Beginning in the 1950s, Ohio State University professor Dr. Robert Sutton started amassing an incomparable collection of papers and artifacts documenting the history of rural education from the Midwest to the Atlantic coast. The collection, consisting of over 2000 items, spans from the late 18th century to the mid twentieth century and contains rare examples of attendance and grade books, lecture notes, teaching materials, yearbooks, awards, manuscripts, student artwork, textbooks, photographs, slides, examinations, student clubs and organizations, manuals, booklets, pamphlets, certificates, etc.
In 2013 a nation-wide search was conducted by the University of South Carolina – then the collection’s temporary home – to find a more suitable and permanent repository for Dr. Sutton’s material. The collection was donated to the University of Northern Iowa to continue and compliment the school’s tradition and commitment to the history and future of education.
CHRIEC staff are working diligently to process the Robert Sutton Collection, which is now a part of the History of Education Collections. However, due to the size and scope of the collection, its contents are not yet available for use by researchers.