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First Last Papers 1921-1976 1950-1976

Identifier: SC-238
This collection highlights the life and work of a book-collector and contains reviews, letters, and articles collected over the years as Mr. Akin sought out and acquired desired works.  The non-monographic portion of the collection measures over seven (7) linear feet, while monographs number over 4,000, with a special emphases upon British literature, including Lewis Carroll, James Boswell, Samuel Johnson, and John Bunyan, and Americana, including a first British printing of Lewis and Clark's Journal (1814).


  • Created: 1921-1976
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1950-1976

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Duplication may be restricted if copying could cause damage to items.


8.00 boxes

Arrangement Note

The collection is arranged by series with folder level control.

Method of Acquisition


Other Descriptive Information

Other Information:

SC-01, the foundational gift of rare books for Buswell Library Special Collections, was made possible by book collector, William S. Akin (1893-1985) of Evanston, Illinois.  His book collection (ca 460 linear ft.) and papers (3 linear ft.) were given to Wheaton College in memory of its fourth President, Dr. V. Raymond Edman.  This friendship began soon after Akin's review of Fire on the Prairie: The Story of Wheaton College, published in 1950.  What began in 1965 as an exhibit-loan, became guest appearances to talk about book collecting (1966-7), and culminated in the gift (1968-) of the entire collection.  In November 1976, the William S. Akin Collection (SC-01) and Rare Book Study Room were dedicated.

Additional information may be found at
Archon Finding Aid Title
Finding Aid Authors: The Wheaton College Archives & Special Collections Staff.
Description rules
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections, Buswell Library Repository

501 College Ave.
Wheaton IL 60187-5593 US