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   Thomas Whiteside Papers, 1839-1995 [Bulk Dates: 1952-1992]

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Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Thomas Whiteside Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

COinS Metadata available (e.g., for Zotero).

Summary Information

Abstract

Thomas Whiteside was an American journalist born in 1918. Whiteside wrote for The New Yorker for over 45 years. He covered such topics in his articles and books as cable television, the cigarette industry, the channel tunnel, chemical weapons (notably 2, 4, 5-T, a component of Agent Orange), Ralph Nader, Stig Wennerstrom, and yellow rain. It has been said that Whiteside's work on Agent Orange led directly to the congressional hearings which discussed the dangers of the substance. By the end of the hearings, the Surgeon General of the United States had announced restrictions on the use of the herbicide. The collection contains material related to the articles that Whiteside contributed to The New Yorker. The files include audiocassettes, book reviews, correspondence, drafts, galleys, notebooks and notes, research files, and typescripts. There is a small section of the collection that contains personal papers not tied directly to specific articles or books. The material ranges in date from the 1950s to the 1990s, spanning the time Whiteside worked at The New Yorker.

At a Glance

Call No.:MS#1545
Bib ID:7971726 View CLIO record
Creator(s):Whiteside, Thomas, 1918-1997.
Title:Thomas Whiteside Papers, 1839-1995 [Bulk Dates: 1952-1992]
Physical description:29 linear ft. (23 record containers, 1 document box, 4 flat boxes)
Language(s): Material is in English.
Access: This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. This collection has no restrictions.  More information »

Arrangement

Arrangement

Material is arranged into two series:

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Description

Scope and Content

The collection contains the papers of Thomas Whiteside and relate to Whiteside's professional career as a journalist as represented in Series I: Writings. There is a small second series of personal papers and material not tied directly to an article or book. The collection primarily pertains to the articles Whiteside wrote for The New Yorker. These files range in date from 1952-1992, covering the time Whiteside wrote for the magazine. The files include research articles and clippings, audiocassettes, correspondence, drafts, galleys and proofs, notebooks, both handwritten and typed notes, and typescripts.

Series I: Writings, 1839-1991

Series I: Writings consists of the material related to articles and books published by Thomas Whiteside as well as research files for unpublished works and general research files, or those untied to a specific book or article. A majority of the material pertains to articles Whiteside wrote for The New Yorker . Themes get repeated over the course of this series. For instance, writing on dioxins are represented in article and book form. This is the case with the article, "The Pendulum and the Toxic Cloud" that was later published as a book under the same name. In other cases, books about certain topics later show up in the magazine. For instance, his series on Ralph Nader, "Countervailing Force" was first published in book form as The Investigation of Ralph Nader: General Motors vs. One Determined Man .

Subseries I.1: Published Articles and Books, 1839-1995

Subseries I.1: Published Articles and Books contains material related to articles and books published by Thomas Whiteside. In general the articles were written for The New Yorker . There are a few outliers, for instance, Whiteside's piece about the 1968 Democratic National Convention, "Corridor of Mirrors" was published in the Columbia Journalism Review . Whiteside contributed to The New Yorker for over 45 years, a majority of the articles he wrote for the magazine are represented in this subseries. He wrote 11 books, and those too are represented, if however briefly, in this subseries. The files consist of research files, made up of articles, audiocassettes, clippings, notebooks, and typed notes. Also present around each article are related correspondence, drafts, galleys and proofs, and typescripts. The correspondence is, for the most part, letters that Whiteside received in congratulations of publication of his book or article. A few contributors of note include, Andy Rooney and John Kenneth Galbraith. There is also correspondence with Whiteside and his publishers and literary agents, Yale University Press, Wesleyan University Press, among others. Some letters to and from Allen Dulles pertaining to a book blurb for Wennerstrom can be found in the correspondence file for "An Agent in Place."

Subseries I.2: Unpublished Articles, 1962-1995

Subseries I.2: Unpublished Articles contains materials related to articles that Whiteside never published. There are three main topics covered in this subseries: French Caves, Joe Camel, and material about the Crytherian Phase. There is also a piece that Whiteside wrote on the arrival of the Beatles to the United States. Like subseries 1, this subseries consists of research articles and clippings, correspondence, drafts, and typescripts.

Subseries I.3: General Reference Files, 1961-1987

Series I.3: General Research Files contains research materials not associated directly to an article or book. There are several files related to a Dioxin Study Project that Whiteside took part in during the early 1980s as well as material on George Blake.

Series II: Personal Papers, 1940-1995

Series II: Personal Papers is a small series consisting in the main of correspondence from Whiteside's children. Represented here as well are letters to Whiteside over the course of his career which are unrelated to a specific article or book. This series also contains material related to the MacArthur Fellowship that Whiteside won in 1986. There is an undated school notebook containing notes and a Toronto Public Library card from 1940.

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Using the Collection

Offsite

Access Restrictions

 This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

      offsite requestMore information and link to off-site request form

This collection has no restrictions.

Restrictions on Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Preferred Citation

Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Thomas Whiteside Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.

Finding aid online and in repository.

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About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries. Rare Book and Manuscript Library; machine readable finding aid created by Columbia University Libraries Digital Library Program Division

Processing Information

Papers processed September 2012 Adrien Hilton

Finding Aid written 10/01/2012 Adrien Hilton

Machine readable finding aid generated from MARC-AMC source via XSLT conversion October 6, 2012 Finding aid written in English. Finding Aid adheres to that prescribed by Describing Archives: A Content Standard
    2012-10-06 xml document instance created by Adrien Hilton

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Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.

Genre/Form

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
AudiocassettesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Clippings (information artifacts)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
CorrespondencePortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Drafts (documents)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Galley proofsPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
NotebooksPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
NotesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
TypescriptsPortalCLIOArchiveGRID

Subjects

HeadingCUL Archives:
Portal
CUL Collections:
CLIO
Nat'l / Int'l Archives:
ArchiveGRID
Advertising CigarettesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Agent OrangePortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Cable televisionPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Carlsen, KurtPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Channel Tunnel (Coquelles, France, and Folkestone, England)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Chemical warfarePortalCLIOArchiveGRID
CigarettesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Computer crimesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Defoliants--War usePortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Defoliation--VietnamPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
DioxinsPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
HerbicidesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Joe Camel (Advertising character)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
JournalismPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Journalism--United StatesPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Nader, RalphPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
New Yorker--(New York, N.Y.: 1925)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Publishers and publishingPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Reeves, RosserPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Seveso (Italy)PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Susskind, David, 1920-1987.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Weaver, Pat, 1908-2002.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Wennerstròˆm, StigPortalCLIOArchiveGRID
Whiteside, Thomas, 1918-1997.PortalCLIOArchiveGRID

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History / Biographical Note

Biographical Note

Thomas Whiteside was born in Berwick-Upon-Tweed, England in 1918. He moved to the US by way of Canada in 1940 to study at the University of Chicago. During WWII, Whiteside worked for the Office of War Propaganda, compiling reports on Axis propaganda. In 1945, he became a US citizen and joined the staff of Newsweek as a foreign affairs writer. Whiteside later went on to write for The New Republic and joined the staff of The New Yorker in 1950.

As a journalist, Whiteside wrote for The New Yorker for over 45 years. He covered a range of topics for the magazine's various series - Annals of Advertising, Annals of Business, Annals of Crime, Annals of the Cold War, Annals of Espionage, Annals of Migration, Annals of Television, Onward and Upward with the Arts, Reporter at Large, and Talk of the Town. The topics Whiteside wrote on were broad and complex, including pieces on cable television, the Channel Tunnel, cigarettes and the cigarette industry, computer crime, dioxins (most notably 2, 4, 5-T, a component in Agent Orange), the publishing industry, Stig Wennerstrom, and yellow rain. Whiteside also wrote several biographical articles for the magazine's "Profiles" section. This included pieces on Teddy Adams, Captain Kurt Carlsen, Daniel Fraad Jr., Ralph Nader, Rosser Reeves, David Susskind, and Sylvester "Pat" Weaver. Several of Whiteside's articles, most of which were published in serial form formed the basis for longer book length works. He published 11 books, working with a number of different publishing houses and literary agencies.

Whiteside was married to Marie Whiteside and had three children. He lived his later years in West Cornwall, Connecticut.

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