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Frederick C. and Ruth P. Smith Papers

Identifier: MS-558

Content Description

The Frederick C. and Ruth P. Smith Papers span from 1951-2007 and include photographs, notes, correspondence, reports, and awards concerning Frederick Coe Smith’s work at the Huffman Manufacturing Company, The Dayton Foundation, Pitney Bowes, the Miami Valley Hospital. The collection also contains awards given to Frederick C. and Ruth P. Smith for their work in the Dayton area. Series I: The Huffman Manufacturing Company contains materials from 1951-1987 relating to the Huffman Manufacturing Company including photographs of employees at work and annual meetings with their families. It also includes correspondence, reports, articles, presentations, agenda, and notes concerning the operations of the Huffman Manufacturing Company and their search for a new president.

Series II: The Dayton Foundation spans from 1983-2006 and contains correspondence, mailers for fundraising, presentations, information on members of the governing board, reports, articles, minutes, information about the Ford Foundation Grant, information concerning Governor Voinovich’s speaking engagement at the Self-Sufficiency forum, newspaper clippings, notes, press releases, and publications concerning the business and creation of The Dayton Foundation and several programs. These programs include the Self-Sufficiency program, the Montgomery County Job Center, and the Out-of-Youth Task Force. The series also includes reports and levy information from Governor Voinovich’s welfare reform and the Society Key Bank merger.

Series III: Other Organizations spans from 1980-2007 and contains documents concerning Miami Valley Hospital and Pitney Bowes, including a photograph, and documents, such as newspaper clippings, publications, reports, dinner invitation and program, quarterly reports, a speech, press releases, correspondence, and business practices.

Series IV: Personal Materials spans from 1964-1996 and includes resumes from both Ruth P. Smith and Frederick C. Smith, a poem dedicated to Ruth P. Smith, awards, publications, a rough draft of personal memoirs, award acceptance speeches written by Frederick C. Smith, a photograph of Frederick C. Smith, and Charter Membership Card to the Victoria Theatre.


  • Creation: 1951-2007
  • Creation: Majority of material found within Bulk 1985-2000


Conditions Governing Access

Oversize materials in this collection are stored off-site; therefore, please notify us at least two days in advance if requesting oversize materials (marked as “OS”).

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply. Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the repository and the copyright holder.

Biographical / Historical

Frederick Coe Smith was born on June 3, 1916, and died on May 16, 2010, in Washington Township, Ohio, at the age of 93. He graduated from Cornell University and the Harvard School of business before marrying Ruth Pfeiffer on October 5, 1940. After graduation he entered the Army Air Corps as a Second Lieutenant in 1941 at the onset of World War II. Smith was assigned to Patterson Field to work on the budget committee during the war. Afterwards he was hired by the Huffman Manufacturing Company as a business manager and was eventually promoted to the position of Chairman of the Board. He retired from Huffy Corporation after 30 years of service in 1976 and devoted the remainder of his life to improving the quality of life for people in the Dayton area.

Frederick C. Smith served as the Chairman of the Board for The Dayton Foundation, Sinclair Community College, and Miami Valley Hospital as well as being the President of the United Way in Dayton. As Chairman of the Board for The Dayton Foundation Smith used his influence to help create and promote several programs for the residents of Montgomery County. These included The Public Education Fund which became the Alliance for Education, Project READ, Neighbor-to-Neighbor, The Dayton Self Sufficiency Program which included the creation of the Montgomery County Job Center, and The Dayton Foundation’s Out-of-School Youth Program. He was honored with several awards during his years in public service including the Citizen of the year in 1985 by the Ohio Association of Social Workers, as well as the National Association of Social Workers. Smith worked hard to help the Dayton Community through improving access to education.

Ruth Pfeiffer Smith was born on May 19, 1916, and passed away on April 14, 2004, at the age of 87 in Centerville, Ohio. She graduated from Wells College in Aurora, New York, in 1938 and was a member of Phi Beta Kappa. Mrs. Smith completed her Master’s degree in International Affairs in 1939 at Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy in Somerville Massachusetts. She then returned to the Packer Collegiate Institute, from which she had graduated in 1936, as a teacher. She married Frederick Coe Smith on October 5, 1940. After arriving in the Dayton area she became an active member of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Oakwood. She also helped found the Dayton Council on World Affairs, the Miami Valley School in Washington Township, and Planned Parenthood. She was a leading member of several organizations including the Junior League of Dayton and the Dayton Art Institute.


3 linear feet

Language of Materials



This collection is comprised of papers, photographs, and awards concerning Frederick Coe Smith’s work at the Huffman Manufacturing Company as President and Chairman of the Board from 1951 until his retirement in 1976, as well as his work in leadership positions of local civic organizations until 2007. These other organizations include The Dayton Foundation, Sinclair Community College, Miami Valley Hospital, and the United Way. At The Dayton Foundation Frederick C. Smith worked on several of their programs including The Dayton Self-Sufficiency, Out-of-School Youth, and the creation of the Montgomery County Job Center. The papers also include his work for Governor Voinovich’s welfare reform, the merger of Society Bank and Key Bank, and his work for Pitney Bowes. The collection also includes personal materials including a partial memoir, as well as resumes and awards from Frederick C. Smith and Ruth P. Smith.


This collection arranged in four series: Series I: Huffman Manufacturing Company 1951-1986; Series II: The Dayton Foundation 1983-2006; Series III: Other Organizations 1974-2007; Series IV: Personal Materials 1964-1996

Other Finding Aids

The finding aid is available on the Special Collections & Archives, Wright State University Libraries web site at It is also available in the OhioLINK Finding Aid Repository at

Immediate Source of Acquisition

This collection was donated to Special Collections and Archives from Frederick C. Smith’s estate in August 2010 by Dorotha Salmon.

Related Materials

Related Material: MS-516 Junior League of Dayton; MS-130 The Dayton Foundation; MS-358 Miami Valley School Records; MS-46 Dayton Council On World Affairs; Mss 005.D0057 Annual Reports Indiana University

Guide to the Frederick C. and Ruth P. Smith Papers (MS-558)
Amanda Norris
2017 Apr 10
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Special Collections and Archives
3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy
Dayton OH 45435-0001 USA