Indiana University Bloomington

Lebanon High School Community Center named for Herman B Wells

Sally Shaw Tanselle, B.A. 1963

The Herman B Wells Chapter of Boone County of the I.U. Alumni Association joined with Lebanon, Indiana city and school officials on November 14, 2013 to dedicate the new Herman B Wells Community Center at Lebanon High School.

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Indiana University as the "Mother of College Presidents": Herman B Wells as Inheritor, Exemplar, and Agent

by James H. Capshew

Herman B Wells Distinguished Lecture of the Institute and Society for Advanced Study given on October 29, 2010; ©2011 Indiana University; 25pps

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Remembering Wells from the Early 60s

By Sally Shaw Tanselle, B.A. 1963

As Arbutus Administrations Editor for the 1961 Arbutus, I interviewed then President Wells.

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Herman B Wells
The Man Who Shaped Our World

by James Capshew, as told to Jeremy Shere

9 pps, published in Bloom Magazine
February/March, 2009

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Wells in Brown County

James Capshew

"By reason of some mysterious atmospheric richness, the hills and dales and wild, woodsy landscapes are bathed in a beauty of tints all their own, and this, coupled with an abundance of log cabins and the quaint living conditions, survivals of the pioneer period, made Brown County a wonderful find for those persons who are searching for the unusual in human life and nature." George Cottman, 1935.

Herman Wells found the hills of county Brown irresistible in the 1930s, and he rented a series of cabins to live in during the summer when he was a professor, dean, and president. This article by Cottman, published in the Indiana Magazine of History, gives some flavor of the place and its past.

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Encounters with Genius Loci
Herman B Wells at/and/of Indiana University

By James H Capshew

Perspectives on the History of Higher Education 28 (2011): 161-192 ©2001. ISBN:978-1-4128-1859-9

Iconic Leaders in Higher Education
Roger L. Geiger, editor
Penn State, Transaction Publishers - Rutgers

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Memories of a Former Student

By Sam Jacobs (IU class of 1965)

I was a freshman during Dr. Wells' final year as president, 1961-62.

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Podcast: Jim Capshew discusses his new biography of Herman B Wells

IU Press's Laura Baich speaks with IU faculty member James Capshew about his new biography. They discuss Capshew's experience writing the book and Dr. Wells's legacy to IU and higher education.

IU campus holds reminders of effort to honor World War I veterans

Mike Leonard

Published in the Bloomington Herald-Times, May 27, 2012

Memorial Day means different things to different people, obviously, from attention to the Indianapolis 500, “the Memorial Day Classic,” to the beginning of the summer season to reverence for those who fought and died in service to their country.

Often overlooked, and to many, unknown, is the considerable attention paid to World War I veterans on the Indiana University campus.

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Wells at 85

By Richard Gilbert, April 10, 1988

Published in the Bloomington Herald-Times, April 10, 1988.

Legendary former president remains a living symbol of IU (Cutline) Info: Almost from the time he began his association with IU as an undergraduate, Herman B Wells' long life has been devoted to the university. Fifty years ago, he became IU's president, having been a professor and dean. The secret of his phenomenal success and popularity as a leader may lie in his most elusive quality - charisma.

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Alma Pater: Herman B Wells and the Rise of Indiana University

By James H. Capshew

(Alma Pater: Latin=bounteous father [Almus Pater]; cf. Alma Mater)


The new century had not lost its shine when Herman B Wells was born in Jamestown, Indiana, in 1902. His father, Joseph Granville Wells, a teacher and farmer, was working all day in the fields on June 7, while his mother, Anna Bernice Wells, labored at home for several hours. When Granville returned home in the evening, his wife and newborn son greeted him. The parents could not have been prouder.

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Memories of Herman Wells

By Howard Gest, September 1979, London

I was on sabbatical leave doing research in the Biochemistry Department of Imperial College.  On Sunday, September 2, an article in the London Times announced that Sir Ranulph Twisleton-Wykeham-Fiennes, 3rd Baronet (OBE), his wife Ginny (plus their dog Charlie), two explorer colleagues and 14 volunteer team members would begin their Transglobe Expedition at midday, departing from Greenwich (near London).

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The Woodland Campus
Indiana University Bloomington - A Historic Walking Tour 

This brochure from IU includes history and information about the campus, including a tree identification section. Dr. Wells was instrumental in protecting the Indiana University woodland campus.

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