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MAY 4 COLLECTION -- Boxes 72 and 72A
Prepared by Nancy Scarcella, April 30, 1991; Updated December 2011; November 2016
1 record storage box and 1 half size record storage box, 1.5 cubic feet, 12th floor
Historical Note: Professor Carl M. Moore was an instructor in the School of Speech at Kent State University in May 1970.
After the events of May 4, 1970, James A. Michener came to Kent, Ohio with the intention of gathering information for a forthcoming book on the events which occurred prior to and on the day of May 4, 1970. Michener interviewed a substantial number of people, including Dr. Carl Moore, during his stay in Kent. In the Spring of 1971, Michener's book titled Kent State: What Happened and Why was published. Upon reading the book Moore discovered several discrepancies in the references made to him. Furthermore, he discovered that there were other individuals who also felt that Michener's references to them were incorrect.
Moore decided to seize this opportunity to provide the students in his argumentation class with an instructive experience in the use of evidence. In order to determine if Michener had taken liberties with the statements given to him by those interviewed, Moore's students identified all of the individuals quoted in Kent State: What Happened and Why. A questionnaire designed to identify Michener's research methods and verify his use of quotes was sent to approximately two hundred individuals quoted by Michener. Although only about half of the individuals to whom the questionnaires were sent responded, their responses indicated that in a number of instances Michener had indeed misquoted and distorted statements given to him during interviews.
At that point, Professor D. Ray Heisey, also an instructor in the School of Speech, was invited to join the project. The project provided the fodder for the Moore/Heisey report titled "Not a Great Deal of Error . . .?" This title was a sardonic twist on a statement made by Michener in an article in the May 15, 1971 Saturday Review; "Not a great deal of error has been found in my books." Although the report was never published, a review of it did appear in the January 16, 1972 New York Times. A copy of "Not a Great Deal of Error. . .?" is contained in the Jerry M. Lewis Papers , part of the May 4th collection.
The Moore/Heisey report did not go unnoticed by Michener. His rebuttal to "Not a Great Deal of Error...?" appeared in January, 1972. A copy of the rebuttal can be found in folder 111 of box 72.
Scope and Content: Box 72 contains survey responses and other materials related to the Moore/Heisey study. Box 72A contains miscellaneous correspondence, publications, flyers, and other documents from the period before and after May 4, 1970.
Acquisitions Note: Moore donated these papers to Special Collections and Archives on May 8, 1986.
Restrictions on Access: Some information included in this collection is restricted due to the presence of information protected by privacy laws. This information has been redacted where present on documents in the collection. Un-redacted originals, in all cases, have been retained by Special Collections and Archives.
Series 1--Moore/Heisey Survey
Series 2-- Other Papers (related to the event leading up to and after May 4, 1970)