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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Chronology
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Fred M. Hechinger Papers
    Dates: 1937-1991
    Collection number: 89019
    Creator: Hechinger, Fred M.
    Collection Size: 74 manuscript boxes, 8 oversize boxes. (32.8 linear feet)
    Repository: Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Abstract: A noted American journalist and education editor, the collection includes speeches and writings, correspondence, reviews, memoranda, studies, scrapbooks, and printed matter, all relating to education in the United States.
    Physical location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Languages: Languages represented in the collection: English

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.
    The Hoover Institution Archives only allows access to copies of audiovisual items. To listen to sound recordings or to view videos or films during your visit, please contact the Archives at least two working days before your arrival. We will then advise you of the accessibility of the material you wish to see or hear. Please note that not all audiovisual material is immediately accessible.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Fred M. Hechinger Papers, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information

    Acquired by the Hoover Institution Archives in 1989.


    Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. To determine if this has occurred, find the collection in Stanford University's online catalog Socrates at http://library.stanford.edu/webcat . Materials have been added to the collection if the number of boxes listed in Socrates is larger than the number of boxes listed in this finding aid.


    1920 July 7 Born, Nuremberg, Germany
    1943 Naturalized; A.B., City College, New York
    1944-1946 Member, Office of Military Attach, American Embassy, and with British War Office
    1945 Graduate study, University of London
    1946-1947 Correspondent, Times Educational Supplement, London
    1947-1950 Education Editor and Foreign Correspondent, Bridgeport Sunday Herald
      Education Columnist, Washington Post
    1948 Special Consultant to the Director, Education and Cultural Relations Division, U.S. Military Government in Germany
    1948-1950 Foreign Correspondent, Overseas News Agency
    1950-1956 Education Editor, New York Herald Tribune
    1956 Author, An Adventure in Education: Connecticut Points the Way
    1956-1959 Associate Publisher and Executive Editor, Bridgeport Sunday Herald
    1958 Married Grace Bernstein. Author, Worrying About College?
    1959 Author, The Big Red Schoolhouse
    1959-1969 Education Editor, New York Times
    1963 Author, Teen-Age Tyranny (with Grace Hechinger)
    1968 Author, New York Times Guide to New York City Private Schools (with Grace Hechinger)
    1969-1977 Member, Editorial Board, New York Times
    1973- Adjunct professor, Hunter College and Queens College, City University of New York
    1975 Author, Growing Up in America (with Grace Hechinger)
    1976 Assistant Editor, editorial page, New York Times
    1976-1977 Deputy Editor, editorial page, New York Times
    1977-1990 President, New York Times Company Foundation
    1981 Author, Higher Learning in the Nation's Service(with Ernest L. Boyer)
    1988-1995 Member and Vice Chairman, Board of Trustees, and Senior Advisor, Carnegie Corporation of New York
    1992 Author, Fateful Choices: Healthy Youth for the 21st Century
    1995 November 6 Died, New York

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The papers of Fred M. Hechinger, a noted journalist and expert in the field of education, are an important addition to the education collections already in the Hoover Institution Archives. They will constitute a significant source of information for students and researchers interested in the issues relating to education in the United States, from kindergarten to the college level. Fred Hechinger along with his wife, Grace Hechinger, also an author and champion of the cause of literacy, devoted a significant part of his life to writing about education, and the causes of its decline in the United States, and suggesting ways to improve it. His contributions were recognized by many educational institutions, as evident in the number of honorary degrees bestowed upon him.
    The correspondence series represents Fred Hechinger's interaction with many individuals and organizations on questions of education. His opinions and observations about their research and publications were always sought after. The speeches and writings series testifies to his genuine interest and devotion to the cause of education. He was flooded with invitations to write, speak, and be interviewed. The comments and reviews of his speeches and writings bear out the level of expertise he acquired and the appreciation and acknowledgements he received from grateful fellow educators and parents. This series also includes writings jointly completed by Fred and Grace Hechinger and indicates the prominent role she played in her husband's career.
    Fred Hechinger's association with various newspapers and specially with the New York Times as education ed., member of the editorial board, and finally as the president of the New York Times Foundation, is illustrated in the newspaper columns series and the New York Times and New York Times Foundation series. Together, they reveal his level of involvement in the newspaper and the role he played in the organization, the columns he wrote, the ideas and suggestions he received from his friends, admirers, and the public, and their opinions about his columns. The career file includes records of his association with different organizations and is indicative of the high regard in which he was held by his peers.
    The papers of Grace Hechinger, found in a separate series, although not large in volume, are nevertheless significant, as they reflect her own interest in educational issues. Besides biographical material and correspondence, the series provides samples of her writings.


    Arranged into twelve series: Biographical File, Correspondence, Speeches and Writings, Newspaper Columns File, New York Times and New York Times Foundation File, Career File, Grace Hechinger File, Subject File, Photographs, Computer Disk, Oversize File, and Scrapbooks.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.


    Education--United States.