Harry O. Smith papers, 1904-2003

1348

Collection Overview

Title:
Harry O. Smith papers
Dates (Inclusive):
1904-2003
Creator:
Smith, Harry O. (Harry Ohmit)
Abstract:
H.O. Smith, of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, graduated from Penn State in 1921 with a degree in architectural engineering and served briefly on its faculty before opening the architectural and building company, State College Construction Company. The collection consists of a variety of materials from H.O. Smith's time as a Penn State student as well as his architectural career after graduation. Materials include school diaries and expense logs, digitized photographs, and building blueprints.
Collection Number:
1348
Size:
5.28 Cubic feet
Location:
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the   library catalog.
Repository:
Special Collections Library. Pennsylvania State University.
Languages:
English

Biographical Note

H.O. Smith, of Williamsport, Pennsylvania, graduated from Penn State in 1921 with a degree in architectural engineering. As a student, he was a member of the Beaux Arts Society, Iota Chi Delta social fraternity (later became Sigma Phi Sigma, then Theta Delta Chi) and the 1920 La Vie board. Additionally, Smith played class lacrosse and was second lieutenant in the United States Field Artillery Corps. After graduation, Smith served on the university's architectural engineering faculty before leaving to start his own business, State College Construction Co. This firm was responsible for a number of area landmarks, including university buildings and fraternity houses, Greyhound Post House, and the first permanent seating at Memorial Field (the athletic facility used by State College public schools). The real estate development firm, H.O. Smith and Sons, also prospered. Smith also served two terms as a State College borough councilman and was active in many organizations, including Boy Scouts of America and Sigma Phi Sigma fraternity. His son, Charles H. Smith, contributed the first donation to the Penn State Arboretum in 2007 by funding the H.O. Smith Botanic Gardens in his father's honor.

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Collection Overview

The collection consists of a variety of materials from H.O. Smith's time as a Penn State student and his subsequent architectural career. There are several pieces of art, including wood-burned sketches, still-life drawings, and a portrait, dating from the time Smith was a student. Also from his student days are photographs of Iota Chi Delta and Sigma Phi Sigma house parties, a Penn State shield, invitations to parties, and photographs of students. There are also diaries with transcriptions, photocopies of additional diary entries, photographs of the State College area, log books for mileage, travel, and expenses, and a history of Vallamont, an H.O. Smith and Sons real estate development in State College in 2002. The collection also includes blueprints and drawings for buildings he designed in the State College area, as well as some architectural tools, such as a tool kit, an edging ruler, slide rule, and scraper. In addition there are digital copies of Christmas cards drawn by Smith, an award for making Centre County a better place to live, and the 1915 diploma from Williamsport High School for his wife, Kathryn Deitrick Bower.

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Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

Copyright is retained by the creators of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Harry O. Smith Papers, PSUA 1348, Special Collections Library, Pennsylvania State University.

Processing Information

Processed by Special Collections staff.

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Controlled Access Headings

Personal Name(s)

  • Smith, Harry O. (Harry Ohmit)

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Collection Inventory

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