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Personal correspondence of E. Kennedy Whitesitt; examples of his print work; book catalogue of his personal library and a proposal to start a typographic center; typeface series and letterhead examples; teacher’s manuals to teach the Industrial Arts; student workbooks for printing and type; syllabi for Industrial arts; manuals for linotype machines; miscellaneous pamphlets and booklets about typography and typographers; Gutenberg Museum pamphlets and material; The Washburn Bible informational material; photographs of E. K. Whitesitt and his personal library and printing; A. H. Whitesitt’s papers (E. Kennedy Whitesitt’s father); posters on comparatives of printing paper and typefaces; posters about typography and typographers; newspapers of different typefaces; newspaper article about E. Kennedy Whitesitt; loose type pieces; E. K. Whitesitt’s signature in type; small replica of the Washington Press; halftones, lithograph stone; an early composing stick; handmade galley; and miscellaneous items.
Ermel Kennedy Whitesitt was born in Plainville, Indiana on April 27, 1905 to Andrew and Ada Whitesitt. His family moved to Pittsburg, Kansas in 1913 when his father joined the Industrial Arts faculty of the State Manual Training Normal (now Pittsburg State University). The Industrial Arts building on campus was renamed in Andrew Whitesitt’s honor in 1965. E. Kennedy Whitesitt married Adelaide Mendenhall Whitesitt in 1926 in St. Louis, Missouri. They had two children, Elizabeth and Robert. Kennedy Whitesitt earned his bachelor’s degree in printing and English from Kansas State Teachers College (Pittsburg State University) in 1926. He taught courses at Reed Junior High, Royster Junior High (Chanute, Kansas), Chanute Junior College, and Wichita East High School. He worked at the Ovid Bell Press and was in the accounting department of Curtiss-Wright Corporation during World War II. Later he was a salesman for American Typefounders Corporation of St. Louis, Missouri. He became Sigma Tau Gamma’s first full-time executive secretary in 1953 and served for thirteen years. Whitesitt was a Wilson C. Morris Fellow, was inducted into the Society of Seventeen and designated as a Golden Epsilonian in 1971. During his lifetime he collected many books, some rare, about type, printing, and typography. He had his own personal printing press, the Thistle Printing Press, which he operated from his home. Ermel Kennedy Whitesitt died March 21, 1984.
Education, Science and Technology
Size of Collection
3 linear feet
Dates of Collection
SpC MS 0200
Special Collections, Leonard H. Axe Library, "Whitesitt, E. Kennedy, Collection, 1921-1976" (2019). Finding Aids. 174.