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O. Orlando Maxfield Papers

Identifier: MC 1540

Scope and Content Note

This collection includes materials related to Maxfield's private and professional life. Materials pertaining to his private life include correspondence, articles and cartoons clipped from newspapers, and other papers, as well as slides of friends and family and vacations in places across the United States as well as Mexico, Canada, and the Dominican Republic.

Materials related to his professional life include papers pertaining to courses he taught, including examination masters, course syllabi, and teaching aids. "item"s pertaining to the University of Arkansas Department of Geography include correspondence, departmental evaluations, historical files, materials related to the geography graduate program, and alumni materials. Materials related to Gamma Theta Upsilon include correspondence, meeting minutes, membership records, and other papers. Also included are papers related to the university's Urban and Regional Studies Program.

Included in the "Arkansas History Materials" file ("Box" 3, "Folder" 13) are articles on the training of Little Rock's Sixth Rifle Company, Marine Corps Reserve, in 1953; old maps of Arkansas; street cars in central Arkansas; and the history of German settlers in central Arkansas in the nineteenth century. Materials in the "General Materials" file ("Box" 3, "Folder" 37) include clippings on the Mason-Dixon Line and the Heavener Runestone in Oklahoma.

The collection also includes seven photographs and more than 17,000 slides. With the exception of one "Folder" of slides pertaining to the Boston Mountains and Fayetteville, slides are housed in the metal slide cases in which Special Collections received them.


  • 1901-2003


Access Information

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Use Information

No Restrictions Apply.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical Note

Ollie Orlando Maxfield was born on February 4, 1925, in Lawrence County, Illinois. The son of Ollie O. and Jeane Taylor Maxfield, he attended public schools in Crawford County, Illinois. He studied geography and English at George Peabody College for Teachers in Nashville, Tennessee, graduating with a bachelor of arts degree in 1945. He continued his studies in geography at Ohio State University, where he completed a master's degree in 1946 and a Ph.D. in 1963. He joined the faculty of the University of Arkansas in 1946, where he played an instrumental role in the development of the university's Department of Geography (now Geosciences). He served as the department's chairman from 1966 to 1978. He was also chairman of several committees, including the committee on the Urban and Regional Studies interdisciplinary major beginning in 1976. He served as principal advisor for at least twenty-four students completing their master's theses.

In addition to his duties with the university, he was actively involved with Gamma Theta Upsilon, an international honor society for geography students. From 1972 to 1992 he served as the organization's international secretary, and in 1993-1994 he served as its president. Afterwards, he became its historian and archivist. In 1973 to 1975 he chaired Governor Dale Bumper's Land Resource Management Advisory Committee. He was also involved with the National Council for Geographic Education, the Association of American Geographers, and the Southwest Division of the Association of American Geographers.

A lifelong bachelor, Maxfield had two foster sons, Virgil H. Holder and Christopher J. Huggard. He retired from the University of Arkansas in 1990. In 2002 the National Council for Geographic Education honored him with its Distinguished Mentor Award. He died May 21, 2003, in Fayetteville.


11.5 Linear Feet (12 boxes)

Language of Materials


Arrangement of the Papers

Materials are grouped into two major categories: papers and slides.

Papers are arranged with materials pertaining to Maxfield's personal life first, followed by materials related to the University of Arkansas Department of Geography, then subject files. The subject files, primarily newspaper clippings, are arranged with Arkansas subjects first followed by files with non-Arkansas materials. At the tail end of the papers ares two "Folder"s containing photographs and slides.

Slides are stored in metal cases with four or five cases per "Box". Slides retain Maxfield's original order. File cases arranged with personal materials first, followed by slides related to Arkansas. After these are cases of slides related to the United States in general,then states arranged in alphabetical order. In some cases metal "Box"es contain slides of more than one state; these are incorporated into the order by the state name first in alphabetical order. After the states are slides of Canada, the Dominican Republic, and Mexico. The final "Box" of slides contains smaller file cases and feature slides of Oklahoma, southwestern Indians, the Incas, Peru, Bolivia, and Mexico.

Acquisition Information

The O. Orlando Maxfield Papers was donated to the Special Collections Department, University of Arkansas Libraries, on April 9, 2004, by Chris Huggard of Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Processing Information

Processed by Todd E. Lewis; completed in November 2011.



O. Orlando Maxfield Papers
Todd E. Lewis
November 2011
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding Aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444