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A Guide to the Records at the Indiana University Archives
Electronic finding aid encoded by Amanda Harlan
Indiana University Office of University Archives and Records Management
1320 East Tenth Street
Herman B Wells Library E460
Bloomington, IN 47405-7000
Spectator (Bloomington, Ind.)
1.8 cubic feet
Materials are in English.
The Spectator began its existence as a weekly student newspaper in January 1966, when it was recognized as a registered Indiana University organization by the I.U. Board of Student Publications. This charter was revoked by the university administation in 1968, but the paper remained in publication as an independent paper in Bloomington, Indiana until 1970. The collection consists of records of the Spectator organized in five series: operational, financial, correspondence, submissions, and newspaper issues.
This collection is open for research.
Advance notice is required.
The Spectator began its existence as a weekly student newspaper in January, 1966, when it was recognized as a registered Indiana University organization by the IU Board of Student Publications.
The first issue was distributed on Saturday, February 5, 1966 under Robb Baker, the first editor. In the era of national protest over the war in Viet Nam, the Spectator espoused anti-war/anti-establishment positions. It also took an active interest in covering the arts, publishing poetry, graphic arts and published many book, film, music and theater reviews. During its life as an IU student publication, the newspaper was produced in consultation with IU faculty advisor Philip Wikelund and operated under the direction of two editors, both graduate students: Robb Baker, who served from January to May, 1966; and James Retherford, who served from September, 1966 through the spring semester of 1968, continuing after the paper lost its student publication status. Mike King served as editor of the independent publication from the fall of 1968 until at least 1969. From sometime in 1969 until the paper ceased publication in 1970, the Spectator ceased listing its staff by position, although Mike King continued to be listed as part of the staff.
On September 20, 1967, the Spectator’s student organization status was revoked under the new “Non-Registration Policy”. This policy seems to have been instituted, in part, to prevent arbitrary discrimination against certain organizations. But the Spectator and more than fifty other organizations’ right to use university facilities and services were revoked under the terms of the “Non-Registration Policy” as having no “fiscal-legal” relationship to the University. Publication continued throughout the Fall Semester as a non registered student publication as Retherford contended with the IU administration over office space. Under duress, the newspaper finally vacated its IU facilities on December 20, 1967 and the newspaper was forced off the Indiana University Bloomington campus. Beginning in September 1967, Retherford and the Spectator coped with the repeated loss of printing services and alleged that the Indiana University administration pressured printers to refuse to print the newspaper.
James Retherford continued as editor after the move and the Spectator resumed publication on February 5, 1968. Later that spring the newspaper established itself as an independent underground publication. With the criminal prosecution of Retherford for alleged Selective Service violations (later overturned on appeal), he left Bloomington in the summer of 1968, eventually arriving in NYC to participate in the development of his appeals defense over the convictions. Mike King became editor in the fall of 1968 and the Spectator continued publication until December, 1970, when it ceased to exist.
Organized into five series: Operational, Financial, Correspondence, Submissions, and Newspaper issues.
This collection consists of files documenting the editorial and operational aspects of the Spectator newspaper from 1966-1967, its first two years of operation when the Spectator was a registered Indiana University organization. Also included is a reference copy of most Spectator newspaper issues printed from February 5, 1966, to December 14, 1970. (No editorial and operational documentation exists for 1968 to 1970, the period the Spectator operated off-campus as an independent publication.) The Operational series includes distribution records, layouts, and original art proofs. The Financial series includes budgets, balance reports, expense records, invoices, and donor lists (primarily for 1966) and distribution ledger pages. The Correspondence series includes miscellaneous letters of commendation, complaint, and some about policy and issue matters. They are organized alphabetically by author’s name within the specified folders. Some are marked up for typeset. The Submissions series contains article and essay submissions as well as related letters and notes sent and received. The documents are organized alphabetically by author’s name. Most are marked up for typeset. The Newspaper Issues series contains copies of all but five issues published from Feb. 5, 1966, to December 24, 1970.
The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in IUCAT, the IU Libraries' online catalog. Materials about related topics, persons or places can be found by searching the catalog using these terms.
Related materials concerning the IU Non-Registration Policy can be found in the folder, “Non-Registration Policy for Student Organizations, 1967-1968” in Collection 11, Vice President and Dean's records 1958-1971, Series: Student Affairs Files, 1958-1970, Box 11.
Related materials concerning James Retherford’s request that the Spectator be allowed to use IU campus facilities to show Andy Warhol’s controversial film are found in “Bike Boy” folder, in Collection 11, Vice President and Dean's records 1958-1971, Series: Student Affairs Files, 1958-1970, Box 11.
It is the researcher’s responsibility to seek permission from the copyright owner and any other rights holders for any reuse of these images that extends beyond fair use or other statutory exemptions. Furthermore, responsibility for the determination of the copyright status and securing permission rests with those persons wishing to reuse the materials.
If you are the copyright holder for any of the digitized materials and have questions about its inclusion on our site, please contact the Indiana University Archivist.
Re-processed by Verlon Stone
Completed in 2003
Microfilm of the Spectator can be located in the Indiana University Main Library's Government Information, Microfilms, and Statistical Services (GIMSS) Department. The holdings include: v.5, no.2; v.5, no.5; v.6, no.5-v.6, no.7; v.6, no.9; v.6, no.11; v.7, no.2-v.8, no.15; v.9, no.1-v.11, no.5 1967-1970 and also no. 1-4 for Summer 1969.