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Guide to the William L. Honnold Papers
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This collection contains correspondence, reports, maps, plans, photographs, realia, and ephemera relating to the life and career of William L. Honnold (1866-1950), a pioneering American mining engineer in South Africa, who later became a major benefactor to the Claremont Colleges, and his wife, Caroline Burton (1868-1954). The collection documents in particular Honnold’s early career in the coal fields of Minnesota and gold fields of California; his activities in furthering the technique of deep mining in South Africa; his position as arguably the first mining engineer in to fully combine the roles of engineer, business entrepreneur, and top corporate executive; his long friendship with Herbert Hoover and his contributions to World War I relief in Belgium and Northern France as a member of the Commission for Relief in Belgium; his long friendship with Sir Ernest Oppenheimer, and their founding of the Anglo American Corporation of South Africa; his “retirement” to California in the 1920s, and his subsequent business ventures, many with members of the Mudd family; and his philanthropic activities, the bulk of which benefited the Claremont Colleges, as well as his alma maters, Knox College and the Michigan Mining School (now Michigan Technological University). Photographs from Honnold’s life in South Africa graphically portray Johannesburg’s elite at the height of the Edwardian age. Extensive financial records from the 1920s onward, including virtually complete accounts paid, document the contemporary cost of living, such as food; workmen’s and servants’ wages; automobile maintenance; travel; jewelry, artwork, and other luxury items; and taxes.
Extent: 102 linear feet (142 boxes + 2 map-case drawers).
For permissions to reproduce or to publish, please contact Special Collections Library staff.
This collection is open for research.