Leo Warren Jenkins Papers

Manuscript Collection #360
Jenkins, Leo W. (Leo Warren), 1913-1989
Physical description
4 Cubic Feet
Preferred Citation
Leo Warren Jenkins Papers (#360), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions

Personal files (1960-1978), including correspondence, clippings, reports, a manuscript, photographs, and miscellaneous.

Biographical/historical information

Leo Jenkins was born in 1913 in Succasunna, NJ, where his father was employed by Standard Oil. Jenkins served as a Major in World War II where he saw action at Guadalcanal, Guam and Iwo Jima. For his military service, Jenkins received the Bronze Star and two Presidential Citations. He married the former Lillian Jacobsen of Lavallette, N.J., and they had six children, James, Jeffrey, Jack, Suzanne, Patricia and Sallie Jean. Jenkins received his B.S. degree from Rutgers University, his M.A. degree from Columbia University and his degree of doctor of education from New York University. He also participated in graduate study at Duke University in 1946. Jenkins started his career as a public school teacher in New Jersey, then later served as Dean of Somerville High School in that state.

In 1947 Jenkins joined the faculty of East Carolina Teachers College, where he served as Dean until being elected as President of the college in 1960. He eventually was named Chancellor, and retired in 1978. During his tenure in both positions, he stood out as a great leader during a controversial and challenging period for the school. These issues included student enrollments doubling in number and expansion and restructuring of academic programs. Under Jenkins' leadership, great achievements occurred, including the granting of university status for the then-named, East Carolina College, the establishment of a medical school and school of nursing and the improvement of the school's athletic program which culminated in the acceptance into the Southern Conference.

Jenkins also served in many capacities for various educational associations, including the North Carolina College Conference, the cooperative of the State Board of Higher Education, North Carolina of the Southern Council on Teacher Education for the N.C. Parent-Teacher Association, the N.C. Education Association; Chairman of the committee, the State Advisory Council on Education, Southern Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, American Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and the North Carolina Association of Academic Deans. Throughout his career, Jenkins also published a vast amount of articles related to educational issues.

Jenkins was also very active in local activities. This consisted of serving in various capacities with the Pitt County Red Cross chapter, the Greenville Recreation Commission, the Kiwanis Club, the Pitt County Polio Campaign and North State Little League baseball. The Leo Jenkins Cancer Center was also founded in his memory. Jenkins died in 1989.

Scope and arrangement

Jenkins' correspondence is divided into political and personal. However, on some occasions, some topics of personal nature can be found in the political series, and political in the personal. See container list for more details. Early correspondence includes a look into many segments of Jenkins' life and activities. Included are photocopies of letters to son (Jimmy) while in military service (1944), letters concerning Jenkins' partnership and assistance to The Methodist Church, and his work with the U.S. Marine Corps. Also present is communication between Jenkins and his former military colleagues. Other individuals represented in the correspondence include Dr. Robert Clothier, the president of Rutgers University, the Dean of Teachers College at Columbia University, and other university administrators commenting on the progress of East Carolina Teachers College (1950), as well as requesting Jenkins' assistance with improving their state education systems. Of particular interest is one letter which concerns confusing media reports regarding the requirement in North Carolina for all teachers to be certified before hiring (1951). Jenkins responds back with an explanation of the system. Jenkins also received letters from past colleagues at Rutgers University and the University of Georgia System, including letters of recommendation for other positions. Other letters include those from Frank G. Clement, then governor of Tennessee, discussing religion (1953), and a Richmond, Virginia church bishop (1959). Included with this letter are minutes of The Official Board of the First United Methodist Church of Washington, North Carolina recommending the establishment of a two-year medical school at East Carolina College (ECC).

Later correspondence is between Jenkins and various business, political, and religious organizations on both local and national levels. Highlights include Pepsi Cola sending a new advertising idea to Jenkins (1966), a press release regarding the death of Mrs. Leo Jenkins' mother (1967), and Jenkins contemplation of running for state office in some capacity (the initial plan was for Robert Morgan to run for governor and Jenkins for lieutenant governor, 1971). Further correspondence concerns more political speculation by Jenkins for possible Democratic office, but with him stating that he is still not finished at East Carolina University (ECU, 1972), and a request for Jenkins to create a painting (1972).

Other topics covered during this time period consist of the United States Information Agency, for which Jenkins continued working for as a consultant (1972), one of Jenkins' books entitled Raise Your Own Kids, Jenkins' offer to support Jim Hunt for North Carolina governor, further support of education, discussion of polls favoring a four-year medical school at ECU (1973) and Jenkins thanking the state convention for passing a resolution supporting the medical school.

Final correspondence in the Jenkins papers relate to charitable donations and other types of assistance to ECU from various North Carolina businesses, including the Carolina Telephone and Telegraph Company. Also included with one letter is a copy of Jenkins' opening remarks for the 1975-76 school year at ECU. Other correspondence of note discusses the marriage of Jenkins' daughter (1976), a notice indicating nomination for the position of Chancellor of Higher Education in New Jersey (declines), sympathy for the death of Mrs. Jenkins' mother (1977), signed letters from Senator Jesse Helms wishing Jenkins a recovery from a health issue (1977-78), Jenkins stating he is retiring and leaving for Atlantic Beach and his wife's health problems (1978), announcement of a portrait to be done of Jenkins, and a photocopy of a letter from actor Alan Alda thanking Jenkins for his long service (1979).

Also of interest is another letter from Jesse Helms and North Carolina Congressional Club member Thomas F. Ellis thanking Jenkins for attending and making a small speech at a dinner held in Greenville, North Carolina on April 20, 1979. Included with the letter is a sheet with numbered points of items for Jenkins to mention (in the speech) regarding Helms, as well as a flyer entitled "Come and Meet Jesse: Dinner With Senator Jesse Helms" describing the dinner which was to support (and sponsored by) the North Carolina Congressional Club, proclaimed as "North Carolina's Foremost Bi-Partisan Organization." Other letters concern a recommendation by Jenkins for David B. Stevens, Jr. (former ECU attorney) for a pilot for Piedmont Airlines (1980), more recommendations made from the Office of the Governor, congratulation letters to elected politicians in North Carolina, and Jenkins' participation in a rescue squad in Atlantic Beach.

Printed materials consist of press releases and committee lists (most related to Jim Hunt), clippings discussing Jenkins' possible run for governor and his work at ECU. Also included are speeches (many promoting Robert Morgan), certificates of achievement, television show transcripts promoting the growth of ECU, Bath, North Carolina Historical Commission documents, and North Carolina church publications. Military-related printed materials include certificates, original orders, and U.S. Marine publications. Audio and visual materials consist of a few sheets of positive proof sheet images featuring a public speaking event (undated) and Robert Morgan-related audio tapes of radio commercials (undated) and questions answered at ECU (1974). See container list for more details on the materials mentioned above.

Administrative information
Custodial History

April 19, 1978 2 cu. ft.; Personal files (1960-1978), including correspondence, clippings, reports, a manuscript, photographs, and miscellaneous. Donor: Dr. Leo W. Jenkins

August 28, 1978 (addition 1), 2cu. ft.; Correspondence, clippings, memos, and miscellaneous. Donor: Dr. Leo W. Jenkins

September 16, 1980 (addition 2), c.500; Papers (1943-1980), including correspondence, military files, a literary manuscript, photographs, and clippings. Donor: Dr. Leo W. Jenkins

Source of acquisition

Gift of Dr. Leo W. Jenkins

Processing information

Encoded by Apex Data Services

Processed by Dale Sauter

Copyright notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Related material

Leo W. Jenkins Papers (UA90-06), University Archives, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC USA

Key terms
Personal Names
Jenkins, Leo W. (Leo Warren), 1913-1989
Corporate Names
East Carolina University--Administration
East Carolina University--History
College presidents--North Carolina--Greenville

Container list
Box 1 Folder a Personal correspondence (1946-1949) 18 items
Box 1 Folder b Personal correspondence (1950-1959) 25 items
Box 1 Folder c Personal correspondence (1960-1969) 37 items
Box 1 Folder d Personal correspondence (1970-1974) 59 items
Box 1 Folder e Personal correspondence (1975) 22 items
Box 1 Folder f Personal correspondence (1976) 21 items
Box 1 Folder g Personal correspondence (1977) 18 items
Box 1 Folder h Personal correspondence (1978-1979) 51 items
Box 1 Folder i Personal correspondence (1980-1984) 26 items
Box 1 Folder j Personal correspondence (undated) 2 items
Box 1 Folder k Correspondence (1975-1977) regarding Pine Knoll Shores 5 items
Box 1 Folder l Correspondence (1959-1977) regarding the United States Information Agency, including Appointment Action contracts 16 items
Box 2 Folder a Political correspondence (1960-1973) 74 items
Box 2 Folder b Political correspondence (1974-1976) 42 items
Box 2 Folder c Political correspondence (undated) 1 item
Box 2 Folder d Correspondence (1979) from John M. Belk to Leo Jenkins 1 item
Box 2 Folder e Correspondence (1965, 1972, 1978-1979) from Robert W. Scott to Leo Jenkins 4 items
Box 2 Folder f Correspondence (1977-1979) from Jesse Helms to Leo Jenkins 3 items
Box 2 Folder g Correspondence (1973) between James R. Sugg, Leo Jenkins, and John Lang, Jr. 7 items
Box 2 Folder h Correspondence (1955-1972) regarding "Raise Your Own Kids." Correspondence between Leo Jenkins and various editors regarding possible publication of Jenkins' manuscript. 46 items
Box 2 Folder i Correspondence (1973-1980, undated) between N.C. Governor Jim B. Hunt and Leo Jenkins 54 items
Box 2 Folder j Memorandum (1973-1980) from N.C. Governor Jim B. Hunt 17 items
Box 2 Folder k N.C. Governor Jim B. Hunt political material (1978-1979, undated) including news releases, contact lists, excerpts, speeches, and announcements. 12 items
Box 2 Folder l Robert Morgan radio interview (undated) on reel-to-reel tape from station WRNS Lenoir-Kinston. 1 item
Box 2 Folder m Robert Morgan cassette tape (4/18/1974) containing a question and answer session from students at East Carolina University. 1 Item
Box 3 Folder a Robert Morgan for U.S. Senate Committee receipt books (1974) 4 items
Box 3 Folder b Robert Morgan political material (1972-1974, undated), including postcards, speeches, agendas, correspondence, financial reports, and memorandum. 9 items
Box 3 Folder c "Raise Your Own Kids" by Leo Jenkins manuscript (undated) 1 item
Box 3 Folder d "Raise Your Own Kids" by Leo Jenkins manuscript (1955) 1 item
Box 3 Folder e "Evaluating the Extra Curriculum in the Secondary School" by Leo Jenkins manuscript. 1 of 2. 1 item
Box 3 Folder f "Evaluating the Extra Curriculum in the Secondary School" by Leo Jenkins manuscript. 2 of 2. 1 item
Box 3 Folder h Correspondence (1944) from Leo Jenkins to family while in the U.S. Marine Corps. 17 items
Box 3 Folder i Political material (1972-1973, undated) regarding Leo Jenkins, and includes notes, news releases, contact lists, "Plan of Organization: Democratic Party of North Carolina" pamphlet, and speeches. 16 items
Box 4 Folder a Speech (2/19/1972) by Leo Jenkins to 68th Bomb Wing Dining-Out Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Goldsboro, North Carolina. 1 item
Box 4 Folder b Submitted articles (1970) by Leo Jenkins for the ECU Report. 18 items
Box 4 Folder c Submitted articles (undated) by Leo Jenkins to various editors. 10 items
Box 4 Folder d Publications (1945-1973, undated), including magazine articles, journal articles, and newsletters. 29 items
Box 4 Folder e New releases (1968-1982, undated) regarding public service, political information, health, and East Carolina University. 10 items
Box 4 Folder f North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame (1978-1979) material, including meeting minutes, memorandum, correspondence, and contact and board lists. 6 items
Box 4 Folder g Carteret Historical Society (1978-1979) material, including speeches and correspondence. 3 items
Box 4 Folder h Agribusiness Council (1973-1974, undated) material, including pamphlets, certificate of incorporation, memorandum, and correspondence. 9 items
Box 4 Folder i International Association of University Presidents membership application and charter (1975). 1 item
Box 4 Folder j Historic Bath Commission (1976-1979, undated) material, including membership card, correspondence, membership list, and "Historical Highlights of Washington and Beaufort County, North Carolina: Bicentennial Edition 1776-1976" book. 16 items
Box 4 Folder k Carolina Charter Corporation (1977-1978, undated) material, including bylaws, membership list, and correspondence. 3 items
Box 4 Folder l Biographical information (undated) which includes information regarding education, military, membership and honors, publications, speeches, and church records. 3 items
Box 4 Folder m Television transcripts (1972) 12 items
Box 4 Folder n Financial information (1974-1980, undated) including receipts and bank statement. 4 items
Box 4 Folder o Religious material (1973-1977, undated) including clippings, church bulletins, correspondence, and articles. 16 items
Box 4 Folder p The Philadelphia Inquirer newspaper (March 25, 1945). 1 item
Box 4 Folder q Notes (undated) that include a rehearsal list, telephone numbers, military information, and ephemera. 5 items
Box 5 Folder a Political clippings (1966-1971) 90 items
Box 5 Folder b Political clippings (1972-1975) 127 items
Box 5 Folder c Political clippings (1976-1979, undated) 70 items
Box 5 Folder d Personal clippings (1955-1958) 4 items
Box 5 Folder e Personal clippings (1960-1969) 33 items
Box 5 Folder f Personal clippings (1970-1973) 64 items
Box 5 Folder g Personal clippings (1974-1977) 56 items
Box 5 Folder h Personal clippings (1978-1980) 45 items
Box 5 Folder i Personal clippings (undated) 21 items
Box 6 Folder a Certificates (1960-1978, undated) given to Leo Jenkins regarding East Carolina University, Lambda Chi Alpha, state of North Carolina, state of New Jersey, and various organizations. 19 items
Box 6 Folder b Programs (1950-1975) for the Kenneth R. Williams Day, Young Democrat Roosevelt Dinner, Mt. Hermon Memorial Association, North Carolina Symphony Ball, UNC School of Medicine class of 1970, and the Chancellor's Bicentennial Concert. 6 items
Box 6 Folder c Miscellaneous (1962, undated) including menu for Eleventh Annual Security Caravan and playing card. 3 items
Box 6 Folder d Ephemera (undated) including an ECU and UNC bumper sticker and index cards displaying questions regarding law enforcement. 3 items