't need this, and they never made any 
money off of it, but it gave them an opportunity to do 
something special and creative and outside of the stream 
of their regular work. Cheney, Dahlstrom, Armitage, 
Ritchie, of course, Holmquist, Carl Hertzog, and then 
that final one that you pointed to up on the wall was 

MINK: What's the name of that one? 

POWELL: That's Paul Horgan 's text, "The Land Is Still 
Supreme in Nueva Granada." It's an essay Horgan wrote 
in the Southwest Review about 193^^ and it's a literary 
appreciation of the Southwest. And you know what Frank 
Dobie said about it when I sent it to Frank (I either saw 
him or he wrote to me), he blew up and he said, "Oh, it's 
just goddamned belletristic bullshit." [laughter] I 
never told Paul Horgan that. He would have really been 
hurt, because he and Dobie v;ere nominally friends and 


colleagues, but Dobie couldn't stand fine writing. He 
hated fine writing, and that is a piece of fine writing. 
Horgan has written better than that in later years. But 
it appealed to me at the time. It was just a damn fool 
example of my nonrelevant enthusiasm, Jim--the whole 
series . 

MINK: Nonrelevant enthusiasm! Well, it v/as related to 
this Southwest kick, and you haven't really repudiated 
[my charge] on this; is it through? 
POWELL: Well, refute what? 
MINK: Well, the fact that it was a "kick." 
POWELL: Yes, well, all my whole career has been a kick, 
Jim. I have never done what was entirely relevant. I've 
done what I wanted to do and found ways of justifying 
it and felt morally righteous. 
MINK: [laughter] That's a very good point. 
POWELL: Yes, [laughter] sure a lot of it's been irrele- 
vant, but that's my life. 

MINK: Well, we said it's been irrelevant only because 
they had. . . 

POWELL: Well, they are in an analytical and cold-blooded 
way-- that is, if an efficiency expert came in and had me 
do a time-and-motion study, I'd have been fired. 
MINK: You probably would have come out on the low rung. 
POWELL: Yes, that's right. 


MINK: But what do you think the impact of these has 
been? I can't Judge this, really; you probably can judge 
this better than anyone else. Well, they are probably 
very valuable for one thing, now. I suppose they sell 
as pieces of fine printing, ephemera; they have some 
value there. 

POWELL: That's all. They have literary aesthetic value. 
I think, in Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas, they would 
dramatize an interest in the literature of the author 
that I've chosen. I think my work had much more impact 
in those states than it did in California. I was known 
on various levels in Arizona and New Mexico; I knew the 
governors of both states and the presidents of the uni- 
versity and a lot of the citizens that were interested 
in libraries. I could have made my career in either 
state anytime. I was given offers to come over and write 
my own ticket in both the University of New Mexico and 
the University of Arizona as a professor at large. And 
I think I enhanced an appreciation of literature and 
libraries in both states by my writing and speaking. 
MINK: Well, the interviewer has to ask, vjhy didn't you 
do it? 

POWELL: Why did I do it? 

MINK: VJhy didn't you do it? Why didn't you go to Arizona? 
POWELL: Well, because, primarily, there was always the 


dream and the goal of a library school here. And there 
would not have been one then in those states, and it was 
a feeling that I had that this must be done in accordance 
with Mr. Dickson's challenge and command in 19^4, "When 
are you going to get that school of the library open?" 
He died in 1956, and it wasn't done. That's probably, 
Jim, the key reason. It wasn't the administration of 
the library, because this could have been, and was car- 
ried on by others; but there was no one else at that 
time that would have or could have done the library school. 
It just wouldn't have been done. Nobody was thick-skinned 
enough to take the reversals and not know they'd been 
reversals. So I suppose that was the reason. And then, 
Jim, I loved UCLA. You know damn well; here I am. I 
couldn't leave it. 

MINK: But on what basis would you make the claim that it 
had more impact. , .just because of what people have said 
to you by word of mouth? 

POWELL: No, I think it's in the renewed collecting in- 
terest in both Arizona and New Mexico of their own ma- 
terials. They felt the threat of UCLA. 

MINK: Who particularly would you name as having twisted 
their tails to start collecting? 

POWELL: I think University of Arizona, their special 
collections, which--remember, we sent Brooke [VJhiting] 


over to its dedication. It's modelled more or less after 
our collection here. The Coronado Room in the University 
of New Mexico Library--the curator of it at one time came 
over here and looked into what we were doing. They pub- 
lished a guide to their special collections that was in- 
spired by the one you did here. I think the state li- 
brary in Phoenix looked again at its whole collecting 

MINK: I was a little bit appalled to see, in visiting 
Santa Fe in 19^6, that the state library there has a 
very poor Special Collections Department. It's locked 
behind these rather. . . 
POWELL: Bronze cases, yes. 

MINK: There's nothing; it's fluff. It's nothing that 
we would have, for example, in our Special Collections 
Department here. I was a little appalled. 
POWELL: Well, it's window dressing. I saw it last sum- 
mer, or summer before last. They have a new head of it, 
Billc . .? 

MINK: Farrington, is it? 

POWELL: Yes. Farrington had Navajo jewelry on, and he 
was very ornamental. 
MINK: Very ornamental. 

POWELL: But, of course, I was pleased, because they were 
using my bibliographies as collecting guides, but this 


is not for source material; this is for the obvious. 

At any rate^ another example, I think, would be the 
University of Texas. Harry Ransom, who has been their 
whirlwind chancellor, who has put them on the map in 
modern Anglo-American literature, has said to me, and he 
said publicly, that he got a great deal of his inspira- 
tion in starting the Humanities Research Center at Texas 
from what we'd done at UCLA. 

MINK: Well, then you really lit a bomb [with your ideas 
on special collections]. 

POWELL: A bomb that blew us up! (And we'll be there 
next year, I think, in residence.) The idea, he said, 
he got from me. I visited there in 195'^^ v;hen Harry 
Ransom was then head of the English department and head 
of the graduate division, dean of the graduate school. 
I met with him and we talked about Frank Dobie, who was 
there. What he had to back up this idea was what we 
never had here, unlimited means--milllons and millions-- 
the oil money that could be used for capital improvement. 
This was a great creative stroke. 

Well, Jim, actually, to get a critical estimate of 
my impact, you'd have to talk to those blokes, wouldn't 
you? I know the Arizona Librarian , a year and a half 
ago — Alan Covey, editing it out of Phoenix, brought out 
an issue of the Arizona Librarian that was devoted to me. 


reprinted my writings on Arizona-New Mexico. And Patri- 
cia Paylore wrote an Introduction to it which kind of 
summed up what I'd done for librarians in that state. 
MINK: Incidentally^ what's happened at the University 
of Arizona Library to Paylore and Ball, who really pio- 
neered there. They seem to have been sort of edged out. 
POWELL: Well, Phyllis Ball's still in special collections, 
but she's not a leader in a sense. She doesn't have a 
library degree and she doesn't have status. Patricia 
Paylore moved over into the Arid Lands Project, and she's 
acting director of it now, and she is in the School of 
Earth Sciences and has published a great deal. I've got 
her books here on the shelf, on deserts and on arid lands; 
so she actually moved out at a good time into a good pro- 
ject and has not been lost. I'm not in touch with what 
they're doing in the library. My great friend over there 
is the president of the university, Richard Harvill, and 
we see each other from time to time when he's over here 
and when I'm over there. But I don't see much of Bob John- 
son, their librarian. Don Powell, the associate librarian 
is an old kinsman, a bibliographer that I respect. The 
change is basic, you see: Lawrence Powell's been edged 
out of this library, hasn't he? 
MINK: No, not quite. 
POWELL: Being the chief edger. 


MINK: Not quite; they haven't kicked you out of the 

office yet. 

POWELL: I had enough, and when people have had enough, 

and if they're lucky, they know it, and they remove 

themselves. And my career's been fortunate in this 



FEBRUARY 24, 1970 

MINK: Well, Larry, this morning, then, as I understand 
it, you have a little rebuttal to our last tape, right? 
POWELL: I've been brooding, Jim, over the criticism 
you said the staff voiced. You heard staff criticism, 
and this is probably a cover-up for your own opinion. 
I think these are the things you thought, and you passed 
it off on to the staff, you so-and-so. 

At any rate, I used to cultivate authors because 
I liked to bask in their radiated glory, and I'd made 
some points how I thought this mostly wasn't true, and 
I thought a little more about it, and I came up with a 
list of authors that I helped and whose materials I col- 
lected, who are absolutely unknown--that is, it was just 
out of sheer philanthropy and great-heartedness on my 
part that I cultivated them, such as: Judy Vanderveer 
down in San Diego County, who had a small reputation, 
but certainly there was no glory attached to it; Jay Leyda, 
who became noted as the author of the Melville Log and 
the book on Emily Dickinson and the translations of Sergei 
Eisenstein and Moussorgsky. Well, Jay came into me as a 
special student, a GI student, and he wanted stack privi- 
leges, and we helped him, and these books came out of 


that. Kenneth Maclennan^ who was a sugar tramp, an 
itinerant worker, who wrote to me for books, and I 
helped him and met him. He was an old Scot, and I got 
him to write an autobiography which we were never able 
to get published. 

Scott Greer, who was a fire watcher, and Henry- 
Miller said, "Will you send him books up in Oregon?" 
And I did. He came after the war, then, and presented 
himself and his wife, and I got him a job on grounds 
as a gardener and put his wife to work at the loan desk. 
Remember Dorothy Greer? She had the most beautiful 
breasts. She was a lovely bulwark at the loan desk; 
her breastworks, you see, would keep back the multitude 
at the same time that it lured them forward. The Greers 
I helped. Now he went on to become a poet. He took 
his Ph.D. here in sociology; he's now a professor at 

Lawrence Durrell, when I collected him, was un- 
known really in this country. Henry Miller, Idwal 
Jones--! could go on, but have I made my point? Have 
I convinced you? No. The answer is no, because Jim, 
you're too old to be convinced; your mind closed early 
and I don't see any hope for you. V/ould you care to 
defend yourself? 
MINK: VJell, really, if you did this out of sheer 


philanthropy, there must have been some motive behind 
this. Now, did you think, "Ah-hah, these people perhaps 
will become known in the literary world and then you'll 
have an in on their manuscripts." 

POWELL: Possibly; but, Jim, really, most of my. . . 
MINK: That's a weak defense. 

POWELL: Yes, well, but most of my activity was not con- 
sciously motivated. That is, I have told you I was com- 
pulsive, and I operated from sort of compulsive reflexes. 
MINK: Well, you know, Larry, that all of the people-- 
not all, but a lot of people--in the East, what you might 
call the Eastern establishment, are real turned off by 
your philosophy of bringing books and people together. 
And I think that maybe they thought, as perhaps some of 
the staff here thought, maybe me, too. . . 
POWELL: Go on, be the spokesman, Jim; be the spokesman. 
MINK: . . .that this was sort of a put-on, that it was 
a way of. . . 

POWELL: o . .getting attention and getting the lime- 
light--of course! 

MINK: You took the words out of my mouth. 

POWELL: Yes, of course it was; but that isn't necessarily 
wrong. No, you aren't saying it was wrong; you're just 
saying that's the way it seemed. 
MINK: Yes. 


POWELL: I'm sure that's true. But to understand me and 
my motivations, you must realize that I had this very 
early commitment to literature--not to lllDrarianship, 
but to literature. It came first, really; and throughout 
my whole life, I was interested in writers and in writing, 
and more in the belles lettres, of course, than in social 
sciences or in the sciences. And it was really why I 
went into library work, because I saw a chance to be iden- 
tified with literature, reading, writing; administration 
and the technical aspects of librarianship always were 

Now this was a weakness in one sense, because my 
library programs sometimes were technically sloppy be- 
cause I didn't know enough. I made wrong decisions at 
times simply through a lack of interest and knowledge. 
But there is that commitment to literature that led me 
to identify with writers, with authors, with bookmen-- 
never a real conscious motivation, but just as my way 
of life. I think that's how I would explain it. And at 
the same time there was another deep need to be recog- 
nized, which I've stressed in my autobiography and these 
remarks with you. I was an actor; I wanted the stage, 
and I exploited any number of ways of getting attention 
from childhood on--bad boy in school, simply because it 
got attention. But this is my own self-analysis, and 


it's always self-justificatory. At any rate^ it was 
based on a need to justify what I had done, and I haven't 
gotten over it, you see. This rebuttal is an exercise 
in self-justification. Now go on, give me hell. 
MINK: Well, you said you had two points. 
POWELL: Yes, all right. Point two: I didn't like what 
you referred to as the "Southwest kick." Kick seems to 
me to smack of a temporary fad or enthusiasm, and I re- 
sent that, Jim, because I think my motivation was deeper 
than that. It was. I saw the Southwest as a source of 
support for that library school. You asked me last week 
why I didn't take one of these offers from the other 
states, and I said because I wanted to stay here at 
UCLA and get the library school established. 

Well, I did a great deal of fieldwork in those 
states with the state associations. I spoke both in New 
Mexico and Arizona, and in Utah and in Nevada and in 
Texas and in Oklahoma--all those states--seeking support, 
seeking eventual students. And also, I waged a campaign 
to see if I could get support from WICHE (Western Inter- 
state Compact on Higher Education), remember, that al- 
lowed for neighboring states that didn't have graduate 
training programs to give support to California that did. 
And I thought that we could get support from these other 
states that didn't have library schools, namely New 


Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, Utah, through WICHE to support 
a school at UCLA. So I met high officials; I met presi- 
dents of universities; I met governors in two of the 
states. Always, this was one of my motivations. Now this 
was more than a kick; this was a deliberate campaign to 
get support. 

MINK: I don't think you mentioned this in the autobio- 

POWELL: Not at length. But what we did get was when I 
called the two regional conferences. One was here at 
UCLA in 1955, just before Regent Dickson died. He was 
there and the various officers of the university and 
representatives from library associations in Arizona and 
New Mexico, the university librarian. ¥e were all ready 
to roll, you see; and then Regent Dickson died, and the 
compact on higher education, or whatever it was, said, 
"Put it on the shelf for five years." 

Well, then another thing in 1955 ^ we arranged that 
Rockefeller Conference at Occidental. It was a meeting 
of the southern district of UCLA and the annual Oxy con- 
ference of the Southwest, remember that? You were there 
weren't you? Well, that was great. That produced the 
[UCLA Library] Occasional Papers, two editions of it. It 
brought Erna Fergusson and Glenn Dumke and v;hat was his 
name from Sonora, the university librarian from Hermosillo, 


Fernando Pesqueira^ and Don Powell and Patricia Paylore 
and Ed Castagna. Remember? That was a good conference, 
and it served notice on the region that we v;ere going 
to get a school established. 

Of course, when we did, there was a let-down and 
a feeling on the part of some in both Arizona and New 
Mexico that the school wasn't serving them. And the 
main reason was that our entrance qualifications were 
too high. We found very few graduates of the Univer- 
sities of Arizona and New Mexico that could qualify for 
UCLA's Graduate Division. 
MINK: Surprising. 

POWELL: Yes. Now this wasn't my fault; this was the 
standard of the Graduate Division. We couldn't lower 
it. We did get a few over, and we did make some place- 
ments. The medical librarian of Arizona, the acquisi- 
tions librarian of the medical library. . . 
MINK: That's David Bishop. 

POWELL: Dave Bishop and Miriam Miller are from here. 
We sent Alan Covey to President Durham at Tempe, and 
he became university librarian at Tempe, and Tom Harris, 
who's the acting university librarian at was one 
of our graduates. So we did a few things for the area. 
Then, damn it all, Jim, this "kick" included also the 
course I taught at UCLA for six years on Libraries and 


Literature of the Southwest. And we did a lot of prose- 
lytizing for the literature and the llbrarianship of 
those regions. I have the papers my students v/rote for 

I think the best tribute that ever came out of 
these classes was that of Josephine Archuleta, who came 
over on a State of New Mexico Library Association Scho- 
larship from Las Vegas. She was a native daughter, born 
in Los Alamos. Do you remember her, Jo Archuleta? V/ell, 
she took my course about the Southwest, this native New 
Mexican, and she said to me after it was all over, "Dean 
Powell, you opened my eyes to my native state. I never 
appreciated my heritage until 1 had this course." 

And then there were the books I did: Heart of the 
Southwest , Southwestern Century , and Southwestern Book 
Trails . Now, the best tribute I ever had to Southwestern 
Book Trails , the last book I did on the region, was when 
my publisher reported last year that high schools in New 
Mexico had ordered seventy copies for their students. 
This is what I like to think I've done, reached down be- 
low the intellectual level to the grass roots and reached 

MINK: Well, when a goes out into a region, the re- 
gion, in toto, at this level, doesn't open its arms 
totally. V/eren't there people that were saying, "Who 


in the devil is this man Powell, coming out here and 
usurping our function, something we should be doing here? 
POWELL: Exactly. 
MINK: Who was saying this? 

POWELL: Well, Harold Bachelor at Tempe, the university 
librarian then. He was jealous, I think, or hostile, 
and there were others. I don't have their names offhand. 
MINK: What was Bachelor saying? 

POWELL: Oh, he was saying that, "Powell's running a 
predatory operation. He's going to take our books and 
our women and enslave them. " And I think they felt this 
in New Mexico somewhat, too. 

MINK: At the University of New Mexico at Albuquerque? 
POWELL: Yes--that UCLA was a predatory institution. 
And of course it was , in a sense. But I said back to 
them, "Well, look, you let all your stuff go to ruin 
here. You haven't had a collecting program of your mod- 
ern writers." And I simply said, "if you aren't going to 
do it, I will." And when Haniel Long died in Santa Fe 
in 1956, I didn't take his library, which his son said 
we could have here. I suggested it be given to the uni- 
versity in Albuquerque. And it was! Erna Fergusson's 
papers--! said, "Erna, even if you wanted m.e to take 
these to UCLA, I wouldn't do it^ they belong in your 
native state." And they are at Albuquerque. So here 


again, I didn't strip them of everything. (I haven't 
said anything about the women! ) But I didn't take all 
their books or all their manuscripts. Jim, I think 
those are the points I wanted to make. Now you want 
to get on with this. [Tape turned off] 

[Continuation of Tape X, Side One 
rerecorded June 25, 1970] 

MINK: For the rest of this session, I wonder if we 
could talk about the Southwest Broadsides. First of 
all, really, how did they come to be issued? In your 
little foreword to them, I quote here: "I do not re- 
call what it was exactly that inspired this series.'' 
But maybe if you put on your thinking cap you might 

POWELL: Well, I might recall; but that doesn't neces- 
sarily mean I'll say, because this is, as you know, a 
sneaky interview, and I'm doing my best to cover tracks, 
and you're doing your best to uncover them. So let's 
say that I don't recall; but I'll make up a fairly like- 
ly story. 

First of all, I was interested in the literature 
of the Southwest. I was working in it and v;riting about 
it and speaking and plowing those fields. And at the 
same time, I had a long, friendly, professional connection 


with local printers. Part of my whole philosophy of 
collecting here and of librarianship was to support lo- 
cal industry. I liked to find, whenever possible, jobs 
for fine printers, the local ones that I'd grown up with. 
So they'd print for me Christmas keepsakes and Zamorano 
keepsakes, and I always had something going with Ritchie 
and Grant and Cheney and Saul. So it occurred to me 
that an interesting project would be to extract texts 
from some of my favorite Southwestern authors and give 
them to my favorite local printers and ask them to make 
broadsides that I could give to my friends, to give away. 

Now, I don't know where "broadsides" came in, why 
it was "broadsides." I think maybe Dick Hoffman, the 
printer, had something to do with this. At some occasion, 
maybe when I became librarian in ISkk, he presented me 
with that beautiful broadside of Whitman' s "Song of the 
Redwood Tree." I think that was just an act of friend- 
ship on his part, or recognition of my advance. And I 
framed it and hung it in my office. You remember, Jim? 
It's in Special Collections, isn't it? At any rate, I 
probably thought, "Here's an idea: to ask printers to 
do this." 

MINK: It says--if we can believe what you write-- 
POWELL: You can't, you can't, Jim; but go ahead and 
read it. 


MINK: [laughter] It says here in the forev/ord that, 
"it was a state of excitement which was engendered by a 
"trip to Tucson in April of 1953a "to attend a Southwest 
conference." And then later the Southwest Conference at 
Occidental triggered three books that you did on the 
Southwest. What about the circumstances of the trip to 

POWELL: Well, that's v;hen I'd reread Comfort's Apache 
and Haniel Long's Interlinear to Cabeza de Vac a and 
Willa Cather's Death Comes for the Archbishop ; and they 
sort of coalesced in a kind of visionary experience. It 
was like flying over the region in an airplane and see- 
ing the whole configuration of landscape laid bare. I 
had a visionary experience. This is what literature has 
always been for me, with certain books affording a tran- 
scendent experience. And I think the whole concatenation 
of the reading and of Pima County in the spring with the 
paloverdes bloomingj and the friendships I made there, 
and the whole idea of a return to Tucson, where I'd been 
in the 1920s v;ith the Oxy baseball team--it all really 
conspired to, I think, turn me in this direction of a 
textual series. 

MINK: V/ell, Larry, then you had also as University Li- 
brarian become very wealthy, and you v/ere able to dig 
down in your pocket and to pay these printers to get these 



POWELL: Well, I had more money then^ and money is to 


MINX: Well, what was your motive in spending all this 


POWELL: Well, to get rid of it, Jim, because money's a 

burning thing in the pocket. [laughter] I didn't want 

my pockets all burned through. So I got it out. I've 

always spent freely all my life, even when I had nothing. 

We've always spent, not all that we earned--I'ra speaking 

of Fay and me--because we were always thrifty in that 

we never spent more than we earned, but we spent a hell 

of a lot of what we earned. She was brought up in the 

same, generous, openhanded tradition. Not profligate, 

but openhanded. Hell, sure, I had come into a larger 

salary, and I was making more money from writing and 

speaking, and so here was this opportunity to spend some. 

That isn't very mysterious, is it? 

MINK: No. Then the first one, of course, does come from 

Apache. Could you talk a little about the first one? 

POWELL: Well, it doesn't come from Apache, actually; it 

comes from reading Will Comfort. 

MINK: It comes from reading Comfort and your experience 

with Apache . 

POWELL: Well, you and I, remember, began to chase Comfort's 


manuscripts^ and Jane, the daughter, found in the closet 
the things that her father had left at his death. We 
got those over here, and you got into that making of 
Apache and published a piece in Manuscripts . We were 
filling out our holdings of his works and in that little 
pamphlet called "The Yucca Story" we found this text, 
"A Man Is at His Best." And of course I chose that in 
a sense as expressing what I felt had happened to me-- 
that I'd come into a position in the 1940s, where I could 
he at my best, where I could lose a sense of self, not 
completely but more than I ever had before, because I 
felt I was doing the work the Lord had intended me to 

So that Comfort text, "A Man Is at His Best," seemed 
a natural. "It made their dreams come true in matter, 
and that is what our immortal souls are given flesh to 
perform. Each workman finds in his own way the secret 
of the force he represents." Well, I don't want to be 
too goddamn mystical, but. . . 

MINK: This was the smallest of the broadsides, and that's 
very typical of the work that Cheney did. 
POWELL: That's right. 

MINK: V/hy did you select Cheney as the first printer? 
He just happened to be at the Clark? 
POWELL: Well, he wasn't at the Clark then. He came 


later. He was over on La Cienega next to Jake's. I 
don't know why, Jim. He probably was the one with the 
least backlog of work, who would be able to do something. 
MINK: Is there anything about the typography of this 
particular broadside that you wanted to mention? 
POWELL: No, it's just a clean little piece of Cheney 
printing. On all these broadsides, it was entirely the 
work of the printers. I had nothing to do with the for- 
mat or illustration or type or anything else. I simply 
gave them a text and said, "Get cracking, you bastards, 
and turn this out within five years," and that was all 
I did. 

Here's number two: Pat Paylore's Up _in Coconino 
County . It was an editorial that I'd read in the Ari - 
zona Librarian, when she was president, I think, of the 
ASLA. This seemed to me a wonderful Whitmanesque sort 
of exhortation to librarian students to get off their 
asses and do something. This appealed to me. She's a 
kind of a missionary over there. She and Don Powell did 
so much to spread the word around Arizona, and I admired 
her and him--still do--and I just liked this editorial 
that I read in the Arizona Librarian . So I turned to 

MINK: And I notice that you commented here on that, that 
you recognized in Pat Paylore a kindred spokesman of what 


you held to be library gospel. 

POWELL: That's right. She was a proselyter and an ex- 
horter of the natives in the same way that I decided to 
be over on this side of the river. The format of this 
is interesting because Ritchie asked his staff artist, 
Cas Duchow (who's still with the Ritchie press--very 
fine artist) to do something characteristic, so that 
the initial U, I think, is taken from a Navajo blanket 
design. And that's a pinon tree that Cas drew from a 
■ photograph, I suppose. Both of these ideas were Ritchie's 
and Duchow' s; they weren't mine. But it's a very in- 
teresting kind of a long, skinny broadside--quite dif- 
ferent, you see, from Will Cheney's. But it's clean 
and good, you see; it's not fancy and not overdone. That's 
Ritchie at his best. 

MINK: It would be natural that Dobie would come in for 
some attention in this, because it was all part of that 
picture, and it seems to me at that time he was here. Was 
he not here at the Southwest Conference. 
POWELL: Yes, I met him for the first time. He was com- 
ing in and out of here, and I met him through John Caughey, 
I think. John brought him to my office the first time. 
It was Frank's bibliography. Guide to Life and Literature , 
that had given me the lead to Comfort's Apache in that 
1953 talk. So it was natural I picked some texts from 


Dobie. Actually, I guess three out of the twelve were 
by Frank Dobie. 

MINK: And this third one is called "Two Kinds of People." 
POWELL: Well, I'd come to that through the Southwest 
Review , the quarterly, an essay called "A Writer and His 
Region," a wonderful piece of writing; and this piece 
from it I think is just typical Dobie, typical Texas. 
Here again Grant Dahlstrom selected--I don't know where 
he got this drawing at the head of the cactus and the 
rocks and the desert. Maybe his staff artist did it. 
It's a drawing, certainly. But there again, it's a two- 
column sort of thing, and simple and beautiful, really, 
I'm pleased v.'ith that. 

MINK: In your review of the broadside, you stated this 
essay of Dobie 's expressed much of what you had been 
thinking about--the literary regionalisms of the South- 

POWELL: You see, Jim, the whole damn thing was an exer- 
cise in self-discovery or recognition, wasn't it? I was 
picking things that seemed to speak for me. My own bias 
was operating in the things I picked. But why not? It 
seemed to me a perfectly natural and normal thing to do. 
MINK: Here's a fourth one, by Haniel Long, another South- 
western writer, "When We Peer into the Colored Canyon." 
POWELL: Well, it's not a broadside; it ' s a leaflet--a 


four-page, folded leaflet. It was done by Saul and 
Lillian Marks. I suppose when I saw it and realized 
that it wasn't a broadside but a leaflet, I must have 
thought, "Well, I'd better tell them this isn't what 
I wanted." But it's so beautiful, and you don't tell 
Saul and Lillian if you don't like what they've done; 
so I kept my large mouth shut and accepted it. It's 
a beautiful piece, really--the paper and that colored 
title made up of type ornaments and type, you see. That's 
really a beautiful thing. 

Well, Haniel Long was pleased with this. He was 
crazy about it. I was over at Santa Fe and took him the 
thing when it was finished, and he gobbled up most of 
the edition, actually. And this is the one that's the 
scarcest of all, or maybe the Harvey Fergusson's Rivers is 
the scarcest because so many were spoiled in the print- 
ing. But the Long is very scarce, and no copies, and 
people are always asking for it. 

MINK: Would part of that be due to the fact that people 
collect Saul and Lillian Marks' typography? 
POTOLL: Yes, certainly it is; and then people are in- 
terested in Long. People are interested in Powell, 
strange as it may sound. [laughter] So betv/een all 
those nuts, there was a run on it. All right, that's 
number four. 


MINK: Number five is Mary Austin's "Paso Por Aqui." 
POWELL: Yes J that's a beautiful piece that Gordon did. 
MINK: Did you ask Gordon to do this, or did he just 

POWELL: I think both, probably. 
MINK: Both. [laughter] 

POWELL: Yes. He saw them coming out and he said, "I 
can do one." He had his handpress. He was then assis- 
tant librarian, and assistant librarians never have 
enough to do. So out of pity, to keep Gordon busy in 
his home hours, I gave him this excerpt from Mary Austin. 
I'd been over to El Morro, I think, in the autumn of 1953, 
when I was doing that piece for Fred Hodge's eighty- 
ninth birthday, and climbed the rock, and this excerpt 
from Mary Austin's essay certainly expressed some of the 
feeling I had when I was up on top of Inscription Rock. 
MINK: You speak about the quality that Austin conveyed 
to you, the land's undying quality. 

POWELL: It's certainly true. Oh, two summers ago, when 
we were going over to Santa Fe, we detoured down from 
Grants to visit Inscription Rock and climbed partway up; 
it came over me again--I hadn't been there for a dozen 
years--what a great religious shrine it is. And Mary 
Austin, in these two paragraphs, certainly caught it. 
Gordon here went to local and meaningful designs, because 


he took Acoma pottery, I think, for this marginal decora- 
tion, and Acoma is the next stop east of El Morro. If 
you hold the paper up to the light, you see vie used VJill 
Clark's watermarked paper. It's WAC, Jr., and there's 
his coat of arms. It's some of that surplus Clark paper 
that he'd had made in Holland, and which we'd been using 
up for years in various projects. So this was on Clark 


MINK: Next is the speech of Henry Fountain Ashurst in 

the United States Senate. 

POWELL: What do I say about that? Jim, you'd better 

cue me. 

MINK: Yes, This one, I think, comes--does it not?-- 

from your association or your meeting of Henry Fountain 


POWELL: It came out of a review I wrote in Westways of 
speeches he made in the Senate, which were collected by 
Barry Goldwater and published. And I got a review copy 
at Westways and read this speech given in the United States 
Senate (June 15, 1935), in which he torpedoed Huey Long. 
It was the same kind of speech, really, in Long's sena- 
torial career, I think, that Senator Aiken of Vermont 
made against Joe McCarthy. It was a kind of a turning 
point. For the first time, one of Huey Long's senatorial 
colleagues held him up to probing and ridicule. And this 


was a typical rhetorical shaft, or harpoon, that Ashurst 

let fly. 

MINK: And you say in your review here that you read the 
speech at the height of the McCarthy uproar. 
POWELL: That's right. I was teaching at Columbia then. 
MINK: Naturally, your feeling about McCarthy v/ent back 
again to your 1948 experience in California. 
POWELL: You mean 1952. 

MINK: When was it that you were up before the Un-Ameri- 
can Activities Committee? 

POWELL: The autumn of 1952. Well, I don't think that 
had anything to do with it. That was past, and McCarthy 
was certainly riding high then, but I figured somebody 
would shoot him down. 

MINK: But didn't you sort of resent this whole line of 

POWELL: Yes, of course I did. There at Columbia I was 
following the hearings that were being broadcast over 
the New York Times station. I used to come home from 
teaching at Columbia and turn on my radio and hear the 
bastards, McCarthy and his ilk, and that wonderful attor- 
ney for the Army--Joe Welch, wasn't it, who v;as really 
disemboweling the McCarthy gang. It was a great turning 
point, certainly, in our political history. So I loved 
this Ashurst speech. Of course, it led to a meeting with 


Senator Ashurst. A really high point, I think, was cal- 
ling on him in his apartment at the Wardman Park Shera- 
ton Hotel in Washington, when he was living in retire- 
ment, and presenting this broadside to him. 
MINK: What v/as he like? 

POWELL: Oh, he was an old-fashioned, courtly gentleman 
of the old school--not in a frock coat, but elegantly 
dressed and beautifully groomed and all. I went up to 
his apartment and presented this; then we went down for 
lunch. It was a kind of a triumphal procession. Every- 
where we went in the hotel everybody knew him. He 
couldn't get over his old habit of stopping to kiss babies 
and pretty women. [laughter] It was as though he were 
campaigning for reelection. He'd pass through and bow 
and shake hands and embrace. It was really a tremendous 
sort of a procession from the elevator to the dining room. 
I loved the old guy. This was a real tribute of homage 
that I made in this broadside. And, of course, Dick 
Hoffman really pulled out the stops, printing it in red, 
white, and blue, and finding that marvelous eagle. 
MINK: Gordon Williams had a hand in this, I think. He 
was the one that located the type ornament, vfasn't he? 
POWELL: Gordon found that eagle, I guess, in an annual 
of nineteenth-century American typography. The American 
eagle has never been more gloriously portrayed. Later, 


I know, Ashurst framed this, and Senator Barry Goldwater 
had one framed, too. In his office (he told me) when I 
called on him once in Phoenix. And a number of libraries-- 
I remember at Tempe in the Arizona State University Li- 
brary, the framed copy of this was hanging at the loan 
desk. It's a great speech in the American tradition of 
political oratory, and I'm very proud of having this in 
the series. 

MINK: And then the last one that we're covering this 
morning is the one that I like best. 

POWELL: Jim, I like them all best. You see, I agree 
with you; this is a wonderful statement. 
MINK: I just like the statement in that. 
POWELL: Well, it's gospel. It's just as much gospel 
for us here in public service as Pat Paylore ' s is for 
fieldwork in librarianship. These are gospel statements. 
This I drew from Charlie Lummis' great report he made, 
called Books in Harness . 
MINK: The I906 report of Lummis. 

POWELL: Is it? Yes. He printed that in Out West , and 
then it was separately printed. I used it in my teach- 
ing, and we framed it. It hangs still, I hope, in the 
library school upstairs. It's what we are here for. I 
say time and again that Lummis is one of our great librar- 
ians, and this kind of utterance certainly bears me out. 


MINK: This became a keepsake, too, for a joint meeting 
of the Roxburghe (northern) and Zamorano (southern) book 
clubs, too. 

POWELL: Oh, I'd forgotten that; but sure, it was printed 
by Lawton Kennedy of San Francisco, who's a member of 
Roxburghe, and I guess I took a whacking lot up of it. 
Now, here, again, it's a broadside but on a folded sheet, 
printed on one page only. But it's a damn dignified 
piece of printing, and of course it's characteristic 
Lawton Kennedy. You couldn't miss it. That's his style. 
MINK: It's a beautiful type ornament. 

POWELL: Type ornaments and variation of type sizes and 
kinds. It looks so easy, but when you come to do it, 
only a master can bring it off. 

MINK: Did you actually send them to people who were 
really not within the library circle but just personal 
friends of yours? 

POWELL: Yes. [Friends] in the Zamorano Club, particu- 
larly, and locally, and on the staff. Didn't you get a 
set of them, Jim? 
MINK: I believe I did. 

POWELL: Yes. You probably can't find it today, because 
you're really a very bad housekeeper, Jim. Probably you 
ought to go to library school some day and get a refresher 
course in library housekeeping. This is pot and kettle. 


isn't it? Look at my stuff around here. I'm messy, 
too. All geniuses are messy, Jim. That's why v^e get 
along so well together now. 


FEBRUARY 24, 1970 

MINK: We are continuing on side two with the Southwest 
Broadsides . 

POWELL: That's Bent's Fort . 
MINK: Which is number. . .? 
POWELL: David Lavender, it's number eight. 
MINK: Number eight. 

POWELL: I think I picked it because I'd just met Laven- 
der. He was then teaching at Thacher School, and he 
came down to use the library. I looked into his books, 
I guess, and got interested in hiai, read his new book. 
Bent's Fort , which, as I say, is in the northeast corner 
of the Southwest. It's actually in Colorado. And I gave 
it to Merle Armitage to design. Well, he went wild as 
you can see. He did a leaflet, really--a great broad- 
sheet, folded into these four pages and a characteristic 
Armitage design, a six-shooter, a buffalo, a covered v/agon, 
a mountain range, a fort, a longhorn and an Indian head. 
In other words, he's got everything but the kitchen sink. 
He designed and drew these himself. He didn't print it, 
of course (he never was a printer); he got Gordon Holm- 
quist, of Cole-Holmquist, to print it. It ' s a lovely 
piece of prose about Bent's Fort and the Arkansas River. 


I went up the Arkansas River a couple years ago, 
driving west from Boston; I followed the Arkansas to 
where Mammoth Pass--not Mammoth, but the pass that goes 
over to Aspen. I was at Bent's Fort-what's left-there 
isn't anything left but a marker. And I think this is 
beautiful prose; it's about the Arkansas and about the 
coming out of the Rockies, Raton Pass. It's very char- 
acteristic Merle Armitage. If you know Merle's work, 
there he is with all his flamboyant, marvelous bold sense 
. of design, and Merle had a great time doing it. 
MINK: Your relations with Armitage have always been 
quite friendly, haven't they? 

POWELL: They were more or less up to a point. Then we 
fell out when I printed a second ten-year report on the 
Clark and mentioned all the modern printers' collections 
that we were proud of there, and unfortunately I omitted 


MINK: Oversight? 

POWELL: Yes, it was just an oversight. It made him mad 

as hell, and he waged a rather vindictive campaign against 


MINK: What did he do to get back at you? 
POWELL: He got his friends to write and say, "We hear 
that the Clark Library no longer appreciates Merle Armi- 
tage and is selling his collection, and we would like to 


buy it." [laughter] It was a pure lie on Merle's part. 
It wasn't true of course. I had to write to all these 
bastards and pin their ears back, sending copies to Merle. 
I pointed out that I supported Merle as a fine printer 
long before they'd heard of him, most of them. Remember, 
we had the first exhibition of Merle's here in the UCLA 
Library about 1939 • 
MINK: One that you arranged? 

POWELL: One that I arranged in that series that I did, 
and Merle knew very well we'd been a friend to him. But 
it was my fault; I shouldn't have left him out. We made 
it up. 

Well, at any rate, number nine is really fantastic 
and beautiful, because here again it's a leaflet and an 
illustrated leaflet, not a true broadside. But I'll read 
you what I say about it because it tells a story. On a 
flight home from Houston (I'd been speaking to the Friends 
of the Houston Public Library), I stopped in El Paso to 
meet Carl Hertzog. This was about 1955. And I asked 
him to print a broadside. 
MINK: Had you this in mind before? 

POWELL: I wanted to meet him. I wanted him to print one 
because I knew his work; we'd collected it at the Clark. 
MINK: This again would be a matter of having a represen- 
tation of. . . 


POWELL: A regional representation of printers as v;ell 
as of texts. 

MINK: There just weren't any printers, were there. In 
the Southwest--New Mexico and Arlzona--who were capable 
of contributing to this series? 

POWELL: No, there weren't any other than Carl Hertzog 
in El Paso. There weren't any In Arizona and New Mexico. 
And there still aren't, really. 
MINK: That's sad. 
POWELL: I know. 

MINK: You would think that In that area there would be, 
you know, with all that beautiful scenery and the In- 
spiration that you get just from being there that It 
would attract printers like flies. 

POWELL: Well, they have to have some economic base, and 
the economic base Is generally In the cities unless they 
have private means. The economic base for Hertzog In 
El Paso was Texas VJestern College; he was the college 
printer. He did all their official work, and then he 
did all the work for Tom Lea and Doble. 

Well, at any rate, while on the ground In San An- 
tonio an hour or two earlier, I'd stretched my legs by 
walking about the airport terminal, and a paperback edi- 
tion of Doble 's A Vaquero of the Brush Country/ caught 
my eye. And reading It on the next leg of the flight. 


I alighted at El Paso with a trans Pecos excerpt in 
hand, and I took it right in and said to Carl Hertzog, 
"Here's what I want you to print." I marked it in the 
paperback and left it with him. And as I say, there 
are other reasons, involving the headwaters and points 
below of the Pecos, why I chose it, but there's not 
room enough here for me to elaborate thereon. Well, 
I'd made a reconnalsance of the Pecos River once going 
from the headwaters down to where it meets the Rio Grande, 
near Del Rio, and the whole thing was gathered up in my 
interest in this very Interesting Southwestern river. 
MINK: What fascinated you about it? 

POWELL: Well, I don't know. I think I like to see a 
water course from its headwaters to its mouth, and there 
aren't many that you can follow all the way. I followed 
the Rio Grande a great deal of the way, but the Pecos 
River I followed all the way, from the headwaters way 
up at Cowles and clear on down to where it meets the 
Rio Grande about 1,800 miles, on one vacation trip. It's 
just sentimental attachment to a little stream that keeps 

At any rate, Hertzog did it, and he got El Paso's 
number-one artist, Jose Cisneros, who illustrated many 
of his works, a native New Mexican and native Mexican- 
American. He drev; a map of the Pecos from Pecos Village 


down to the union with the Rio Grande at Langtry and put 
in the various places that are mentioned by Dobie in the 
passage, with a skull and with the shading and all. . . 
MINK: This is the second time a skull appears in the 


POWELL: Yes, there's a skull in Armitage and here in 
the Dobie--it was my second choice of a Dobie text. And 
I say with his usual drive for perfection, Hertzog printed 
the leaflet in several color combinations, and please 
don't ask him or me which state is which^ I don't know 
which came first. This is in brown and red. He printed 
it in blue and red. He printed it in brown and blue, and 
we had all these variants. 

MINK: Gee, I wish we had a copy of all of those. 
POWELL: Oh, I think we do, damn it all, Jim. 
MINK: We should have them. 

POWELL: We should have them. If you don't in the enve- 
lope, Clark might still have them. At any rate, that 
was number nine. 

Well, number ten--we hadn't finished with the Va- 
quero of the Brush Country . There was another passage 
that I was fond of. It was on the Brush Country itself-- 
J. Frank Dobie 's catalog, really, of the flora that makes 
up the Brush Country. It's really a tour de force of 
prose involving botanical names and a feeling for the 


place; it's one of the great passages, sort of a virtu- 
oso passage that Dobie wrote about the mesquite and all 
the other chaparral. I went back to Dahlstrom--don' t 
ask me why; maybe he called me up and said, "Got any 
more of this kind of work for me; I'd like to do another." 
So he did this. It's very simple. It's one broadsheet 
in two columns with a heading in green. The touch of 
green, of course, sets it off. And Dobie liked it very 
much. I sent him a good many of the copies, as I did 
of the earlier ones. 

Well, number eleven is the scarcest of all, and 
for the reason that although the colophon says 150 copies 
were printed, they never completed that many. The silk- 
screen printing of this bold design stumped these two 
student printers that were in Dick Hoffman's class. 
MINK: Oh, you went to Dick Hoffman again, 
POWELL: Yes, Hoffman did it because--well, I don't know 
why. Maybe he said, "I'm ready for another." 
MINK: This would be his second. 

POWELL: His second. And he turned it over to his two 
students in the class. One was a Mexican, Rafael Gon- 
zales. . . "in the graphic arts laboratory of Los Angeles 
City College under the supervision of Richard Hoffman. 
The illustration, dravm and stencils handcut by Gonzales, 
was produced in five colors by the silk-screen process. 


There were a few copies on Italian handmade Umbria paper, 
the rest on Shadow Mold Cover." 
MINK: What's this on, Larry? 

POWELL: I think this is Shadow Mold Cover. [tape off] 
Well, it's another passage about the Pecos, and it's 
Harvey Fergusson. It's from his autobiography Home in 
the West . He grew up as a boy on the Rio Grande and 
summers fishing on the upper Pecos. 

MINK: The other day did you mention when you first met 
Harvey Fergusson? 

POWELL: No, I don't think so. I mentioned Erna, perhaps 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: I met Harvey for the first time in Berkeley, 
of course, where he has lived for the past twenty years. 
He lives on the upper floor of a two-flat house. It's 
an old redwood house that belonged to Phoebe Apperson 
Hearst--to Mama Hearst. Fergusson has the upper floor; 
he did then when I met him. He's old and ill and in a 
rest home now in Berkeley. He's very ill. I probably 
called on him for the first time, taking him up one of 
these broadsides. We had a great deal in com.m.on--talk 
of books, of New Mexico, of writing. And there again, 
we did some reference work for him; we were given a 
good screwing, I'm sorry to say, by George Hammond of 
the Bancroft Library. 


MINK: How did that occur? 

POWELL: Well, I made a speech in Albuquerque, along in 
1954 or 1955, about Harvey Fergusson as a native New 
Mexican writer and author and as a prophet in his own 
country I was honoring. It's a talk I called "Books 
Determine." It was a speech to the Southwestern Library 
Association, the regional group, which met every two 
years, and it hit all the Albuquerque papers. They gave 
a front-page story on Harvey Fergusson hailed in his 
hometown and so on. It led to meeting Harvey, and he 
said he would be glad to have his journals preserved at 
UCLA. Earlier, his friend. Quail Hawkins of the Sather 
Gate Book Shop, had sent us the typescript of Harvey Fer- 
gusson' s Grant of Kingdom , the book about the Maxwell 
land grant. We had it here at UCLA. All right. I ex- 
pected then to get his journals. Well, George Hammond 
of the Bancroft Library apparently discovered Harvey 
Fergusson for the first time through my talk; he ought 
to have known of him because he's been at Albuquerque 
for many years, but. . . 

MINK: Hammond also was dean of the graduate school at 
the University of New Mexico. 

POWELL: But Fergusson was not a historian in that sense. 
He was a novelist, and he wrote Rio Grande , a book about 
the river valley. He wasn't one of George Hammond's kind 


of historians. Hammond had overlooked him, apparently. 
MINK: Can I interject something here? VJasn't this about 
the time that the Bancroft began, in a sort of self- 
avowal, to say that they were going to be the repository 
of California and Southwestern belles lettres? 
POWELL: Yes, it probably coincided with this, and I 
like to think that it was my needle in their side. They 
figured v/e ' d better do this or UCLA will pull the rug. 
MINK: Well, we were already doing it here, weren't we? 
POWELL: Of course, we were, yes. 
MINK: So what did George P. do? 

POWELL: He zeroed in on Harvey Fergusson, and he said, 
"Well, you shouldn't give those journals down to UCLA; 
you'd better give them right here to the Bancroft. We'll 
keep them for you and you can look at them any time you 
want." Actually it was a better deal from Fergusson' s 
point of view, I must admit. Harvey wrote me and said, 
"I'm doing this." Well, Powell, with his typical Chris- 
tian charity, instead of fighting back at George Hammond, 
turned the other cheek. What did Powell do? He wrote 
to Hammond and said, "You ought to have this typescript 
that we have. Grant of Kingdom . We shouldn't divide 
Harvey Fergusson' s collection. Therefore I'm withdrawing 
it from UCLA and sending it up to the Bancroft." And I 
did; we sent him Grant of Kingdom, and that cleaned us 


out of Harvey Fergusson. I'm not bitter about it; I'm 

MINK: I've always been amused at the Bancroft Library 
because it's always been such a one-way street with them. 
POWELL: It still is. Maybe under Jim Hart it might be 
a little more relaxed. 

MINK: I don't know. I think for example of the Water- 
man papers in Berkeley at the time that I v;as vforking 
in the Bancroft. The Waterman papers came to light be- 
cause of Waterman's daughter, who, as I recall, was some- 
what of an eccentric. I believe it was his daughter; 
I'm not absolutely certain of this. I think through John 
Barr Thompkins, it was discovered that she was beginning 
to burn and throw away the Waterman papers. VJell, they 
Jumped in, but again, the large share of the Waterman 
papers dealt with his cattle ranch and in the San Bernar- 
dino area. He was a Southern California man--one of the 
early people from Southern California to become governor 
of the state, you know. 

POWELL: Yes, well, remember the Teague papers, too: that 
was the classic example and how v;e bled and died. 
MINK: The Charles Collins Teague papers, yes. 
POWELL: We bled and died. 

MINK: And then the Robert Kenny papers, too. 
POVJELL: Kenny papers, yes. Well, this is v;hat happens 


when you're the little brother. You never can catch up 
with big brother. You can try. 

MINK: It's always sort of "him v;hat has, gits." 
POWELL: "Him what has, gits." Of course, v;e ' ve operated 
on the same principle vis-a-vis Irvine, Santa Barbara, 
and Riverside. We're big brother and we've gotten in 
ahead of them. My father's citrus papers, for example. 
Riverside would have liked very much to have, and in a 
sense they belong at Riverside; but we have them here 
and they stay here, because I want them here with my 
family papers. And who's to say where they're the most 
meaningful. I tried always to take the large regional 
view. It always gives you a good feeling when you know 
that you're being a Christian and not being a mean son 
of a bitch and fighting back; and you can afford to be 
a Christian a certain number of times, Jim, but don't 
overdo it. Here's number twelve. 
MINK: That's the last in the series. 
POWELL: That's the last. 

MINK: Had you decided in the beginning that you were 
going to have twelve and that would be it, or did you 
decide at the end that you had enough? 

P0V7ELL: I think I ran out of gas. I ran out of printers- 
the ones that I wanted them to do, and I didn't v/ant to 
go back too many times, I'd gone back twice to Hoffman 


and to Dahlstrom. And after all, I had to pay for these. 

MINK: I was going to ask you about that. How much did 

all this cost you? 

POWELL: I don't know; I never dared add it up. They 

gave me good friendly prices. 

MINK: But you can deduct it from your income tax. 

POWELL: No, I don't think I could. 

MINK: As gifts. 

POWELL: But not to charitable institutions. They were 

gifts to friends, individuals very largely. No, it was 

simply an enthusiasm; it was a kick. It cost me money, 

"but what better use. 

Well, at any rate we had to have the Grabhorns, one 
of the greatest of all the Western printers, and my con- 
tact with him was through David Magee, the San Francis- 
co book seller who was close to them, did their biblio- 
graphy--he and Heller. And I think I sent the text up 
to David and asked him if he'd get Grabhorn to print it, 
and he did. The text is out of Paul Horgan's essay, 
"Land of the Southwest," from the Southv/est Review. And 
I think I told you a couple of weeks ago what Frank Dobie's 
comment on the prose was--"belletristic bullshit." I'd 
never tell Paul; Paul would really be hurt. But it's 
fine writing; it's early Horgan (1933) • But it was a 
good way to end: "For it's the land which is still 


supreme in Nueva Granada. From its rusty earth must 

grow the grasses for the range in which the red cows 

rove. When winter withdraws before the southern breath 

of spring. ..." 

MINK: Dobie just didn't like it, I guess, because it 

was poetical. 

POWELL: Yes, that's right, fine writing. 

MINK: He was more down to earth. 

POWELL: Yes, more gutsy. He and Horgan were personal 

friends, but Dobie was the stronger writer. 

MINK: Well, which of the twelve do you fancy the most? 

POWELL: Gee, I don't know, Jim. I don't know. I never 

thought of it that way. I don't know; I like them all. 

As an example of prose--I think maybe Mary Austin's 

"Inscription Rock" is the most moving. 

MINK: What about the graphic design? That was Gordon 

Williams', and he is strictly an amateur and couldn't 

be said to be in competition with people like Grabhorn 

or Dahlstrom? 

POWELL: No, but he really rose to it, I think, and did 

a beautiful simple broadside on a handpress. It was 

Gordon at his best. 

MINK: So maybe that's your favorite. 

POWELL: Perhaps. Fay and I, a year ago last fall after 

CLA in San Diego, drove over to Santa Fe and detoured 


down to Zunl and over to Inscription Rock. She'd never 
been there, and I wanted her to see it. I hadn't been 
there since 1953- It's not a national park; it ' s a 
national monument. They have a headquarters building 
and a museum and a ranger-naturalist, which was all new 
since I was first there. But the rock itself and the path 
to it and all is absolutely unchanged. We had a beauti- 
ful day there in October of '68. 

I did another piece which came out of that interest 
in Inscription Rock. John Slater, who is an electronics 
engineer at North American [Rockwell] in Downey had read 
my piece, or had seen that broadside, and he was doing 
of all things this book on El Mor, Inscription Rock, which 
is a book of all the known photographs and drawings of 
it and transcriptions that he brought together and had 
Saul and Lillian Marks print. He asked me if I'd write 
a foreword. I'd met Slater only once at a library affair 
out in Norwalk, and I said, "Yes, I will." I wrote this 
little foreword to it which referred to the Mary Austin-- 
the fact that she wanted her ashes there and that Fred 
Hodge's ashes were scattered near there. And I think 
this is one of the beautiful books Saul and Lillian ever 
did. Slater paid for it„ It cost $10,000 to print, and 
he sold it through Dawson's at $30 a copy. There 're 
still copies left. But here again, it's an example of 
what enthusiasm will lead a man to do. 


MARCH 10, 1970 

MINK: Well, this morning I had said that v/e would like 
to continue talking about your writing. VJe talked about 
the Southwest Broadsides, and you said that you had more 
to say about some of your writing that is not a matter 
of record and perhaps that we're really recording for 
the future and not for the present, and maybe this part 
is going to be sealed. 

POWELL: Well, I was thinking of so-called creative writ- 
ing, which I've tried to carry on all through my career 
and really never published. And I don't think I will 
publish anything in my lifetime. I'll probably leave 
a number of unpublished manuscripts. Now don't misun- 
derstand me, Jim--this isn't pornographic writing; this 
isn't writing that can't be published because of its 
content, but it's just writing that probably isn't good 
enough because I've never been able to give my full time 
to it. I have done it clear out on another side--that 
is, a lot of my published writing was on the side of a 
working career, and the creative writing v;a5 outside of 
it on a very thin margin. I probably ought to set the 
record straight on it because inevitably it v/ill come 
out that I've done writing of this kind: novels, long 


stories, "because in my correspondence there v/ill appear 
reference to It from Henry Miller, from Brother Antoni- 
nus (Bill Everson), from ones that were privy to it. 
MINK: They saw the manuscripts? 

POWELL: Yes, M. F. K. Fisher and others, Ritchie and 
Newell and Dr. Bieler, my closest friends and confidants 
that I shared with. So why don't I put it straight: v^hat 
the hell I was trying to do and how it came about. Is 
that fair enough? 

MINK: You said you didn't think it was good enough to 
publish. Was it because these confidants told you it 
wasn't, or because you're just so self-critical yourself? 
POWELL: Both, I suppose; although the closest friends 
are never your best critics. 
MINK: True. 

POWELL: They tend to be carried away by your personal 
relationship to accept whatever you do somewhat uncriti- 

MINK: Well, since none of us have ever seen this writing, 
except your closest confidants, it's very difficult for 
anyone to interview you about it. So you'll just have 
to say what you're willing to say. 

POWELL: Well, Jim, I will give you leads, you see, as 
a good interviev;ee. I provide you with leads, you see, 
and you can pick up, because I don't V7ant to make this 


a total monologue; I think an interview is much more in- 
teresting when it's dialogue. And that, remember, was 
our criticism of the Ritchie manuscript, that Liz [Dixon] 
didn't enter into it enough. I want to encourage you, 
Jim, to be yourself and to be expansive, not to be in- 
timidated by my august presence, and to participate, 
even though it's not done very intelligently at times, 
[laughter] I'll attempt to coach you so that you appear 
at your best. After all, I want you to be remembered 
as a historical figure, as well as I. 

Now. The whole thing goes back to what we've called 
my compulsive nature--compulsion toward expression, toward 
recognition, toward achievement, toward influence, to 
all these things that have motivated and goosed me inLo 
doing what I've done. 
MINK: Your unflagging ego. 

POWELL: That's right; that's right. And the thick skin, 
the pachydermist investiture in which I'm encased. [laugh- 
ter] Yes; and it is and it isn't. There's always the 
sensitive, shrinking, shy-violet type, down underneath, 
I think, although I've never gone really in deep enough 
to make sure; but it's probably there. But I don't really 
care much about it. It goes back to, I suppose, that 
Marengo Literary Leader , the writing of the Fu Manchu and 
the desire to write something that would be read. 


MINK: Were you always intrigued by Gothic novels? Were 
those your favorites? 

POWELL: No, just the period, I think, the Fu Manchu-type 
period. I never went on and never continued this, and 
I'm not a Gothic buff now, and never have been. No, that 
was Just a phase. I think then another thing I've said 
about my career that you can't understand unless you take 
it in terms of the parallel dedication to literature-- 
that is, I've been Interested in writers and I've been 
friends with writers and I've been interested in writers' 
writers. That is the whole problem of writing itself. 
I've read a lot of literary criticism, and I'm interested 
in the relationship of writing to living, to what writing 
does for a writer in the way of a safety valve--every 
man his own psychoanalyst. 

And in my case, I think, writing has been a great 
therapeutic device that's given me an outlet, when actual 
living itself of a total and a compulsive sort was not 
possible--that is, in an academic career you can't live 
your entire life; you've got to hedge it and to contain it 
within the bounds of propriety. You can go underground 
or you can go in the air as far as possible, but still, 
your life is circumscribed. 

Nov;, I suppose this v;as part of my affection for 
Henry Miller, a man who didn't recognize this, who denied 


this. He never twitted me or said, "Larry, v;hy don't 
you give it all up and be a writer." No; because he's 
not that kind of a guy. But he led that kind of life-- 
he gave it all up--and I suppose, I had a sublimated 
experience in Henry. This is part of the secret of our 
friendship, I think. He represented a life that. . . 
MINK: You envied? 
POWELL: Not envied, but admired. 
MINK: Admired. 

POWELL: Yes, I admired it; I didn't envy it. If I really 
wanted to, I would have, and I could have. 
MINK: Well, you said you read a lot of literary criti- 
cism; can you buttonhole any literary critics that in- 
fluenced you most? 

POWELL: I think maybe Cyril Connolly, the English critic, 
was very strong. I read Horizon all through the war when 
he founded and edited it--his essays on writing in there. 
MINK: What most about these essays influenced you? 
POWELL: Well, always style. I was always interested in 
the feeling for words, both for their sound and their 
meaning. I think the highest tribute I ever had paid me 
as a speaker was once in Tulsa, Oklahoma, vrhere I spoke. 
A librarian from the grass roots came up afterwards and 
said, "I just want to tell you that you choose v;ords si- 
multaneously for their sound and their sense." "Of course," 


I said J, "that's my whole aim, to make the sound and the 
sense coincide." V/ell, Connolly had a great deal to say 
about this and he also. . . 
MINK: About sound and sense? 

POWELL: Yes J about the marriage of sound and sense in 
style. I always wanted to write well, and I didn't write 
well many times because I was too hurried. 
MINK: The thing that's been said, of course--and I think 
this is already in the tape--that your writing has al- 
ways been so personalized. 

POWELL: Well, in essays perhaps, not in bibliography. 
I think I did a lot of bibliographical writing. I did 
all the Westways reviewing. The Books of the Southwest . 
All that Southwestern and California bibliographical 
writing was in a sense. . . 

MINK: No. What I'm trying to say is that a lot of your 
writing relates books to personal experiences and not 
past experiences, but experiences contemporary with the 
actual writing. 

POWELL: Yes, and this is both a strength and a weakness. 
It can be rich and it can be thin, depending on how skill- 
ful you are or how deep an experience it was. Yes, I 
know--personal and also repetitive. You said that I 
often regurgitated and lived on my own guts until they 
were really lived up, and this is true. This is part 


of the problem of having to produce. I was under the 
compulsion to deliver a lot in the form of talks and 
contributions and essays, but. . . 

MINK: Well, Bob [Vosper] doesn't seem to be under this 
compulsion; he seldom publishes at all. 
POWELL: Well, sure, we're different. People are dif- 
ferent, Jim. 

MINK: Well, you were under personal compulsion; you 
weren't under pressure from the university or from your 

POWELL: No, no, but from an involvement in the profes- 
sion, let's say, as a conference institute speaker, that 
kind of pressure--I mean, being asked to be on programs. 
MINK: The more you're in demand, the more necessary it 
is to chew on your own guts? 

POWELL: That's right. I was just thinking in my last 
year here before I retired in '66, I had a whole series 
of talks to give. And retired, there was Tokyo, 
there was Tulsa, there was Norman, there was Chattanooga, 
there was Santa Monica, and there was Chicago, and then 
in Europe there was Aberystwyth and London and Zagreb. 
Running through six months there, I had ten or fifteen 
talks to give, 

MINK: You didn't have enough personal experiences in 
this period that you could relate to books. . . 


POWELL: No, that isn't itj I just didn't have the time 

to refine it. It all came too fast. I've always used 

travel as a device and written a lot on travel. 

MINK: Relation of experiences on travel to books. 

POWELL: Books and reading. 

MINK: That you read while traveling? 

POWELL: Yes, that's right. Well, we're getting off 

the track. 

MINK: No we're not. Where did you get this idea? 

POWELL: I got it from my mother and father in my genes. 

MINK: Oh, now wait a minute--what about Gertrude Powell's 

The Quiet Side of Europe ? 

POWELL: What about it? I got her to write it; it was 
my compulsion imposed on her, because she came back from 
Europe in 1934, pretty much at a loose end and pretty 
discouraged because her money had all been lost in the 
Depression. There were writing contests open in the At- 
lantic Monthly, and various periodicals were offering 
prizes for writings. 

MINK: During the Depression years, yes. 
POWELL: And I suggested to ray mother that she recoup 
her fortune by entering one of these. Actually, I think 
I remember this only by aid of her journal recently. I 
went back to 1934 and found it. It was in that year, 
'34- '35, that under my urging, she went back to her 


journals and her family letters which she'd v/ritten to 
her brother and sister and wrote that manuscript, and I 
began to type it and revise it. And I don't know, the 
contest closed; we never made 'the deadline, and her for- 
tunes improved a little when my brother and her brother's 
earning power was rising, and she didn't have that same 
compulsive need. But there it was. She wasn't a com- 
pulsive writer in the sense that I am in the need for 
recognition. She wrote everyday. She wrote these copious 
journals, and she was a great letter writer. She wrote 
right up to the end, but she never thought of herself as 
a writer in the sense of ever being published. 

Yes, you asked me how I got this way--well, ±z came 
from this heritage, I suppose of my nature, my parents, 
my mother and father. We're what they combine to give 
us, aren't we? And this was my nature. 

All right. I was writing pieces then in grammar 
school and in high school, generally on assignment for 
class or for a newspaper or a periodical, and in college 
for the Occidental and for the Tawny Cat and some of 
those things. And when I met Fay and fell in love with 
Fay, I was, I think, motivated to write poetry. I wrote 
quite a lot of poetry to her. 
MINK: VJard also v;rote poetry. 
POWELL: He wrote better poetry than I did. He was a 


better writer than I was earlier. I'm a better writer 
now because I've stayed with it. He was a better writer 

MINK: Well, maybe, while I think of it, we might as well 
get this in the record and get your reaction to it. Wil- 
bur [Smith] read the Ritchie manuscript, and his major 
criticism of it--and I wondered if you found this true-- 
is that he finds the same thing in this manuscript that 
he finds in Ritchie's speeches and in his writings: not 
getting the facts straight, not getting the whole story 

POWELL: He's diffuse; he tends to be diffuse. 
MINK: Particularly about his recollections of the machina- 
tions of the Smith episode of Dorothy and his father and 
Sarah Bixby and the like; he really didn't tell it like 
it was . 

POWELL: Well, maybe he told it the way he remembered it, 
which is like it was to him in his memory. 
MINK: I don't know whether I should put that on the tape, 
or not. 

POWELL: Well, why not? Ritchie would probably agree. It 
was the way I remember it, he'd sayo But his writing tends 
to be diffuse because it's highly marginal in a very busy, 
full careero 
MINK: Perhaps he has not enough time to organize his 


thoughts and put them down on paper the way they should 

POWELL: That's rights yes. That's why my writing's 
getting better now as I age^ because I have more time 
to organize and to compose. Well, a lot of the poetry, 
I think, came out of Maclntyre and Stelter and those 
classes at Occidental in literature and a wide exposure 
to literature through Maclntyre and his reading which 
was worldwide, comparative, very eclectic, and stimulat- 

MINK: And of course, Jeffers. 

POWELL: And Jeffers. So, when it really began in ear- 
nest was that summer of 1930 in Paris after Fay had gone 
home and VJard and I were living together in the Crystal 
Hotel. And he'd go away in the daytime. I think he'd 
started work for Schmied, and I was alone. I'd go over 
to the Luxembourg Gardens and rent an iron chair from 
the crone. With a pad and a pencil I sat there, and 
for some reason mysterious--an inner necessity--I began 
to write a novel, my first novel. And it poured out, a 
daily flood. And at night, I'd read aloud to Ritchie; 
and he'd end up with maybe three quatrains of poetry, 
chiselled, refined and finished, and he'd read to me. 
And those poems of his, he printed later in that little 
book XV Poems for the Heath Broom, under the nom de plume. 


Peter Lum Quince, in 193^« And then he produced a couple 
more books. The Year' s at the Spring , when he had this 
wonderful, moving love affair and wrote these beautiful 
poems, with the Paul Landacre flower Illustrations; that's 
a lovely little hook. Then he wrote A Few More . He wrote 
it for Marka when they were married. 

MINK: Yes, I remember that one. Well, what about your 
novel, Larry? 

POWELL: Well, what about it? I went on writing. . . 
MINK: The plot? 

POWELL: Plot? It was a college novel. 
MINK: A college novel. 
POWELL: A college novel. 
MINK: Did you have Oxy in mind? 

POWELL: Oxy in mind, and music. It was an attempt, I 
think, to understand myself in terms of a change from 
a very hectic and scrambled life as a dance musician 
(which I led all through those years) and a growing in- 
tellectual awakening through my teachers and a commit- 
ment, then, more toward literature and possibly teaching. 
MINK: Certainly scholarship. 

POWELL: Scholarshlp--going through to the doctorate. 
It v;as an attempt, I think, to understand these diver- 
gent pulls in me, because I could have. If I'd have de- 
cided to do it, stayed with music and made it. I would 


have had my own orchestra and I would have been success- 

MINK: You would have been another Benny Goodman? 
POWELL: Yes. VJell, maybe not that good a man, but I 
would have certainly had some kind of life. But I had 
too much mind. My mind had been awakened by my teachers 
and by my heritage, I suppose. This didn't satisfy me. 
MINK: Did you finish the novel? 
POWELL: Well. . .yes. I finished. . . 
MINK: The way you hesitate makes me think you weren't 
satisfied with the way it wound up. 

POWELL: No, I finished it in the sense that I was through 
with it, but it wasn't a finished book in that sense. 
I kept writing on a draft all down through the months 
and in Dijon. I used to read it aloud to the Fishers, 
to Alfred and Mary Frances, and to Ritchie when he came 
down visiting. It wasn't good at all, it was chaotic and 
rather formless. It wasn't stream of consciousness, but 
it was wooden, it was lifeless. But it was important 
that I keep doing it, and Fisher used to tell me, "For- 
get all your ideas of form and style and plot. Just write 
simply as though you were talking to me." He kept en- 
couraging me to be simple and direct and not arty. I had 
to learn this. I finished a draft maybe in a year and 
then junked most of it. I think I've kept of that draft 


one chapter. Then I started again. 
MINK: You mean you threw it away? 

POWELL: Later, I threw away all but one chapter of 
that first draft. 

MINK: All right, at the point you threw that away were 
you mad? 

POWELL: No, no, not mad. I was just starting another 
draft, and I didn't feel I needed to keep it. That was 
probably it, but there was one chapter that. . . 
MINK: Sometimes when we do writing at some point we 
will just get inwardly furious, and we'll just toss the 
whole thing into the fire. 

POWELL: Oh, I'm too cool a customer, Jim, for that; I'm 
not an emotional type. I'm a cool customer. I would keep 
what I thought might be useful. 
MINK: You keep assuring me of this. 

POWELL: Yes, I keep assuring--not assuring myself, be- 
cause I have my confidence, but assuring you. 

All right I kept the one chapter because I liked it. 
It was about the Arroyo Seco, about a little idyllic time 
with a young lady. 
MINK: Oh? 

POWELL: A walk, a walk, Jim. Don't carry yourself to 
the precipice and jump over! Just a walk, and probably 
a description of the wild flowers. What I was doing 


simultaneously was trying to find my own v;ay, and at the 
same time I was full of a sort of nostalgic appreciation 
of Southern California as an environment. You see, I 
was far away. I'd left it. I'd never left it for that 
long before, and I was looking back at the seasons, at 
the weather, at the college. 
MINK: Ritchie was, too. 

MINK: He brings this out, I think, in his memoirs. 
POWELL: Nostalgia. Well, this was very good because 
It gave some more meaning to my dissertation on Jeffers. 
I could see California; I could see the whole thing, as 
I've said, through the wrong end of the telescope. It 
was tiny and far away, but It was crystal clear. I had 
maps up on the wall, topographic quads of Monterey and 
San Luis Obispo County, and I had a long map of Califor- 
nia. I had Jo Mora's map of the Monterey Peninsula, 
that pictorial map. So I was working simultaneously on 
the dissertation, which was criticism and biography, and 
not personal in any sense; but at nights, either in my room 
or at the cafe, I was working on this novel. I had the 
encouragement at the same time from Fisher v;ho was writ- 
ing The Ghost in the Underblows. 
MINK: Right. 
POWELL: It was a great period, Jim, and M. F. brings it 


out in her book. The Gastronomical Me ; the chapter on 
Dijon beautifully catches that. I only touched on it 
in my autobiography in a chapter, but I didn't go into 
any of this in that book because it wasn't that kind of 
a book. All right, we finished the degree; we finished 
the second draft, and we were in Florence, I think, and 
by God, I started a third draft. 
MIKK: And you threw out the second? 

POWELL: No, I kept the second draft. It was better than 
the first. I kept the whole second draft. No, I didn't; 
I threw out the first eight chapters, I think. I have 
the ninth on through to the end of the second draft, and 
then I started it all over again with Fisher's criticism 
in mind: keep it simple, keep it direct. And it was 
still a novel of the college. It was still a novel of 
the young man seeking his way between music and litera- 
ture. And there was an older teacher in it, a woman in 
music, but actually she was modelled on my drama coach, 
Joyce Turner. 
MINK: I'll be damned. 
POWELL: Do you remember her? 
MINK: No. 

POWELL: She's married nov/ to Jerome VJeil, UCLA, a lawyer; 
Joyce Turner V/eil ner name is. She v;as a marvelous drama 
coach. I did several plays under her. 


MINK: Was she anything like Evalyn Thomas? 
POWELL: No, she was one of Evalyn Thomas's proteges. 
And the last time I saw her and her husband v;as v/hen 
Evalyn Thomas died here in the Village. Jerry VJeil was 
her executor; and they called me down to the apartment of 
Evalyn Thomas, there hy Ralphs. 

MINK: Oh, and that's where we got all of the Evalyn Thomas 

POWELL: We picked up the stuff. That's right. I went 
down and there I saw Joyce Turner VJeil for the first time 
in fifteen years. She was a beautiful young woman and 
then a beautiful older woman. Well, at any rate, she 
was in the back of my head as a kind of a model, not that 
I'd had any experience with her. I had no personal rela- 
tionship with her. Our relationship at Occidental was 
entirely student-teacher and professional, but you have 
to have models. 

All right; so I had a wonderful spring then in Italy 
writing this novel. I telescoped the whole thing, and 
where it had taken me a couple of years to do two drafts, 
now, in two or three months, I did a whole manuscript, and 
I have it complete. It was written really at top speed, 
and I finished it about the time I got back to London in 
the summer of '33, and my God, I started a fourth draft. 
I started to revjrite it; I v;as stubborn as hell, Jim, a 


real mule. 

MINK: You hadn't thrown out the third; you kept the 

POWELL: I kept the third^ part of the second, one chap- 
ter of the first, two or three pages of the fourth, but 
then I came back to the United States. 
MINK: Two or three pages of the fourth--you threw all 
the rest of the fourth away? 
POWELL: I didn't do more than that. 
MINK: Oh, I see. 

POWELL: I just started it. I kept it and then the whole 
draft of the third. I came back to this country, and then 
everything got very complicated, economically, emotionally. 
I re-met Fay, you see. All of these drafts weren't her; 
she wasn't in them at all; it wasn't our story. What- 
ever I wrote about her was in these poems, but we came 
back together and I. . . 
MINK: She had married. 

POWELL: She was married then, yes. We were living to- 
gether at my brother's in Pasadena while we v;ere trying 
to find a way for her to be free and arrange with her 
husband to release her, and it all worked out of course-- 
miraculously, really. 

Well, I got fed up then with all these bloody drafts 


of a novel that were synthetic in a way, and they'd 
served their purpose. And lo and behold I started to 
write a version of kind of a story of Fay and me--what 
had happened to us, how we'd come together, how v;e'd 
separated, and how we'd come together again. So I wrote 
a short sort of a novella, or a long short story, or 
a short novel called A Personal Record . And I whacked 
it out there while living at my brother's. Fay hadn't 
come there yet; she was still in Hollywood. But I found 
it a great solace to be able to write and keep my nerves 
under control trying to find our way in this troubled 
time, and I whacked this out in longhand and then I typed 
it. And it served a good purpose, but it was lousy writ- 
ing, Jim. It was lousy; it really was. It was so bad 
that some years ago, when I'd done a longer version of 
it and a much better version of it, I junked this one. 
MINK: You mean you threw it away. 

POWELL: Yes. I not only threw it away, I shredded it 
to bits. I deliberately destroyed it because it was simp- 
ly a working draft, really, for what came to be a fairly 
long novel of the same story. That is Fay's and my story 
and the real Oxy story--the way it was then without all 
the artifice of the older teacher and so on. 
MINK: So this was really an autobiography in a sense; it 
really was . 


P0I-7ELL: Yes, I should have kept it. 
MINK: You should have kept it? 

POWELL: I suppose I should, as an autobiographical docu- 
ment, because it was as close to the truth as I could make 
it without literary artifice. Well, at any rate, let's 
go on. 

MINK: You threw the whole thing away? 
POWELL: Yes. I threw the whole thing away. 
MINK: That's too bad, Larry. 

POWELL: But I think maybe there's a carbon somewhere. 
That's amusing, isn't it? 
MINK: You think ? 

POWELL: Yes, I think there is if he still kept it, and 
it happened this way: One of my great friends through 
all these troubles--Ritchie was one, and Newell--was 
Dr. Bieler. 

MINK: Dr. Bieler, yes. 

POWELL: He was practicing in Altadena, and I found my- 
self absolutely flat broke at one point. I hadn't gone 
to work for Jake yet, and I needed money, I think, to go 
see Fay on, to buy gas for the car or something. So I 
went to Dr. Bieler and I said, "V/ill you lend me five 
dollars?" He said, "Lav;rence, I'll never lend you any 
money. I'll give you five dollars or I'll barter five 
dollars. You give me something. What have you?" Well, 


I said, "The carbon copy of a story I've just written." 
He said, "All right, I'll buy it for five dollars." So 
I think maybe he has a carbon. 
MINK: You never asked him for it back. 

POWELL: No, but I think he's leaving us all his papers. 
This '11 be a terribly interesting file because it's the 
longest correspondence that I have and that's been kept. 
It's from 1930-1970--forty years. He said he kept every- 
thing and will bequeath it to me, and of course it'll come 
here. I think he has that carbon of A Personal Record . 
All right. 

MINK: Are you going to require that that be restricted. 
POWELL: I think definitely. I think these are something 
time '11 have to deal with--all this writing. 
MINK: You don't intend to do a records management job 
on it? 

POWELL: Nah, I don't think so. 
MINK: Please don't. 

POVJELL: No, I won't; I won't destroy anything, now. All 
right. Fay and I resolved our lives. Vie married in '34, 
and all the slov^ climb up began, and here's where it be- 
comes personal. Oh, in the late thirties, when I started 
to work here in '38, I think February 1, 1938 was the 
real watershed time, because it was a secure job at 
$135 a month and. . . 


MINK: Went a long way then. 

POWELL: Oh, God, it did, Jim. And I had a great burst 
of energy in reading and writing; it was mostly critical 
work. I was editing Fisher's Ghost in the Underflows , 
I was writing Philosopher Pickett , I was doing the John 
Fiske study. 

MINK: Was it in this time also that you were appearing 
in a series of radio talks reviewing books? 
POWELL: Yes, I was doing a lot of things like that, and 
Fay, I think, got fed up with all of this. I was writing 
lots of letters and carrying on. This was at home, al- 
ways at night, and I think she scolded me once and said, 
"I thought you were going to be a poet and a creative 
writer, and that was really one of my strong interests 
in you and hopes for you, but you don't write that any 
more and everything seems to be gone and lost. Why don't 
you go back to some of that?" Well, I suppose this led me 
to think, "What shall I go back to; what is it that I'll 

I don't know how it came about, but I suppose that 
I moved up then to the next segment of experience that 
I hadn't written about. I'd done the college, and so I 
looked back to Europe and the years that we were separated, 
And I don't know what the model was for it, but I v;rote 
a short novel called Quintet . It was five profiles of 


women that I had known in Europe--three American girls, 
one Swedish, one French, and one mixed blood. [laughter] 
MINK: There weren't any of those girls from Occidental 
that Ritchie talks about in his manuscript that were 
visiting at the same time you were in Paris with Ritchie? 
POWELL: No, those were casual and trivial and just really 
fun stuff. These were. . . 
MINK: Serious encounters? 

POWELL: Yes, serious encounters. I don't know, I thought, 
"I'll make it as simple as possible and as meaningful 
[as possible] ." 

MINK: Larry, should I ask you were they physical encoun- 
ters as well as mental encounters? How do you put it? 

POWELL: Well, Jim, don't be so bashful. They were. . . 
MINK: Affairs? 

POWELL: They were affairs. They were studies in male-female 
relationship, with a plan, a moral. You see, I was a 
moral writer. The moral--and I think this has been 
operative all through my later life--was that the more 
you ask and demand of the woman, the less apt you are 
to get everything. If you can persuade a vroman to give 
on her own and not make demands on her, you get far more. 
All right. Music v/as still in it, you see--"quintet . " 
These were five pieces, and I intended them, to be to the 


novel, to a long prose piece, what the string quintet is 
to a syraphony--short pieces, mood pieces, and v;ith key 
signatures . 

MINK: And you found five v/omen who v;ould fit this? 
POWELL: Yes, that's right. A passionato, a molto tran- 
quillo, a lento, and so on. So I wrote it in musical 
terms--molto agitato, first movement violent, violent 
sort of a slam-bang encounter, and then going through a 
whole sequence to a final episode, andante sostenuto, I 
suppose, absolutely relaxed and undemanding and uncon- 
summated in the sense that there was no actual physical 
consummation in the last episode, but intended to be the 
most rich and satisfying of all. The moral there is that 
there are different ways to satisfaction and consummation 
other than necessarily the physical. And the moral was 
that in each episode the man attempted to put into prac- 
tice what he'd learned from the one before. So it's 
pedagogical, you see. 

MINK: It's interesting. Then when Fay read it she got 
mad . 

POWELL: Jim, how perceptive you are! 
MINK: Well, of course. She got jealous. 
POWELL: Yes, but I suppose, I . . . 
MINK: She asked for it. 
POWELL: Yes, that's v;hat I said. [laughter] That's 


what I said. Well, I said, "You wanted me to write 
something creative." "Yes," she said, "but I didn't 
mean this." VJell, I said, "I didn't plan it; this is 
what came. When you're a writer, it erupts and you do 


MINK: And she thought you were trying to get back at 
her for having chided you. 

POWELL: I suppose this was it, and it led to misunder- 
standing. Well, the great encourager I had at this time, 
was none other than my Beverly Glen neighbor, Henry 

MINK: Did he read it? 

POWELL: Henry read it. Well, I wrote the goddamned 
thing about four times, over and over. And, Jim, I got 
records conscious by this time, and I've kept everything. 
I have all those drafts. 

MINK: I thought perhaps Fay would have made you destroy 

POWELL: No, Fay is never aggressive to that point. It 
hurt her, but she respected everything--my Reed--and so 
it never came to that. 
MINK: And she got over this? 

POWELL: I think so. Well, Henry was terribly encouraging, 
and along into one of the later drafts he sat down and 
wrote me about a four-page, single-spaced, typed letter 


about the goddamned thing. Wonderful letter, Jim; it's 
a great letter. It's not in the Miller collection; I've 
never released it. 


MARCH 10, 1970 

MINK: Well, we're continuing then on side two this 
morning from vihere you left off before I turned the 

POWELL: Well, Henry's letter was enormously encouraging. 
Of course, I won't get it out and quote from it, but it 
meant a great deal to him (this book about Europe) and he 
said, "It's the very opposite of my writing. I brutalize 
women and you tenderize them." And we had some vronder- 
ful sessions about this. I put in trains and eating 
and European travel. And the train plays the key — Leit 
motif — in all these episodes, so that there's a train 
coming or going in each one. It opens with a trains it 
ends with a train--an arrival and a departure. 
MINK: It's effective, yes. 

POWELL: Yes, it's a good device, and I used it uncon- 
sciously, really. All right, this carried me up through 
1941 or 1942. I think Fay stimulated me to do the next 
piece of writing. She said, "Well, this is well and good: 
you can write V7ithout much effort romantically about 
Europe because it's essentially romantic, but can you 
bring the same nostalgia and romance to a piece of domes- 
tic writing?" And it kind of challenged me in that sense. 


I tried to write her story and mine, and had not suc- 
ceeded in that draft that I junked, and I thought, "I'll 
do two things: I'll take a local theme and bring it to 
life, and I'll also write something that will dignify 
or ennoble or do something for her, because I had great 
love for her and a great appreciation of all she'd done 
for me, and she was a wonderful young woman." 
MINK: Perhaps subconsciously you felt that you had hurt 
her with the preceding piece. . . 

POWELL: Yes, I owed this to her. All right, so I went 
back to the goddamned college again, Jim. 
MINK: Oxy? 

POWELL: Yes. I began, then, in '42 or '43--I suppose 
it was in '43 that I began it. At the time, my whole 
career was boiling up here, and I was about ready to 
resign and go to Northwestern and all. I began this col- 
lege novel, and it came out very strong and good stuff. 
I carried it on in the autumn of '43, when I was working 
over in the war plant for my brother, a long eight-hour 
day and an hour's ride each way, but I still had enough 
juice left to work every night. 

MINK: How was this novel differing from the preceding 

POWELL: It's just closer to the truth, more autobiography, 
closer to the truth. 


MINK: Still a musician, a literary. . . 
POWELL: Yes, a musician going to literature, but it 
brings in v/onderful portraits of Stelter, of Maclntyre 
and of Ritchie and Newell. 
MINK: Bird? 

POWELL: Yes--I called him Lamb, Prexy Lamb, just a pas- 
sing touch of him, but it's. . . 

MINK: Were you thinking of Harold Lamb at that point. 
POWELL: No, I was just thinking of a wolf in lamb's 
clothing. I don't know; I was just punning. I carried 
that on until I began work at the Clark in the spring of 
'44 and then, gradually, it dried up. I typed it; I got 
out maybe a 300-page version and began then on the mid- 
dle part, another part. But it dried up, stopped, be- 
cause my whole career then began to absorb me, and there 
it sits. It's an unfinished, long college novel. But 
its the best thing--the best, the final version of all 
these efforts that's the closest to being good. It's 
still overwritten. If I picked it up, as I will even- 
tually, I think and redid. . . 

MINK: Do like Ronald Reagan says, "Cut the fat out of it." 
POWELL: "Cut the fat out," cut out the hyperbole and the 
crap. Well, what else? 

MINK: I've been thinking as you've been talking, could 
you ever bring yourself to v/rite about the university 


here? I don't know of many that have, and I don't think 
of anyone who's done a really good novel based on UCLA. 
POWELL: I don't know, Jim, I might. I don't know, but 
I'd probably have to be away from it, be in Europe look- 
ing back. On what basis? I can't write totally objec- 
tively; it has to be tied in personally to my own ex- 
perience. I couldn't write an emotional love story about 
the university and my life here, because I never had any. 
I was never involved. 

MINK: Yes, but does writing have to be related to your 
personal experience? 

POWELL: Mine does in order to come to life. 
MINK: In other words, you could not do creative writing 
unless it was related to your own personal experience. 
You could not impose an imagined experience upon a set- 
ting and. . . 

POWELL: No, no, I don't have that gift, I'm afraid. 
That gift wasn't given me. Otherwise I would be a suc- 
cessful novelist now. I have that limitation and I know 
it. Unless I feel the old fire burning my guts and re- 
membering how I was lit up at one time, my v;riting is 
dead. It just doesn't come to life. 

All right. I'm not through yet, Jim; I've got more 
to say. I wrote one more short novel along in the for- 
ties based on an experience I had which didn't relate to 


the campus. It was off-campus. It was an emotional 
experience which didn't change my life, but it might 
have. Here again. Fay has always been an equalizer and 
has enabled me, I think, to keep my balance, and she's 
very important this way. But I suffered a lot, and I 
couldn't reconcile it until I was able to write it. 
And then in the forties I did another short novel that 
purged me and refined my emotions and got everything 
under control, and it's a novel of Beverly Glen and the 
Santa Monicas. A lot of good setting in it, local set- 
ting and characters; and it's really buried. Very few 
people have read it. 

MINK: You don't want to talk about the experience that 
triggered it? 

POWELL: No, I don't think so. I'd rather it just be 
a converted; I'd rather it just be known for what I made 
of it. 

MINK: Oh, so that when the manuscript is seen, it will 
be clear from this interview exactly what happened. 
■POWELL: Well, if it's ever seen. I don't. . . 
MINK: . . .know that you're going to leave it. 
POWELL: VJell, I don't know what terms I'll come to fi- 
nally. I won't destroy it, but I don't knov; that I want 
it read. I don't have any illusions of ray ovm worth as 
a creative v/riter. I think they m.ight be historically 


interesting some time in any study of my career and me. 
They would be documents^ and I'd leave them v;ith that 
in mind. All right. Let's see, where are we? 
MINK: You're in the forties. 

POWELL: The f if ties--nothing. I didn't virlte anything. 
The damnedest thing happened when I retired here on June 
30, 1966, and I had six weeks left to teach in the summer 
session upstairs. Andy was the dean; I was simply a sum- 
mer session professor. 
MINK: You were an appendage. 
POWELL: I was an appendage. 
MINK: A lame duck. 

POWELL: A lame duck, quacking once a day, ten to eleven 
o'clock every morning for six weeks. 
MINK: That course was. . .? 

POWELL: It was the Introduction. Just the one course. 
The other summer sessions I taught two courses; this last 
summer session I taught the one. All right, what did I 
do? I went into my files and I dug out that European 
novelette. The Quintet , which I came later to call The 
Music of the Body . I took the damn thing over to the 
Faculty Center with me every day after my eleven o'clock 
class, and I s at down in the lounge before lunch and then 
after lunch; and I rewrote the whole thing during this 
six-weeks summer session. 


MINK: VJhat made you do that? 

POWELL: I don't know. It was, I think_, a great release, 
a great burst of energy and release of having won my free- 

MINK: Relief? 

POWELL: Relief and release from the administration. Andy 
was the dean, Vosper was the librarian, I was phasing out 
as a teacher, and I was doing what I originally set out 
to do--be a writer. It was really a symbolical act, you 
see. It had high symbolical meaning to me to do this. 
I didn't think this out; this just came. It was almost 
an unconscious [thing]. Well, I rewrote it in longhand, 
and then here in this study, I typed it. 
MINK: In your office here? 

POWELL: Yes. And then Bill Targ, my publisher at World 
that had done three books, knowing about some of the writ- 
ing I'd done, he'd been anxious to see something; so I 
sent him this typescript, and he didn't like it at all. 
No. He said, "it's monotonous. It has no tension, it's 
mono-key, it doesn't have the gutsy tension of a proper 
novel." "Exactly," I said to myself, "I wrote it as a 
musical exercise not as a gutty tense novel." So actually 
his criticism validated my own intention, but he was disap- 
pointed in it. 
MINK: Who v;as this? 


POWELL: William Targ, who was editor at World, and when 

Times-Mirror bought World, he got out. 

MINK: Yes, a good thing. 

POWELL: He went to Putnam; he became their chief editor, 

where he is now. 

I talked to Henry Miller about this, I guess, before 
I went to Europe, and he said, "Well, if you ever publish 
this, you use my letter as an introduction. It'll be the 
best damn foreword I ever wrote to any book." And of 
course, it could be published just on the strength of 
Miller's introduction, now, because of his reputation. 
It's one of the longest things he's ever written about 
any book. But I don't want to do it, I think, Jim. 
MINK: I think maybe this is where you are sensitive, 
and I think anybody is sensitive about the things they 

POWELL: Yes, I don't want to be kicked around for my 
failures. I can kick myself around; that's fine. The 
other thing is I have enough recognition for other work, 
you see. If I weren't achieving recognition through my 
other writing and my other work, I'd probably be driven 
to do this. 

MINK: Now, what you're really thinking is, "If I do this, 
people will read it and say, 'What is this guy Pov;ell? 
What business does he have now doing this sort of. . ?'" 


POWELL: Yes, second-rate emotional. . . 
MINK: Well, yes, but how do you know it's second-rate? 
You never know. A lot of writing that was considered 
to be second-rate when it v/as done is considered to be 
classical today. 

POWELL: Well, one other person I showed this European 
novelette to was Frank Dobie. 
MINK: What did Dobie say about it? 

POWELL: Well, he said, "it has life, it has vitality." 
He said, "That's the main thing. All the writer work- 
shops in the world can't put life into a writing." He 
said, "It has great breadth of life in it, no matter how 
imperfect it is in other ways." He was enthusiastic. 
MINK: When did you show it to him? 

POWELL: Oh, back in the fifties, when he was out here. 
We talked a lot. He was much interested in the conver- 
sion of emotional experience into literature. He's done 
some that's never been published, and we had a lot of 
frank talks about it, that's how it came up. I said, 
"Well, I've done something; would you like to read it?" 
MINK: VJhat do you think of Dobie as a writer? 
POWELL: Oh, I think he's a great writer; he's a great 
writer, really, the way he's converted his experience 
and gone on beyond it. 
MIITK: What do you think makes his writing great? 


POWELL: Vitality, I think, and a sense of life. 
MINK: Isn't it the regionalism, a feeling for the region? 
POWELL: Yes, a feeling for the region, but his region 
is very wide; it's not just Texas. 
MINK: Yes, well, it's the Southwest. 
POWELL: Yes. Well, then I came to one more. When I 
was at Wesleyan two years ago, I was teaching a course 
in the English department on Southwestern literature, and 
I set my boys--four students who were all senior students-- 
to work on their final project, which was to write a 
story or a poem or something creative, using what we'd 
covered in the course in the way of literature of the 
Southwest and of their own knowledge of the region, if 
any (none of them had been out here more than on casual 
visits), and we would have final meetings of the class 
when we would read what we'd written. Then I thought it 
over after I'd given the assignment: I said, "Well, I'd 
better do something, too." 

So all the time I was there at Wesleyan, I wrote a 
story of the Southwest in terms of the struggle betvjeen 
Arizona and California for the water of the Colorado River, 
and in terms of hero and heroine. I'd long been interes- 
ted in the whole water thing and dams on the river and 
so on, and had been over many times; and I had some types 
to v;ork with, some characters. It's probably the most 


objective thing I've done because it isn't based neces- 
sarily on personal experience. 

So I shook them up at the last meeting when I brought 
in my own exercise and said, "Look, you little bastards; 
you hear this and grade me." And I read it to them, and 
it had quite an impact. We had a great time, really — 
these four great kids that I had, all totally different 
student backgrounds. It was a wonderful experience, Jim, 
to have, there at Wesleyan in '68, and all the rest of 
my time I was free to write. I was beginning the Cali- 
fornia book; I wrote four or five chapters of it there. 

Well, that's it; that's my so-called creative writ- 
ing up to date. I don't know what I'll do next, but in- 
evitably I will go on writing, whether I go back and redo 
or do something new or both is immaterial really. You 
don't plan these things out; they erupt and well up in 
you, and you deal with them as best you can. But, you 
see, it goes back to my original intention--that is, to 
be a writer, not a librarian. The librarian kick was a 
thirty-year detour. I'm really ending up what I wanted 
originally to be--a writer. 


APRIL 23, 1970 

MINK: In the Interviews that 'are now coming up we'll be 
talking about the UCLA School of Library Service and your 
tenure as dean. And there was, as you knov/ (for the rec- 
ord) a tape recording done by Norman Handelsman, who was 
doing an oral history internship in the library school 
in 1962. He was doing the '6l-'62 class, I believe, 
under Elizabeth Dixon. Now, this interview is in the 
oral history collection--you have read it; I have read 
it--it covers, in general, the background of the school 
leading up to its founding, and some on the first classes, 
on the problem of accreditation. And I don't believe 
there is too much discussion, if any, of the selection 
of the faculty. This morning I would like to talk about 
that, and I'd like you to respond to the point that was 
raised by the ALA Accreditation Committee upon their visit 
here toward the end of the school year in I962. They 
pointed out that on the core faculty there v^ere too many 
Berkeley graduates--you, Andy [Horn], [Seymour] Lubetzky, 
Barbara Boyd, Tanya Keatinge, Betty Rosenberg, and then 
of course. . . 
POWELL: Vosper? 
MINK: Well, Vosper wasn't here at that. . .yes, he was 


here at that point, and was very shortly appointed pro- 
fessor. I wonder if you could respond to this. The idea 
would be here that you had a sort of an inner circle, and 
you certainly wanted to present a different style of 
library education which really, as I understand it, came 
about as a result of your objections to the type of edu- 
cation that was presented in the Berkeley Library School 
and in other schools around the country. Now, you had 
what you might call an inner circle here, and when ALA 
came and they saw this, they said, "Well, now, you've 
got to get with it and start bringing in people from 
other library schools." Now, Andy has been trying to 
do that, and now we find some people coming in, some of 
whom are very good and some of whom he's not too happy 
about. What I'm wondering about is this mutual admira- 
tion society: is it critical of outside people or is it 
really better? Is the inner circle better, or is it cri- 
tical of those who are coming in from outside, and unduly 

POWELL: Oh, Jim, I don't know. I think the ALA was at- 
taching too much importance to the library school back- 
ground of instructors. I don't think the Berkeley Library 
School under Mitchell, Coulter, and Slsler ever had any 
copyright philosophy with which they indoctrinated their 
graduates. I think the personality of the instructors 


was what I was interested in, not the fact that they 
were from one library school. I don't think that mat- 
ters. I think ALA'S criticism was that they just had 
to say something and they fastened on that. But the dif- 
ferencesj, for example, between Lubetzky, Horn, Pov/ell, 
Barbara Boyd, Betty Rosenberg, Tanya Keatinge, for exara- 
ple--those were all Berkeley Library School beginners. 
Vesper, include him too--the differences of personality 
and style between these were enormous. It wasn't really 
a philosophical inner circle; it was an expedient inner 
circle--that is, here were the people that were possible 
to start with, without going through an enormous amount 
of nationwide screening. You simply couldn't have done 
that and got the thing open. In other words, it was ex- 
pediency, Jim, really--not mutual admiration. We kicked 
each other around, for Christ's sake. So I think the 
criticism is irrelevant. 

I think your point is well taken now. I don't think 
you're ever irrelevant, Jim; don't misunderstand me. But 
I think ALA's was irrelevant. I never bothered to really 
answer it. I think when you have time to m.ake a search 
and to make a selection, then you can do things that we 
couldn't do in the beginning. Andy just had the time. 
I don't think he, though, ever went about setting up dif- 
ferent library schools and saying, "V/e'll get somebody 


from this and that school." No, he was looking for con- 
fidence, for personal ability to teach and research. 

I don't think it has very much to do with v;here you 
went to library school. I don't think library school was 
that important. And part of my idea was that it be made 
important. It should be an important year. It should be 
a critical year of indoctrination. But I don't think we 
have any single indoctrinating philosophy. I think we 
were a bunch of wild-eyed idealists in a sense, although 
we'd been pretty well seasoned in library work. I don't 
think the school now has any real inner circle kind of 

MINK: Well, you wouldn't think of taking someone, say, 
that had been in library work for three years, who maybe 
also had a Ph.D., and bring him in as a member of the 
faculty, would you? 

POWELL: No, I wouldn't, I didn't. In fact, all of our 
original faculty were picked, really, on the basis of 
their success as librarians--and in some cases as tea- 
chers. I deliberately prepared myself for teaching by 
taking that assignment in the English department here, 
which was very good experience, and taking the semester 
at Columbia. Those were deliberate steps on my part, 
because I knew I needed teaching experience. I don't 
say it made me a good teacher, but it helped me teach. 


and when we opened the school I felt a confidence that I 
might not have had otherwise. Lubetzky had no teaching 
experience. I set up something to give me an insight 
into his ability. Although I knew him from back in the 
early years here, I still hadn't seen him operate in a 
public group. You see, I never ran with catalogers or 
classifiers, and so I missed all his work at the Library 
of Congress. So I set up a little project in 1958 or 
1959j I guess. We had that Institute on Written Report- 
ing at Santa Barbara. Remember? Didn't you go to it? 
MINK: No, I didn't. 

POWELL: You had to stay home and keep shop? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Well, at any rate, you remember it, and Betty 
Rosenberg edited the proceedings, that Mean What You Say , 
a [UCLA Library] Occasional Paper. I brought Lubetzky 
deliberately as a participant in that workshop, which is 
what it was, to see how he performed. It was my way of 
getting a line on his ability to operate before a group, 
both in formal presentation and then in discussion. 
MINK: At this point he hadn't been asked if he would be 
interested in becoming a member of the faculty? 
POWELL: I think he and I had talked about it as early 
as--the files would shov;; but it was Lubetzky viho initia- 
ted it. VJhen he saw an announcement or heard something 


that a library school was going to be here, he wrote to 
me from the Library of Congress and said he'd be interes- 
ted in an appointment, whereupon I met him at midwinter, 
we talked some more about it. I invited him to be in this 
Santa Barbara workshop, and I was impressed with the way 
he performed. I also had my spies meet him at midwinter 
once and go into a meeting where he was with the classi- 
fication group and give me a report from another source. 
These were secret spies of mine, Jim. I won't reveal 
their names to you. Actually, they weren't human. They 
were robots that we had operating at different centers, 
[laughter] So I got what's called "input" on Lubetzky. 
I was entirely satisfied that he would be a good teacher, 
although he'd never taught a class in his life, unless 
he'd been a TA at Berkeley. I don't know whether he had. 
I don't think he had. 

Who else? Mrs. Sayers, of course, we had no question 
about, because she'd been teaching for years. Andy had 
taught; Tanya Keatinge had not, but I'd seen enough of 
her in staff work here to know that she could deliver, 
and the same with Betty Rosenberg. 
MINK: What about Barbara Boyd? 

POWELL: Ah, there again, I got a line on Barbara Boyd-- 
in fact, I first became interested in her in another one 
of those institutes we had here under extension on library 

5 a 


administration, reraetnlDer, that we held over in Moore Hall. 
It was called "A New Look at Library Administration." I 
don't remember what Barbara's job was then; I think she 
was a field consultant in the state library. I invited 
her to be a--no, I didn't either. She was a participant 
in it. She wasn't on the program. She was in my discus- 
sion group. We broke up in discussion groups, and I was 
enormously impressed with her ability to operate in a 
group. She was a group leader and she was very good in 
what she said and how she handled them. 

That interested me then in asking her to take the 
Public Library course. I had some other ideas of people 
to take that. Mind you, she wasn't--! don't think--the 
first choice. I think the first person I asked to fill 
that spot was Thelma Reid. Remember Thelma Reid v;ho had 
been a field consultant at state library and then was 
city schools librarian of San Diego, And I knew her in 
CLA; I'd seen a lot of her in CLA work. I think I asked 
her and she backed away from the idea because we couldn't 
offer any tenure appointment. It would have been a lec- 
tureship. She wasn't interested in that. 

Then Page Ackerman had another idea of someone in 
public library work from North Carolina--Elaine something 
or other, who was public library consultant for the State 
Library Comm.ission of North Carolina. I met with her at 


Midwinter and was impressed with her qualifications to 
teach public library work. But she really didn't express 
any interest in moving to Southern California. 

So in my way I went through some motions of recruit- 
ing and ended up with Barbara, who wasn't the last choice 
by any means. I think all these were going concurrently. 
And she pulled her weight. She was a Berkeley graduate 
of the same class as Vosper and Betty Rosenberg, but no 
three people could be more unalike than those three. What 
the hell has the library school got to do with it, Jim? 
MINK: And yet she subsequently got the axe. 
POWELL: Well, that was because she and Andy didn't get 

MINK: You got along all right with her. 

POWELL: Sure, I got along with everybody, Jim; you know 
me. Just a great good get-along-ing guy. I never fell 
out with anybody who played it my way. That's a joke. 
MINK: Do you want to go into the matter of Barbara Boyd 
and why she was discharged? 

POVJELL: Well, really, Andy would be the one that would 
have to say that, because I think there was some kind of 
chemical disaffinity between them. They just didn't take 
to each other. And I don't knov; why. They'd have to 
answer that. She didn't like Andy and Andy didn't like 
her. There are probably reasons. I never paid much 


attention to it. It's kind of vague in my mind nov;. I 
wanted her to achieve more in the v;ay of research and 
publication, and I set up projects for her. I think may- 
be I'm being unfair to Andy in saying it was personal an- 
tipathy. I think he saw her potentially unappointable 
to tenure, and he wanted to unload any members of the 
faculty that might prove embarrassing appointment-wise. 
Andy was always shrewder than I in seeing the weaknesses 
in people's appolntability. Betty Rosenberg was a problem 
until we got her security of employment. I initiated 
that and secured that I think before I retired. 
MINK: I'm not quite clear on this security of employment 
in an academic teaching situation as opposed to tenure. 
POWELL: Well, it's the same thing, really. It's like the 
equivalent of a sabbatical leave, and it applies to senior 
lecturers. After a certain time they're reviewed by a 
committee of the senate, and even though they haven't the 
final qualifications of degree in research, by their ser- 
vice, by the quality of their service over X years, they're 
given this so-called security of employment. It's really 
the equivalent of tenure, Jim, without rank. 
MINK: On this subject of tenure, did the fact that you 
could not give tenure to a lot of appointments, that you 
only had so many tenured positions on the table of organi- 
zation, hamper your recruiting? 


POWELL: I think it did, yes. I can't think of other 
specific cases, but I think it was the reason that Tanya 
Keatinge v;as operating here on leave-of-absence from the 
city schools. She wouldn't resign. She's a smart girl. 
She kept her position there and finally went back to it, 
and that's when I got Chase Dane to come in on a double 
appointment. He maintained his position and yet he took-- 
it isn't ideal here for school library work, I think, to 
have such an appointment, but Dane was certainly a good 
person to fill it. 

MINK: Well, you solved this question of tenure, of not 
being able to give tenure to a lot of people, did you 
not, by appointing people who wouldn't worry about whe- 
ther or not they had tenure because they never could get 
it, people like Jo Tallman? 

POWELL: Well, Betty Rosenberg in the beginning. 
MINK: Why was the school so limited in the number of 
tenured appointments it could initially begin? It seems 
to me that this hampers a professional school from the 
very outset. 

POWELL: Of course it does. And the school has been 
hampered from the outset by the restrictions and the 
limitations of the university organization. This is a 
sad thing in a way, and yet I can see its reason. It 
makes it terribly difficult to operate. I think it aged 


Andy enormously because he bore the brunt of it, and he 
still does. The feeling in the beginning that we v;eren't 
really a true graduate research discipline--the remark 
a gentleman on the faculty made to me v/hen the library 
school was founded, "For God's sake, Powell, why don't 
you take that bloody trade school to San Luis Obispo! "-- 
in other words, affiliate with Cal Poly. A lot of people 
didn't and still don't regard librarianship as a true 
academic discipline. I don't know that I do myself. VJe 
called it School of Library Service, and Andy's protected 
himself in subsequent years by upgrading the curriculum, 
the content, and instituting the second degree, the M.S. 
in l.S. 

I take credit, I think, for interesting Bob Hayes. 
There was an answer, certainly, to the Accrediting Com- 
mittee. We brought someone that wasn't even a librarian 
to the faculty. It wasn't easy to do. It was a long 
slow process of luring him. You want me to talk about it? 
MINK: Yes, I do. I think that you mentioned him in the 
book, but why don't you go into it in a little more detail. 
POVJELL: Well, it came about I think way back in I96O or 
1959 probably, the year we were organizing. And I was in 
the Librarian's office and Andy was here as a lecturer 
to get the school set up, and this man Hayes came into 
my office of the University Librarian and introduced 


himself as a UCLA Ph.D. in math who was in private indus- 
try then--with an information outfit--and had been asked 
by the University Math-Engineering Extension to give an 
extension course in information science or retrieval, or 
whatever it's called, which he was prepared to do. But 
he said to me, "I'm weak on formal librarianship. I'd 
like a quick course in academic and general historical 
librarianship without going to library school for a year. 
Can you suggest what I might do?" 

I said, "Sure, I've got two men here who v;ill give 
you the quick course, make a good graduate librarian 
out of you in two weeks." I rang for Everett Moore and 
Andy Horn, as I remember, and I said, "Everett, you give 
Hayes a quick course in reference work; and, Andy, you 
give him a quick course in the history of libraries." 
And they did, in some luncheon meetings or conferences. 

Hayes, of course, genius that he is, soaked it up. 
He did the readings; he learned very fast. He didn't 
need to go to library school. He learned it in a couple 
of v;eeks. He gave the course, which was a kind of crash 
course given over in the Engineering Building, four days 
a week every morning, or all day- -I don't kjaow how it 
was--but anyv^ay, it was a very intensive course for li- 
brarians and for faculty people who were interested. I 
went over and audited one of them. I think maybe it was 


in the first one that he was to give the background cf 
formal librarianship and library history. Jeez, he v;as 
a real old pro. He spieled it and it was good. Jo Tall- 
man was there; she could vouch for this. He spoke with 
real knowledge and authority on what formal librarianship 
was and the way it had to relate to keep up to date. So 
I was impressed right then and there with his teaching 
ability. He was a superb lecturer. 

I was still operating then as librarian, and as I 
saw the need to develop these new techniques of informa- 
tion science and relate them to what we were doing here, 
I asked Hayes if he would be a kind of an advisor. He 
was, and I don't know who was here then--was Paul Miles? 
I guess he was in charge of this business. Gordon Williams 
had left, hadn't he? 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: It was old Pablo and Cox and--I don't know who 
else. Anyway, Hayes was brainwashing them or being 
brainwashed by them. I don't know what went on. But 
at any rate, I kept drawing him in closer as an advisor, 
and he gave of his time without any appointment, without 
any remuneration. In the meantime, he was going on 
teaching this extension course. It was more and more 
successful, he was repeating it, and he was learning more 
and more about libraries from our people here. 


MINK: And he was still employed in private industry. 
POWELL: That's right. He had simply an appointment in 
extension, Math-Engineering Extension. So v;hen we got 
the library school going, I think I had Hayes appointed 
as a lecturer without stipend. 

MINK: Can you do that? Can you appoint somebody as a 
lecturer without stipend? As a consultant? 
POWELL: I don't know what the hell he was, Jim, but he 
was something. I was trading on Hayes's desire to have 
an academic affiliation. He was devoted to UCLA v/here 
he took his degree--Just like Andy--and I suppose I ex- 
ploited this, in the best sense, and gave him every op- 
portuTiity to come back and got him more and more interes- 
ted in library problems. And there was more and more 
university-wide interest in establishing inform.ation 
science procedures here, not only in the library but in 
the other offices. Registrar's and so on. 

I got Hayes, and maybe it was Bill Young and various 
people in the administration who were interested in Hayes 
and picked his brains. He came closer and closer. Fi- 
nally I think we had him appointed as a lecturer with a 
stipend and then as a professor in residence for one 
year, and then we went all out and he was appointed pro- 
fessor and he resigned his industry position. I don't 
know which year this v;as, but he came into the school and 


for the first time in any American library school^ I 
believe, we required of all students a course in data 
processing for graduation. This was about '63 or '64, 
I think. Some of the students kicked like hell, parti- 
cularly the ones going into school and children's library 
work, but by God we made them do it, and they ended up 
grateful, because Hayes is a great teacher. 

He is, I think, the best teacher we had: in his 
organization, in his presentation, and in his intellec- 
tual power. I recognize Lubetzky and Horn as superb 
teachers, but in my book I think Hayes was the top. I 
audited his class and I had him as guest speaker every 
semester in ray Introduction class. He had this great 
sense of timing. Without ever looking at the clock he 
could zero in and zero out, interest students, and yet 
he was essentially a humble guy. He had no arrogance and 
no pretentions and no embarrassment or apologies, really, 
for not being a librarian. I think I helped him get over 
that in the beginning. I said, "Forget it. You don't 
have a library degree; you've got something else that we 
need and you're one of us." I tried to make him feel that, 
and I think he did. I also reconciled him and Mrs. Sayers, 
who were--I think she was--hostile. 
MINK: VJhat was their bag? 
POWELL: Well, she was hostile. 


MINK: Why? 

POWELL: Wellj this went against all her ideas of librar- 
ianship--the data processing, machines, and all this. You 
know, she's even more old-fashioned than I am, and she 
didn't want any part of it. She was not rude to Hayes, 
because she's a lady, but she was pretty damned cold to 
him until Hayes got smart and asked her advice on a read- 
ing list for his nine-year-old son. Oh, he's a fox. She 
got interested then in that problem and found that he was 
quite a warm human being, and they ended up, of course, 
doing this institute in extension on the effects of auto- 
mation on children, which was a real love match. [laugh- 
ter] Yes, that was great. 

MINK: Well, Larry, since we're talking about great tea- 
chers--you' ve mentioned Hayes, Horn, Lubetzky--you haven't 
mentioned yourself. 

POWELL: Let me interrupt. I didn't mention Sayers either. 
Of course, she's in a class absolutely by herself. I'd 
put her over and above all of us, 
MINK: Even Hayes? 

POWELL: Yes, as an evangelical type of teacher. She was 
the archangel herself (Is there a female archangel?). At 
any rate, she was really transcendental. Well, they were 
all great, and, Jim, I believe that it's who teaches that 
is the important thing, not vrhat ' s taught or vrhere they're 


from or their pedigrees or anything else. It's the qual- 
ity of the person teaching. I'm a disciple of Bishop 
[Nikolai] Grundtvig, remember, the great Dane who revo- 
lutionized Danish education. He said the curriculum is 
nothing, the teacher everything. And this is true. It's 
been true in my own education. The colossi that I Tiad-- 
Stelter and Maclntyre, Georges Connes in France — these who 
by their personalities, plus what they knev;, changed my 
life. And I thought this is what we should do here: we 
should recruit faculty with this overpowering sense of 
person. And I don't mean it in a flashy sense, but in 
this deep sense of commitment that Hayes had to his dis- 
cipline, that Sayers had, that Betty Rosenberg has to ac- 

MINK: This is very good, this is a great thought, but. . 
POWELL: Yes, but what? for Christ's sake. 
MINK: You were very limited in your recruiting, because 
in this context you could only choose those people with 
those personalities you had considerable contact and a 
certainty of. Now, what about recruiting people from the 
East or from the North, and so on? You don't know. 
POWELL: Well, I'd go and knov; them. I wouldn't recruit 
in absentia . I would make a point of knov;ing them. I'd 
go v/ith ray Batman cloak and disguise and find out if they 
were any good. 


MINK: This creates problems. 

POWELL: Sure It creates problems. It's limiting, but 
it's simply the way I operate. It's limited, human, and 
biased and personal and all these things, but what man 
isn't limited in one way or another? These were my limi- 
tations and I recognize them. Sure. And it v;ould v;ork 
only when I was in charge. 
MINK: Well, let's go back to you. . . 
POWELL: Yes, let's go back to me. 

MINK: . . .as a teacher. Now, in my way, I heard--you 
know, because people would come to prepare papers who were 
in your classes--that there were criticisms. And I sup- 
pose that you hear from those people that are turned off; 
you don't usually hear from the people that are turned on. 
What was your style of teaching? Now, some would say, 
"Larry Powell's course was really a course in Powell." 
POWELL: Of course. [laughter] 

MINK: Of course. Did you feel that the best method, for 
example, of teaching college and university library ad- 
ministration was not to give formal lectures on this based 
on the literature, books, textbooks, and so on, and re- 
quire a standard text for the course, v;hich I believe 
Berkeley did? 

POWELL: Well, I did, too, but only nominally. We didn't 
limit ourselves to it. 


MINK: Well, was it your feeling to give them more of 
your own personal experience--such as how to deal v;ith 
a library committee, based on your experience in dealing 
with the Library Committee here--rather than to lecture 
on administration? 

POWELL: Yes, sure, that's right. It was personal; it 
was derived from my own experience, but not just here, 
because I had traveled a good deal. I'd been active in 
ARL and ACRL, and I'd observed a great deal of university 
library practice throughout the country. I had a lot of 
contacts, a lot of second-hand experience which I used. 
It was a style based on my own flair and my own limita- 

MINK: Well, naturally, some people would be critical about 
this, but. . . 

MINK: , . .1 can't remember that we ever received at the 
Berkeley school anything from Danton (who was teaching 
the course at that time) on the structure of the univer- 
sity, vis-a-vis the library, the senate, the various com- 
mittees, which has a general pattern throughout the coun- 
try. I don't remember ever reading much in textbooks on 
library administration about this. 

POWELL: VJell, V/ilson and Tauber have a certain amount on 
it. I used Kenneth Brough's book Scholars' Workshop, his 


dissertation based on those five university libraries. 
I used that J those two books. I went into the library 
committee and whether it was desirable to have the li- 
brarian a member or not. Remember, I was not, and Vos- 
per is; each v;ay has its advantage. 
MINK: Would you talk about that a little bit? 
POWELL: Would I talk about it now? 

MINK: Yes, as if you were lecturing to me on it. [laugh- 

POWELL: Well, I preferred not to change the system. I 
was getting, I felt, everything I needed and accomplish- 
ing what I wanted to accomplish without being a member of 
the Library Committee. And the fewer changes that I made, 
the fewer suggestions of change that I made to the senate, 
to the faculty, the better. I preferred to work quietly 
and get my work done and not say, "Look, you did it 
wrong; now let's do it this way." So I went along in 
the pattern that Goodwin had established. I felt, you 
see, that I had all the prestige and recognition and 
authority that the office required and that I required 
personally, and I didn't feel any need to change this. 
I think of incidents on campuses where a librarian would 
be on the outside and had to be a member of the committee; 
if he wasn't, then he should work to be a member. But 
I didn't feel that way. I don't know what Vosper's 


reasons for. . . 
MINK: Insisting? 

POWELL: Insisting, no. You'd have to ask him. I've 
never discussed it with him. 'I think maybe it followed 
the pattern he had at Kansas where he was a member of 
the committee. 

MINK: He felt more comfortable in this kind of a rela- 

POWELL: Yes. Also he came back in a kind of honeymoon 
glow: everyone wanted him back, he wanted to be back, 
and it was the time. I must say that when I came I also 
had the honeymoon glow in 19'^'^^ and I did some other 
things that I could have done then only at the begin- 
ning. Vosper's sense of timing was good. He had the 
change made right at the first. Well, I knew situations 
around the country where the librarian was or was not a 
member of the faculty committee, and I tried to point 
these out. I never tried to limit my teaching to my own 
experience at UCLA. I used it as a point of departure 
and a comparison. I think maybe that college university 
course that I taught in the spring semester improved with 
teaching, and I think the last year I got som.e excellent 
papers out of students. They used to come to you for 
archives, didn't they? 
MINK: Sure. 


POWELL: I had some excellent papers out of them, and I 
didn't give formal lectures because I wanted the student 
to be involved earlier than that. I didn't v;ant him to 
be the target of my talking for forty-five or fifty min- 
utes. I wanted a participation. So I generally v/orked 
from the topic. I had a syllabus and we v/orked from an 
outline^, but I encouraged participation and interruption. 
MINK: Well, my experience, of course, is limited in deal- 
ing with UCLA library school students. I'd never dealt 
with library school students at Berkeley. I'd dealt v;ith 
librarians at Berkeley because I was in the school, but 
I must say that the people who came during that time from 
the school seemed to me to have had a very, very good 
sense of research methodology, a very keen interest. They 
were alert people and they worked well. I enjoyed that 

POWELL: You mean here. 
MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Well, they got this not only from me, but they 
got it from Horn and from all the other faculty, their 
general philosophy. They were going forv:ard concurrent- 
ly in several classes, and I think Horn did a lot of in- 
doctrinating in methodology in his historical bibliography 
class. So mind you, the people that were taking this 
college and university class--these were optional courses. 


you see^ they weren't requlred--were really interested. 
My required course that I taught over here--the introduc- 
tion--I had the bigger class then. And here again it was 
more of a free-for-all in a class up to fifty or so. 
There couldn't be the same amount of discussion that you 
could have in the smaller class. The college and univer- 
sity class used to run twenty or twenty-five students. 
The other class was double that. So I did more formal 
lecturing^ I think^ in introduction. 

Then we got down to the even smaller classes that I 
taught in advanced problems in acquisitions and in the 
Southwestern course. Those would be maybe a dozen stu- 
dents, more of a seminar kind of thing, and I enjoyed 
all three of those experiences--the large class, the med- 
ium, and the smaller. And I got great results. Oh, sure, 
you can' t teach a course and have 100 percent agreement, and I 
didn't expect that. I had a couple of real smart-ass 
students that I used to have to whack. 

I just saw one of them at Ds.vis. I was at Davis last 
week talking to the Friends of the Library, and this stu- 
dent came up to me afterwards. He was Whitten--young 
V/hitten who was the son of Ben Whitten, Whittier's li- 
brarian. Remember, he came here to school. He v;as a 
very balky student. He was hard to turn on, his face 
expressed boredom, and even disagreement. And I used to 


needle him, trying to get him to react, and v;e had a 
couple of real confrontations in class. I finally told 
him off once, to either come alive or get out. "Don't 
sit there looking bored, even if you are. Put on a 
show," I said. "You bore me, but I'm trying to show some 
interest in you." So we got to laughing and I think v/e 
ended up friends, and anjrway he went on to Cal to take 
his Ph.D. in the library school. But he dropped out and 
he's now at Davis taking the degree in English. He came 
up with his new wife, and we had a little reunion. 

There was another student who quit after a month, 
John Schwartz. Did you ever meet him? They elected him 
president of the class. He was from Montana, had his M.A. 
in English, and he wanted to be a writer. But I don't 
think he really wanted to work for the library degree. 
I think he wanted to go on writing and make motions of 
taking the courses, and, you know, he got into trouble 
fairly early. I think I suggested that he drop out and 
he did. He quit. And it was a good thing, too, because 
the vice-president of the student body was that beautiful 
Rita Brenner, with the long dark hair. Remember, Jim? 
MINK: Yes! 

POVffiLL: She became president of the class, didn't she. 
VJell, that v;as because Schwartz chickened out. 
MINK: Or you chickened him out. [laughter] 


POWELL: NOj I think he really knew he had made a mistake; 
so he went into English to take his degree. I don't know 
what's happened to him. He published a novel since with 
Grove Press. I thought maybe he'd bring me one, but I 
haven't looked it up yet. But I should. 

MINK: I noticed in one of the annual reports to the chan- 
cellor that you had pointed out that it v/as "hogwash," 
this notion that every so often the faculty in the school 
should go back into the profession and work to have a 
"renewal," so to speak, and therefore to bring back into 
their teaching more of what perhaps would be current prac- 

POWELL: No, I thought it was a cliche. If they'd been 
good librarians, it's with them for life. They should 
read, they should travel, they should go to conferences-- 
they could do all these things as faculty members. I 
don't say they should go into the ivory tower, but they 
don't have to go back on a leave of absence into an employ- 
ment situation. This might be true if you're recruiting 
faculty that had limited experience. 

MINK: The thing about that remark in the report v;as that 
I couldn't understand in what context it was made, what 
came up during your tenure to make you blast off at this? 
POVJELL: Jesus, I don't kjnow. Maybe it was accrediting. 
I perhaps read som.e accrediting committee report, or maybe 


I'd been to a conference where this was talked aboutj or 
maybe Danton had come down and sounded off. I don't know. 
Anyway, I was just sounding off myself. You mentioned at 
Cal what you didn't get from Danton, but certainly Mitchell 
taught more the way I did. I didn't have his course, be- 
cause he was at Yale the year that I was in library school, 
but I heard enough about it from others. I think I v/as 
more in the style of Mitchell, and Andy v/as more in the 
style of Danton. 

MINK: Well, yes. Now, as far as Danton 's style--and I 
see nothing wrong with an interviewer putting things in 
the record--it seemed to me that it was pretty stereotyped 
teaching, as I recall it. We did a paper; the paper had 
to be on a library, and we were told to select a library 
in the region. I selected the library at Cal State, San 
Francisco. We were asked to apply the 19'^9 ALA's stan- 
dards to the library, and this required going there. And 
I remember going and interviewing Ken Brough at San Fran- 
cisco State and then taking these standards and applying 
them and writing it up. Danton alv/ays insisted on succinct, 
precise papers. Any paper that was more than two and a 
half to three pages long usually got marked down just on 
the basis of the fact that it was longer than three pages. 
He put great emphasis on good English and correct syntax. 
P0V7ELL: Yes, Perry's an orthodox and conventional and 


Germanic, well-organized, totally unoriginal guy. He 
has no originality, no flair, no career distinction, 
really. He was an undistinguished person in American 
librarianship. Let's face it: he had courage, he had 
methodology, he had thoroughness, and these are all 
good qualities, and he certainly has done well since 
he left the deanship. 


APRIL 23, 1970 

MINK: Well, we are going on on side two this morning 
with a discussion of J. Periam Danton. You v/ere evaluat- 
ing his teaching. 

POWELL: Wellj he shouldn't have been dean--that's all 
I ever said. He's a good researcher and a good seminar 
teacher. But he's not a good teacher of a general class, 
and he's not a good administrator. My viev/point. 
MINK: I think you said in an interview that you had with 
Handelsman, that in the organizing years of the school, 
Danton was a great help to you. 

POWELL: He wasn't a help to me, Jim; he was a help to 
Andy. He and Andy, you see, had this teacher-student 
relationship. Andy had been his brilliant student. Perry 
once told me, "He's the most brilliant student I ever 
had, period, in any class, any year." They liked each 
other and they got along well. I never interfered with 
this. Perry did come down--now, I must correct that to 
say that when we were having that seminar in library edu- 
cation way back in the--when v;as it, the fifties? 
MINK: Yes. 

POVJELL: 'We had those evening sessions. Well, Perry came 
dovm to one, do you remember? 


MINK: I wasn't on that. 

POTOLL: VJeren't you? I thought you'd been in everything 
here, Jim. You ask questions like you v;ere. 
MINK: That's all right. 
POWELL: That-'s all right. 
MINK: I'm not being interviewed. 

POVJELL: [laughter] At any rate, I asked Perry to come 
down and he did. He came down and spent some time with 
us, and he said the greatest problem we would have would 
be the recruiting of faculty. Well, actually it was the 
smallest problem we had. 

MINK: He was probably looking at it from a different 
standpoint, wasn't he? 

POWELL: That's right. More of the style that Andy's had 
to follow in nationwide recruiting. I was 'lucky in the 
beginning in having a task force more or less set up. 
I would think, though, Jim, if I were to do it again — and 
I talked a little about this at Colorado last month when 
I spoke at Boulder--that ideally a library school should 
be unaffiliated with an academic institution. It should 
go back before the Willlam.son Report and attach itself to 
a big library without any academic trappings or parapher- 
nalia or restrictions. A training school. 
MIM: The way that Perry did in the Los Angeles Public 
Library, in a sense. 


POWELL: In P.L., and Munn did it in Pittsburgh and Gillis 
did in Sacramento. 
MINK: Right. And [Melvil] Dewey. 

POWELL: Dewey, certainly, pulled it out from Columbia 
and took it to Albany when Columbia got in his hair. And 
this is more my style. I would have done very well in 
that era. 

MINK: Well, now, let me ask you about that: what would 
you see as the ideal advantages of this first of all, hov7 
would it help you in recruiting? Certainly, you could not 
attract an academic group of people as well, it seems to 
me, to a library school based at a library as you would 
to a library school based in a great academic institution 
such as UCLA. 

POWELL: I think it would have to be limited pretty much 
to public library training. 
MINK: You do? 

POWELL: Training for public librarians and perhaps not 
school, because there again they're hamstrung with require- 
ments, academic requirements, but work with children in 
public libraries. Be primarily a public library training 
school. Yes, you're right, you couldn't attract to a pub- 
lic library v/orking-training situation those people who 
wanted special libraries--oh, it's totally impractical, 
anyv/ay, Jim. 


I'm just saying I was born too late. I should have 
been born in the Melvil Dewey era. And 1 v;ould have been 
more like Jim Gillis. 

MINK: Well, you'd rather be your own man. I think it's 
pretty apparent that you were terrifically turned off-- 
correct me if I'm wrong--about the bureaucratic kinds of 
relationships that you get into in trying to run a library 
school in a university situation. 

POWELL: Turned off?— I was never turned on. I never un- 
derstood them, Jim; or I never chose to understand them, 
let's put it that way. I understood them very well, but 
I wasn't patient. You see, Andy is patient, and I wasn't. 
We can illustrate this in the way we went about the ac- 
crediting process. My whole position on accrediting was' 
that we do the minimum of paperwork on it, because the 
mere fact that we're a graduate school in the University 
of California is enough for me. 

MINK: And you thought it ought to be enough for the com- 

POWELL: Yes, exactly, and I didri't want these chickenshit 
bastards coming in here [laughter], like the school people 
did, and telling off the University of California. No, 
I had great pride in the school's being in the University 
up to its standards, and I thought this was good enough. 
So I didn't propose to spend three weeks filling out the 



forms . 

MINK: You wouldn't have had that in the library school 
that you. . . 

POWELL: No, I wouldn't have had accrediting. [laughter] 
At any rate, the forms came to me first and I filled them 
all out, what I thought we ought to put into them, in 
one evening's work at home. I brought them into Andy 
and Flo, and they just heaved a great sigh and took them 
away from me and spent three weeks filling them out--to 
my mind with an enormous amount of unnecessary data. And 
I just didn't think it was worth all of that, or neces- 
sary, let's say. 

MINK: Weren't you telling the library school about the 
importance of accreditation with what the ALA looks for 
in accreditation? 

POWELL: Yes, but I thought we could display it or docu- 
ment it in much briefer form. That's where I differed 
from Andy and Flo. At any rate, the accrediting team fi- 
nally said they'd never had such an avalanche of data. 
MINK: It was very good, wasn't it, and worked out to your 
benefit, because it gave them an opportunity to attend 
classes. Usually, as it v;as pointed out in the inter- 
view, they spent most of their day-and-a-half ' s visit 
asking for data. 
POVrELL: Yes, all right, you're right. I take it all back. 


MINK: And Andy knew this. So he went ahead and he spent 
the time and he prepared the data, and it turned out bet- 
ter for the school. 

POWELL: You've been talking to him, haven't you? 
MINK: No, I read the interview. You read it. 
POV/ELL: Oh, you mean the Handelsman one? 

MINK: Right. 

POWELL: Oh. Is it in there? 

MINK: Oh, absolutely. 

POWELL: Yes, I guess so. I wanted it both ways. 

MINK: This is another interesting point. . 

POWELL: Well, I had it both ways. I had my way and he 

had his. So it was a perfect symbiotic relationship, 

which is what I always said. I was the spirit and he was 

the form. [laughter] 

MINK: Handelsman— I have to take my hat of f to him--he 
really got you. 
POWELL: Did he? 

MINK: When he tried to pull the same thing you tried to 

pull on me all the time. . . 

POWELL: What's that? 

MINK: Well, talking about the reaction of the first year's 

class to the accrediting team and the wild session that 

they had behind closed doors when you all v;ere on the 

outside wondering what was going on. 


POWELL: Yes, I think they had some booze in there. 
MINK: And you asked Handelsman, "Well, you v;ere in there, 
Norman, what v;ent on?" And Norman said, "Well, I'm not 
being interviev;ed, but I'd like to know v;hat your reac- 
tion is to what went on in there as you heard it." And 
you reacted a little bit. I wonder if you v/anted to re- 
act any more. As you went on, did you really find out 
what the class said to those people? They v;ere really 
primed. They'd been there nearly their full period at 
that point. It was late in the spring, wasn't it? 

MINK: And they had some definite ideas about this school, 
and they had an opportunity to make them known. I think 
it's interesting, because I was talking with Dellene 
[Tweedale] this morning, and when Eric Moon [at the Uni- 
versity of Pittsburgh], for example, found out that Del- 
lene had gone to this school, he asked her to make a 
comparison between the Pitt school and UCLA, because he's 
interested in library education, but the blasted dean there 
wouldn't allow Dellene and him to be alone. He insisted 
on being at the interview. So Dellene had to simply quote 
statistics and say what faculty-student relationship ra- 
tios were and hov; many students were admitted. 
POWELL: V/as Lancour the dean then? 


MINK: Yes, I think so. 
POWELL: He's a jerk. 

MINK: Yes. Well, these guys had a chance, ^vithout hav- 
ing you guys on the faculty around, to tell the committee. 
POWELL: I didn't pull anything on Norman. I didn't try 
to pump him. I just was amused because it was such a 
ruckus. They were all laughing and having a hell of a 
good time. I think the students brought a bottle of booze 
and got the Accrediting Committee stoned, which is a good 

MINK: Well, what did the Accrediting Committee say after 

POVJELL: They just said, "These are a great bunch of stu- 
dents. They're really alive." That's all they ever told 
us. They said, "They act as though they're live human 
beings." So I took that as a compliment. Wasn't it? 

MINK: I hope it was. 

POWELL: I hope it was. In other words, we hadn't knocked 
all the life out of them. They were finishing up their 
year with a good deal of spirit. Yes. Well, what else, 

MINK: I think that's an interesting point, that you al- 
lowed this criticism--in fact, the annual reports show it, 
this give-and-take betvreen faculty and students, which we 


were never allowed at the Berkeley school. 
POVJELL: I know; no, I wasn't either. 

MINK: I remember that we met as a class about the second 
or third week of the first semester and passed a resolu- 
tion to the effect that we were not about to do all the 
work that the dean required of us. Yes. We felt that it 
was just too much--you know, I50 reference collections 
every night, and what we considered to be just a lot of 
stupid busyv/ork. 

POWELL: Well, I mentioned this in my Coulter lecture. 
John Henderson told me that he'd led a student revolt in 
his year. 

MINK: There must have been a lot of them at Berkeley. 
There must be something about the Berkeley atmosphere that 
foments revolt. 

POWELL: Yes, that's interesting; yes, I think it is. 
I felt that when I was there. I revolted against Miss 
Slsler. Of course, neither of us had Mitchell, did we? 
You had Danton and I had Sisler as director. 
MINK: But I had Merritt and I had Danton, and that was 
enough . 

POWELL: Yes. Well, I suppose some of our students would 
say, "Well, we had Powell and X and that's enough." I 
couldn't reach them all. I reached some of them and I 
see them everyvfhere I go now. At Colorado, there's one on 


the staff. In fact, I went up to speak at Boulder be- 
cause one of our graduates up there had charge of programs 
and brought me up . I saw several of our people at Davis. 
Don Kunitz is in special collections there now, editing 
the California " Librarian . He was one of our good students 
here. I told you about meeting Ben Lasky out in Tokyo. 

Yes, I had a lovely time, Jim, really. I'm not ter- 
ribly introspective or self-critical. I'm happy to go 
along doing my own thing. They were great years. They 
were the crowning years, really, of my career--the years 
here. And I know--I say again, and I will say it to my 
last breath--that I couldn't have done it alone. I had 
to have the support that Andy gave me. He made the school 
possible in a formal sense; he enabled it to be founded 
and to survive. I didn't have the skill or the patience 
to do this. 

MINK: One thing that did disturb Andy, and it disturbed 
me, too: he was pointing out that in the last year of 
the school, which was the first year of the Higher Educa- 
tion Act, we could have had twenty fellowships if we wanted, 
which would have brought in $2,000 apiece to the school, 
but you simply refused to apply for fellowships. Why? 
P0V7ELL: I never refused to apply for anything. 
MINK: VJhy didn't you send in the requests? The point 
that was made: Andy was on sabbatical (this v;as your 


last year), and you simply said, "Well, that's up to him; 
that's for next year." So we lost out during that year. 
POWELL: Well, yes. I didn't refuse; I just didn't do it. 
MINK: Why didn't you do it? I mean, in the face of the 
fact that it would have meant $2,000 for, say, twenty-- 
that's $40,000 over and beyond what you would have had 
in your budget. I can't see you, Larry, passing up money 
like that. 

POWELL: Well, nobody told me it in these simple terms, 
I think. Probably Flo showed me the forms, and I said, 
"Christ, I can't do these forms." And I just got through 
telling you I didn't have the skill. I didn't. I didn't 

have skill in doing this kind of paperwork. Just put it 

down to blindness on my part, not wilfulness. 

MINK: No, no, I wouldn't think so. 

POWELL: I was just blind to it. And that's what I mean: 

Andy was on sabbatical, so it didn't get done. He was 


MINK: Well, you know, it came as a terrific surprise, 

apparently, to everybody concerned, that you decided just 

like that in I965 to stop, period. 

POWELL: What do you mean, "came as a surprise." Did it? 

MINK: Yes, I think so. They didn't expect you to resign. 

Deans don't resign or go into retirement v/hen they're 

sixty years old, for goodness sakes. 



POWELL: Yes, I know. 
MINK: You want to talk about it? 

POWELL: Yes, I don't see why not. I'd have to go back 
in my files, but I think I initiated some correspondence 
with the retirement office in Berkeley v;ay back as early 
as '55 or earlier. No, not earlier. About then. I 
don't know, Jim, I just had this sense of fulfillment that 
was growing in me. I saw this as a kind of a peak, and 
if I could do it through these five years as dean I would 
have done what I was intended to do, and beyond that it 
was repetition. 

MINK: Was there any feeling on your part of having seen 
other people in the university throughout your experience 
here staying around "too long." 

POWELL: Possibly. Probably unconsciously it was a per- 
ception. I think I began to get sensitive in my last 
years as librarian, when I sensed ,an impatience on the 
part of younger faculty that we were moving too slov;ly. 
MINK: The same impatience you had with John Goodwin. 
POWELL: Yes, exactly. And I sensed in myself an inabil- 
ity really, to respond to the extent that they expected, 
and I had the precedent, yes, of Goodv^in staying on. I 
think the war had a lot to do with this, you see; it 
kept him on. He v;ould have retired, but the v;ar kept 
him on. But it was a very sad final period. And I saw 


a rising Impatience on the part of the faculty that v;e 
were lagging tiehind Berkeley, that we should try to 
achieve parity with Berkeley, and I saw also the impos- 
sibility of doing this as long as Berkeley was holding 
the reins and that our chancellor was an easygoing, an 
unaggressive person, such as Ray Allen. 

It had to be Murphy and Vosper--that team. And I 
saw this possible when I met Franklin Murphy in 19oOj in 
the early spring or winter of I96O. He'd be^n appointed 
chancellor. He came to talk. We had that breakfast at 
the Bel-Air Hotel in which he wanted to know what the 
pluses and minuses were here. I knew right then that 
this was the time to step down as librarian and that 
this would give him an opportunity to bring in Vosper. 
We agreed on that at that breakfast meeting. 

So I was in a sensitive state of not v/anting to be 
in the position of a target. I was getting too old for 
that kind of thing. I don't mind making other people 
targets, but I didn't want to be a target myself. I could 
see this happening perhaps in the' library school v;ith the 
move toward--oh, what? --the information science and all 
of this, in which I could give lip service but no real 
creative contribution. I did help on the Library Coun- 
cil in establishing the Institute for Library Research. 


Swank and I were the deans then, and I v/as still librar- 
ian vrhen that occurred. 

I don't know, Jim. Somebody said, "VJell, you in- 
herited money _from your uncle, so this enabled you to 
retire," but actually the decision v/as made before that. 
That was one of those bonus things that came along. I'd 
made the decision before that. And let's bring this 
other thing into the picture, too--my increasing success 
as a writer. I'd published several books at the end of 
the fifties and into the early sixties. I had more work 
I wanted to do. 

MINK: Did you make a lot of money off these books? 
POlAffiLL: No, I didn't make a lot of money off them, but 
I made maybe $4,000 or $5,000 in royalties off each of 
those World books. Yes, they paid a very good royalty. 
MINK: A guy could almost get along on $5,000. 
POWELL: Plus retirement. I saw also that if I were going 
to do my best writing I v/as going to have to give more 
time to it. And to give more time to it meant less time 
to the university job, and I think, in conscience, I wasn't 
willing to do this. I never gave my daytimes to writing. 
I did it at night or early morning. I did a certain 
amount of the gathering, the correspondence and all, I 
suppose, in the course of the job. But I saw I was going 


to have to have more time, and this was another motiva- 
tion to free myself in order to write. I don't know, 
Jim; I suppose it did surprise some, because I didn't 
discuss it widely. I think Miss Bradstreet and Flo and 
Andy--we talked about it. 

MINK: You didn't have interviev;s with people on the 
Dally Bruin like Rosemary Park. 
POWELL: No. Is that what she's done? 
MINK: Yes, she's going to resign. 

POWELL: Oh, I didn't see this. [It happened] while we 
were away, I guess. 

MINK: I think maybe it's the same thing. I mean, people 
see forces shaping up in the university which really sort 
of bring on a handwriting on the wall, that your era is 
coming to an end and there's going to be a new one and 
you don't feel that you can adjust or be part of that new 

POWELL: That's right, I think this was true. I was 
greatly relieved to have Vosper take over the librarian- 
ship, you see. I never shed a single tear over that, and 
it freed me for five years in the library school. 
MINK: I think that there was some resentment on Vesper's 
part, however, that he was not able to take over the 
directorship of the Clark Library at the same time that 
he took over the UCLA Library. 


POWELL: Was there? 
MINK: I think so. 

POWELL: He didn't ever indicate that to me. 
MINK: Was it just because of your stake in the Clark or 
something that you didn't want to give that up at the 
time you gave up the library job? 
POWELL: I thought I could do justice to it. 
MINK: Do you feel that you did? 

POWELL: Yes, I did. I do. I kept the seminar program 
going which I'd started. I kept it going. We initiated 
the post-doctoral program because of Mark Curtis 's ori- 
ginal suggestion when he was in the graduate office. I 
made one buying trip abroad for the Clark in '63. The 
agreement was with Murphy in the beginning that I would 
keep the directorship of the Clark, and Murphy said, "Well, 
I have only one objection to that, Larry, I'd like the 
job myself. If you ever give it up, let me be director." 
MINK: Murphy? 

POWELL: Yes. He was kidding, of course, but he took a 
great interest in it, and we had some wonderful years. 
Do you really think Vosper resented this? How do you 
arrive at that, Jim. 

MINK: From my informants, my secret spies. 
POWELL: From your spies? 
MINK: Like those you send back to ALA. 


POWELL: Let me just Interject this, that I said "Vosper 

didn't indicate this to me." His relationship toward me 

was alv/ays discreet and kind and generous, and if he felt 

this, he didn't make it apparent to me, v/hich was kind of 

him. In other words, he swallowed it. 

MINK: Well, I think maybe Mr. Vosper--and v/e ' ve already 

discussed this aspect of it--felt somewhat hampered by 

this syndrome that you spoke a'bout--Andy, the whole bit 

about the boss, you know- -be cause I sensed that from some 

of my informants that it was sort of needling, you know, 


to be introduced to your old friends by Mr. Vosper (people 
that you have knovm twenty or thirty years longer than 
he had) as "my good friend Larry Powell." 
POWELL: Yes. Well, we all eat a certain amount of shit, 

MINK: I think that this is all part of that syndrome. I'd 
like to take this tack for a moment or two. There's 
another syndrome that you and I are very much aware of and 
exists in all--not all, but a lot of academic institutions 
where there's a library school, a library in juxtaposition, 
resentment that grows up on the staff of the library, that 
gets to the library students. And very happily here--I 
think through your and perhaps Andy's foresight, you 
brought Everett into the matter of selecting the labora- 
tory collection, brought Ardis into this. So you started 



out on a very good working relationship with the library. 
Maybe this has deteriorated, because new members of the 
staff come in and they had no loyalty to you when you were 
librarian. Their loyalties are now different. Their un- 
derstanding of the situation as it existed then doesn't 
exist. . . 

POWELL: And the school is twice as big. There are twice 
as many students. 

MINK: Yes. Do you think that as you began to see it 
around '64 or '65, that this relationship was beginning 
to deteriorate? 

POWELL: I didn't notice it. I was of course traditional- 
ly insensitive, Jim, to anything like this. I didn't no- 
tice it, and I haven't noticed it now. 
MINK: I don't think it's really too bad. 

POWELL: No, but it can grow. It takes work, because you 
and I know what it was at Berkeley--" the gloomy princesses," 
as we used to call the reference group, they hated us. 
Peyton Hurt, who was associate university librarian--we 
were beneath his notice. And it was a very unhappy situa- 
tion. Ardis was responsible for a lot of this good spirit, 
and Everett, Page, and Andy, of course. Andy is respon- 
sible for an enormous number of things, as you and I knov;. 
He and I have never had, I don't think, any of the syn- 
dromes that might have operated betvfeen Vosper and me. 


I think Andy and I have had a more crystalline, trans- 
parent working relationship. I don't think he has ever 
had any feeling of resentment toward me. 
MINK: There was one little bind that. . . 
POWELL: Was there a bind, Jim^, that I wasn't aware of? 
MINK: No, not between you and Andy. VJhen Mr. Vosper 
came, of course, the thing that had to be done was to 
appoint him to the faculty of the library school, right? 
So there was a question of what level he v/as going to 
be appointed. And as I understand it, you recommended 
him for associate professor. And this didn't sit very 
well with him. He thought he ought to have been a full 
professor. As I understand it, the reason that you re- 
commended him at the associate level was because you 
didn't think you ought to put him higher than Andy. 
POWELL: Yes, that was sticky. This never v;ent to the 
point of a recommendation. It was simply in a matter 
of letter exchange between him and me. I asked if he 
would consider coming in as an associate, and he replied, 
no, he wouldn't. So I had to tell Murphy. Well, this 
was terribly unfair to Andy and I knew it. And as I 
remember, I arrived in New York from Europe in '60 and 
talked to Murphy by phone, and he said, "Well, I can't 
get Horn appointed at the highest level, and I can get 
Vosper. Do you agree to do this?" And I said, "Yes, I 



will agree. If you will agree that at the earliest pos- 
sible moment you will appoint Horn to the professorship." 
This was "by telephone. Murphy was at a party here, and 
1 was in the airport hotel at New York. And Murphy agreed 
I will say this: anything that Murphy ever agreed to, 
he did. You didn't have to have it in writing. 
MINK: But he did drag his feet. 
POWELL: Well. . . 

MINK: Or somebody dragged his feet. I won't say Murphy 
did. Somebody did. 

POWELL: Well, he had to feel his way as to his power-- 
how much authority he could use in voting against the 
Appointment Committee or the Budget Committee, or both, 
and until he established his prerogatives as chancellor 
he wasn't ready to overrule them. And they were adamant; 
they wouldn't give Andy the tenure. The appointment was 
finally made after two or three years, by Foster Sherwood 
and by Murphy, without any kind of appointment committee 
or anything else. They just did it, as I understand, and 
appointed Andy from associate to full professor. I don't 
hold this against Murphy. He was new here and he was 

MINK: These are the kind of problems that can come up, 
and the reason I bring them up is to demonstrate what a 
touchy relationship there can be between the library and 


the library schools. 

POWELL: Wellj it could have resulted in a complete break 
between Vosper and me and Horn and Vosper, if Horn had 
been resentful. He could have never spoken again. This 
is the sort of thing that would have happened at Berkeley. 
But we were fortunate^ of course, in Andy's Christian 
character. We really were. I suppose I goofed in the 
beginning. But here again, I was operating with Ray 
Allen, who was an uncertain quantity, who left for Indo- 
nesia at a crucial time. And it was an all-new area in 
which to operate, Jim. We had never done it before. 
Everything was being done for the first time and, Christ, 
I suppose we're thankful we made as few mistakes as we did. 
MINK: How did you feel personally about having Gustave 
Arlt as chairman of the Advisory Committee? 
POWELL: Very good. 
MINK: You felt comfortable? 

POWELL: Oh, yes, I felt comfortable with Arlt. I don't 
think I ever trusted him 100 percent, but I did 99 per- 
cent. He'd been very close to Eddie Dickson, and he 
knew how important it was to get the library school going 
and to get Andy appointed. The big foot dragging, of 
course, was when Earl Griggs was the chairman of the 
Appointment Committee on my deanship. Griggs dragged 
his feet for a year. 


MINK: Purposely^ or just. . . 

POWELL: Just because he's a horse's ass, I think. I 
just think he's a colossal one. I've worked with him 
quite a few times here on a number of things, and I think 
he's a nit-picker of the worst sort. I was awfully glad 
when he left this campus. I think he's a phony. 
MINK: How about your relationship with Foster Sherwood? 
Was there anything in that relationship going back over 
the years that made you feel that he opposed or blocked 
the progress of the school once it was established? 
POWELL: No. I never had this feeling, Jim. I liked 
Foster. I always got along well with him. He was or- 
ganized, and he had his data organized. He understood 
the academic machinery. The only person who ever under- ' 
stood it as well, in my book, was Andy. Foster under- 
stood it, and you had to present things to hisi in terms 
of the system. 

MINK: But didn't you have problems, during the time that 
you were dean, in trying to get him to agree to appoint- 
ments and so on? 

POWELL: I don't think I ever had any problem getting him 
to agree. I had a problem getting people to accept, par- 
ticularly the long hassle we had over the reference posi- 
tion after Tanya gave it up. You see, we brought [Arnul- 
fo] Trejo here, which v/as a fiasco. But my God, give me 


credit, I solved it and got us out of it . I got him his 
other job--just in the nick of time, too--and sent him 
off back to Arizona with flying colors. I did that. I 
had to, for Christ's sake. It was hanging around my neck 
and I had to do it. But it was through my friendship 
with President Harvill of Tucson that I was able to do 

I tried to get Reuben Musiker appointed from South 
Africa. We had him as associate professor, but he wanted 
a full professorship and more travel money. I tried to 
get Rob Collison in the beginning, but he had just gone 
to the BBC, and he couldn't come. I tried desperately 
to get Roy Stokes appointed, you see, and had that agreed 
at the professor level, and then he backed out, chickened 
out at the last. I resented this because he had encouraged 
us to make the appointment, and then when we had it ready, 
he wouldn't accept it. 

You may have heard, he's coming to British Columbia 
as dean. We made up our differences, though. It didn't 
disturb our relationship over the long run. I taught 
for him last year in England. Then he came here and 
taught one summer for us. 

So these were not problems caused by Sherv;ood. I 
had these appointments all sanctioned by him., but I 
couldn't get the appointees to come, namely, Musiker and 


stokes and Collison. No, Foster was good to v;ork v;ith. 
I respected him, and he was the one that put through 
Andy's promotion. He called me at home and told me. He 
said, "I'm delighted to do this for Andy. You call him 
up and tell him." So I did. What else, Jim? 
MINK: No, I think that this will do for today. Unless 
you have something further that you want to put in the 

POWELL: Well, on this retirement, did we chev7 that really 
into bits? 

MINK: Yes, I think you've given your views of why you 
did it, and I do think that if you didn't discuss it 
vjlth people widely, obviously it would have surprised 

POWELL: And don't you agree it was a good thing to do 
for everyone? 

MINK: No, I'm not going to say. 
POWELL: You aren't, huh? 
MINK: No. 

POWELL: Well, I think it was a good thing, in view of 
my age and my limitations. 
MINK: We all know ourselves the best. 

POWELL: Yes, I knew my limitations of strength and vis- 
ion and support here. It v;as time to go. And these 
four years that I've had since retirem.ent have really 


been wonderful years--personally and selfishly. 

MINK: Was Fay urging you or was she remaining neutral? 

POWELL: Well, she never urges, and she doesn't remain 

neutral either. 

MINK: That doesn't answer the question, but maybe it 

does. [laughter] 

POWELL: Well, she operates in a different way, Jim. I 

sense what she wants, but she never asserts it. I know 

this pleased her because it meant more time together, 

and it was something we both wanted. Have we talked 

about her? 

MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Have we before in another session? 

MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: What I really owe to her? 

MINK: Yes. 

POWELL: Well, let me say it again. I owe as much to 

her, really, as I do to Andy. She kept the home front, 

and he kept the academic front for me. I couldn't have 

done these things without enormou-s support (you know that). 

My support hadn't vanished, but my own self was diminlsh- 

ing--that is, my own contribution was diminishing. And 

I have so much ego that I couldn't stay on in a diminished 


MINK: Also, doesn't there come a time when you can't get 


up the enthusiasm for something--you' re just not enthus- 
iastic about it, it doesn't send you. 

POWELL: No, my evangelical fire hadn't burned out, but 
it wasn't as bright as it had been--for steady burning, 
that is. I can go out and speak now and get an audience 
involved and I can v/rite, but day in and day out, I'm 
no longer capable of doing the detailed, intensive, ad- 
ministrative decision and leadership kind of work that 
I did. I just don't have it anymore. And I jolly well 
knew it. And that's why. Damn it all, Jim, agree with 
me. It was a good thing to retire. 
MINK: Okay. 
POWELL: Okay. 


JUNE 25, 1970 

MINK: Well, Larry, this morning you said that in this 

last tape of this long, arduous interview that we've 

had, you wanted to talk about what you've been doing 

since retiring. You've already talked about your motives 

for retiring, but now we want to find out, if we can, 

what you've been doing to make your life useful. 

POWELL: Yes, well, part of my motivation, certainly, was 

selfish: to do what I wanted to do; but also there was 

a continuing feeling that I had something yet to give 

and to continue to give to the profession. 

MINK: I think you said there was a lot of writing that 

you did, that you talked about, that never has seen the 

light of day, and I suspect that maybe you wanted to do 

some more of that type. 


MINK: You haven't had it really, yet. 

POWELL: I hadn't what? 

MINK: You hadn't done that type of writing, fiction 

and . . . 

POWELL: I've done what I set out to do when I retired. 

I set myself four books to write or rework, and I'm just 

now finishing the fourth. So I feel very good that I've 


been on schedule in the writing program I set for myself. 
But., oh, I remember that summer of '66 everything came 
with a rushj really. On June 30^ I gave up the deanship 
to Andy and moved down here to this office, v;hlch Norah 
Jones very kindly relinquished to me. 
MINK: This used to be her office? 

POWELL: It was her office for a good many years, and 
when she moved upstairs, the Reserve Book Room hoped they 
could keep this as ^a kind of a playpen, but Norah said it 
should go to Powell. 

MINK: Well, isn't it true that every emeriti is entitled 
to an office? 

POWELL: He's entitled to it if he can get it, but there's 
some that haven't been able to get one, or not as good 
a one as this. 

MINK: I think Staff VJarren Is one that was rather shab- 
bily treated for a while. 

POWELL: Well, you have to speak up, and he might not 
have been aggressive enough at the right time. But I 
was speaking up with Space Assignment — with Vosper, with 
Jones, with everybody else--that I expected to be pro- 
vided for, and sure enough, they did. This is a perfect 
work place for me because it's near the outside door, it 
has outside windows, there's no nam.e on the door, no 
listing in the directory, no telephone. There's a v/ash 


baslrij and a hot plate where I can make that poisonous 

brew that you're drinking. 

MINK: Maybe there should be a sign on the door that 

says, "Powell of Powell Library." 

POWELL: [laughter] "Powell of Powell Library. Knock 

and go away." I never answer the door v/hen anyone knocks. 

They rarely do. Sometimes notes are slipped under the 

door, which I push back out. In other words, this is 

a hideaway. 

All right. June 30^ 19^6, after that smashing re- 
tirement gala and three-ring circus that we held upstairs, 
I came down here and set to work. I finished as dean 
June 30^ but I was teaching through the six-week summer 
session one course only. In the five previous summer 
sessions I'd taught two courses, morning and afternoon. 
In this final summer session I was determined to teach just 
the one course, the Introduction to the opening classj 
so I taught that from ten to eleven each morning, five 
mornings a week, for the six weeks. Then I went over to 
the Faculty Center, had an ear ly_^ lunch, and then either 
worked there in the lounge or came back here and began 
to write. I've been following this schedule, minus the 
teaching, ever since, whenever I've been here. This has 
been a real v/orkroom. I finished what I'd set to do. 
I needn't go into details of the writing. 


MINK: I think maybe it's rather apropos. 
POWELL: Of what? 

MINK: That this room is directly above where Betty Rosen- 
berg spent so much of her time as your special bibliogra- 
phical assistant, doing just about the same sort of thing, 
helping you with your research and your v/riting. 
POWELL: Directly beneath here. VJell, this is a good 
vertical polarity certainly. [laughter] There is good 
current operating here. I felt it. I also like the view 
out on the old Physics Building, and that beautiful deodar 
tree. There's a great wood engraving of this same view 
done by Paul Landacre--remember--in that California land- 
scapes book of his. It's done here in the twenties or 
thirties--well, in the early thirties, before the trees 
had grown; so it's a really beautiful view of that build- 

MINK: I also think it's appropriate, because it's remin- 
iscent in a way of the ceremony which I witnessed as a 
student here in 19'^9« You stood on the porch right out 
here and cut the ribbon. 

POWELL: Oh, yes, when we dedicated the east wing. 
MINK: You dedicated this whole east wing of the library 
that was so long in coming because of the years of the 
POWELL: That's right. It was John Goodwin's dream that 


we realized. 

MIFK: It was one of the very first things that came in 
that postwar building boom. 

POWELL: It was, indeed, and 1 remember that ceremony. 
Dykstra, of course, and I put on a kind of a Mutt-and-Jeff 
act, didn't we. I came about to his belt--great big 
Dutchman. God, I loved him. And he was so pleased. Jim, 
what I remember about that dedication is the way the peo- 
ple streamed into the building. They streamed into and 
filled all the reading rooms. 

MINK: Right through this door. That's why I thought it 
was so appropriate. 

POWELL: They immediately filled it up. Every seat was 
taken within an hour, which showed the kind of need we 
had for seating. 

Well, that was through the summer session of 1955, 
and then Fay and I planned this trip abroad. We left in 
August and flev; to London and spent a week in the English 
countryside and then settled into Dolphin Square for the 
autumn. I had great trips then, both for pleasure and 
also for professional reasons. I'd agreed to go over to 
the library school of Wales at Aberystwyth and spend two 
or three days with the students, and I did that in the 
autumn of '55. That was a great experience. It v;as one 
of the livest, most jumping library schools I've ever been 


in. We had a wonderful evening with the students in 
their beer cellar, when they wanted to talk about Henry 
Miller. They did a beautiful keepsake for me, excerpts 
from Henry's books, things he'd said about me as a li- 
brarian. They'd had it printed and presented it to me 
at that occasion. 

We went on to Ireland in that same autumn of '66. 
I made my first pilgrimage to the Yeats country. County 
Sligo. I saw Yeats 's grave, came down to Thoor Ballylee 
and saw the roundtower, which he lived in or v;rote in, 
which is now a national monument. I saw the remains of 
Lady Gregory's Coole Park and had an Idyllic week with 
a rented Volkswagen on the Irish roads. 

And then we had a complete change of pace. VJe went 
down to Yugoslavia. It was a visit that I'd promised 
to pay some day to Dr. Lela Markic. Remember, she was 
the Yugoslav medical librarian who had spent a year here 
in '62- '63 working for Louise Darling on Slavic exchanges. 
She also audited courses in the library school, including 
two of mine. She was a wonderful, beautiful, graying 
Yugoslav woman. Her husband was a lawyer, v;ho came to 
visit her once during the year. She made a great many 
friends here. I had her speak to the class at the end 
of the year, and she astonished us all with this very 
shrev/d, perceptive summary of her year and what she'd seen 


and observed and felt here. She said, "VJell, I don't 
suppose you'd ever come to Yugoslavia; it's so far away." 
And I said, "Dr. Markic, one of these days I'll be ring- 
ing your bell and visiting you in Zagreb." VJell, so it 
worked out that four years later, on her invitation and 
our acceptance, we flew dovm to Zagreb and spoke to the 
Croatian Library Association. 

MINK: Did you speak in Croatian? [laughter] 
POWELL: I spoke in ray version of Croatian, which was 
very 'broad American, and Lela translated. 
MINK: While you were speaking? 

POWELL: Following each paragraph, she threw it into 
Croatian. It's a beautiful tongue, of course, musical, 
and no meaning at alio But lovely music, spoken by a 
lovely woman. This was a great experience, because the 
president of the association got up afterwards and said 
in Croatian (which Dr. Markic translated) that this was 
the first time they'd ever heard a humanistic speech from 
a librarian. They'd always been addressed by technicians, 
Yugoslav or French or Austrian or Italian--any of their 
neighbors. Their whole concern had been technical, and 
here was a speech in the humanistic tradition. You knov;-, 
just Powell; that's all. I just gave them my philosophy 
of laying hands on books. 

Well, we had a great time in Zagreb, and then down 



to Dubrovnlk on the Dalmatian coast. Dr. Markic's hus- 
band^ who was in the Yugoslav government^ had paved the 
way for us, and we had a guide and all kinds of red car- 
pet treatment. The V/elsh and the Yugoslav experiences 
were refreshing and reconfirming, because retirement was 
an abrupt thing, you see. It was cutting a cord that had 
been between me and a profession and my colleagues and 
students for a great many years. I found very quickly 
that I missed it. So speeches such as this, visits such 
as this, were very important to me in restoring this line 
between me and working librarians and students. 
MINK: While you were in Wales did you visit the Mowats? 
POWELL: We had a marvelous reunion with Charles and Jo 
Mowat in Bangor. Yes, indeed; we went on up the coast 
and we had dinner with them and their son, John, and their 
daughter, Rosemary. 

MINK: They were neighbors of yours in Beverly Glen. 
POWELL: That's right. We were great friends here, and 
we followed Charles all through the loyalty oath confer- 
ence and admired him very much. His son and daughter 
wanted to talk Henry Miller. But Charles--really, I don't 
think this was his cup of tea. But John, his son, v/as 
a Miller buff, so we were able to give him the gospel from 
the old guru at firsthand. / 

For the rest of '66 we saw Maclntyre in Paris. It 



was the year before he died. V/e went on into Portugal 
for the first time and had that great experience and on 
to Madeira^ to Funchal, for a week. Then we came back 
to California. We were here most of '67. That's when 
the Guggenheim Fellowship became operative. It was the 
second I'd had. It was a very fortunate break for me, be- 
cause they generally don't give them to men of sixty and 
beyond. But I'd held my firsts fifteen years earlier. 
It was to start work on one of the four writing projects, 
a book on California landscape and literature. 

We spent a great deal of '67 in visiting and revisit- 
ing parts of California. I particularly wanted to see areas 
that I'd never visited, namely, the northeast and the 
northwest--Alturas, Weaverville, Susanville, the Trinity 
Alps, and all of that country. We had a good base for 
doing it, because Fay's mother lives in Tehama County, 
at Los Molinos, and we used that as a base for trips. 
I'd always known the long roads, the longitudinal roads 
of California, but I didn't know all the lateral roads. 
So a lot of the time was spent on crisscrossing on little 
roads. We did all the Sierra passes, for example, and 
all the Coast Range passes. Mendocino Pass, and then of 
course Tioga and Donner and various Sierran passes, making 
notes and looking at landscapes that I v;ould come later to 
write about when I was rereading Frank Norris, Jack London, 


Bret Harte, and so on. We did the Mother Lode country, 

the desert country j, Anza-Borrego, Mary Austin's country 

again. So that was fieldwork. 

MINK: This v;as purely observation viith note-taking, not 

consultation in libraries or research of that nature? 

POVffiLL: No, none at all. I wanted to see the land. 

MINK: Then the Guggenheim people paid you to do this? 


MINK: This is very interesting. 

POWELL: This was really a windfall. But that's the \ion- 

derful thing of the Guggenheim fellowships. They're often 

unorthodox and based on what a candidate wants to do, 

not what the foundation thinks he ought to do. 

While we were in London in '66 we had had this won- 
derful cable from Paul Horgan at Wesleyan University v;here 
he was director for the Center for Advanced Studies, an 
old friend from Southwestern years. Remember, he dedica- 
ted the library school here, and we'd been in touch, and 
he'd always been saying, "Some day you must come to VJes- 
leyan." The cable came while we „were in London in ^66, 
offering us a fellowship at the Center for Advanced Studies 
for the next year--a v;hole year at Vfesleyan. I wrote that 
I couldn't come in '67, that year '67-'68, because of 
the Guggenheim running through calendar '67, but that we 
could come for one semester in '68. So that was arranged. 


Then in '67 we were looking forward to a semester 
in Connecticut, and we planned to drive to New England. 
Well, we had the old station wagon. Fay's l6-year-old 
car, which really v/ouldn't do, and we had my Porsche. 
And Fay said, 'looking at the Porsche, "This won't hold 
all the baggage that we need to take, and I don't want 
to sit on the floor all the way to New England," the way 
the passenger does in a Porsche. I didn't want her to 
either. So I said, "Well, we'll get a new car, a more 
comfortable one." And in the autumn of '67 we were on 
our way over to the Ambassador to the ABA Book Fair and 
we went by the showrooms of Citroen cars, the French car, 
and stopped az a traffic light, I think, and Fay looked 
in the window and she said, "That's the one I want." And 
it was the new Citroen DS 21 sedan. So we went in and 
looked at it, and she liked it even more. Its comfort 
and roominess and all of this promised well for driving 
to New England. 

Well, in my sneaky little head I wanted to go back 
to France to see my old friend Georges Connes and to see 
Maclntyre, who I think was still then alive, and so I par- 
layed this desire of hers into a trip for me to France 
to buy a Citroen at the factory. So it came. I flew over 
in October of '67 and bought the car and ran it in, as 
they say, broke it in in the French countryside, and then 


shipped it over to England and visited my niece and her 
husband^ the Lawrences, and shipped the car from London. 
So when '68 came around v/e had the new Citroen to drive 
to New England in. 

MINK: Larry, 'there's one thing that has occurred to me 
that I've wanted to ask you, and since this is the last 
tape it will be all right maybe Just to insert it, if 
you'll try to answer it honestly. 

POWELL: Well, you ask me honestly, now. No sneaky ques- 

MINK: No, it's nice; it ' s a question which you've got 
to decide how you want to answer it. You know, it seems 
to me that you and Neal Harlow were very close. But it 
seems to me that since your retirement, perhaps towards 
the end of your career, that you drew apart from one 
another. What really do you attribute this to, that 
you became more or less diametrically opposed in philoso- 

POWELL: VJell, first of all, probably geographical. 
MINK: With his going to UBC [University of British Co- 
lumbia] . 

POWELL: He was up there for ten years and he did ask me 
to come up and speak toward the end of my career, and I 
just v;asn't able to in the year '66. And we never visited 
him there. I'd been in the Northwest before. I think 


Neal's interests became more organizational. He became 
president of the Canadian Library Association and became 
more--v;ell, I don't want to say "technical," but he cer- 
tainly was more responsive to new developments in librar- 
ians hip. 

MINK: Less book-oriented. 

POWELL: Less book-oriented, more progressive than I. I 
regretted all this: Neal's letting this take from him 
the great capacity he had for research and writing. And 
I wouldn't say we became diametrically opposed. We had 
all of those reunions at ALA Midwinter. 
MINK: Well, let me say that I inferred this from the 
speech that he made at the end of the convocation. 
POWELL: That wasn't a very good speech, I'll admit. He 
didn't give enough time and thought to it. 

MINK: Well, you know, it just doesn't seem to me as though 
it's quite proper at a convocation for one to be criti- 
cal of the person that it's honoring. VJhen I use the 
word "critical," I mean in the sense that you're criti- 
cizing the philosophy of the man--perhaps not the man him- 
self, not criticizing what you consider to be his mistakes, 
but just his outlook on life. 

POTOLL: Well, I'd probably have done the same if I'd 
been speaking at Neal's. I'd have got up and said, "Look, 
I regret that this guy has not been more like I think he 


should have been." You see, we tend to speak out of our 
deepest selves at these moments. Neal, I think, probably- 
felt that I spent too much time on the theatricals of li- 
brarianship and not enough on the hard facts of a develop- 
ing, technological librarianship. 

MINK: He, of course, was a dean, too. He had been cri- 
ticizing you from that standpoint as well. 
POWELL: Well, yes, because at the Coulter lecture, at 
San Francisco at CLA, V7hen Dick Dillon spoke and Neal-- 
or, no, it was the Coulter lecture which Neal gave, I 
guess. We spoke to the Alumni Association about our phi- 
losophy of librarianship, and I said very strongly that 
I thought Columbia and Rutgers were mistaken in admitting 
so many part-time, commuting kind of librarians, and that 
our philosophy at UCLA of almost all full-time enrollment 
was the best. And Neal got up and gently rebutted this 
and said, "Certainly there's room for both." He was right 
and I was right. 

But v;hat I used to chide Neal for, I think, when we 
met at Midwinter, was the amount jDf time that he spent on 
the machinery of being a dean. He personally looked after 
all kinds of things that I delegated to Florence Williams 
and to the girls in the office here. Neal used to--well, 
you remember. He had a passion for doing things in depth. 
I think he and Andy Horn both have this. I just don't 


work that way. 

Well, these were differences. They v;eren't alien- 
ating differences, certainly. Neal and I always, I think, 
loved each other--still do--but we developed very dif- 
ferently. Our circumstances were different. Our styles 
were different. And then always, I think, people who 
have worked for me in a system of librarianship capacity 
have always been a little glad to get out from under, 
and . . . 

MINK: Yes, the family aspect. 

POWELL: And they felt I was a little too paternal toward 
them probably, and I remember joking at Midwinter, we-- 
Johnny Smith and Neal and Vosper and VJilliams and Horn 
and all--would always get together. They called themselves 
the Association of Refugees from Powell, and we'd have a 
great time. I understand this. I didn't insist on being 
the whole show here, but certainly I was the star perfor- 

MINK: Well, that was a little digression, but I think it 
was interesting because we hadn't talked about Neal too 

POWELL: Well, Neal is back here, nov;, of course, and the 
other day he and Maria.n came up and had lunch v;ith us at 
Malibu, and v;e took them on a long ride through the hills 
aftervrards. It v/as in the spring and the flov;ers v;ere 


just out J and Marian Harlow in particular knows a good 
deal about botany ^ and we had a wonderful time. But, I 
should say, and I will say nov:, when v;e come to the Nev; 
England year, this involves Neal. 

So we drove East, Jim, in '68, in the Citroen, stop- 
ping in Yuma and Tucson and El Paso and Del Rio and San 
Antonio, and then through Louisiana, New Orleans, and the 
Gulf Coast, and then up the Carolinas, through Virginia, 
stopping in Baltimore for a visit with the Castagnas. 
We arrived in Middletown, Connecticut, on February 1, 
1968 (it was just thirty years to the morning when I 
started to work here in this library) . 

We had a most beautiful spring semester. The Center 
for Advanced Studies was a kind of a junior Institute for 
Advanced Studies, similar to the senior one at Princeton, 
and its purpose was to bring together interdisciplinary 
peoples. We had a building of our own, a library lounge, 
and offices of our own. There were six of us fellows at 
the time, all from different areas--a Turkish physicist, 
an economist from the Federal Reserve Board, a Norv/egian 
sociologist, a poet, a Milton scholar, and myself. 
MINK: An interesting combination. 

POWELL: And we saw each other at lunch if v/e v;ished to, 
at the faculty club, but every tvro weeks we dined together, 
Monday evening, in the Honors College, and one of us read 


a paper. Our acting director that year^ Paul Horgan, v;as 
on sabbatical in residence. Our acting director v;as Phil 
Hallie^ a philosopher--a wonderful fellow. We came to 
love him and his wife. And our colleagues there--it wa^s 
a most affectionate and close and interesting year. A 
complete change really of intellectual milieu. Wesleyan 
is a very interesting, rich college, which has great re- 
sources from Xerox stock that it sold at an enormous pro- 
fit, and the center was a way of spending some of this 
Xerox money. 

Not only did we have a facility there, an office, 
secretarial help, but we were given a house. Fay and I 
had a college house on the very edge of campus, complete- 
ly furnished, a two-story. Cape Cod kind of house. Fay 
loved it. She had a great time there. We were able to 
walk to everything. Middletown is a college town. Well, 
I also had a fine relationship with VJyman Parker, the 
college librarian, an old friend. I was taken in by the 
library staff there, in the best sense, and m.ade to feel 
at home. I'd begun on that February 1 my book on Cali- 
fornia--the Guggenheim book. 
MINK: _0n Literature and Landscape . 
POWELL: I began to write it there. 

MINK: I suppose then that some of these papers that you 
read at the institute v;ere embryo chapters of that book. 


POWELL: They were progress reports on Mary Austin j, on 
Dana, on Ramona, on Robert Louis Stevenson. Those were 
the four chapters I wrote in Middletown, 
MINK: Using the resources of the. . . » 

POWELL: The resources of V/esleyan, of Trinity in Hart- 
ford, and of the Beinicke at Yale. Of course, they were 
tremendous. . . 

MINK: Very, very great sources. 

POWELL: Great sources, particularly on Stevenson. Wes- 
leyan either had what I wanted or borrowed it. Remember, 
their librarian had been Fremont Rider, and he'd been 
much interested in the West. He published or edited 
a guidebook on California, remember. Rider' s California . 
For example, they'd been a member of the Book Club of 
California from the beginning. So there in Wesleyan in 
Connecticut, were the complete runs of the Book Club 
publications. These were helpful to me, because of the 
things that Jim Hart and Franklin VJalker did in this ser- 
ies of publications were pertinent to what I was doing. 
MINK: Walker's work in the literary frontier? 
POWELL: That's right. And Jim Hart on Stevenson and 
on Dana. So the fellowship, Jim, paid us v;ell indeed. 
We received $7^500 for the four months, plus house, plus 
office and secretarial help, telephone and everything 


else. It was a very comfortable arrangement. We were 
able to live very comfortably on that. The fellowship's 
terms were completely permissive. You had no duties, but 
if you wished, you could volunteer to do something, and 
most of us there, most of the six fellows, gave courses. 
I chose to give one on Southwestern literature. Paul 
Horgan had been teaching that course in the English de- 
partment on Southwestern art and history and anthropology. 
I followed him, giving a course on Southwestern litera- 

MINK: He was teaching anthropology in the literature 

POWELL: Well, it was a cultural course, not anthropology, 
but the. . . 
MINK: Ethnology? 

POWELL: Yes, it was a composite kind of thing that Hor- 
gan could do, and did. It was a kind of interdisciplinary 
thing. Many of these things were true at VJesleyan, v;here 
the lines between the departments were quite slack. But 
it was difficult for me to follow, because Horgan is a 
brilliant man, a virtuoso, artist and historian, and a 
man of great personal charm. So I was a little nervous 
seeing what I v;ould get. 

Well, Horga.n recruited the students for me, continu- 
ing students out of his class. I had the marvelous total 


number of four students. But, Jim, these were some of 
the greatest I've ever had. They were seniors and four 
totally different guys. And they had all come to me when 
I was counselling and telling them what the course was to * 
be, and they said, "Look, you've got a great act, Mr. 
Powell. We just had Paul Horgan's course and v;e're in- 
terested to see if you can maintain the pace." And I 
said, "Well, I v/on't be able to in the same way, but 
I'll give you something that he didn't give you. I'll 
give you fiction and literature, poetry of the Southwest, 
and I'll expect you to work your little asses off." 

And Lord, they did. We met once a week, Tuesday 
evenings, in my office in the center, from 6:30 to 9:00* 
And I want to speak a little about these four kids, be- 
cause they were great. New England college students 
are--let's face it--culturally, intellectually ahead of 
California. They've come from a more advanced cultural 
situation, and a senior at Wesleyan is the equivalent 
of any graduate student I've ever seen at UCLA. These 
were kids well prepared and sophisticated--not effete 
by any means. They were a very rugged group. Let me 
tell you about them. 

First, Larry Gross, from Orono, Maine, the University 
of Maine. His father is head of the German department 
there. He and his wife, mind you, had come to Wesleyan 


as freshmen four years before--a married couple--and they'd 
gone four years through Wesleyan (the man, of course, be- 
cause it ' s a men's college) and had children while big 
Larry Gross was taking his degree in American studies. 
He was six-feet-four, had been summers a telephone lines- 
man, and he'd been a timber cruiser in Maine. He was real- 
ly a rugged guy. He was a shotputter on the track team 
and yet a terribly sensitive and gentle guy that wanted 
to get a view of Southwestern lit. 

I had Charlie Hill, who was a New York State student 
from the Hudson River Valley. He was majoring in politi- 
cal science and was going to Harvard the next year for 
graduate work. Larry Gross was going to Brown. Charlie 
Hill was not a hippie, but he had a long, handlebar mous- 
tache and he dressed rather informally. 

The third student was Jack Michael from Chadds Ford, 
Pennsylvania--Chadds Ford being Andrew Wyeth's (the painter) 
hom.etown. Jack Michael had grown up with Jamie Wyeth, the 
painter's son, who is also a painter. He came from a very 
interesting cultural background. He had come out West 
in his sophomore or junior year and attended Occidental 
one year, because he wanted to get away from New England. 
And he'd roamed all over Southern California and had enough 
in one year, turned around, and had come back for his 
senior year at VJesleyan. He was the only one of the four 


who had ever been West. 

And the fourth student was probably the most in- 
teresting of all and was somev;hat of a hippie type. His 
name was Ian Vickery, and he was the son of a Czechoslo- 
vak woman and an English diplomat father. He'd been born 
in Czechoslovakia. He was bilingual, he was majoring in 
Russian studies, and he wore his hair long with a head- 
band, wore beads, rode a motorcycle, and was said to live 
in the woods across the Connecticut River in Moodus with 
a woman! He was really an interesting type, Jim. He wore 
his hair long with a pageboy bob, was blue-eyed, very 
casual and u.nstructured, and in the beginning very--not 
hostile, but very skeptical of me, seeing in me a li- 
brarian, a square- type he was going to shoot down. 

Well, so it was a challenge, but I worked at it. And 
Wy Parker, God bless him, in the library had said, "Look, 
here's your reading list. I'm going to charge every sin- 
gle book that you want and you want these students to have 
to you and your study. They go there for the semester, 
and if anybody else calls for thdta, I'll tell them they're 
out." So I had my whole reading library there in my study, 
maybe 100 books, that I expected these kids to read. 
MINK: This is idealistic-type teaching. 
POWELL: It is. It's only possible in a college v;here 


you have 1,000 students, maybe, and a great deal of free- 
dom and permissiveness. 

MINK: No administrative bureaucracy to cut through. 
POWELL: No, none at all. And Wy Parker, he's a Vermon- 
ter, he's a New Englander, he's just the salt of the earth, 
a great librarian. He and his staff, all of them all the 
way down, made it so wonderful for me. I told the kids, 
"Look, here are the books. Now, you're not going to read 
them all. If anybody reads all of these, I'll flunk them. 
I want you to . . ." We used my Southwestern Book Trails 
and Dobie's Guide to Life and Literature as required texts. 
They had to buy copies of these. 

I said, "You set up a project--what you want to do 
and what you want to report on--and pick your books there, 
and I'll expect progress reports from you." They milled 
around a while, for a week or two, and then they began 
to settle in and showed Interest. We then spent our Tues- 
day evenings in a combination of my talking and they re- 
sponding or talking about what they'd been reading, work- 
ing toward the final, which was to be this, Jim: it was 
to be an original exercise, a creative work of some kind 
that they'd write, either a story, a poem, or an essay, 
or something on the Southwest that would represent their 
reading and interest. And in only one case, that of Jack 
Michael, v;ould it represent personal experience, because 


none of them had been West. So it was all what they got 
out of the books and out of me. 

We had great times, because it was v;inter then, and 
early spring, and snowy and cozy; and Charlie Hill would 
go downstairs to the lounge of the center and bring up 
coffee, and Fay would send over goodies. Sure, it was 
ideal study and teaching, Jim; this was the way it should 
be. We sat around in my study and did what we all wanted 
to do; and yet I was the director, and they knew that I 
knew more than they did. This is what a teaching rela- 
tionship must be; you're not coequals. I was older and 
more experienced in reading and travel and I was able to 
lead them. But they were free to gallop off whenever they 

They were outspoken and very critical of some of the 
books on my list. Vickery, the hippie, would come up with, 
"Aw, this is a bunch of crap. What did you put this on 
for?" And it happened to be something very dear to me, 
you see, and I would bleed, like Haniel Long. I said, 
"Well, I don't think you've really read it, Vickery. 
You're making a crap judgment." And I said, "I want you 
to read this Interlinear to C ab e z a de Vaca, because that's 
a hippie piece of literature." "Well," he says, "it looks 
precious." "Well," I said, "look, you son of a bitch, 
read it and then talk to me about it. Don't make these 


superficial judgments." 

Well, by God J we hooked him on it. Haniel Long 
hooked him on it, because his exercise, Jim, at the end 
of the semester was to write in his way a kind of an ima- 
ginary hippie -epic of what it would be like to be a hippie 
Cabeza de Vaca 400 years later. He imagined going across 
the country on his motorcycle and meeting the natives. 
MINK: A sort of an Along Came Bronson type of TV script. 
POWELL: That's right. So he did this. It v/as a very 
interesting and creative sort of thing. 

Larry Gross, the big boy from Maine, came up with 
a very interesting short story which he wrote as though 
he were a telephone lineman in southern Nev; Mexico, down 
there toward Texas, toward El Paso. He projected the 
story as though he were a lineman and he'd been working 
on the telephone line of a Mexican family and looked 
through the window and fallen in love with a Mexican wo- 
man and figured a way to get at her. It was a really 
shocking thing for this big, discreet, married man from 
Maine to write. But it was a real release for him, be- 
cause here he could commit adultery creatively, you see, 
and keep from being caught by the husband, because he 
heard that Mexican husbands with their knives are very 
jealous. VJell, this is the kind of damn thing they came 
up with. 


Charlie Hill wrote a story about building a concrete 
dam, as though he'd been a cement wheeler on one of the 
big dams in the Southwest. It was based, really, on a 
summer that he'd had on construction work in New York 
State. He transposed that to the Southwest. 
MINK: Did these students, in their short stories and es- 
says and so on, manage to convey a realistic picture of 
the Southwest? 

POWELL: Well, they did it in a synthetic way, because 
their data was pulled out of books and pictures and Hor- 
gan's course, you see, that they'd had, and mine, and the 

MINK: Was anything that came out of this thing published? 
POWELL: I told them this, but of course they went away 
to graduate work here and there and nothing that I know 
of has come of it. Jack Michael wrote a story about 
Southern Calif ornia--the boy v;ho'd been at Oxy a year. 
He wrote a story about being on the beach at Santa Monica. 
It was a very strange story, really, based on his ex- 
perience, and the odd types at the mouth of Santa Monica 
Canyon, muscle boys and all the Sunday confusion there. 

Well, I ended up, of course, reading them something 
that I was writing. I said, "Look, you guys came through 
and I'll read you something of mine." I was trying to 
write something about the struggle for the Colorado River 


in terms of human protagonists. I read them a draft of 
something I was writing and they said, "V/ell, we'll give 
you a passing grade, if you'll give us one." 

Wednesdays I had lunch with my colleagues in the 
English department at the Faculty Club. I met the di- 
rector of the V/esleyan Press, and all kinds of interest- 
ing things went on. Martin Luther King was assassinated 
that spring and then later [Robert] Kennedy. We were 
moved by all the reaction to this. The Threepenny Opera 
was put on by the students, which was a great affair. 
MINK: Then you said that Neal Harlow figured in this, 

POWELL: I made a lot of trips, you see, that spring, 
because I'd been invited to speak to the Connecticut 
Library Association, their annual meeting in New Haven, 
which I did. I'd been invited to dedicate the new library 
at Lycoming College in Williams port , Pennsylvania, which 
we did. We drove down there and spoke and met the Metho- 
dists in their lair. A dry lair. Fay had a helluva time 
getting a drink before dinner, you see, because they're 
so militantly dry. They gave me a Litt.D. 

Where else did we go?--v7e went to Philadelphia. The 
Drexel Library School gave me its annual achievement av;ard, 
which is hanging up there on the wall, that beautiful 
calligraphic manuscript there. V/e went to Philadelphia. 


Luther Evans had received the award in a previous year, 
and Emerson Greenaway, and Joe Wheeler. So all those 
previous recipients were there, and, bless you, I was 
introduced for the award by Neal. Really, he made up 
for any deficiencies of his speech out here. 
MINK: Little indiscretions? [laughter] 
POWELL: He gave me a wonderful introduction that really 
was touching. And then he invited me and Fay to come 
down and speak to the students at Rutgers the next month, 
which we did. We drove dovm from Middletown to New Bruns- 
wick and spent two nights with Neal and Marian. 
MINK: How did you find the attitude of the Rutgers school? 
POWELL: Well, I found them--and I teased Neal about it a 
lot--starved for books. I'd been cued because one of their 
graduates of the year before was on the Wesleyan staff 
and he cued me. He says, "Look, give them book talk, be- 
cause they don't do that at Rutgers. Between Shaw and Har- 
low and all, they're talking about documentation and tech- 

MINK: I suppose this is why Ralph Johnson, who was a 
graduate of that school, has become so technologically 
oriented, although he began his career in Special Collec- 
tions . 

POWELL: It's very strong that way, coming from Shaw and 
then Harlow. So I teased them a lot. Neal introduced me 


again, beautifully. And we sensed, I think, that a lot 
of the--not alienation, but the distance between us had 
been closed. It was a very crucial visit in one sense, 
because Marian Harlow and Fay 'put their heads together, 
and Marian was determined that Neal do what I'd done, re- 
tire at sixty, because he was killing himself. You kjiow 
how Neal works, all out, seven o'clock to seven o'clock 
on the job, and then later and earlier at home. And he 
was tired and thin and nervous--gaunt, even--and Marian 
said, "He's got to stop or he'll kill himself." 


JUNE 25, 1970 

POWELL: The Harlows gave us a reception at their home 
for the Rutgers faculty, and then the meeting v/ith the 
students. Neal and I and Fay and Marian v;ere able to 
talk quite a lot about what retirement had meant to me 
in the two years I'd been retired, and I think this pro- 
bably helped them toward a decision. I just encouraged 
them in every way to do the same thing. 
MINK: And so he retired. 

POWELL: Two years later at sixty. He was two years 
younger than I. And he'd completed his new building, done 
everything he'd set out to do at Rutgers, really, in the 
same way that I had finished my program here at UCLA. 
It was a natural time for him, and so it proved, because 
we saw Neal last fall--remember, they took three months 
to drive west--and when he arrived here he was a new man, 
completely relaxed and had gained weight, looked fine. 
I think probably the most meaningful thing of all 
that I did, Jim, in that spring of '68 in New England, 
was to find my origins in New York State in the Hudson 
River Valley and my father's birthplace and where he's 
buried. I'd never been there since I v;as a baby, and I 
had no memory of visits as a little boy. It was about 


one hundred fifty miles northwest of where v;e were In 
Connecticut^ through the Berkshlres into the Hudson River 
Valley at Ghent near Chatham. V/e went over one spring 
day and found the village of Ghent, which was really a 
Quaker settlement, and Orchard Farm, where rr.y father had 
been horn and raised. And after some trouble we found 
the little Quaker burying ground, which lies on a hill- 
side two miles east of Ghent. There we found a number 
of Powells and Townsends and Macys. On my father's side: 
his parents and their parents--Aaron Powell, who'd been 
a great abolitionist, and Elizabeth Powell Bond, who'd 
been dean of Swarthmore, and my father, who was buried 
there in I922. 

It was a beautiful hillside with maybe a hundred 
graves, no longer used but maintained, and each genera- 
tion a member of the Friends has kept the graveyard. 
My first cousin. Mason Powell, who lives in Massachusetts, 
is in charge this generation of coming over once a year 
and repairing any damage and setting up any fallen stones. 
So it was a real return to origins. In 1954, I visited 
my mother's birthplace down river at Cornwall, so this 
was a rounding out. 

One more thing we did, Jim, v;as to go up to Williams- 
town and visit Archer. Here again was someone that we'd 
not been alienated from, but certainly our trails had diverged 


But we had a fine visit v;ith Margot and Archer and saw 
the Chapin and the main library and attended music, and 
they had a faculty reception for us, faculty and librarians 
at their home. These are things you can do in New England^ 
everything is' so comparatively near. I visited the vari- 
ous New England colleges, Amherst and Trinity and Connec- 
ticut at Storrs, and the various public libraries I came 
to know around Middle town. 

The town librarian in Middletown, whose name v/as Van 
Bynum, probably related to' Llndley Bynum, if they ran it 
back. He was a great friend to me, because I found things 
in the public library that the college didn't have, nota- 
bly on Jack London. 

Well, the semester came to an end and we took two 
weeks before I was due to teach at Simmons and drove up 
into Maine. It was the first time either of us had ever 
been in the state of Maine. We loved it. VJe went up the 
coast to Boothbay Harbor and Bar Harbour. Just drifted 
up that wonderful, rainy, rock-bound coast for a week or 
so, and then we struck through the mountains, stopping 
first to visit my student Larry Gross and his parents at 
their sum.mer camp on a pond in Maine. Then we made a 
rendezvous with people that you'll remember, Jim, this 
was Kay and Richard Hocking. Rem.ember, he'd been pro- 
fessor of philosophy, or assistant professor, and had 


never been promoted, and then let go here. 
MINK: I took classes from him. 

POWELL: Did you? One of the best persons here--I don't 
know how good a teacher he was. . . 
MINK: He was the son of the elder Hocking. 
POWELL: Father Hocking, William Ernest. Well, they'd 
been at Emory all these years in Georgia, but they sum- 
mered every year on Father Hocking's farm in New Hampshire. 
And, of course. Father and Mother Hocking had died in 
their nineties, and Richard and Kay and some of the rest 
of the family were up there on a 200-acre farm. We found 
them, then, deep in the woods, very remote, not primitive, 
but a pastoral place. And I think I helped Richard on a 
decision as to what to do with his father's papers. 

It was a tremendous collection of manuscripts, let- 
ters, and archives on Father Hocking's ninety-three years 
of life in a stone house that he'd built. There the ar- 
chives were, in filing cabinets and boxes and every other 
thing, overflowing this great wooden house, and Richard 
didn't knov; what to do with them^ The Library of Congress 
wanted them and Harvard v/anted them. He wanted them to 
go to Harvard, but Harvard's problem was there was no 
room for them at present, and wouldn't be until they had 
some enlargement. So I think we worked out an intermediate 



arrangement whorelDy the Episcopal Seminary in Cambridge 
would have them on deposit for X years until Harvard 
could accommodate them. And I believe that's v/here they've 

Then we drove down to Boston, and Fay flew home and 
I stayed for an intensive three weeks' summer course in 
the Simmons Library School. I've long known Ken Shaffer, 
its director, and he'd been after me to come back, and 
this seemed to me to be the logical time, when we V7ere 
in New England, and Fay naturally didn't want to stay in 
Boston in early summer. It was heating up. I'd be busy 
teaching every morning, so she flew home and I stayed and 
had a resident's head suite in one of the dormitories on 
a beautiful quad there on the Simmons campus. 

I taught a course that V7as listed in their catalog, 
but I turned it into my ov/n kind of course, called "Re- 
sources in the Research Library," how to collect, to or- 
ganize, to use the staff for research materials in librar- 
ies such as Huntington, Morgan, Bancroft. 

And it was a great experience, Jim. Here again, I 
found the need of linking up with students. I will never 
lose this. I must have this, I guess, as long as I live; 
and I had it there in a very rich sense. 

It V7as a course that met four mornings a week from 
nine o'clock to twelve o'clock. It was three hours, four 


mornings a week, for three weeks. It v;as the equivalent 
of a full course. They could take no other course. So 
they were mine in the morning and then their afternoons 
were free for their reading. 

I found Simmons a very live school in its own quar- 
ters, the whole floor of the college library. It's the 
only library school in New England, the only accredited 
school. Southern Connecticut has an unaccredited school, 
but it draws them from the Ivy League. The summer cour- 
ses are coed. In fact, the library school is coed, al- 
though Simmons at large is a women's college. And I 
happened to have all women students, eighteen of them. 
That was great. Powell's harem. They were drawn from 
Ivy League schools. They were working librarians, most 
of them, finishing their degrees. They were from Smith 
and Vassar and Mount Holyoke, from Vermont and New Hamp- 
shire state universities, from MIT. And we had a helluva 
good time, Jim, just hammering it out there. I prepared 
a reading list, a course outline that had been mimeographed, 
and they had the supporting library materials. It was a 
very good v;ay to teach, everything there under one roof. 
I lunched every day in the. . . 
MINK: I hope you didn't neglect oral history. 
POWELL: Oral history? No, I was intervievfed in an oral 
history project. 


MINK: No, when teaching, about organizing the resources 
for the research library. 

POWELL: Jim, that's a course in itself, and you knov; it. 
That deserves a full semester. I was interviev/ed in an 
oral history project by the editor of the Bay State Li - 
brarian , the Massachusetts quarterly. Ken Kister, vjho 
teaches in the library school. And he did a hell of an 
interesting interview. Did you see it, with all the can- 
did camera shots of me all the way through--Powell in ac- 
tion. It was based on my autobiography that had been 
published that spring. I think it's one of the best things 
of its kind I've ever participated in. The reviewer was-- 
well, like you, Jim--he knew something about me; so he 
was able to ask appropriately embarrassing questions as 
you do, trying to uncover my tracks. 

All right, we came home from that, and I drove across, 
stopped in Aspen and had a week with my friend Dr. Bieler, 
heard music day and night. I went down on through New 
Mexico to opera at Santa Fe, to opera in Flagstaff. I 
visited in Phoenix at the public library and in Tucson 
at the university library. I came on home for the rest 
of '58. I guess I v;as working on the California book. 

Then we took off once again in the spring of '69, 
last year, and flew to Italy, came up to Sv^itzerland, 
picked up a Karmann Ghia,back to London, and viere in residence 


again at Dolphin Square for three months. And once again 
I taught a course, a lecture series on research libraries 
in America, which I gave at Loughborough, at Roy Stokes's 

And here 'again was a totally different experience, 
certainly, from Wesleyan, from Simmons, from UCLA--com- 
muting once a week 115 miles up the motorway to Leicester- 
shire, lunching with the staff on Tuesday noon. And Bea- 
trice Warde, the typographer, who was lecturing that same 
day in the same school, came up from London. We had 
these great luncheon sessions, then I lectured from two 
o'clock to four o'clock, then I had tea with the staff 
and then got in my Karmann Ghia and zeroed back to London 
for a late dinner with Fay. 

It was great. I had thirty students, I think. They 
weren't as live as the Welsh students, but I did recruit 
one to work in the book trade for a year. He is now 
working with Tony Rota in London. He's a Lancashire 
boy that I interested in the idea that bookstore experience 
can be meaningful in research librarianship. So that was 
one scalp out of that experience. 

VJell, Fay and I traveled, of course. We drove all 
over England. VJe saw a lot of my niece and nephew, the 
Lawrences. We were back in France once. And what else 
did v;e do, Jim? We did something unusual that spring, but 


it's blurred now. I can't think of what it v;as. 

Wellj, we came home; certainly, that v;as the high 
point. And we've been home, good Lord, ever since, for 
a year now, with trips to Arizona and Nev; Mexico, to nor- 
thern California. 

MINK: You said that you had at the time of your retire- 
ment four definite writing projects in mind. Now, you 
talked about the California literature and landscape pro- 
ject. Could you mention briefly the other three? 
POWELL: Well, the other was the autobiography. 
MINK: VJhich, of course, you did. 
POWELL: That I wrote in London. 
MINK: And that was done mainly in London. 
POWELL: Yes, altogether. 

MINK: And then the printing of it was done in Amsterdam. 
POWELL: No, it was at home, by Bowker. 
MINK: Oh, that's right, Bowker did it. 
POWELL: Yes. It was printed in New York. Well, the 
other two are more creative projects that haven't been 
published; so I'll wait on publication, Jim, and let my 
work speak for itself. One relates to the struggle for 
the water. 

MINK: Chapters of which you v;ere reading to your students 
at Wesley an. 
POWELL: Yes. So let's wait on those. But they're done 


in a sense. 

MINK: They're fiction, or more essay-type or non-fic- 

POWELL: Just creative masterpieces. 

MINK: Creative masterpieces. Now, one more thing that 
you have been involved in lately for the city--the selec- 
tion of the librarian. VJould you like to speak a little 
bit about that? Because I think it's something that pro- 
fessional people do become involved in, and we don't 
choose a librarian very often in Los Angeles. How much 
of it can you talk about? 

POWELL: Well, I don't know if they've made the selection 
yet, but certainly we recommended the top three out of 
fifty-three applications that we evaluated, and we inter- 
viewed twelve. It was a very interesting experience, 
based there again on my Occidental background. 
MINK: The experience which gave you bronchitis, I think. 
POWELL: Yes, I cracked up afterwards; I was tired out. 
Interviewing is hard work. It was an Occidental exper- 
ience because two members of the Civil Service Commission 
of the city of Los Angeles are Oxy graduates--Guy Wads- 
worth and Herb Sutton of the Gas Company and Pacific 
Mutual. And Herb Sutton had read my autobiography and 
said to the civil service manager, Mrs. Morris, "We ought 
to get Powell in to help us examine." So I responded on 


that basis. And Ed Castagna came out from Baltimore and 
Bill Geller, the county librarian, and three leading busi- 
nessmen, one of whom I'd gone to high school viith, Steven 
Bilhelmer of Silverwoods. We did the examining, and it 
was meaningful to me, because here was the library that 
I'd first worked in, the Los Angeles Public Library, thir- 
ty-five years after, or whatever it was, and I was helping 
pick the successor in that great tradition that goes back 
to Mary Foy up through Perry and Warren and Hamill. I 
think we creamed this great group of applicants and gave 
them three to choose from. 
MINK: Who were you looking for, mainly? 

POWELL: We were looking for. . .well, what I was looking 
for--and I think Castagna and I hammered home on this--was 
a cultural sophistication in addition to technical compe- 
tence. We felt that the city librarian should be a person 
going clear back to the [Charles F.] Lummis tradition of 
a widely cultured person who is also a good manager and 
a good technician. And, of course, this is a kind of para- 
gon, and damn few of the candidates v/ould pass this. The 
fact that we eliminated out of fifty-three all but twelve, 
just on their paper applications, shov;s the standards that 
we were applying, and the twelve we examined, v;e really 
put through the ringer. We gave an hour to each. And in 
one hour, six people questioning you, one can really take 


you apart. 

MINK: \Ihat kind of questions were you asking? Just a 
couple for instances. 

POWELL: Oh, I'd ask people what they did in their free 
time. "What do you do when you aren't v/orking eighteen 
hours a day? Or what means most to you in the opportun- 
ity? What do you think is the greatest thing you can do 
if you become city librarian? What's going to be your 
direction?" And Castagna would always ask them, "What 
was the most interesting thing you've ever done in li- 
brarianship? What do you think was the high point of 
your career?" We got some very interesting answers. And 
the businessmen would ask them, "What do you want this 
job for? What does it mean to you?" And somebody would 
say, "Well, aren't you afraid to come to Los Angeles? 
Don't the problems here frighten you?" And we hit them 
from all sides this way. They were very sophisticated 
men--McDonald and Duggan — Dan Duggan from UCLA was one. 
He's from Coldwell Banker, the vice-president. And Steve 
Bllhelmerj the Silverwoods man, is a very interesting 
character that I'd known fifty years ago. 
MINK: I don't suppose you can say at this point who the 
three candidates are because they haven't chosen one. 
POWELL: V/ell, but it has been published who they are. 
MINK: Well, would you talk about the three candidates. 


POWELL: Well J I think V/alter Curley from Boston, library 
consultant with Arthur D. Little, former business manager 
of the Providence Public Library, represented stability 
and sophistication in a very dignified and strong sense 
and a rich background of library experience in New England, 
very strong managerial qualities, and a very cool and dig- 
nified and strong personal presence that we all liked. 
The second, and probably my favorite choice, was Wyman 
Jones, Fort Worth Public Library, who's an Oklahoman or 
Texan and had most of his experience there. He'd been 
assistant librarian of Dallas. He'd grown up in merchan- 
dising. His father was a Woolworth manager, and Wyman 
Jones had been an assistant manager in a Woolworth 's store 
as a young man and had good preparation there. But in 
Fort Worth he had had a lot of interesting community ex- 
perience in taking the library into the community, and 
he was a very swinging kind of guy, very aggressive and 
alert and imaginative, I felt--the kind of person Los 
Angeles needs. 

MINK: Something like Skip Graham at Louisville. 
POWELL: But Jones even had a better background than Skip. 
It was not quite as eccentric, and a little smoother, a 
little more sophisticated and polished than Skip was. V/ell, 
I liked Jones; I thought Los Angeles needed this kind of 
person if you're going to bring the community together. 


And then the third choice was Ernie Segal. 
MINK: VJho is the present. . . 

POWELL: Head of the main, central library. He automati- 
cally came on as number three because of the promotional 
exam feature--that is, anyone on the promotional exam who 
passes it' has to come on and be part of the final panel. 
So he was the thirdo So it's between those three. 
MINK: I personally like Ernie Siegel very much and feel 
that he does a very good job. 

POWELL: He made a fine appearance, cool and honest, sim- 
ple and straightforward, and a very appealing kind of guy. 
I think he would have the staff with him in a very strong 
sense. Well, it happened, Jim, that I came down with bron- 
chitis after that, because I put a helluva lot into it, 
really, these two days of just probing and hammering away 
at these cookies. It's hard work, and it's an emotional 
drain. Castagna was our house guest; we had great visits 
with Ed. He came out alone and we commuted every day, 
and he's, I think, one of my closest friends and colleagues, 
of course, in the profession. He was a very strong fac- 
tor in getting our school established here originally, 
you remember. 

Well, I'd had an invitation about that time to go 
down to San Diego and speak at the retirement luncheon 
for Clara Breed, the city librarian. The mayor of the 


community gave her a great luncheon, at the U. S. Grant 
Hotel. Five hundred came. Fay and I flew down. And 
everyone was there--the mayor, the city council, the li- 
brary, a lot of commissioners, and all her friends in the 
community, and a great many surrounding librarians. 
MINK: Well, she's made a great reputation in California. 
POWELL: Yes, she was in a great tradition, you see--Cor- 
nelia Plaister, Althea Warren, and Clara Breed. And I 
said, "This tradition must be continued; you must have a 
great successor." The city manager was present and he 
heard me say this. He called me the next day and said, 
"Well, we're going to be examining for the successor to 
Miss Breed. Will you come down and assist me examining?" 
It's not a civil service job; it's an appointment by the 
city manager entirely. But he asks help, and the city 
personnel officer took part. The city manager and I, the 
three of us, then, examined the three candidates--Marco 
Thorne, the assistant librarian, and Ernie Siegel, who 
came down because he'd been ten years in San Diego before 
he'd come to Los Angeles, and John Perkins from Inglewood. 
MINK: There was no examination promotional connected with 

POVfELL: No exam. But I can't comment on this, because 
I don't think they've made a selection. I simply spent 
an afternoon with them, v/ith the city manager and the 


personnel officer. I did have this compliment^ Jim, by 
the city personnel officer who does all the interviewing 
for their key city jobs. He said afterv/ards^, "Powell, 
you've given me a lesson in good interviev;ing. You really 
took them apart." I said, "Well, Goddammit, I've been 
doing this long enough in my own staff and then in all 
the library school applicants--! interviewed them all for 
six years, every goddam one of them that was local." And 
I said, "I had experience in getting at people and find- 
ing out who they are." 

I do this with pleasure. Part of the great joy I 
had, I think, was working with people in librarianship, 
not just these bloody books that we're always talking 
about, but the people themselves, the human material of 
which I am a piece. Not only that, Jim, but I got paid 
for it in San Diego. Los Angeles didn't pay me a cent; 
that was a labor of love. And I don't live in the city, 
mind you; I live in the county. I think they ought to 
have given me gas money. We did have lunch in the Music 
Center, though; that was nice. But San Diego paid m.e very 
well, indeed. 

Nov; v;e're on the eve of another experience next spring. 
VJe've just been to Tucson and made arrangements with the 
president of the university to be a professor in residence 
next spring attached to him, to President Harvill, and to 


give a seminar in their new library school. Pay and I 
have just been over there and been entertained by every- 
one, and v/e're both very eager to be there next spring. 
MINK: What will the subject of the seminar be? 
POWELL: It will be something in academic libraries, re- 
search and academic libraries. We haven't really finalized 
it. It depends on the students that are enrolled, what 
their interests are. It's a new graduate school that is 
just getting going; so it will be open until this spring 
and we decide who's there and what we shall give them. I 
like their new dean, Don Dickinson, very much, and the 
faculty that he's gathered. And, of course, I love Tucson 
and the whole atmosphere and our many friends there--Don 
Powell and Pat Paylore and Dorothy McNamee (we all worked 
together) . Pat took Fay out to the Desert Museum to spend 
the day, and George Harvill, the president's wife, took 
Fay to Nogales for the day, and Dorothy McNamee gave us 
a dinner; the president gave us a reception. 

Well, Jim, this is the life of Riley, really. Re- 
tirement has been full of these rich and wonderful middle- 
aged rewards. 

MINK: Not only rewards, but also a chance to really con- 
tribute in another v;ay. 

POWELL: In another way, that's right; and I hope to go 
on doing this speaking, writing, and traveling and v/riting. 


The California book is nearly done. Two more chapters 
to write and then Ward will publish it next spring. It's 
the best thing I've done by far, and I think even better 
work lies ahead, because I'm free. I have no administra- 
tion, no committees, and I've not accepted any assignments 
that weren't close to my heart. 

MINK: Like the Oral History Colloquium assignment. 
POWELL: That's right. That was not central to what I 
can do. The best thing in oral history I can do is this, 
this kind of a talk, and I don't know what you'll make 
of it. Do I get to see it? 

MINK: We won't make anything of it. We'll simply trans- 
cribe it, edit it, and send it to you for review. 
POWELL: Oh, good, and I'll burn it. 

And now I've decided not to! It goes into his- 
tory, God help us all and keep us from burning. 
Let me say again how wonderful Jim is as an in- 
terviewer. He really knew how to turn me on, 
blast his black heart. Herewith my corrections, 
made June 11-12-13, I97I. Nothing to suppress. 
Nothing to add. It is not to be read until after 
my death, except if and when I give written per- 
mission to anyone undertaking an authorized (by 
me! ) biography. Certainly not by students or 

Lawrence Clark Powell 



Abbey San Encino 

Academie de Dijon et de la Cote d'Or, 

Dijon, France 
Accessions Department, UCLA Library 

see Acquisitions Department, UCLA 

Ackerman, Page 

Acquistions Department, UCLA Library 

Adamic, Louis 
Adams, Charles K. 
Adams, Randolph 
Administration Building, UCLA 
Adventure (periodical) 
Advisory Committee, UCLA 
Affiliates, UCLA 
Aiken, George D. 
Aldington, Richard 

All Men Are Enemies 

Death of a Hero 
Aldrich, Daniel G., Jr. 
Allen, Leroy 
Allen, Raymond B. 

Alpha Tau Omega fraternity 

Alumni Association, UCLA 

Alumni Library Committee, UCLA 

American Library Association (ALA) 
Accreditation Committee 
College and University Section 

American Library, Paris 

Am.erican Men of Science 

Amherst College, Amherst, Massachusetts 

Andei'sen, Arthur & Co. 

Andersen, Hans Christian 

Anderson, Caroline 

Anderson, Katherine 

Angel's Flight, Los Angeles 

Appolntm.ent Committee, UCLA 

Archbald, Malcolm 

Archer, H. Richard 

84, 86 

103, 110-111, 339 

















214 , 





226, 227, 229 





. 393 














627, 628 


259-261, 262, 263, 



Archer, H. Richard [cont'd] 

Architects and Engineers, UCLA 

Archuleta, Josephine 

Arensberg, Walter 

Arizona Highways (periodical) 

Arizona Librarian (periodical) 

Arizona State Library Association (ASLA) 

Arizona State University, Tempe 

Arlt, Gustave 0. 

Armitage, Merle 

Ashurst, Henry Fountain 

Association of Research Libraries (ARL) 

Atlantic Monthly (periodical) 

Austin, Mary 

"Inscription Rock" 

"Paso For Aqui" 
Automobile Club of Southern California 





































351, 436, 


320, 321, 

529, 530- 

525, 526 

543, 643, 651 


B & G Sandwich Shop, Berkeley, California l4l 

Bachelor, Plarold 
Bacon, Frank 
Baer, John V/illis 
Ball, Phyllis 

Ballard, Miss 

Balthis, Frank 

Bancroft, Eleanor 

Barja, Cesar 

Baxter, Frank 

Bay State Librarian 

Beecroft, Eric 

Bell, Alphonzo E., Sr 



Mrs. Alphonzo 
Alphonzo, Jr. 


Bellin, Bill 
Belt, Elmer 

Bennett, Fleming 
Bent's Fort, Colorado 

Bernigaud and 
Beverly Hills 

Privat , Dijon, France 
California, Public Library 



37, 73 




336, 337 



69, 669 


54, 77, 78, 325- 

326, 327-328 

77, 78, 168 












Bianchls, Mile. 

Bickford, Miss _ 
Bieler, Henry G. 

Blerce, Ambrose 
Big Bear, California 
Big Sur, California 
Bilheimer, Steven 
Billheimer, Ruth 
Bingham, Edwin 
Biomedical Library, UCLA 
Bird, Frederick Lucian 
Bird, Remsen du Bois 

Bishop, David 

Bixby, Sarah 

Bjork, David 

Blake, Fay 

Blasingame, Ralph 

Boaz, Martha 

Boelter, Llewellyn M. 

Bohemian Club, San Francisco 

Bolton, Herbert E. 

Bonamour, Mme. 

Bond, Carrie Jacobs 

"End of a Perfect Day" 

"I Love You Truly" 
Bond, Carrie Jacobs, collection 
Bond, Elizabeth Powell 
Book Club of California 
Book-of-the-Month Club 
Bowker, R.R., Company 
Boyd, Barbara 

Boynton, Mary 
Bradbury, Ray 
Bradstreet, Elizabeth Steward 

Brady, Florence 

Breasted, James 

Breed, Clara 

Bremer collection (Germanic) 

Brenner, Rita 

Brentano's (bookstore), Los Angeles 



56^, 669 


129, 3^9 







37, 38 









95, 477 
673, 674 


53, 72, 

, 277, 

361, 362, 1424 

312, 315 


312-313, 314, 316 






581, 583, 586-587, 




255, 256, 267-268, 

279, 280, 282, 421 

422, 433-434, 435, 

438-441, 622 

73-74, 92 







Brlnlg, Myron 

The Flutter of an Eyelid 
British Broadcasting Corporation 
British Museum Catalogue 
The Broadway (book department) 
Brother Antoninus 

see Everson, William 
Brough, Kenneth 

Scholars ' V/orkshop 
Brown, Clarence 
Brown University, Providence, 
Rhode Island 

John Carter Brown Library 
Browne, Clyde 
Browning, Robert 
Bryan, Elizabeth 

Budget Committee, UCLA 

Buell, Bill 

Buffalo, New York 

Buildings and Grounds, UCLA 


Bumstead, Frank 

Burdach collection (Germanic) 

Burton, R.F. 

Bush, George 

Buvens, Margaret • , 

Bynum, Lindley 

Bynum, Van 

Byron, George Gordon 





226, 3^19 

83, 84, 86 

40, 42 

187, 274, 275, 281 
283, 408, 410 
332-333, 627 




243-245, 258 
321, 323-326, 


















113, 128 

California Club 

California Horticultural Society 
California Librarian (periodical) 
California Library Association (CLA) 
California State Assembly 

Ways and Means Committee 
California State Library 
California State University, San 

Camp, Charlie 
Campbell, Jim 
Canaday, John 
Canadian Library Association 


173, 470, 587 


217, 218, 336, 464, 466 




Capstlck, Thomas 
Carey, Fred 
Carlson, Raymond 
Carmel, California 
Carpenter, Edv;in 
Carter, Edward W. 
Cass, A.B. , Sr. 
Cass, Alonzo 
Cass family 
Castagna, Edwin 

Catalog Department, UCLA Library 
Cather, Wllla 

Death Comes for the Archbishop 




and La 

Ree , 


History of California 

Hubert Howe Bancroft 
Caughey, La Ree 
Cestre, Charles 
Charnock, David 
Chateau d'lf, France " ' 
Chawner, Lov;ell 
Chemistry Library, UCLA 
Cheney, V/ill 

Cheyenne Davjson 

Chouinard Art School, Los Angeles 
Cisneros, Jose 

City Lights (motion picture) 
Claremont Colleges, Claremont, 

Pomona College 

Scripps College 
Clark, Harold 
Clark, Marian 
Clark, William Andrews, Jr. 

Clark, V/illiam Andrews, Library, UCLA 







































4, 115 

18-19, 167-168 

8, 19, 24 
171, 309, 444, 
453-454, 464, 
466, 510, 649, 
674, 676 
281, 406-407, 412 

219, 220, 224, 
288, 290-291, 
294, 295, 296, 
298, 335, 519 


286, 291, 292, 295 
116, 117 

74, 92 

496, 514, 517- 



49, 174, 393 

14, 72, 141, 168 


156, 239-240, 241, 

242-243, 249, 251, 

253, 261, 264, 301, 

349, 523 

176, 186, 187, 222, 

227, 228, 237, 240, 


Clark Library [cont'd] 

Clark Fellowship 

Clark Library Committee 

Clarke, Dwight 

The Clarks , An American Phenomenon 

Clary, Will 

Cleland, Robert Glass 

Cllne, Mr. 

Codice Atlantico 
Coffman, L. Dale 

(da Vinci) 

Coldren, Fanny Alice 

see Goodv;in, Fanny Alice (Coldren) 
College and Research Libraries 

College Book Company 
College [Powell] Library, UCLA 
Collins, Nev; York 
Collison, Robert L. 
Columbia University, New York 

Law Library 

Library School 
Coman, Edwin T. 
Comfort, Jane 
Comfort, Will 


"A Man Is at His Best" 

"The Yucca Story" 
Committee on Economic Development (CED) 
Comm.ittees, Com.mittee on, UCLA 
Community Christian Church, V/estwood 

Coney, Donald 

Connecticut Library Association 














247, 248- 





351, 352 


40, 51, 
57, 85, 







290, 416, 419, 420, 

421-422, 424, 425-426 




















211, 381, 428, 637 

378, 421, 422, 
447, 524, 584, 


516, 517, 519 


338, 344, 345, 
J4124, 444, 445, 
452-453, 455 



ConneSj Georges 

Connolly, Cyril 

Constitution of the Confederate States 

of America 
Conway, William 
Cook, George F. 
Cook, Laurence 
Coons, Arthur G. 
Cooper, Lane 
Corley, James H, 
Cornell, Ralph 
Corona, California 
Coryell, Gladys 
Cosgrove, Jack 

Cota, Mr. 

Coulter, Edith 

Coulter Lectures 
County Sllgo, Ireland 
Covey, Alan 
Cowan, Robert E. 

Cowan, Robert E., collection 




Cowan, Robert, 
Cowles, Texas 
Cox, James 

Crabtree, Miss 

Crahan, Marcus 

Crerar, John, Library, Chicago 

Croatian Library Association, 

Crotty, Clarey 
Crotty, Homer 
Crum.mer, Le Roy 
Cucamonga, California 
Cumberland Hotel, Los Angeles 
Curley, Walter 
Curtis, Mark 
Gushing, Harvey 
Custer, Arlene (Kern) 
Custer, Ben 











275, 460 















128, 597, 644 


171, 172, 
459, 582 
177, 459, 


616, 647 









151-152, 156, 
158, 216-217, 





376, .377 













Dabagh, Thomas S. 












Dahlerup collection (Germanic) 


Dahlstrora, Grant 












Daily Bruin, UCLA (newspaper) 



Dairy Lunch, Berkeley, California 


Dakin, Susannah (Mrs. Richard) 





Dana, John Cotton 



Dane, Chase 


Danton, J. Periam 








Darantiere, Mr. 




Darling, Louise 




Daughters of the Confederacy, 


Richmond, Virginia 

Daves, Delmer 


Davidson, Carter 


Davie, A.E. "Deacon" 



Davis, Edna 




Davis, William Heath 


Dav/son, Ernest 


Dawson, Glen 


Dav;son's Bookstore 





Day, George 



Deans, Committee of, UCLA 



Deetjen, Kelm.ut 


Defoe, Daniel 


Detective Story (periodical) 



Deutsch, Babette 


Deutsch, Monroe 



Dewey, Melvil 



Dick, Christian 


Dickinson, Don 


Dickinson, Emily 


Dickson Art Center, UCLA 



Dickson, Edward A. 
















, 3C4- 





309-310, 311, 312, 
313, 316, 317-318, 
319, 320-321, 326, 
499, 509, 628 




Dickson, Mrs. E.A. (Wllhelmlna) 
Dictionary of American Scholars 
Di Giorgio Ranch, Kern County, 

Dijon, France 
Dillon, Richard 
Dixon, Elizabeth I. 
Doble, Frank 

Guide to Life and Literature 

"Tv70 Kinds of People" 

A Vaquero of the Brush Country 

"A V/riter and His Region" 
Dodd, Paul 
Doe, Charles F. 
Doheny, Estelle 
Dolbee, Eve 
Dollar Steamship Line 
Donaldson, Bob 
Donaldson, Carolina 
Doves Press 
Drake, Dorothy 

Drexel Library School, Philadelphia 
Dryden, John 

All For Love 
Duchow, Cas 
Duffy, Clinton T. 
Duggan, Daniel 

Duke University, Durham, North Carolina 
Dumke, Glenn 
Dunn, Max 
Dunne, Peter M. 
Durham, George Homer 
Durrell, Lav/rence 

Dykstra, Clarence 

298, 320, 321 



98, 101, 
467, 468 




66, 69 


































245, 246, 353 


283-284, 321-323, 
325, 327, 328, 
330, 400, 420, 

Echo Park, Los Angeles 
Eddlngton, Arthur Stanley 
Edendale , Los Angeles 
Edmundson, Sidney 
Educational Policy Committee, 







Elsenstein, Sergei 

El Centre School, Pasadena, California 

Elk, Marie 

Ellsworth, J. Phil 

El Paso, Texas 

Emerson, Ralph V/aldo 

Endore, Guy 

Engelbarts, Rudolph 

Engelke, Marian 

Engineering, College 

Engineering Library, 

English, Department 

Episcopal Seminary, 

Epstein, Louis 
Euler, Esther 
Evans, Lora B. 
Evans, Luther 
Evanston, Illinois 
Everson, William 
Ewing, Carmelita 
Ewing, Majl 

of, UCLA 

of, UCLA 













410, 412 



275, 481 







42, 204-205, 206, 

209, 214, 217, 332, 

396, 397, 398-399, 


Faber and Faber, Ltd, London 

Faculty (Senate) Library Committee, UCLA 

Fales, Miss 

Parquhar, Robert 
Farquhar, Samuel T. 
Farrar and Rinehart 
Farrlngton, William H. 
Ferguson, Milton 
Fergusson, Erna 
Fergusson, Harvey 

Grant of Kingdom 

Home in the West 

Rio Grande 

File of Library Guides and Handbooks 
File of Library Surveys 
Fillmore, California 










































Plsher, Alfred Young 

68, 98, 101, 102, 

103, 108, 110, 113, 

118, 119, 120, 121, 
122, 138, 556, 558 

The Ghost in the Underblows 

97, 122, 558, 565 

An Introduction to Shakespearean 



Plsher, Mary Frances 

68, 98, 101, 103, 108, 
110, 119, 120, 121, 122 
138, 545, 556, 558 

The Gastronomical Me 


Flske, John 


Fiske, John, collection 

187, 188, 215 

Fitzgibbon, Russell 


Fleischmann, Jerry 


Polger Shakesoeare Library, Washington, 



Folz, Sue 


Foothill Revlev; (newspaper) 

34, 35 

Forbes, Theresa 


Foreman, Mildred 

268, 439 

Fort Worth, Texas, Publ: 

Lc Library 


Fowler Brothers (bookstore) 


Foy, Mary 



67, 97-98 

Franklin (automobile) 


Frederickson, Hansena 

214, 224-225, 233, 
271, 387, 393, 402 

Freeman, Robert 


Freud, Ralph 


Freud, Sigmund 


Friends of the Houston , 

Texas , 




Friends of the Library, 


214, 386, 391-392, 

Frost, Robert 


Furthman, Jules 

162, 164 

Pussier, Herman 



Galbraith, John S. 397 

Galen, Claudius 391 

Garbanza, California 9 

Geller, V/illiam Spence 673 

Genoa, Italy 67 

Ghamrawy, Ahmed K. 34-35 

Ghent, New York 664 


Gifts and Exchanges, UCLA Library 

Gllhousen, Howard 

Gill, Eric 

Gill, Eric, collection 

Gillespie, Archibald 

Glllls, James L. 

Gillis, Mabel 

Gilman, Richard C. 

Golden Cockerel Press 

Gold Shield, UCLA 

Goldwater, Barry 

Gonzales, Rafael 

Goodheart, Berl 

Goodheart, Willy 

Goodman, Benny 

Goodspeed, Edgar 

Goodwin, Fanny Alice (Coldren) 

Goodv;in, John E. 

Gottschalk, Mr. 

Goudy, Frederick 
Goulding, Philip 
Gowanda, New York 
Grabhorn Press 

Graduate Division, UCLA 
"Graham, Clarence 
Graham, Malbone 
Grant, J.A.C. 
Grant, Ulysses S. , IV 
Gray, Hilda 











2, 523, 












610, 611 

265, 349 
389, 390 






190, 191 
194, 195 
199, 200 
205, 206 

180, 184, 
188, 189, 
196, 197, 
203, 204, 
207, 208, 
216, 218, 
223, 224, 225, 
230, 232, 234- 
236, 240, 252, 

255, 263, 273-274, 
276-278, 279, 280, 
284, 303-304, 331, 
337, 341, 346, 















439, 450, 
619, 637 

265-266, 496, 




279, 460 



Greenaway, Emerson 

Greer, Dorothy 

Greer, Scott 

Gregory, Lady Augusta 

Griggs, Earl 

Groenewegen, Cornelius 

Groenewegen, George 

Gross, Larry 

Grove Press, Incorporated 

Grundtvig, Nikolai 

Grunwald, Fred 

Guggenheim, John Simon, "emorlal 

Guide to Reference Books (Mudge) 
Gutenberg, Johann 






9-10, 1^7, 1^8 


653-651, 658, 665 




137, 642, 6^43, 650 



Hagan, Jeannette 
Haight, Helen 
Haines, Charles Grove 
Hallie, Philip P. 
Ham, Clifford 
Hamill, Harold 
Hanimack, Daniel S. 
Hammond, George P. 
Hand, Eleanor 
Hand, Wayland 
Handelsman, Norman 
Hanna, Phil Tovmsend 

Hanum, Paul 
Harding, George 
Harding, VJarren G. 
Harding collection 
Harlow, Marian 
Har].ow, Neal 

(pamphlets ) 

Harmon, Dorothy 

Harmsv;orth collection (theology) 

Harrassov.'itz , Otto 

Harris, Tom 

Harrison (ship) 

Hart, James D. 

109, 457 

333, 416 










444, 468, 




469, 673 

613, 6l4, 615 
466, 479, 494 

648-649, 661, 
203, 271, 278, 












373, 374, 
445, 466, 


661-662, 663 

539, 651 


Harte, Bret 
Hartley, Edith 
Hartley, Walter 
Harvard University, Cambridge, 

Houghton Library 

Lament Library 

Wldener Library 

Wolfe Collection, Harvard College 
Harvill, George 
Harvill, Richard 
Hav;kins, Quail 
Hayes, Robert M. 

Hearst, Phoebe Apperson 
Hearst, William Randolph 
Hedrick, Earle R. 
Heltschmidt, Earl 
Heller, Elinor Raas 
Hemingv/ay, Ernest 
Henderson, John 

Hendrick, Helen 
Henkle , Herman 
Henry, Bill 
Henshaw, May Dexter 
Heron, Dave 
Her.rlck, Betulia 
Herrlck, Samuel 

Hersholt, Jean 

Hertzog, Carl 

Higgs, Rosalie 

Highland Park, California 

Hill, Charlie 

Hinderaker, Ivan 

Hocking, Kay 

Hocking, Richard 

Hocking, William Ernest 

Hocking, Mrs. V/illiam Ernest 

Hodge, Frederick V/ebb 

Hoffman, Richard 

Hole, Wlllits J. , 

Holland, Kenneth 

Hollreigh, Molly 

Holmquist, Gordon 

Holt, Jack 





68, 160, 227, 229 

3^2, 666 




502, 630, 678 


591-593, 594, 595 

596, 597 


189, 202 




124, 125 

35, 171, 

467, 469 


373, 374 




















654, 657 

388, 397 

665, 666 




















496, 529 


Honolulu, Hawaii 
Hood, Leslie 
Hooker, Edward 

Horgan, Paul 

"The Land Is Still Supreme In Nueva 

"Land of the Southwest" 
Horizon (periodical) 
Horn, Andrew 

Houser, Frederick F. 
Houston, Percy 
Howard, Clinton 
Howard, Leon 
Huberty, Martin 
Hudson, Ruth 
Humlston, Alice 

Huntington, Collis P., collection 
Huntington, Henry E. , Library, San 
Marino, California 

Friends of the Huntington 
Hurt, Peyton 
Hussey, Roland D. 
Hustvedt, Sigurd 

Hutchinson, Paul 
Huxley, Aldous 

Words and Their Meaning 


229, 2^5y 





246, 247, 






373, 406, 424 
ijilO, 4^5, 466 
472-473, 475, 
481-482, 575, 






247, 2i;8 

332, 333, 355 

255, 256, 276, 406- 
408-409, 4lC, 411-41 

174, 187, 229, 
265, 3^9, 394, 
485,. 667 

221, 625 

228, 2-;6, 241, 
247, 260, 259, 

-329, 389 
, 477 

Illinois Historical Society 483 

Imler, Don 60 

The Importance of Being Earnest (Wilde) 251 


Indianapolis, Indiana, Public Library 
Industrial Relations, Institute of, UCLA 
Inscription Rock, Grants, New Mexico 
International Educational Union 
International Workers of the World 

36i], 365 
522, 5^3 

Jackson, John B. 
Jackson, William A. 
Jacobs, Thomas L. 
Janss Investment Corporation 
Jardelller, Mr. 
Jean - Christophe (Rolland) 
Jeans, James Hopwood 
Jeffers, Robinson 

Cawdor and Other Poems 

Roan Stallion , Tamar , 

and Other 

"The Rock and the Hawk" 

"Rosalind and Helen" 

"Shine Republic" 


Jeffers, Una 
Jenkln, Thomas P. 
Johnson, Ralph 
Johnson, Robert Kellogg 
Jones, Idwal 
Jones, Norah 
Jones, Wyman 
Jordan-Smith, Paul 

Joyce, James 


Kansas University, Lawrence 
Kappa Sigma fraternity 
Kayser, Boynton 
Keatinge, Tanya 










386-387, 393 
229, 262-263, 


52, 68, 90, 91, 
93, 94, 96, 97, 
104, 105, 112, 
115, 127, 128- 










, 113 

, 130, 131-132, 134 

, 388, 397 









466, 478, 479, 505 






124, 125 

■96, 150, 164 
, 479, 490 



581, 533, 586, 

590, 629 


Kellams, Jesse 
Kelley, Barbara 





Kelley, David 
Kelley, Pat 
Kelmscott and Doves 
Kelmscott Press 
Kennedy, Lawton 
Kennedy, Robert 
Kenny, Robert W 
Kent, Rockwell 
Kern, Edward Meyer 
Kerr, Clark 
Kessler, Charlie 
Kindersley, David 
King, Deborah 

King, Martin Luther 

Kinney, Abbott 

Klster, Kenneth F. 

KleinSmid, Rufus von 

Kllngberg, Frank 

Knight, Goodwin S. 

Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois 

Knudsen, Vern 0. 

Knudsen Hall, UCLA 

Koch, Theodore VJ. 

Koch collection (Germanic) 

Koontz, Louis Knott 

Krans, Horatio S. 

Kunitz, Don 

Kurth, Bill 

325, 329 


^35, ^38 


17, 31, 33 


26i<, 3'^9 





191, 388 



188, 281, 

3^3, 354, 

377, 378, 



69, 669 

207, 302, 312 

119, 206, 224, 



314, 315, 420 




97-98, 103 



356, 365, 
412, 413 

247, 211 

Lamb, Harold 

Lamb , Ruth 
Lambert, Charles 
Lancour, Harold 
Landacre, Paul 

Las Plores Adobe, Pasadena, California 
Las Flores School, Pasadena, California 
Lasky, Ben 


Mr. _ 














477, 4! 

145, 164, 


Lavender, David 
Bent's Fort 

Law Library, UCLA 

Law Library, Faculty Committee on the 

Lawrence, D.H. 

Lady Chatterly ' s Lover 
The Rainbow 
Sons and Lovers 

Lawrence, D.H., collection 
Lawrence, Frieda 

Lav/rence, Mr. and Mrs. 

Lea, Tom 

Lee, Edwin 

Lee, Eugene C. 

Legouis, Emile 

Leigh, Carma (Zimmerman) 

Leocker, Elsa 

Lessa, William A. 

Leupp , Francis 

Leupp , Harold 

Leyda, Jay 


Association, UCLA 

Chowder and Marching Society 

Librarians ' 

Librarians ' 

Library Company of Philadelphia 

Library Council, UCLA 

Library Journal (periodical) 

Library of Congress, V/ashington, D.C, 

Library Quarterly (periodical) 
Library Research, Institute of, UCLA 
Library School of V/ales, Aberstwyth 
Library Service, School of, UCLA 

Library Staff Association, UCLA 

Limited Editions Club 

Lincoln Park School, Pasadena, 

Lindsay, Fred 
Link Belt Company 
Liss, Beverly 
Literary Guild 
Little, Artliur D. 
A Live Woman in the Mines (Delano) 





























4, 2 









420, 424, 427 

138, 209, 316- 

182, 398, 399 
399, 477, 491 






173, 221, 222, 
336, 337, 338- 
340-341, 344, 

227, 444 
20, 349, 483 

589-591, 602, 
612, 629, 639, 643 

164, 348 

72, 141 




Livingston, Helen 
Livsey, Rosemary 
Lloyd, Barbara 
Lockey, Joseph 
Lodge, Ardls 

London, Jack 
Long, Haniel 

Interlinear to Cabeza de Vac a 
"VJhen We Peer into the Colored 

Long, Huey 
Long, Teresa 

Look Homeward , Angel (Wolfe) 
Los Angeles 

Los Angeles Athletic Club 
Los Angeles, City of 

Board of Commissioners of the 
Public Library 

Civil Service Commission 

Library Commission 
Los Angeles City College 

Graphic Arts Laboratory 
Los Angeles County Law Library 
Los Angeles County Museum of History, 

Science, and Art 
Los Angeles Public Library 

Order Department 
Los Angeles Times (newspaper) 

Loughborough, England 
Loynd, Karen 
Lubetzky, Seymour 

Lummis, Charles P. 
Books in Harness 
Land of Sunshine 

Lund, John J. 

Lundy, Frank 

Lustig, Alvin 

Luxembourg Gardens, Paris 

Lycee Carnot, Dijon, France 

Lycoming College, V/illiamsport 

Lydendecker, Ann 





209, 224 

378, 412, 456 

458, 460, 624 


512, 520, 521 





214, 387 

9, 479 






















104, 114 




165-166, 178- 

468, 609 

286, 295- 

209, 221 







Macalester College, 
McCarthy, Joseph R, 
McCleary, Kiss 

St. Paul, Minnesota 

McCloy, Elizabeth 
McCulloch, Samuel C. 
McCurdy, Mate 

McDonald, Mr. 

McElvey, Carl 
McEniry family 
Maclntyre, Carlyle Ferren 

McKeown, Bill 
McLain, Fred French 
MacLaughlin, Florence 
MacLeish, Archibald 
Maclennan, Kenneth 
McMurry, Sadie 
McNamee, Dorothy 
McVicker, Mary Louise 
McWilliams, Carey 

Pickering and Chatto 

Magee, David 

Maggs, Robinson, 


Man ah an, Pat 

The Man in the Iron Mask (Dumas) 

Manuscripts (periodical) 

Marengo Avenue School, Pasadena, 

Marengo Literary Leader (newspaper) 
Marengo V/ater Company 
Markic, Lela 

Markic, Mr. 

Marks, Lillian 

Marks, Saul 

Marlborough School, Los Angeles 

Marmon (automobile) 

Marseille, France 

Martin, Lowell 

Theory of L ibrary Administration 
Matcham, Charlie 
Matruchot, Jean 
Mayflower Hotel, Washington, D.C. 

200, 223 



47, 48-49, 166 


257, 259, 263, 266, 409 


306-307, 357, 381 


38, 40, 42-46, 47, 

49, 50, 51, 63, 84, 

87, 89, 94, 96, 204, 









257, 259 


149, 479 




7-8, 14 


597, 641- 
259, 352, 


409, 411 

147, 148- 















, 543 
, 514 


521, 543 



Mearns, David 

Medicine, School of, UCLA 

Meek, Miss 

Melz, Mr. 

Mennevee, Roger, collection 

Merrild, Knud 

Merriman, Al 

Merritt, Le Roy Charles 

Metcalf, Keyes 

Metcalfe, Ned 

Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios 

Meyers, Irene 

Michael, Jack 

Michel, Margaret Duguid 

Middletovm, Connecticut 

Miles, Paul 

Millar, Launce 

Miller, Henry 

Tropic of Cancer 

Miller, Hiriain 
Mitchell, Sydney 

Mitchell, Mrs. Sydney 

Moana Hotel, Honolulu, Hawaii 

Montana collection 

Monterey, California 

Monterey Hills, Pasadena, California 

Mood, Fulmer 

Moon, Eric 

Moore, Ernest Carroll 

I Helped Make a University 
Moore, Everett 

Moore , Merritt 

Mora, Jo 

Morgan, Elliott 

Morgan Library, Nev; York 


329, 362 







342, 383-384, 385 


182, 198 

39, 40 

654-655, 656, 659 





475-476, 477, 478, 

484-485, 505, 545, 

547-548, 568-569, 

570, 577, 639, 641 



167, 169, 

172, 175, 

185, 193, 


383, 385, 455, 

334, 336, 
582, 606, 



253, 349, 352 


9, 11 






9, 73 

170, 171, 
176, 177, 
222, 227, 

241, 344, 

355, 4l8, 


;26, 248, 

151, 213 



130j 199 




349, 667 

Morris, Mrs. 

Morrison, Ray 

Angel ' s Camp 
Moussorgsky, Modest Petrovich 
Mowat, Charles 
Movjat, Jo 
Mowat , John 
Mowat, Rosemary 

Mrs. Gray's Inn, Westwood, California 
Mudd, Seeley 
Munn, Ralph 
Murphy, Franklin 

Music, Department of, UCLA 
Musiker, Reuben 
My Ian, Mr. 













297-298, 641 


404, 405, 
626, 627 


Nash, John Henry 
Nation (periodical) 
Native Daughters of 
Nehls, Benny 
Nelson, Robert 
Newbro, Bill 
New Directions Press 
Newell, Gordon 

the Golden West 

Nev/ Mexico 
Nev; York 
New York Times 
New York Times 

State Library 

Book Review 

Neylan, John Francis 
Nietzsche, Friedrich Wilhelm 
Nixon, Roberta 
Nonesuch Press 
Norris, Prank 
North American 
North Carolina 
Northv/estern University, 

College of Commerce 
Deering Library 
Notre Dame du Mont, Marseille, 

Rockwell Corporation 
State Library Commission 
Evans ton. 







264, 349 



91, 92, 93, 
145, 155- 

Nude Descending a Staircase (Duchamp) 

156, 241, 545, 563, 572 




128, 129 

265, 349 



229-230, 232, 233, 

235, 236, 238, 505 






Nyholm, Jens 

209, 217, 221, 222- 
223, 228, 238, 2'JO, 
274, 337, 3^6, 456 

O'Brien, Helene 
O'Brien, Richard 

Occidental College, Los Angeles 


The Occidental (newspaper) 

Occidental Players 

Orr Hall 

Sabre Tooth (literary magazine) 

Tavmy Cat (magazine) 

Turdman Hall 
Odell, Morgan 
Olson, Culbert L. 

O'Melveny, Mr. 

Oneonta Hills, Pasadena, California 
Order Department, UCLA Library 
Out West (periodical) 
Oxford University Press 


399, 427, 428-430, 
431-432, 433, 435, 
437, 438, 441-442 
9, 37, 47, 51, 54, 
71, 72, 81, 84, 

129, 130, 



138, 166, 



277, 310, 



515, 554, 



562, 571, 




83, 552 




84, 552 



149, 300 


11, 14 

284, 347 



Pacific Electric Rallv;ay 6-7 

Pacific Historical Reviev; (periodical) 217, 219, 295 

Pacific Mutual Building, Los Angeles I63 

Palace Hotel, Berkeley, California l4l 

Paris, France 97-99 

Park, Rosemary 622 

Parker, Wyman 65O, 655, 656 

Pasadena, California, Public Library 23 

Pa tience (Gilbert & Sullivan) 251 

Pauley, Edwin 301, 302 

Paylore, Patricia 502, 510, 518-519, 

526, 679 

Up in Coconino County 518 

Payne, Robert 486-489, 490 


Payne, Robert [cont'd] 

Blood Royal 

The White Pony 
Pecos River, Texas 
Pegrum, Dudley 
Pepys, Samuel 

Percival, Olive, collection 
Perkins, John 
Perry, Everett 
Pesqueira, Fernando 
Petran, Laurence A. 
Phi Gainma Delta fraternity 

Philadelphia Art Museum 
Phillips, Catherine Coffin (Mrs 
Piacenza, Louis 
Picasso, Pablo 
Pickett, Charles Edward 

"John C. Fremont" 
Pima County, Arizona 
Piru, California 
Plaister, Cornelia 
Plummer, Charlie 
Poetics (Aristotle) 
Powell, Mr. (grandfather) 




Powell, Donald M. 
Powell, Fay Shoemaker 

Powell, G. Harold 

Powell, George 
Powell, Gertrude 








303, 609, 673 



55-58, 68, 76, 15^ 













1, 27 












423, 424 

217, 295 

34, 35, 75 

80, 121 

510, 518, 679, 
53, 54, 75-76, 
79, 82, 86, 89: 
98, 135-137, 
147, 156, 166, 
230, 232; 
441, 453 
516, 542, 
561, 562 

552, 554, 






1, 'i 









, 12, 
27, 28, 



2, 11-12, 




, 298- 

13, 15, 

26-27, 29, 74, 
80, 94, 119-120 

121, 146, 551-552 


Powell, Gertrude [cont'd] 

The Quiet Side of Europe 
Powell, Lawrence Clark 


Books of the Southwest 

"Books of the West" 

"Chief Librarian, Bookman or 

"Education for Academic 
Librarians hip" 

Fortune and Friendship 

Heart of the Southwest 

Islands of Books 

Jazz Band 

Mean V/hat You Say 

The Music of the Body 

On Literature and Landscape 

A Passion for Books 

A Personal Record 

Philosopher Pickett 

"The Prolific Robert Payne" 

"Resources of Western Libraries 

for Research in History" 
Southv;estern Book Trails 
Southv;e stern Century 

120, 551 
















511, 656 
493, 511 


"Administration in One Easy Lesson" 

"Books Determine" 

"This Dry and Wrinkled Land" 


"Letter to the Faculty" (column) 

"Resources in the Research Library" 
( course ) 

"Roasting an Old Chestnut" (program) 
Powell, Marcia Chace 
Powell, Mason 
Pratt, Enoch, Free Library, Baltimore, 


Price, Miss 

Price, Miles 
Primavera Press 
Princeton University, Princeton, . 
Nevj Jersey 

Institute for Advanced Studies 649 
Proehl, Paul 297 

Providence, Rhode Island, Public Library 675 
Publication Committee, UCLA 217 

445, 463 








421, 422 

52, 135, 139, 146-148 


Public Health, 
Putnam's, G.P. 



of, UCLA 


Quince, Peter Lum 

see Ritchie, Harry Ward 

Quinsey , 


Rachmaninoff, Sergei 

Ralphs Market, Westwood, California 

Ramona (Jackson) 

Rand, Sally 

Ranson, Harry Huntt 

Raton Pass, Colorado 

Raymond Hill, Pasadena, California 

Raymond Hotel, Pasadena, California 

Read, Albert 

Reagan, Ronald 

Redlands, California 

Reference Department, UCLA Library 

Reid, Thelma 

Reserve Book Room, UCLA Library 

Rexroth, Kenneth 

Reynolds, Jack 

Rice, Ralph 

Rider, Fremont 

Rider 's California 
Rigoulot, r4me. 

Rigoulot, M. 

Riley, Helen 
Rilke, Rainer Maria 
Rio Grande, Texas 
Ritchie, Harry Ward 


428, 429 







9, 1 

















7, 1 









1, 21, 25 
166, 179, 183 

347, 372, 428 

1, 356, 365, 63:3 

425, 426 

109, 110 

42, 4 





5, 46 

3, 62 

4, 84 
1, 92 
7, 98 





, 50- 
, 63, 
, 94, 
, 99, 





Ritchie, Harry Ward 



A Few More 

XV Poems for the He 

ath Broom 

The Year's at the S 


Ritchie, Harry Ward, collect: 


Ritchie, Marka 

Riverside, California 

Robb, Agnes R. 

Robinson, Edwin A. 

Robinson, W.W. 

Robinson's (book depar 

tment ) 

Rodin, Auguste 

Rohmer, Sax 

Rolfe, Franklin 

Rolle, Andrev; 

Roman, Frederick 

Roosevelt, Theodore 

Rorty, James 

Rosenberg, Betty 

Rota, Bertram 
Rota, Tony 
Roupnel, Gaston 
Rousseau, Jean Jacques 
Roxburghe Club, San Francisco 
Rozelle, Glen 
Rubsamen, Walter 
Rush, Charles 
Rust, E.O. 

Rust's Nursery, Pasadena, California 
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, 
Nev; Jersey 


3^8, 3^9, 
514, 518, 
558, 563, 



271, 272 
91, 114 










480, 496, 
519, 545, 
55, 556, 
566, 572, 



356, 365, 430- 
432-433, 436- 















445, 647, 

583, 585, 
589, 590, 


661, 663 




San Dimas, California 
San Francisco, California 
San Francisco Public Library 

239, 240, 241, 

243, 24^1, 245, 

253-254, 257 






San Marino, California 

San Quentin Prison, California 

Santa Barbara, California, Public 

Santa Clara Valley, California 
Santa Fe Railroad 
Santa Paula, California 
Sather Gate Book Shop, Berkeley, 

Satterlee, Mabel 
Saunders, John B. de CM. 
Sayers, Frances Clarke 
Schmied, F,L. 
Schuetze, Ellie 
Schumacher, Helen 
Schurch, Jack 
Schwartz, John 
Second Committee, UCLA 
Shaffer, Kenneth R. 
Shaw, Ralph 

Sheekman, Gloria Stuart 
Shelley, Percy Bysshe 




A Shropshire Lad (Housman) 

Siegel, Ernest 

Silver Lake, Los Angeles 

Simmons College, Boston, Massachusetts 

Library School 
Sinclair, James 
Sinclair, Upton 
Slsler, Delia 

Slater, John 

Smith, Janet Hathaway 

Smith, John E. 

Smith, Lucille 
Smith, Sarah Bixby 
Smith, VJllbur 
Snyder, Franklyn D. 
Sorbonne, Paris 

Southern Connecticut State College, 
New Haven 


35, 36 




8, 25, 231 



69, 97 


586, 595-596, 


125, 554 


365, 370-371 




447, 667 

365, 661 

92, 155 

112, 128 


403, 627, 629, 

, 630, 



676, 677 


69, 447, 665, 


668, 670 



186, 300 

170, 171, 177- 


582, 616 



364-366, 367, 


370, 371, iJ06, 

, 417, 

427, 429, 648 



203, 397, 399: 

, 553 

232, 236, 238 

103, 114 




Southern Pacific Railroad 
South Laguna Beach, California 
South Pasadena, California 
South Pasadena High School 
South Pasadena Record (newspaper) 
Southwest Museum, Los Angeles 
Southv/est Review (periodical) 
Southwestern Library Association 
Special Collections, Department of, 
UCLA Library 

Special Libraries Association (SLA) 
Spence, Charlotte 
Sproul, Robert Gordon 

Sproul, Mrs. Robert Gordon 
Stanford University, Palo Alto, 

Graduate School of Business 


Medical School 
Stechert, G.E. , & Co. 
Stechert -Hafner Book News 
Steinbeck, John 

To a God Unknown 
Stelter, Benjamin 

Stelter, Mrs. Benjamin 
Sterling, George 
Stern, William B. 
Stevens, William Bertrand 
Stevenson, Robert Louis 
Stieg, Lewis F. 
Stokes, Roy 

137, 138, 

1^2, 146 







33, 159, 



10, 22, 34, 50 



520, 541 


500, 514 







224, 225- 
237, 243, 
248, 250, 
262, 269- 
283, 285, 
291-292, 298, 301, 
302, 303, 307, 308, 
318, 319, 323, 324, 
332-333, 345, 347, 
350, 351, 352, 388, 
400, 4l6, 426, 449, 
19, 71-72, 115, 147 






436, 449 













154-156, 479 
115, 651 
449, 450-451 
630-631, 670 

40-42, 43. 46, 
50, 53, 68, 82, 
89, 90, 91, 93, 
135, 166, 198, 
572, 597 


stone, Irving 

Love is Eternal 

Lust for Life 
Stormzand, Martin 
Stressing, Ed 
Stuart, Gloria 
Stubblefield, Louise 
Sugimoto, Gay 
Summerhayes , Martha 
Sumner, Ann 

Sunkist Growers, Incorporated 
Sutro Library, San Francisco 
Sutton, Herb 
Sv;ank, Raynard 

Sv;arthmore College, Swart hmor e , 

















334, 414, 
436, 437, 






Tallman, Johanna Allerding 

Tarq, V/illiam 

Tauber, Maurice 

Taylor, Angus 

Taylor, John 

Taylor's Drugstore, Pasadena, 

Teague, Charles Collins, collection 
Texas V.'estern College, El Paso 
Thacher School, Ojai, California 
Theatre Arts, Department of, UCLA 
Thomas, Evalyn 
Thompkins, John Barr 
Thompson, James V/estfall 
Thoor Ballylee, Ireland 
Thorne, Marco 
Three Arches 

see South Laguna, California 
The Threepenny Opera (Brecht) 
Times -Mirror Corporation 
Titus, Charles 
Tom.massinl, Carmenina 
Touring Topics (periodical) 
Trahard, Pierre 


359, 360-361, 


462, 590, 593 






























The Travels of M. de Thevenot into the 

Levant (The"venotT 
Trejo, Arnulfo 

Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut 
Trout, Virginia 

Truesdale, Elsie 

The True Story of the Conquest of Mexico l88 

Truman Inn, Westwood, California 327 
Turner, Joyce 

see Well, Joyce (Turner) 
Twain, Mark 3 

Tweedale, Dellene 6l4 

Two Years Before the Mast (Dana) l88 



651, 665 

192-195, 196, 202, 

205, 208, 212, 267, 

269, 274, 284 



UCLA Librarian 

UCLA Magazine (periodical) 

U.S. Army 

Ninth Army Corps Library 
U.S. Department of Agriculture 
U.S. House of Representatives 

Committee on Un-American Acblvltles 
U.S. Navy 

Electronics Laboratory, San Diego 
University Club 

University Elementary School, UCLA 
University Extension, UCLA 
University of Arizona, Tucson 

Arid Lands Project 


School of Earth Sciences 
University of British Columbia, 

University of California 

Board of Regents 

Committee on Southern California 
Librai'y Council 

University of California, Berkeley 




4, 365: 









592, 594 















306, 307, 






307, 324 



341, 344, 




72, 168-173, 

176, 204, 221, 238, 

259, 337, 338, 341, 

346, 360, 368, 371, 

414, 444, 453, 455, 


University of California, 

Bancroft Library 


Boalt Hall 

Doe Memorial Library 

Friends of the Bancroft Library 

Morrison Reading Room 

Order Department, Library 

School of Librarianship 

University Library 
University of California, Davis 
University of California, Irvine 
University of California Press 
University of California, Riverside 

University of Chicago 
University of Colorado, Boulder 
University of Connecticut, Storrs 
University of Maine, Portland 

Department of German 
University of New Mexico, Albuquerque 

University of North Carolina, Chapel 

University of Pittsburgh 
University of San Francisco 
University of Southern California, 
Los Angeles 


Library School 
University of Texas, Austin 

Department of English 

Humanities Research Center 
University of Texas, El Paso 
University of Washington, Seattle 

Library School 
University Research Library, UCLA 


Vanderblue, Homer 
Vanderveer, Judy 
Van Doren, Mark 
Van Patten, Nathan 































598, 599, 




195, 449, 




389, 469- 

498, 510, 512, 537 



302-303, 310, 

382, 396, 451- 











230, 232 

478, 504 


154, 162 

449, 450 


Van Wyck, V/illlam 

Varney, Burton 

Verrall, Harold 

Vickery, Ian 

Vincent, John 

Vinci, Leonardo da, collection 

Vosper, Loraine 

Vosper, Robert 

"A V/ord to the Wise and Friendly" 
Vroman ' s (bookstore) 


Wadsworth, Guy 

VJagner, Kenry 

V/alker, Franklin 

Wallace, Lura 

V/ard, Ned 

Warde , Beatrice 

Wardman Park Sheraton Hotel, 

Washington, D.C. 
V/ard Ritchie Press 
Warren, Althea (Hester) 

Warren, Stafford 

Warren, Viola 

VJashington (state) 

V/atkins , Gordon 

Webb School, Clar.einont , 

Wecter, Dixon 

V/eil, Jerome 

Weil, Joyce (Turner) 

V/elch, Joseph N. 



































































































673, 677 




425, 635 
















Werfel, Franz 

Wesleyan University, Mlddletown, 

Center for Advanced Studies 
Department of English 
Honors College 

West, Linda 

Westergaard, V/aldermar 

Western Interstate Compact on Higher 

Education (WICHE) 
Western Worker (periodical) 
Westways (periodical) 

Westwood Bruin Club 

Westwood Businessmen's Association 

Westwood House 

Wheat, Carl 

V/heeler, Joseph L. 

Whipple, T.K. 

White, Carl 

Whiting, Brooke 

Whitman, VJalt 

"Song of the Redwood Tree" 
Whltten, Benjamin G. 
Whltten, Benjamin, Jr. 
Whittier, California 
Wiggins, Frank, Trade School, 

Inglewood, California 
Williams College, Williamstown, 

Chapln Library 
Williams, Florence 

Williams, Gordon 

Wilson, Donald G. 

Wilson, H.L. 

Wilson, Louis Round 

Wlnnett, P.G. 

With, Karl 

Works Progress Administration (V/PA) 
















209, 222, 
278, 299, 



95, 132, 137, 139, 

145, 494, 523, 549 


















612, 618, 






374, 375- 



379, 380, 



415, 433, 


















World Publishing Company 

World's Fair, Chicago 

Wrenn Memorial Library, High Point 

North Carolina 
Wright, Louis 
Wroth, Lawrence 
Wyeth, Andrew 
Wyeth, Jamie 


Xerox Corporation 






229, 299 

Yale (ship) 

Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut 

Beinicke Library 

Yale Associates 
Yale University Press 
Yeats, William Butler 
Young and McAllister 
Young, Brigham 

Young Man V/ith a Horn (Baker) 
Young, William G. 

170, 606 




97, 102, 139, 209, 639 




38^, 59^ 

Zamorano Club, Los Angeles 

Hoj a Volante (periodical) 
Zeitlin, Gina 
Zeitlln, Jake 

Zeitlin, Josephine 
Zimmerman, Carma 

47', 49 















95, 139 

147, 148 
157, 158 
168, 182 



, 149- 











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