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Clinton W. Toms Scrapbook

Title: Toms, Clinton W. Scrapbook
Inclusive Dates: 1887-1897, 1959, and undated
Extent of Materials: 1 flat box, scrapbook 9.5″X 14.5″
Location: Cabinet 21; accessible online at
Date of Accession: ~2010
Processor: Cale McCammon
Subject Headings: School superintendents
Education — North Carolina — Durham — History
Scrapbooks — North Carolina — Durham
Scope and Content: The collection consists of a scrapbook that was discovered in Darlington High School, South Carolina, and passed on to Clinton W. Toms’ family members.  A 1959 correspondence between his family members describes the contents of the scrapbook and its discovery.  The scrapbook contains primarily newspapers clippings that report on the climate surrounding Durham’s education system during Toms’ service as superintendent, 1894-1897.  It also contains school exercises, letters to Clinton W. Toms from such people as the president of the University of North Carolina, poetry, invitations to commencement ceremonies, and pamphlets, among other items.
Restrictions: The collection is open for research
Biographical / Historical Note: Clinton W. Toms (1868-1936) worked as a teacher before serving as the superintendent of Durham schools from 1894 to 1897.  Known as a progressive educator and philanthropist, he revamped the administration and arrangement of the graded school and helped to found the Durham Public Library in 1896.  He introduced a compulsory manual training course to the curriculum and also reorganized the high school curriculum into subject departments.  His efforts to secure funds to provide classroom materials brought him in contact with the Duke family.  In 1897, Ben Duke offered to make Toms the manager of the American Tobacco Company’s Durham plant.  By 1928, he was living in New York City as president of the company, a position he occuppied until his death.  Appointed a trustee of Trinity College, Toms was still active in Durham life and served as a liason between James Duke and the president of Trinity College during their negotiations over the founding of what would become Duke University.
Condition Notes:
Loose materials placed in separate folders and denoted by the page number in which they were found.
Organization of Collection:  1. Scrapbook and Correspondence
Container List:
Box 1
1. Scrapbook, 1887-1895, undated
2. Correspondence, 1959
3. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 113
4. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 115
5. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 117
6. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 119
7. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 129
8. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 166
9. Loose Materials from scrapbook p. 187


Updated October 24, 2013.