Search within:

University Libraries and the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism collaborate for June 6 exhibit and centennial celebration

Mimi Calhoun
May 25, 2023

Ohio University Libraries has teamed up with the E.W. Scripps School of Journalism for the School’s centennial celebration, which honors 100 years since the first journalism class was taught on the Ohio University campus. The collaboration will occur over this year with three events: a salute to foreign correspondence on June 6, honoring winners of major journalism awards during Homecoming Week and an exhibit about the E.W. Scripps Company, founded in 1878 as a chain of daily newspapers, and its founder Edward Willis Scripps this November.

One event for the June 6 salute to correspondence will be highlighted through the University Libraries’ exhibit titled, “Commitment to Courage: Navigating the Everyday of World War II.” The display focuses on the stories of World War II from different individual perspectives of those that lived through it. The D-Day Normandy Invasion, Operation Market-Garden, War Correspondents, the Pacific Theater of Operations and Local Connections are the five main topics. Items such as personal letters, photographs and maps are just a few of the many things on display to show the unique memories of those from WWII.

The exhibit is located in the Cornelius Ryan room on the fifth floor of Alden Library, which is attached to the Mahn Center for Archives and Special Collections. Greta Suiter, manuscripts archivist, and Alex Hines, a senior studying history and museum studies, co-curated the exhibit.

On the Mahn Center’s blog, Hines wrote about how the exhibit not only shows the human side of war but also the complexity of it.

“World War II was not a simple conflict of good versus evil, but a deeply complex and morally conflicting war, which impacted nearly every community across the globe,” Hines wrote. “Walking through the exhibition, one will be drawn into the intimate thoughts and experiences of those who were directly involved in the events.” 


Black and white photograph of five women in military uniforms standing in front of a grounded World War II airplane
Caption: Phyllis Peirce, standing second from the left, and other members of the Women’s Army Corps (WAC) stand together in front of a Lockheed P-38 aircraft. January 1944 marked the arrival of the first WAC in the Pacific Theater of Operations. Photo courtesy of the Phyllis M. Peirce World War II Collection.


The Cornelius Ryan Collection of World War II Papers will be the primary collection featured, but over 20 other WWII related collections will also be shown like the John R. Wilhelm Papers, the Phyllis M. Peirce World War II Collection, the Richard E. Cole Papers and the William Saviers Collection. Additionally, the Southeast Ohio History Center loaned three of its period uniforms for the display.

The Ryan Collection was donated to Ohio University mainly because of the bond between John Wilhelm and Cornelius Ryan, who were war correspondents in WWII. Wilhelm was one of the first reporters to cover D-Day. He was also the dean of the OHIO Scripps College of Communication and director of the E. W. Scripps School of Journalism until he retired in 1981.

Suiter mentioned that the relationship between the two correspondents, and Ryan’s efforts to record the past, set the base for the WWII collections in University Libraries’ Mahn Center and at OHIO.

“Ryan’s dedication to document and tell the full story of what happened during World War II events such as the D-Day invasion, Operation Market-Garden and the Battle of Berlin form the foundation of the World War II collections.