Scope and Contents
The records are organized into seven series: Administrative Files, Financial Files, Wheeler Mission Associated Groups, Printed Materials, Door of Hope Research Materials, Individual Photographs and Audio/Visual.
The Administrative Files, 1923-1978, contain the correspondence and subject files of Superintendents Herbert E. Eberhardt (1923-1944) and Leonard C. Hunt (1945-1978) which are in alphabetical order. The correspondence, both personal and business, documents matters pertaining to the mission's management. The Eberhardt files contain 40 photographs of the interiors and exteriors of Wheeler buildings and one photograph of the 1928 Building Campaign Committee. The Hunt files contain 21 photographs of Camp Friendly and 90 photographs of Camp Hunt. This series also includes the Board of Directors' meeting minutes (1956-1963, 1964, 1968, 1972), general information including the bylaws, incorporation, brief histories, instructions and guidelines of the mission. Biographies and obituaries of both Eberhardt and Hunt are in this series. The forty-nine bound volumes of appointment books for the years 1926-1975 contain daily routines and fixed weekly appointments as well as clippings of the obituaries of mission workers and friends but also notations of donations, etc. The Service Reports (1911-1912, 1920, 1923-1937, 1938-1959, 1964, 1969, 1979, 1987) give an accounting of the services given by the mission and document applications for aid.
The Financial Files, 1927-1977, contain annual reports encompassing the years 1927-1970. For years on which annual reports are unavailable, monthly reports were kept. Bound ledgers for the building campaigns include two ledgers for 1929, one ledger for 1929-1935 and one large 3-ring binder for 1938. These materials supplement the documentation of the organization and implementation of the capital campaigns found in the Administrative Series of this collection with lists of donors, types and amounts of pledges and workers assigned to particular target groups.
Wheeler Mission Associated Groups, 1930-1978, are those groups which were operated by or associated with Wheeler Mission. The Adult Fellowship Meeting (materials ca. 1953-1967) began in 1953 and served as a practical support group to the mission as well as a social fellowship for its members. This group and the Youth Fellowship produced a weekly newsletter, Fellowship News (Printed Materials Series). The Gospel Prayer Band (materials ca. 1937-1978) was incorporated in Indianapolis as a non-profit organization in 1937 to promote home prayer meetings, support mission work, receive voluntary contributions or pledges of funds and/or property and to buy, rent or sell real estate to be used for religious purposes. The International Union of Gospel Missions (materials ca. 1938-1960), founded in 1913, is a national association of rescue missions and other faith-based providers of services to the homeless and needy. Wheeler Mission maintained active membership and both Eberhardt (1930s) and Hunt (1960s) served as president of the national organization. The Sunday School (materials ca. 1947-1970) was, from the very beginning, an integral part of the services at Wheeler Mission. Classes held included pre-school through adult. The Youth Fellowship (materials ca. 1930s-1960s) consisted of young people ages 14 through 21 who held services regularly and sought to "bring the Gospel of Jesus Christ to other young people outside our fellowship through personal work." City-wide rallies were held as a means to accomplish this goal. The Women's Auxiliary (materials ca. 1950s-1960s) was organized by Frances Hunt in 1950 with the primary purpose of ministering to women. Members included delegates from more than 80 local churches who undertook to establish a women's home to serve as a half-way house for women coming out of prison. Later, a girls' home to help troubled teen-aged girls was established and run by the auxiliary.
The Printed Materials series is divided into two parts: mission publications and other printed materials. The Weekly Bulletins (1934-1952) detail services at Wheeler Mission. Also included here are various newsletters detailing the work and programs of the mission. Pamphlets, magazines and materials printed by Wheeler Mission and other printed materials from other missions, various religious organizations which have a direct connection to Wheeler Mission comprise the remainder of this series.
The Door of Hope Research Materials contain information used by author Joe Snider in writing this history of Wheeler Mission in celebration of the mission's 100 year anniversary. The series includes information on individuals, Snider's handwritten research notes, handwritten personal recollections of people who were in some way connected to the mission, news clippings and scrapbooks. The 128 photographs of various mission activities and people are in this series, including the posed photographs taken for the book.
The Individual Photograph Collection includes identified photographs of the members associated with the mission.
The Audio/Visual Collection contains interviews with campers and counselors from the late 1980s, including one with Mrs. Hunt, testimonials, staff interviews and selected broadcasts from the mission's Sunday radio program during the late 1980s. The reel-to-reel audio tape is of the presentation of the Golden Deed Award to Rev. and Mrs. Hunt by the Exchange Club, a social service organization. The presentation speech given at the Columbia Club on April 28, 1972 documents the longstanding relationship between Wheeler Mission and the Exchange Club. The filmstrip is a history of Wheeler Mission. One film was taken at Wheeler Mission Camp in 1962 and the other film is of the Mission, c. 1950s.
The photographic collection consists of 439 photographs, primarily from the 1940s-1950s documenting most aspects of the Mission's work. Most of the photographs are listed within the series which is documented by them. Single person or portrait-type photographs are listed alphabetically in the Individual Photograph series.
Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Access
From the Collection: 23.0 Cubic Feet (19 cartons, 2 document boxes, 439 photographs, 48 cassette tapes, 2 films, and 2 filmstrips )