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Arthur Horace Carter papers

Identifier: MSF 488

Scope and Contents

The Arthur Horace Carter papers (1916-1969; ) document Carter’s life as a student at Ohio State University as well as his later career as a professor and architect. The collection includes architectural plans drawn by Carter over the duration of his career, as well as some drawn while he was a student at Ohio University. Also included in the collection are Carter’s diplomas from Ohio State, a few of his assignments, and a scrapbook of his time there. The blueprints and architectural plans reflect Carter’s architectural style and the fact that he primarily focused on the design of private residences. One notable exception to this is the blueprints for the Columbus, Ohio City Hall project that he worked on while a member of the Allied Architects Association of Columbus. The photographs in the scrapbook depict various buildings on the campus of Ohio State University, Carter’s friends, and notable events in the years he was a student and those immediately following his graduation; the majority of the photographs are labelled. Finally, the collection includes some of Carter’s correspondence, particularly with one of his students, Peggy Jo Drury (who was a member of the Peace Corps in the 1960s). Unfortunately the collection contains little information on Carter’s personal life after his graduation or his tenure as a professor at Purdue University. This collection could be useful for researchers interested in architecture of the mid twentieth century, Columbus government buildings, Ohio State University, material culture of the early twentieth century, and correspondence from the same era. Types of material include: blueprints, architectural plans, diplomas, black and white photographs, and correspondence. The Papers are organized into *** series:


  • 1916 - 1969
  • Majority of material found within 1920 - 1929
  • Majority of material found within 1960 - 1969


Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Access Information

This collection is open for research. Consult an archivist for information about accessing this collection.

Copyright and Use Information

All copyrights belong to the family of Arthur Horace Carter.

Biographical Information

Arthur Horace Carter was born at the turn of the twentieth century in 1893. Although his childhood years remain a mystery, we do know that he attended Ohio State University. Carter attended Ohio State University during two time periods, ultimately receiving two degrees there. He first attended the university from 1913-1917 and graduated with a Bachelors of Science in Agriculture; materials in his papers indicate that his focus was in agricultural engineering. After a number of years, Carter returned to Ohio State University to complete his second degree in 1925, a Bachelors of Architecture in the Engineering School. In the years immediately following Carter’s graduation, he was employed with the Allied Architects Association of Columbus, Ohio. While employed there, he was a member of the architectural design team that was responsible for Columbus’ City Hall. The City Hall project was a part of the larger City Center project that refocused Columbus’ municipal activities into one central area along the riverfront. City Hall still stands today; the building used Indiana limestone for its façade and was designed in the art deco tradition of the time. Carter’s papers include documentation of the project from 1926-1928. After the completion of the City Hall project, Carter married Esther Garver of Fort Wayne, Indiana, and accepted a position at Purdue University. During Carter’s tenure at Purdue, his title changed several times, likely due to the growth and diversification of the engineering department at the time. He started as a Practical Mechanics instructor, eventually became a member of the Civil Engineering Department and member of the Michael Golden Laboratories, and also taught Engineering drawing, graphics, and watercolors. Purdue University Board of Trustees minutes and phone directories indicate that Carter retired from Purdue after the fall semester of 1967, after being granted a number of retirement delays from the university. In addition to his work at Purdue, Carter also continued to develop architectural plans and specifications for private residences in the West Lafayette area. Arthur Carter passed away in 1974, and was survived by his wife Esther who passed away in 2008.

Note written by Virginia Pleasant
Sources: MSF 488, Arthur Horace Carter papers, Purdue University Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries. Purdue University Board of Trustees Minutes collection, Karnes Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries Purdue University Student and Staff Phone Directory collection, Karnes Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries Debris Yearbooks, Karnes Archives and Special Collections, Purdue University Libraries Makio Yearbooks, Buckeye History Digital Content Portal, Ohio State University Libraries


0.00 Linear Feet


The collection includes architectural sketches and blueprints, correspondence, artwork, and a photo album; it spans from Carter’s time at Ohio State University to his tenure at Purdue University.

Acquisition Information

Collection materials donated by Gretchen Lawler 2008-06-10.

Processing Information

Whenever possible, original order of the materials has been retained. All materials have been housed in polyester sleeves, acid-free folders, and acid-free boxes. All newsprint has been photocopied and in most cases original newspaper clippings have been discarded. Oversized maps, blueprints, diagrams, certificates, and other printed material [OVS]; photographs; and artifacts have been separated and grouped into individual series for preservation purposes.
Arthur Horace Carter papers
In Progress
Amanda Rumba and Virginia Pleasant
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
Second edition. Collection description first completed 2013-03-12 by Virginia Pleasant.

Revision Statements

  • 2020-04-22: Collection description updated by Amanda Rumba to align with data entry standards.

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States