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Robert B. Wolf papers


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Robert Bunsen Wolf was born May 16, 1877, in Newark, Delaware. He was the son of Theodore R. Wolf, a professor of Delaware College and namesake of Wolf Hall on the University of Delaware campus, and Annie Rosius (Rosie) Kohler. Wolf attended Delaware College and graduated in 1896 with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering (B.E.E.) and then received his master's degree in engineering (M.E.) in 1916.

Wolf had a long career in the paper and pulp industry. He held a variety of positions in many different companies, working his way up from "apprentice boy" to president of his own companies. In 1930, he was named pulp division manager at the Weyerhaeuser Timber Company. He was a member of the University of Delaware's Tau Beta Pi engineering honors society and the Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI).

Aside from engineering advancements, one of Wolf's main focuses within the pulp industry was management and labor relations. He argued that companies should foster creativity and individuality among employees instead of stunting them, and was a proponent of non-financial incentives for workers. He was a member of the Taylor Society, and later the Society for the Advancement of Management, which promoted the concept of "scientific management."

In 1901, he married Harriet Curtis Cooch. They had four children together: Anne, Margaret, Theodore, and Robert Jr. Wolf died on November 10, 1954, at the age of 77.

U.S. World War II Draft Registration Cards, 1942 (accessed via on October 4, 2021) Delaware Marriage Records, 1744-1912 (accessed via on October 4, 2021) 1925 New York State Census (accessed via on October 4, 2021) Other biographical information derived from the collection.

The Robert B. Wolf papers comprises his personal and professional files spanning from 1910 to 1952. Wolf worked in the paper and pulp industry, and wrote about industrial management and labor relations. The collection contains correspondence, articles, conference papers, news clippings, and texts of speeches, conferences, and lectures. It is arranged into three series: I. Correspondence, II. Articles, speeches, and lectures, and III. Reference materials.

Series I. contains correspondence and associated materials. Arranged alphabetically by correspondent, the files contain incoming letters and outgoing carbons of Wolf's letters, telegrams, and postcards, as well as clippings, conference papers, transcripts of talks, and photographs. Notable correspondents include American social philosopher Mary Parker Follett, British poet and philosopher Frank Townshend, Canadian American industrialist Cyrus Ching, U.S. Secretary of Labor Frances Perkins, American economist Sumner Slichter, and French surgeon and biologist Dr. Alexis Carrel. The Carrel file includes Wolf's correspondence with one of Carrel's colleagues about accusations that Carrel was a Nazi collaborator. This series also includes personal and biographical information about Wolf, filed under his name.

Series II. contains Wolf's published articles, conference papers, and transcriptions of talks he gave on management and labor relations in industry. His writing cans also be found in series I, interfiled with correspondence.

Series III. contains copies of speeches and published articles that Wolf collected. Included in the files are Matthew J. Burns' farewell message as president of the International Brotherhood of Paper Makers; "The American Revolution" by Rose Wilder Lane (1939); "If We Keep This Enterprise Free," an address by John L. Lewis to the US House of Representatives Committee on Labor; "Man Must Work for More Than Wages…." by Roderic Olzendam of the Weyerhaeuser Timber Company (1939); and a 1936 editorial from the

Seattle Star, praising the "intelligent men of the papermaking industry and crafts" for reaching an agreement to raise wages (1936). There are also clippings on the subjects of technocracy, Nazi Germany, and a 1938 "war scare."

The text of this web page can be reused and modified under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. (

Boxes 1-2: Shelved in SPEC MSS record center cartons

Sometime after the death of Robert B. Wolf, his daughter Anne Wolf gained possession of this collection. After her death, her brother Theodore Wolf took possession of it and donated it to the University of Delaware.

Gift of Theodore Rudolf Wolf, 1995

Processed and encoded by Julianna Salak, October-November 2021.

Series I and III maintain order in which the collection was recieved. Series II was arranged chronologically by the processor from the original unordered pile.

The following book was removed and cataloged with imprints in Special Collections. It can be accessed by searching the library catalog.

Townshend, Frank. Earth. London: Knopf, 1929.

Two folders containing copies of Herbert Hoover's address before the Federated American Engineering Society deaccessioned due to over-abundance. There are more copies in another folder, labelled Hoover, Herbert.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

American Management Association, 1933-1947.
Box 1 Folder F1
Burke, John P., 1917-1930.
Box 1 Folder F2
Carrel, Dr. Alexis (Rockefeller Institute), 1937-1951.
Box 1 Folder F3-F4
Carey, J. T., 1917-1923.
Box 1 Folder F5
Ching, Cyrus (U.S. Rubber Co.), 1933-1952.
Box 1 Folder F6
Clark, Dr. Austin H. (Smithsonian Institution), 1929.
Box 1 Folder F7
Clark, Wallace, 1940.
Box 1 Folder F8
Collins, Grellett, 1917-1919.
Box 1 Folder F9
Comfort, Will Levington, 1916-1931.
Box 1 Folder F10
Delaware, University of, 1916-1927, 1935-1945.
Box 1 Folder F11-F12
Dennison, Henry, 1917-1929.
Box 1 Folder F13
Dodge, Martin (Walter Teague NYC), 1935.
Box 1 Folder F14
Finletter, T. K. (Coudert Bros. NYC), 1938.
Box 1 Folder F15
Ferguson, Charles, 1917-1930.
Box 1 Folder F16
Follett, Mary P., 1921-1928.
Box 1 Folder F17
Fosdick, Raymond B. (President, League of Nations Association), 1933.
Box 1 Folder F18
Glenn, the Reverend Leslie, 1929.
Box 1 Folder F19
Glen, Marion P. (Miss), 1931-1940.
Box 1 Folder F20
Gompers, Samuel, 1919-1922.
Box 1 Folder F21
Green, William (President, American Federation of Labor), 1925-1931, 1932-1954.
Box 1 Folder F22-F23
Scope and Contents

The first folder is correspondence from before Green's promotion to presidency, and the second is during his presidency.

Hard, William, 1936-1945.
Box 1 Folder F24
"Harmonizing Security & Individual Rights: Management's Viewpoint" by Robert B. Wolf, 1939.
Box 1 Folder F25
Harrower, Norman, 1938-1947.
Box 1 Folder F26
Hill, Raymond P. (Pulp Bleaching Corp.), 1931-1943.
Box 1 Folder F27
Hopkins, Harry (Secretary of Commerce), 1939.
Box 1 Folder F28
International Brotherhood of Pulp, Sulphite, and Paper Mill Workers, 1941.
Box 1 Folder F29
Scope and Contents

This folder pertains to a conference held on May 26, 1941.

Jordan, Virgil (President, National Industrial Conference Board), 1938-1939.
Box 1 Folder F30-F31
Kelty, Paul (Editor, The Oregonian), 1933.
Box 1 Folder F32
Kelly, W. Norman (Manager, Weyerhaeuser, Longview Mill), 1942-1945.
Box 1 Folder F33
Kendall, Harry P., 1940-1947.
Box 1 Folder F34
Kennedy, G.A. Studderd (Anglican Minister, Author), 1946.
Box 1 Folder F35
Keyser, Professor Cassius J., 1921-1924.
Box 1 Folder F36
Kiplinger, William M., 1934-1938.
Box 1 Folder F37
Larkin, J. J. (Vice-President, Chase National Bank), 1938-1940.
Box 1 Folder F38
Larson, L. K. (Manager, Weyerhaeuser Sales), 1940-1947.
Box 1 Folder F39
Leeds, Morris E., 1935-1939.
Box 1 Folder F40
Little, Arthur D., 1918-1926.
Box 1 Folder F41
Management Appreciation Letters, 1916-1931.
Box 1 Folder F42
Manns, Professor T. F. (University of Delaware), 1924-1925.
Box 1 Folder F43
May, Marcus B. (Patent Lawyer), 1910-1921.
Box 1 Folder F44
Moley, Raymond (Editor, Today magazine), 1933-1935.
Box 1 Folder F45
Munk, Dr. Frank (Department of Economics, University of California), 1941-1943.
Box 1 Folder F46
Northcott, Dr. C. H., 1926-1927.
Box 1 Folder F47
Scope and Contents

Discusses Wolf's daughter, Anne.

Olzendam, Roderic, 1927, 1938-1947.
Box 1 Folder F48-F49
Parker, Benjamin M., 1929-1951.
Box 1 Folder F50
Peattie, Donald Culross, 1941.
Box 1 Folder F51
Scope and Contents

Presented before the Bureau of Personnel Administration on January 18, 1924.

"Periodic Planes of Creation" by Robert B. Wolf, 1924-1938.
Box 1 Folder F52
Perkins, Frances (U.S. Department of Labor), 1938-1945.
Box 1 Folder F53
Perkins, Milo (Farm Security Administration), 1938-1945.
Box 1 Folder F54
Pinchot, Gifford (Governor of Pennsylvania), 1922-1930.
Box 1 Folder F55
Portenar, A. J., 1917-1918.
Box 1 Folder F56
Pritchard, Lysle, 1940-1941.
Box 1 Folder F57
Recommendations, 1923-1924.
Box 1 Folder F58
Riis, Roger William (Reader's Digest), 1945-1953.
Box 1 Folder F59
Rochester Chamber of Commerce, 1917-1923.
Box 1 Folder F60
Russell, Walter, 1946-1947.
Box 1 Folder F61
Slichter, Sumner (Harvard, Graduate School Business Administration), 1933-1947.
Box 1 Folder F62-F64
Schneck, C. A., 1936-1938.
Box 2 Folder F1
Shoemaker, Reverend Samuel M., 1941-1947.
Box 2 Folder F2
Sullivan, Herbert W. (First Vice-President, International Brotherhood of Pulp, Sulphite, and Paper Mill Workers), 1935-1946.
Box 2 Folder F3
T.A.P.P.I. Medal Award to Robert B. Wolf, 1941-1942.
Box 2 Folder F4
Thompson, Dorothy (New York Herald Tribune), 1937-1939.
Box 2 Folder F5
Thompson, Sanford E., 1916-1917.
Box 2 Folder F6
Thorne, Florence (American Federation of Labor), 1920-1925, 1934-1946.
Box 2 Folder F7-F8
Thwing, Dr. C. B., 1913-1916.
Box 2 Folder F9
Townshend, Frank, 1939-1947.
Box 2 Folder F10
U.S. Maritime Commission, 1942.
Box 2 Folder F11-F12
Watson, Thomas J. (International Business Machines), 1946-1947.
Box 2 Folder F12
Personal history, 1919-1921, undated.
Box 2 Folder F13
Delaware College Review, 1896 October.
Box 2 Folder F14
The University News, 1937 November.
Box 2 Folder F15
Who's Who In America, 1942-1949.
Box 2 Folder F16
Who's Who In Engineering, 1936.
Box 2 Folder F17
"Dr. Wolf As Seen By His Students", circa 1917.
Box 2 Folder F18
Scope and Contents

Article about Robert Wolf's father, Theodore Wolf.

"Individuality in Industry", 1915.
Box 2 Folder F19
"Individuality in Plant and Worker", 1918.
Box 2 Folder F20
"Non-Financial Incentives", 1918 December.
Box 2 Folder F21
"Modern Industry and the Individual", 1919.
Box 2 Folder F22
"Developing the Individuality of the Worker", circa 1924.
Box 2 Folder F23
"The Creative Workman", 1927.
Box 2 Folder F24
Scope and Contents

Originally published in 1918.

"Business Management As a Profession: Leadership", 1928 February 2.
Box 2 Folder F25
"Harmonizing Security & Individual Rights: Management's Viewpoint", 1939 February 9.
Box 2 Folder F26
"Collective Bargaining Today: From the Employer's Point of View", 1938 February 18.
Box 2 Folder F27
"Suggestions for a Scientific Approach to the Study of Human Nature", 1942.
Box 2 Folder F28
III.. Reference materials--Speeches and articles by others, 1918-1946.
Box 2 Folder F29-F57

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