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Kent State Shootings: May 4 Collection Contents

Special Collections and Archives

Kent State Shootings: May 4 Collection Contents

Special Collections and Archives

Kent State Shootings: May 4 Collection Contents

May 4 Collection


The May 4 collection is comprised of over 750 cubic feet of archival materials. This chart provides descriptions of each sub-collection that makes up the May 4 collection. Also included are links to finding aids for these sub-collections, which provide detailed information on the contents of each.

This collection

Box #(s)  Name of Sub-collection  Description 


Newspaper clippings, magazines, and journal articles related to the Kent State shootings and their aftermath, organized chronologically. Materials are added to the collection on a continual basis. Inclusive dates: 1964-2024


Includes oral histories taped during the 1990, 1995, and 2000 May 4 Annual Commemorations, as well as several interviews collected since 2000. Includes both a textual transcription and audio/video recording of each oral history. Almost all of the oral histories to date are audio recordings. Inclusive dates: 1990-2024


This collection contains responses from individuals and groups that were sent to Kent State University Student Government in the months after the Kent State shootings of May 4, 1970, as well as related materials produced by Student Government members. Inclusive dates: 1969-1972


The collection contains papers from former Kent State University Secretary George Urban regarding campus disturbances prior to and after the events of May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1969-1971


The Doug Moore May 4 papers include bulletins, correspondence, flyers, legal documents, meeting minutes, position papers, press releases, publications, reports, statements, and subject files. Most of these materials date from 1970-1977 and are related to the events of May 4, 1970, court cases, and commemorations. Inclusive dates: 1967-1978


The William A. Gordon papers include clippings, articles, and papers written by/about Bill Gordon. Inclusive dates: 1970-1974 (Please note this collection was originally processed with two other individuals' papers in Box 21 of the May 4 Collection)


The James Nuber papers contain records from national and Kent State University organizations related to, or created in response to the Kent State shootings and the Vietnam War. Nuber was a student at the time of the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1969-1977


Legal Documents Related to the Kent State Shootings

The Legal Documents Related to the Kent State Shootings contains materials from a variety of sources related to litigation and trials that occurred in the aftermath of May 4, 1970. The collection includes various court documents, legal notes, and indictments. Inclusive dates: 1970-1978


Head coach of men's track and field and cross country at Kent State University from 1960 to 1978. Collection contains primarily correspondence pertaining to the shootings at Kent State on May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1969-1971


Mayor of Kent from 1969-1972. Collection includes correspondence, documents, speeches, notes, photographs, news clippings, periodicals, and audio materials, most of which pertain to the events of May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1955-1976


The collection includes correspondence from students regarding the completion of the spring 1970 quarter, to Frank L. Byrne, a Kent State University history professor. Inclusive dates: 1970



KSU professor of biological sciences, beginning in 1967. Collection includes papers, correspondence and records from a variety of campus task forces with which Cooke was involved. Inclusive dates: 1963-1970


Contains newsletters and flyers pertaining to student protests, mainly those that occurred on American college and university campuses in the aftermath of the Kent State shootings in the Spring of 1970. Inclusive dates: 1965-1972


Includes issues of the Congressional Record that include information on the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1969-1973


KSU professor of sociology since 1966; May 4, 1970 eyewitness; active in researching the period and event. Papers include scholarly works, primary materials and general clippings. Inclusive dates: 1968-2011


Thomas Lough was a professor of sociology at Kent State. His papers include materials about the BUS/SDS Oakland Police protest and Black Student Walkout (November 1968), the Music & Speech Bldg occupation (April 1969), the Concerned Citizens of the Kent Community (CCC), and Lough's reflections on being one of the "Kent 25" indictees. Inclusive dates: 1968-1978


Contains items created and saved by Virginia Lee Heidloff-Reichard, a defense attorney at Krause et al. vs. Rhodes et al. Various materials relating to this event and its aftermath are featured, including handwritten notes, correspondence, news clippings, briefs, and court exhibits. Inclusive dates: 1978-1994


Ken Hammond was a Kent SDS leader in late 60's, a speaker at the May 4, 1970 rally, and a member of Kent 25. His papers include publications, flyers, leaflets, and other materials created by Hammond and the organizations with which he was involved while at Kent State. Inclusive dates: 1968-1974 (Please note this collection was originally processed with two other individuals' papers in Box 21 of the May 4 Collection)


Contains materials acquired by the Kent State University Libraries from a variety of faculty and staff members that reflect their reactions to the Kent State shootings. Materials in this collection include clippings, flyers, leaflets, and publications. Inclusive dates: 1970-2000


Consists of materials that document the activities of Kent State University student organization, the May 4th Task Force. Materials in this collection include organizational records, event files, including posters, publications, and clippings. Inclusive dates: 1975-2018



Associate Professor of psychology, Stuart P. Taylor created a detailed questionnaire sent to students following May 4, 1970. This collection includes materials that detail student responses and reactions to the events surrounding May 1970 Kent State shootings and their aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1970-1998


Includes photographs taken by the KSU News Service before, during, and after the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: April 30, 1970-1989


William A. Fredrick was a student and eyewitness on May 4, 1970. Collection contains photographs taken on and around KSU during spring 1970, in the time leading up to and including the shootings. 1970; 2022.


Materials gathered by the Special Committee on Campus Tensions, some of which were used as a basis for two publications of the American Council on Education: Perspectives on Campus Tension, and Campus Tensions: Analysis and Recommendations. Inclusive dates: 1969


Editor of KENT alumni magazine. Includes alumni letters regarding the Kent State shootings, KSU News Service press releases, photocopies of legal documents, publications, speeches, and statements. Inclusive dates: 1970


Created in 1971 as a living memorial to May 4. Now, the Center for Applied Conflict Management (CACM), the center serves as a conflict studies program at the University. Inclusive dates: 1971-1976


Professor of English. Materials include correspondence, publications, flyers and bulletins. Inclusive dates: 1969-1971


1978-79 Chair, May 4 Task Force, also involved in the May 4 Coalition and May 4 Observance Committee. Materials describe the manner in which May 4 commemorations and related activities were undertaken on the Kent campus. Inclusive dates: 1974-1981


KSU political science professor. Materials include correspondence from students re the completion of the the spring 1970 quarter. Inclusive dates: 1970


KSU student. Includes political ephemera demonstrating the range of student activist concerns for the years 1977-80. Focuses on the May 4 commemoration and the gym annex controversy. Inclusive dates: 1977-1980


KSU art professor. Materials include correspondence from students regarding the completion of the spring 1970 term. Inclusive dates: 1970


Organization operated in the summer of 1970 by 8 individuals involved in the production and financing of the independent film "Confrontation at Kent State." Fund was used to help students wounded at KSU and Jackson State. Includes records relating to the fund and film. Inclusive dates: 1969-1980


KSU art professor. Materials include correspondence sent to student government office from all over the world and compiled into a display, fall quarter, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1970

62-64S (23 boxes)

National Archives employee from 1968-80. Materials include research notes, correspondence, photocopies of FBI and National Guard reports, other archival sources from D.C. as well as all of his manuscripts. Also included are links to Thomas' e-books about the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1970-2003


Tent City resident and active participant in May 4 Coalition. Includes correspondence and political ephemera related to Coalition activities, Tent City and gym controversy. Inclusive dates: 1977


Professor at Emerson College, Boston, part of many notable May 4 projects including the NBC docu-drama "Kent State." Materials include items related to his work on the NBC movie and research. Inclusive dates: 1975-2005


KSU architecture professor. Papers focus on events and administrative results of May 4 shootings. Inclusive dates: 1970-1976


KSU psychology professor. Includes materials on various faculty groups and committees formed after the incident, student letters, and memos related to administrative procedures. Inclusive dates: 1970


Documents Harold Kitner’s role as Faculty Ombudsman in the immediate aftermath of the Kent State shootings. Included are correspondence, flyers, memos, reports, statements, and other materials from Kitner, faculty members, and administrators.
Inclusive dates: 1970-1971


KSU teaching fellow in geography. Offered extra credit points to students for attending 20th annual commemoration and writing a brief report on their experience. Includes 87 class responses, brief explanation of assignment, and poem written by Keiffer. Inclusive dates: 1990


KSU speech professor. Papers include information re a survey he conducted noting discrepancies in James Michener's book, including surveys and taped transcripts. Inclusive dates: 1968-1972


KSU student, eyewitness to May 4, 1970. Materials include color photos along with his personal account and materials related to later class reunion in 1990. Inclusive dates: 1970-1990


In 1990, the Akron Beacon Journal invited readers to share their memories of May 4, 1970. On April 29, 1990, they published excerpts from 12 replies. The collection includes letters that were sent in, but were not printed in the paper. Inclusive dates: 1990


Materials related to a major event that was part of the 20th anniversary commemoration of the shootings in 1990. A Gathering of Poets brought poets from across the country to Kent State for a series of readings. A published anthology including the poetry of selected contributors was subsequently produced. Inclusive dates: 1989-1993


These records reflect a range of activities of the Kent State University Police department primarily from the period of 1968 through 1973, but with earlier and later records being present. There are records maintained on individual persons, files compiled on various national and local organizations and subjects related to campus unrest and political protest, as well as information about the Kent State shootings and various legal cases that involved police records. Inclusive dates: 1956-1976


This collection consists mainly of correspondence, publications and bulletins gathered or created by Kriese, in response to the May 4, 1970 Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1967-1972


A collection of selected poetry related to the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1970-2020


Contains miscellaneous research papers, theses, dissertations, and manuscripts that have been submitted to the May 4 Collection. Inclusive dates: 1977-2021


Contains information produced by and about the May 4 Memorial Design Competition and the final memorial design selected and installed on campus. Includes competition design entries, correspondence, press releases, photographs, and audiovisual materials. Inclusive dates: 1978-2014.


Consulting environmental designer who submitted design for the Memorial competition. He wrote the book To Heal Kent State about this experience. Papers include manuscripts, drawings and related materials. Inclusive dates: 1985-1990


1970 Kent resident. Published article in Delta Gamma national magazine. Includes copy of article and edited typescript. Inclusive dates: 1970


Member of President's Commission on Campus Unrest (Scranton Commission). Includes commission's report, letter, journal article and photo ID. Inclusive dates: 1970-1992


Initial winner of the Memorial Design competition, later disqualified due to his Canadian citizenship. Includes related correspondence, newsclippings, and photocopies of the design plan. Inclusive dates: 1986


Includes correspondence, photographs, and other materials about Segal's Abraham and Isaac sculpture rejected by Kent State University in 1978. Inclusive dates: 1978-1990


KSU student, one of the organizers and a coordinator of Students Maintaining and Advocating Cooperation and Constructiveness at Kent (SMACCK), a student organization. Papers include SMACCK and SDS flyers. Inclusive dates: 1970-1980


KSU art professor. Materials include correspondence from students regarding the completion of the the spring 1970 quarter. Inclusive dates: 1970


Faculty supervisor and general manager of radio operations at WKSU in 1970. Focus of papers is on the role and activities of the University radio station during May, 1970 and immediate aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1968-1973


Miscellaneous films, videos, and DVDs related to the Kent State shootings and their aftermath. Most of the collection consists of secondary documentaries. Inclusive dates: 1970-2024


Non-musical sound recordings and audio footage related to the Kent State shootings and their aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1970-2002


Koller was a KSU sociology professor. Includes materials related to his docu-drama "5-4-3-2-1-0" based upon the records of the Civil Trial of 1975 (Krause v. Rhodes). Inclusive dates: 1981


Hoover was a KSU sociology professor, Associate Dean of Arts & Sciences, and Chair of the 1979 May 4 Observance Committee. Papers include materials concerning the planning and staging of the commemoration and information on the University Commission to Implement a Commitment to Non-Violence (UCICNV). Inclusive dates: 1970-1979


Obituaries and information about the 4 KSU students who were killed on May 4, 1970: Allison Krause, Jeffrey Miller, Sandra Scheuer and William Schroeder and the nine students injured. Inclusive dates: 1969-2024


Baron was a KSU psychology professor, present when the shootings occurred, and along with others, did his best to keep students calm and the situation from escalating. Papers include letters from students after the incident. Inclusive dates: 1970


Personal accounts of and commentaries on the events of May 4, 1970 and their aftermath by various people. Most of these narratives have been submitted in writing. Full-text is available for many of these accounts. Inclusive dates: 1970-2024


Records created and compiled by the  University Commission to Implement a Commitment to Non-Violence (UCICNV), one of the bodies formed in the aftermath of the Kent State shootings. Charles F. Kegley chaired this body, which is often referred to as the "Kegley Commission." Inclusive dates: 1968-1971


The May 4 20th Commemoration records include agendas, schedules, budgets, correspondence, news clippings, press releases, and other materials pertaining to preparations for the 1990 commemoration of the shootings. Inclusive dates: 1985-1991


Flyers, publications, posters, and documents created by SDS (national) and the Kent State chapter. Includes information on protest activities of the late 1960s on the Kent State campus. Inclusive dates: 1967-2005; but most date from 1968-1970


Artworks and other materials from the 25th annual commemoration workshop in large scale enameling. Includes artists' statements by workshop participants. Inclusive dates: 1994-1995


Kent State Shootings Photographs from Various Sources


Photographs related to the Kent State shootings that have been donated to the Department of Special Collections and Archives by various individuals or offices. Provenance information for each piece (if known) can be found with the individual listing. Inclusive dates: 1968-1970


KSU English professor, Chair, Faculty Senate, 1970-71. Papers relate to both his roles in the university. Inclusive dates: 1970-1971


This 25th commemoration art exhibit by Kay Willens allowed visitors to write their thoughts on notecards and use them to replace seed packets, which they could then take home and plant in remembrance. Includes all the responses. Inclusive dates: 1995


Civil suit documentation donated by Judge William Kernahan Thomas. Includes court documents, judge's notes, exhibits used in trial including maps and photos. Useful to studying May 4 litigation and before and after photos of May 4 shooting. Inclusive dates: 1978-1979


Jerman was a KSU English professor. Includes materials on student unrest at KSU. Inclusive dates: 1969-1971


Includes a miscellany of May 4-related t-shirts from various years and events. Inclusive dates: 1990-2024


Subject files that have been created on miscellaneous topics related to the Kent State shootings and their aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1970-2022


Materials created annually for commemorative events on campus including programs, flyers, posters, publications, and photographs. Also includes records of the Symposium on Democracy. Inclusive dates: 1971-2021


Includes manuscripts and other documents from selected dramatic productions related to the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1971-2000


Helen was Executive Secretary, Honors College and John was Director of Food Services, KSU in 1970. Food Services was responsible for feeding the National Guard, the state police and the students following the shootings. Papers document the immediate aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1970-1995


KSU student. Materials document Tent City and the gym annex demonstrations. Inclusive dates: 1977-1978


Papers released from the United States Department of Justice in response to a Freedom of Information Act request made by the May 4th Task Force. Inclusive dates: 1970-1973


KSU student and, later, Editor of the Kent-Ravenna Record-Courier newspaper. Includes photographs, newsclippings, protest literature and UPI dispatches regarding the gym annex controversy. Inclusive dates: 1977-1978


Contains memorabilia and artifacts pertaining to the shootings and their aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1970-2009


20-member committee, formed in 1994 to coordinate spring 1995 Commemoration. Includes meeting minutes, membership rosters, correspondence, clippings, press releases, funding applications, events schedule and programs. Inclusive dates: 1994-1996


Collection contains documents created and received by selected Kent State University administrators leading up to and following the Kent State shootings of May 4, 1970. It includes correspondence, meeting minutes, press releases, reports, speeches, and statements, which provide a broad view of the administration’s activities and responses to the shootings in the immediate aftermath and in the following years. Inclusive dates: 1968-1977


This collection contains banners and posters associated with the student protest/anti-war movement and the Kent State shootings and their aftermath. Inclusive dates: 1969-2021


Contains records of the 30th Annual Commemoration and the 30th May 4 Commemoration Committee. Includes agendas, minutes, correspondence, promotional materials, and video recordings of events. Inclusive dates: 1999-2000


Barclay Doster McMillen was a Kent State University political science lecturer and assistant to President Robert I. White from 1967-1971 and was also the "Special Counsel for Student Rights" from 1968 to 1969. His papers include correspondence with White regarding campus unrest, manuscripts written by McMillen about who was responsible for May 4, 1970, audio recordings of McMillen's thoughts about the events, and a Minority Report of the Commission on KSU Violence. Inclusive dates: 1968-1999


Hubbell was a history professor and director of the Kent State University Press. This small collection includes an address to the faculty by Bruce Harkness, Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, in the fall semester of 1970, as well as summaries of the special meeting on "the ROTC question" and class opinion questions with student responses. Inclusive dates: 1970-1985


Earle Roberts served on a variety of May 4-related committees, including the Kent Students Medical Fund, Kent Community for Non-Violent Change, the Committee for Non-Violence, and the Campus Security Advisory Committee (CSAC), the last of which he served as chair. Inclusive dates: 1968-1983


Includes selected paintings, sketches, drawings, and ceramics, as well as other art works and their accompanying materials, related to May 4. Inclusive dates: 1967-2021


Rowe, a Kent State student in the 1970s, was active in committees and organizations concerned with remembering the events of the Kent State shootings. The collection contains papers, photographs, posters, and artifacts related to the May 4 Coalition, the May 4 Task Force, the Gym Annex controversy (Tent City), and other student activism.


A collection of papers of a Kent State faculty member that includes materials related to campus unrest in the late 1960s, the Kent State shootings, and commemoration of the shootings, including the B'Nai B'rith Memorial Marker in the Taylor Hall parking lot. There are also materials related to the Gym Annex protest. Inclusive dates: 1968-2000


Materials gathered by William Armstrong in his role as the Daily Kent Stater editor in 1970. Includes photographs, correspondence, and poetry. Inclusive dates: 1970


Audio recordings related to the Kent State shootings that were created or collected by WKSU, Kent State University's public radio station. The recordings, originally made on tape, were transferred to compact discs in 2001. Inclusive dates: 1970-2000


From 1969-74, "Carp" was News Director at WKNT-AM/FM (commercial stations) in Kent. This collection includes articles, newspaper clippings, subject files, and artifacts related to the events before, during, and shortly after May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1967-1998


Selected musical recordings and sheet music related to the Kent State shootings. Inclusive dates: 1971-2021


Color photographs taken by Professor Frank Smith around KSU and the city of Kent in May of 1970. Inclusive dates: May 1970


34 original hand-drawn art for daily and Sunday comic strips within this May 4th story arc of the comic strip "Crankshaft," created by KSU Alumnae Chuck Ayers and Tom Batiuk. Inclusive dates: 2000


During his years at Kent State (1969-1973), Keane was a graduate student, residence hall assistant, and instructor at the Center for Peaceful Change. He was co-leader of the national petition for a Federal Grand Jury regarding the events of May 4, 1970. He also organized Pop's Snow Squad, a town and gown collaboration. Inclusive dates: 1969-2024


The 39 photographs that encompass this collection were taken by Deborah J. Andersen. Most of the pictures date from September 17, 1977 and September 24, 1977 and document Tent City. Inclusive dates: 1977


Ayers, a KSU alumnus and professional cartoonist, took these 54 photographs of the KSU campus from May 1-3, 1970. Includes images of student gatherings, damaged buildings, Ohio National Guard personnel and vehicles, and events of May 4. Inclusive dates: May 1-3, 1970


In 1970, Howard Ruffner was a second year student at Kent State University, majoring in broadcast communications. Ruffner was also on the staff of the Daily Kent Stater and the Chestnut Burr, editing the yearbook in 1971. Among other things, this collection includes the camera Ruffner used on May 4, 1970 and the photographs that appeared in the 1971 Chestnut Burr, many of them showing the events of May 1-4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1970-1998


Contains photographs taken by the Ohio State Highway Patrol during the events leading up to and including May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: May 1-4, 1970


Contains files related to the origin and development of the May 4 Resource Room, located on the first floor of the Kent Campus Library. Inclusive dates: 1974-2021


The Commission on KSU Violence (CKSUV) was assembled on May 8, 1970 by President Robert I. White to collect information about the events leading up to the Kent State shootings. Materials in this collection include statements about the events, survey responses, reference materials, administrative records, and audio-visual materials. Inclusive dates: 1963-1976


The University Communications and Marketing May 4 records contain press releases, programs, brochures, forms, correspondence, reports, surveys, speeches, papers, press kits, periodicals, fliers, articles, publications, news clippings, and photographs pertaining to the events of May 4, 1970, Tent City, and the May 4 annual commemorations. Inclusive dates: 1964-2000


The Akron Beacon Journal Kent State Shootings collection contain materials from the Ohio State Highway Patrol and the Federal Bureau of Investigation reports on the Kent State shootings. These materials were requested from the U.S. Department of Justice by Beacon Journal staff. Inclusive dates: undated


This collection contains the personal papers of Robert C. Dix, member of the Kent State University Board of Trustees from 1941-1973. The materials mostly center around the events of May 4, 1970 and provide an inside look at the events from an administrative perspective. Inclusive dates: 1944-1996


Sanford Marovitz May 4 papers

This collection contains the personal papers of Sanford Marovitz collected primarily during the first year after the Kent State shootings. The materials mostly center around the events of May 4, 1970 and provide an inside look at the events from a faculty and administrative perspective. Inclusive dates: 1970-2000


Laura Davis May 4 papers

This collection contains the papers of Laura Davis regarding the Kent State shootings. It contains materials related to the May 4 site and subject files related to May 4, 1970. Inclusive dates: 1968-2013


Emil Dansker May 4 papers

This collection contains papers and research gathered by Emil Dansker regarding the Kent State shootings. It also has documents detailing the creation of the documentary Covering the Confrontation. Inclusive dates: 1970-1995


Organizational Responses to the Kent State Shootings

This collection contains flyers, leaflets, pamphlets, and other printed materials created by national and local organizations that reflect reactions Kent State shootings, and document inter-related activist movements in response to the Jackson State shootings, the Vietnam War, and the draft. Inclusive dates: 1969-1979


Kent State Shootings Historic Site and Grant Proposal records

These papers are comprised of proposals submitted for grants and historical sites related to the Kent State shootings. They contain both the proposals and responses regarding successful and unsuccessful applications.  Inclusive dates: 1978-2015

218 - 221

Gym Annex Controversy (Tent City) records

These records chronicle the Kent State University Gym Annex controversy of the late 1970s and include student, university, and community responses to the protests of the gym as well as its planning and construction. Inclusive dates: 1970-1980

222 - 228

Kent State University May 4 Visitors Center records

The Kent State University May 4 Visitors Center records They show the evolution of the museum's content and building design as well as the audio visual materials used. Additionally, these records contain the feedback solicited from various groups during the process and the efforts to obtain funding for the project. Inclusive dates: 1970-2014


Thomas M. Grace papers

A 1972 graduate of Kent State University, Thomas M. Grace is one of nine students who survived being shot by the Ohio National Guard on May 4, 1970. This collection includes materials related to the Kent State Shootings and their aftermath, activism, labor and unions, and political campaigns created and collected by Grace. Inclusive dates: 1958-2020