The Finding Aid of the Howard A. White Papers 0010

Jamie Henricks and Jessica Geiser
The processing of this collection and the creation of this finding aid was funded by the generous support of the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.
Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
June 2012
24255 Pacific Coast Highway
Malibu, CA, 90263-4786

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
Title: Howard A. White Papers
Identifier/Call Number: 0010
Physical Description: 97.71 Linear Feet (79 boxes)
Date (inclusive): 1938-1991
Date (bulk): 1957-1990
Abstract: The collection contains professional and personal papers of Howard A. White dating from 1938 to 1991. The bulk of the materials range from 1957 to 1990 and document his professional involvement with Pepperdine University in various administrative roles, and personal documents including speeches, personal and family history, and book research for Crest of a Golden Wave.
Physical Location: Pepperdine University. Special Collections and University Archives.
Language of Material: Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access. Materials in sub-series 2.3 are restricted until January 1, 2020. Materials in series 3 are restricted for 50 years after their date of creation; the entire series will be open in 2036.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], Howard A. White papers, Collection no. 0010, Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries, Pepperdine University.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Items in the collection were transferred to the University Archives in October 1989, and after Howard White's death in 1991.

Biographical note

Howard Ashley White was born on September 28, 1913, in Cloverdale, Alabama, to a family of teachers. He attended David Lipscomb College, and was almost forced to leave due to money issues during the Depression, but the school loaned him the money to continue his education. White then planned to attend Tulane University, and sought a ministerial position in New Orleans part-time to augment his schooling. He received the position of minister at the Carrollton Avenue Church of Christ. While the elders there initially wanted him to work full time, he convinced them to allow him to attend Tulane as well, where he received his bachelor's and doctorate degrees in history. White extensively studied the Reconstruction Era in the United States, and later published a book, The Freedmen's Bureau in Lousiana (1970).
White served at the Carrollton Avenue Church for 12 years before academia called again. He began teaching at David Lipscomb College in 1953, and eventually became chairman of the history department. In 1958, Norvel Young recruited him to teach at Pepperdine College, where he served as a history professor and the chairman of the Department of Social Studies.
In 1962, White was named director of Pepperdine's graduate program, and in 1965 he became Dean of Graduate Studies. He also served as the Dean of Undergraduate Studies, before being appointed the Executive Vice President in 1970 under President William S. Banowsky. He held this position until Banowsky's resignation in 1978, whereupon he was appointed President of the university. During his time at Pepperdine, he also became the founding director of the Pepperdine's Year-In Europe program, and helped M. Norvel Young recruit students for the first program in Heidelberg, Germany.
As President of Pepperdine, White is credited with bolstering faculty numbers and raising faculty salaries, tightening admissions standards to make Pepperdine a selective school for the first time in its history, and establishing four urban education centers in Los Angeles and Orange Counties to serve graduate students. He also famously doubled Pepperdine's financial resources through the university's first nine-figure capital campaign, called the "Wave of Excellence". It ultimately raised $137.8 million dollars for the university, far exceding the $100 million dollar goal. These funds helped White add 200 acres to the campus and construct major facilities, including music and theater buildings, student and faculty housing, the Helen Field Heritage Hall, and the baseball stadium. A major sports supporter on campus, White was also instrumental in bringing the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics to Pepperdine for the water polo competitions.
White retired from the Presidency in 1985, but continued to serve as President Emeritus until health problems no longer allowed him to do so. He passed away on February 1, 1991, and was survived by his two sons. His wife, Maxcine Elliott Feltman White (May 5, 1919-January 19, 1973), preceded him in death, passing away after a struggle with cancer. White's legacy is honored in many ways at Pepperdine, including the Howard A. White Award for Teaching Excellence, the Howard A. White Professorship in History, and the Howard A. White Center (HAWC) on campus.

Scope and Content

The collection contains professional and personal papers of Howard A. White dating from 1938 to 1991. The collection contains chronological correspondence files; subject and correspondence files from White's office at Pepperdine University; files related to university boards (including the Board of Trustees, Board of Regents, and University Board); White's appointment books; notes and copies of speeches and sermons; and personal files including biographical information, personal and family history, and notes made in the course of writing the book Crest of a Golden Wave.
White documented many aspects of Pepperdine's history and people, and made extensive notes and reports about the university. As a result, the collection also contains correspondence and files originally created by other individuals including M. Norvel Young, William S. Banowsky, Thomas Bost, Jerry Hudson, Donald Miller, and others.
Items are primarily paper, but the collection also includes photographs and large blueprints.


The collection is arranged in six series:
Series 1: Chronological Correspondence Series 2: Subject/Correspondence Files Series 3: University Boards Series 4: Appointment Books Series 5: Speeches Series 6: Personal Files

Processing Information note

The collection was arranged and described by Jamie Henricks and Jessica Geiser in June, 2012.

Separated Materials

Contact information cards from William Banowsky's rolodex were moved from the Howard A. White papers to the William S. Banowsky papers.

Related Archival Materials

Other collections with material from Howard White's time at Pepperdine are the M. Norvel and Helen Young papers and the William S. Banowsky papers.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Speeches, addresses, etc., American -- 20th century
Malibu (Calif.) -- History -- 20th century
Financial records
Universities and colleges -- United States -- Records and correspondence
Universities and colleges -- History
Universities and colleges -- Faculty
Universities and colleges -- Employees
College administrators -- United States -- History
College presidents -- California -- Malibu
Education, Higher -- California -- Malibu
Universities and colleges -- California -- Malibu -- History
Universities and colleges -- Administration
Administrative records
Appointment books
Graziadio School of Business and Management
Pepperdine University. School of Law
Pepperdine University
Pepperdine University. Board of Trustees
Miller, Donald V.
Tiner, Hugh M. (Hugh Marvin)
Pepperdine University. Office of the President
Seaver College
White, Howard A. (Howard Ashley)
Young, M. Norvel (Matt Norvel)
Banowsky, William Slater

box 10-15, box 4-9, box 1-3

Series 1: Chronological Correspondence 1967-1988

Scope and Content

The series contains Pepperdine University correspondence and interoffice memos collected from Howard White's office from 1967 to 1988. Correspondence is primarily to and from Howard White, but also includes correspondence of M. Norvel Young, William S. Banowsky, Jerry Hudson, and other individuals that was collected by Howard White. Some files contain logs of phone calls from the office as well.


Materials are arranged chronologically.
box 1

October 1967 - July 1969

box 2

July 1969 - October 1970

box 3

November 1970 - August 1971

box 4

September 1971 - August 1973

box 5

September 1973 - April 1975

box 6

March 1975 - 1976

box 7

January 1976 - June 1976

box 8

January 1977 - June 1977

box 9

July 1977 - July 1978

box 10

August 1978 - October 1978; January 1981 - October 1981

box 11

November 1981 - December 1982

box 12

January 1983 - December 1983

box 13

January 1984 - December 1984

box 14

January 1985 - December 1986

box 15

January 1987 - November 1988

box 78, 79, box 64-65, box 58-63, box 52-57, box 46-51, box 37-42, box 43-45, box 15, box 25-30, box 31-36, box 16-21, box 22-24

Series 2: Subject/Correspondence Files

box 15-61, 65, 78-79

Sub-series 2.1: Howard A. White Subject/Correspondence Files circa 1957-1990

Scope and Content

The sub-series contains files on various subjects and people that contain primarily correspondence, reports, newspaper clippings, notes, and other paper materials collected in the office of Howard A. White during his time at Pepperdine University in the capacity of professor, Dean of Graduate Studies, Dean of Undergraduate Studies, Executive Vice President, President, and President Emeritus. The files contain documentation of university policies and procedures, material generated from administrative work and activities at Pepperdine, and information related to interests that would improve the Pepperdine community, including the process of moving the campus from Los Angeles to Malibu.
Major topics include budgets; commencements and commencement speakers; introducing computers to campus (with the Computer Services Committee and Computer Systems Company evaluations); enrollment; finance; faculty and faculty salaries; salary studies; IRS investigations; the McKinsey report; the Seaver family; the Malibu and Los Angeles campuses; campus professional schools (including the School of Law, School of Business and Management, and others); tuition; Hydril; the University Planning Consultants investigation; the Year in Europe study abroad program; and the 1984 Olympics.


Subject files are arranged alphabetically according to the original folder titles. Multiple styles of filing were present in Howard White's offices over the years. General miscellaneous files include one folder for a letter of the alphabet, sometimes one per calendar year (i.e: M, or M 1976). These folders were catch-all folders for correspondence to or from people or about topics that did not amount to enough to fill their own folder. Other miscellaneous files that included a greater volume of paper were broken down into multiple ranges for each letter of the alphabet (i.e. AA-AC). Finally, there were many files about individual people or topics (i.e. Budget).
For each letter of the alphabet, general miscellaneous files are arranged first (i.e: M, or M 1976), followed by miscellaneous files labeled with letter groupings (i.e. AA-AC), which are then followed by individually labeled subject files starting with that particular letter (i.e. Budget).
box 15

A (misc.) - American Association

box 16

American Council - Bei (misc.)

box 17

Bei (misc.) - Bet

box 18

Beverly Hills - Budget

box 19

Budget - Carr (misc.)

box 20

Cars (misc.) - Colw (misc.)

box 21

Com (misc.) - California Postsecondary Education Committee

box 22

California State Universities - Chain

box 23

Chalala - Commencement

box 24

Commencement Speaker (Wernher von Braun) - Dorms (misc.)

box 25

Dorr (misc.) - Edaw, Inc.

box 26

Educational - Fifty (misc.)

box 27

Film (misc.) - Finance

box 28

Finance - Furniture

box 29

Friend - Gaudin

box 30

Gauthier - Hern (misc.)

box 31

Hero (misc.) - Hill

box 32

Hon - Interfund

box 33

International - IRS

box 34

IRS - Keck (misc.)

box 35

Kenney (misc.) - Lane (misc.)

box 36

Lang (misc.) - Lincoln

box 37

Lind - Maro (misc.)

box 38

Marp (misc.) - More (misc.)

box 39

More (misc.) - McKinsey

box 40

McKinsey - Nelms (misc.)

box 41

Nelson (misc.) - Nelson

box 42

New - One

box 43

One Hundred Club - Paz (misc.)

box 44

Pea (misc.) - Pack

box 45

Palm - Prospective

box 46

Q (misc.) - Rose (misc.)

box 47

Rosen (misc.) - Russian

box 48

S (misc.) - Shel (misc.)

box 49

Shep (misc.) - Stua (misc.)

box 50

Stuc (misc.) - Salary

box 51

Salary - School

box 52

School - Seaver

box 53

Seaver - Systems

box 54

Systems - Tcheng (misc.)

box 55

Teach (misc.) - Tuition

box 56

Tuition - University Planning Consultants Investigation

box 57

University Planning Consultants Investigation - W (misc.)

box 58

Ward (misc.) - Wood (misc.)

box 59

Woodcarving (misc.) - World

box 60

Wright - Young

box 61

Z (misc.) - Mixed alphabet (misc.)

box 65

Legal-size Subject Files

Scope and Content

This box contains materials housed in legal-size folders taken from other parts of the collection. Materials include blueprints for the Pepperdine international house in Heidelberg, the Adamson House in Malibu, and various buildings around the Pepperdine campus in Malibu; files on budget, finance, and salaries; information about the Adamson land grant; correspondence between Howard White and William S. Banowsky; and correspondence between Howard White and Thomas Bost.
box 78-79

Subject File Addendum Boxes

box 61-63

Sub-series 2.2: William S. Banowsky Subject Files circa 1960-1980

Scope and Content

This sub-series contains subject folders of William S. Banowsky's that Howard White collected in his office, dating from approximately 1960 to 1980. Most folders are labeled with a single letter of the alphabet, with individual papers inside from a range of individuals and about topics starting with that letter (i.e. A). Some folders are named according to individual topics (i.e. Budget).


Items are arranged alphabetically by folder title.
box 61

A - Budget

box 62

Budget - LACC

box 63

Law School - Z

box 63-64

Sub-series 2.3: Howard White's Research on Pepperdine University's Relationship to the Churches of Christ 1965-1989

Scope and Content

Materials in this sub-series were collected and arranged by Howard White primarily regarding the history of the relationship of Pepperdine University to the Churches of Christ. There are also folders about M. Norvel Young, William S. Banowsky, the Seaver family, and the politics of presidency.

Conditions Governing Access

Items in this sub-series are restricted until January 1, 2020.
box 66, box 67-72, box 73

Series 3: University Boards 1957-1986

Scope and Content

The series contains materials produced by the governing boards of Pepperdine University: the Board of Regents, Board of Trustees, and University Board. The materials include correspondence, meeting minutes, background information, reports, and copies of organizational amendments to bylaws and articles of incorporation made during this time. Between 1975 and 1976, the governing board was expanded and the name was changed from the Board of Trustees to the Board of Regents, while the members of the former Board of Trustees became the Religious Standards Committee.


Materials are arranged chronologically, and divided by specific organizations when possible.

Conditions Governing Access

Materials in this series are restricted for 50 years after their date of creation; the entire series will be open in 2036.
box 66

1957 - October 1975

box 67

December 1975 - September 1977

box 68

December 1977 - July 1980

box 69

July 1980 - September 1982

box 70

February 1983 - December 1985

box 71

February 1986 - December 1986; Miscellaneous Undated Files; "Expanding the Board" report

box 72

Amended Bylaws and Articles of Incorporation

box 72-73

University Board

box 73

Series 4: Appointment Books 1973-1978, 1981

Scope and Content

The series contains appointment books of Howard White's schedule kept by his secretary, Shirley Roper, from 1973 to 1978, and 1981.


Materials are arranged chronologically.
box 73-75

Series 5: Speeches circa 1940-1985

Scope and Content

The series contains drafts, notes, and copies of speeches written and delivered by White on a variety of subjects, including his address given to Pepperdine University upon his inauguration as President in 1978. Other files include notes for speeches before board meetings and notes for sermons.


Speeches are arranged chronologically when possible, and arranged by topic when folders are undated.
box 77, box 75-76

Series 6: Personal Files 1938-1990

Scope and Content

The series contains White's personal materials, such as biographical information, photographs, family history files, and other information. The series also includes his research for the book on Pepperdine's history, Crest of a Golden Wave. Materials include correspondence, notes, articles, drafts and copies of book chapters.


Materials are arranged by topic.
box 75

Personal Files

box 76-77

Book Research