Collection ID: npkmc-225-061

Collection context


Thomas, Lowell, 1892-1981
The Lowell Thomas Papers encompasses a wide range of materials documenting the life, family, and professional career of Lowell Thomas. These materials include correspondence, administrative and financial documents, manuscripts, printed materials, photographic materials, motion picture films, audio recordings, and memorabilia.
1203 Linear Feet
The language of the materials is predominately English. Other languages include: Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Spanish and Swedish .
Preferred citation:

[Description of item, date, location of item in order of series, box number, folder number ], in the Lowell Thomas Textual Materials Collection, Archives and Special Collections, James A. Cannavino Library, Marist College.


Scope and Content:

Materials in this collection range from correspondence and manuscripts to broadcast scripts, publicity materials, and administrative papers. Of particular interest are the materials relating to Thomas's travelogues, association with T.E. Lawrence, Cinerama productions, journey to Tibet, and broadcast series "High Adventure with Lowell Thomas." Also notable are the materials pertaining to Thomas's education, as well as the correspondence and other materials relating to his family members. The series is divided into 30 subseries, most of which are subdivided further (sub subseries, etc.). The subseries and further subdivisions are arranged alphabetically by subject or form of material.

Biographical / Historical:

Lowell Jackson Thomas was born in Woodington, Ohio on 6 April 1892 to two school teachers, Harry G. Thomas and Harriet Wagner Thomas. The family did not remain in Darke County, Ohio for very long because Lowell's father wanted to become a doctor. Harry G. Thomas's pursuit of a medical degree led the family to Kirkman, Iowa where five-year-old Lowell was enrolled in school for the first time. Harry's studies soon led him to the University of Nebraska. Upon graduation, Harry G. Thomas followed his brother's suggestion to begin his medical practice in the twin mining boom towns of Cripple Creek and Victor, Colorado. It was here in the rugged American West that Lowell spent the better part of his childhood and young adult years.

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Acquisition information:
The Lowell Thomas Papers were donated to Marist College by the Thomas family in 2006.

These records are organized into 30 series: 1) Alaska, 2) Aviation, with two subseries, 3) Prosper Buranelli, 4) Calendars, address files, and guest books with four subseries, 5) Cinerama, with eight subseries. Subseries 5.7 has two subseries and subseries 5.8 has three subseries, 6) Clubs, with four subseries, 7) Correspondence, with six subseries, 8) Deceased Files, 9) Equipment, 10) Family with eight subseries. Subseries 10.1 has eleven subseries and subseries 10.1.9 has seven subseries. Subseries 10.2 has fourteen subseries, 10.3 has four subseries, 10.7 has six subseries, and 10.8 has two subseries. 11) High Adventures with Lowell Thomas and other television shows, with three suberies. Subseries 11.3 has three subseries. 12) Lecture Files, 13) Library catalog, 14) Newspaper and other clippings, with three subseries, 15) Publications, with three subseries, 16) Quaker Hill, with 9 subseries, 16.8 has four subseries, 17) Scrapbooks, 18) Scripts [film], 19) Scripts [radio] with two subseries, 20) Sports, with two subseries. Subseries 20.2 has three subseries, 21) Sun Oil, with three subseries, 22) Tibet, with eleven subseries. Subseries 22.10 has three subseries, 23) University of Denver Project, 24) Bertha Spafford Vester and the American Colony, 25) World War I, with three subseries. Subseries 25.1 has seven subseries, 25.1.4 has two subseries. 25.2 has twelve subseries, 25.2.4 has two subseries and 25.2.5 has three subseries. 25.3 has eight subseries and 25.3.8 has three subseries. 26) World War II with two subseries, 27) Wiritings, has two subseries. 27.1 has six subseries, 27.1.1 has three subseries and 27.1.2 has two subseries. 28) Topical Files 1, 20) Topical Files 2, 30) Documents found with graphic materials, sound recordings, and objects, with two subseries. Subseries 30.1 has three subseries and 30.1.1 has two subseries.

Rules or conventions:
DACS Describing Archives: A Content Standard. Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2013.

Online content



There are no restrictions on this collection


Individuals requesting reproductions expressly assume the responsibility for compliance with all pertinent provisions of the Copyright Act, 17 U.S.C. ss101 et seq. Patrons further agree to indemnify and hold harmless the Marist College Archives and Special Collections and its staff in connection with any disputes arising from the Copyright Act, over the reproduction of material at the request of patrons. For more information please visit the following website:


[Description of item, date, location of item in order of series, box number, folder number ], in the Lowell Thomas Textual Materials Collection, Archives and Special Collections, James A. Cannavino Library, Marist College.

3399 North Road
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601, United States