Skip to main content

William C. Wallace Papers (MS-563)

Identifier: MS-563

Scope and Contents

The William C. Wallace Papers contain information on William C. and Jean (Baker) Wallace and their daughter Mary (Wallace) Baker. Mary was responsible for collecting the papers. The collection consists primarily of correspondence, photographs, and genealogy information. There are family letters and over 200 photographs dating from the late nineteenth century to the late twentieth century.

Series I, William C. Wallace Family, contains information on the Wallace family and their antecedents, dating from 1887 to 1995. The materials are organized according to subject or family member. Materials include scrapbooks and yearbooks from William and Jean’s time at Coshocton High School; materials pertaining to William’s time serving in the Merchant Marines; legal documents; documents and newspapers from the Coshocton (OH) Tribune, where William was managing editor; papers of Fredrick and Lettie (Burns) Wallace, William’s parents; World War II correspondence between William and Jean; an oral history “The Story of My Life” by Gram Wallace (Jean Laird Wallace); and correspondence and engagement announcement of Mary (Wallace) Baker. Of particular note are a deck work log, and a medal and plaque received due to lifesaving efforts in 1932; an Olive Branch Commencement program dated 1894, the oldest original document in the collection from Lettie (Burbs) Wallace; a school program from 1887, the second oldest original document in the collection, in which Fredrick Wallace gave the “Class Prophecy”; correspondence between Fredrick Wallace and his mother during Fredrick’s time in the army in 1898; and the WWII correspondence of William and Jean Wallace, which is arranged in the original grouping order the materials were received upon donation.

Series II, Genealogy, contains documents from 1805 to 1995 created or accumulated by Jean (Laird) Wallace and Mary (Wallace) Baker primarily for the purpose of gathering a genealogical record, apparently with the goal of joining the Children of the American Revolution and Daughters of the American Revolution. This series includes information on the Burns, Cecil, Sweet, and Wallace families, with information dating circa 1700 to 1995; however, all copies in this series are from the twentieth century. There are lineages, family Bibles, obituaries and memoirs, and family history materials covering these families from approximately when they came to North America, as early as 1700, to 1995. Much of the correspondence in the collection is typed copies of originals; it is unknown if the originals still exist and if they do, where they are located. The series also contains over 200 photographs, including two tintypes. Photographs are a non-organized group of pictures from two albums and loose photographs in the collection. The earliest dated photograph is from April 12, 1912, but there are many that appear to be much earlier. The collection also includes two tintypes. Some photos are labeled with names, but many of these only have first names.


  • Creation: 1805-1995
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1927-1988


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”).

Due to preservation concerns, original audio and video materials cannot be accessed in the reading room. Patrons may have access to reference copies. Items without reference copies can be digitized at the request of a patron for the cost of creating a digital copy. Please provide us at least two (2) weeks advance notice if you would like to request an audio or video reference copy. Call (937) 775-2092 or e-mail us at Use of digitized content is subject to conditions governing use.

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 Note

William Clark Wallace was born on October 26, 1906, in Springfield, Clark County, OH, and died in Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH, on February 7, 1960, in Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH. His parents were Fred S. and Lettie Burns Wallace. They moved to Coshocton when William was very young and his father was made managing editor of the Coshocton Tribune. He graduated from Coshocton High School in 1923 and the New York State Nautical School in 1926.

After graduation from Nautical School, Wallace served in the Merchant Marine from 1926 to 1934. Due to a lack of trained navigators, he returned to active duty during World War II from 1941 to 1945. After his father died in 1934, Wallace returned to Coshocton and started at the Coshocton Tribune on the news staff. He became the managing editor when he return from World War II in 1945; he was the managing editor until ill health caused him to retire in 1959.

He married Jean Elizabeth Laird on September 18, 1937; they were married until his death on February 7, 1960. He was in a serious automobile accident in 1952, which left him partially disabled. William and Jean had one daughter, Mary Letitia (Wallace) Baker.

Mary Letitia (Wallace) Baker was born on December 14, 1939, in Coshocton, Coshocton County, OH, and died on June 6, 2011, in Ypsilanti, Washtenaw County, MI. She graduated from high school in Coshocton and received a degree in journalism from Ohio University. She was employed as an editor at a publishing firm in Cleveland, OH. She relocated to Ypsilanti, MI, in 1967 and was later a secretary at both Ypsilanti Public Schools and Eastern Michigan University.

Mary married James K. Baker about 1962 and they were married until her death. The couple had two children: Letitia Baker and Kyle Baker. Kyle and his wife Karen had three children: Molly, Katherine and Erin.


2.5 linear feet (3 full legal-size Hollinger boxes, 2 artifact box, and 2 over size files) : 46 legal-size folders and 2 over size folders

Language of Materials



The collection covers William C. Wallace, a Merchant Marine and newspaper editor from Coshocton, OH; as well as his wife, Jean E. (Laird) Wallace, and daughter Mary L. (Wallace) Baker. It consists of correspondence, photographs, and the genealogy of the Wallace family in Coshocton, Ohio. They are relatives of the Wallace family of Medway, OH (MS-92 in the Special Collections and Archives).


The collection is arranged in two series: Series I: William C. Wallace Family, 1887-1995; Series II: Genealogy, 1805-1995

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

This collection contains an original audio cassette tape, which must be digitized prior to access, due to preservation concerns.

Other Finding Aids

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


The William C. Wallace Papers were donated to the Wright State University Special Collections and Archives by James K. Baker, husband of Mary Letitia (Wallace) Baker on October 24, 2016.

Related Materials

MS-92: Wallace Family Papers Collection; MS-244: National Society, Daughters of the American Revolution (NSDAR) Jonathan Dayton Chapter

Processing Information

Many photographs were loose and placed in an album box. A loose-leaf notebook of newspaper clippings were taken out of the notebook and place in a file to help preserve the pages so as not to fall out of the notebook. One photo album’s binding had disintegrated and the leafs were placed in sleeves, which were placed in a file. Another photograph album was not in the state of deterioration of the previous one, but it has been placed in an enclosure.

Guide to the William C. Wallace Papers (MS-563)
Victoria Chadbourne
2017 Apr 14
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Edition statement
2017 Apr

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

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