Archives > Online Collection Guides


Annenberg School for Communication
Records, 1958 - 1990

UPB 11

4 Cubic ft.
Prepared by Kaiyi Chen

Access to collections is granted in accordance with the Protocols for the University Archives and Records Center.


Transferred to the Archives in 1984 and 1995.



The records of the Annenberg School for Communication have been arranged alphabetically by subject.



This school was founded as the "Annenberg School of Communications" by the Annenberg Fund, Inc., and the University of Pennsylvania in 1959. Walter H. Annenberg, president of the Fund, and Gaylord P. Harnwell, president of the University, jointly announced the decision in December 1958. The Fund underwrote the construction of a building and ten-year operating expenses for the School. The School was commissioned to "teach the art, science and techniques of mass communications, with particular emphasis on radio, television, and publishing." The School has been under a Joint Committee of Trustees composed of members of the University Trustees and the Trustees of the Annenberg Fund.

In 1966, the Annenberg School decided to establish a center to house the University's performing arts activities and communications research. The new center, called the Annenberg School Center for Communication Arts and Sciences, was dedicated in 1971. Although the Center was conceived as a unit under the administrative direction of the Annenberg School with the Center's Director of the Performing Arts as a member of the School faculty, both the Center and the School sensed over time that it would be more convenient for the Center to operate independently. In June 1975, the Center was finally separated from the School. After the annual giving from Annenberg ended in 1978, the Center was left very much on its own.

In 1990 the name of the school was changed from "Annenberg School of Communications" to "Annenberg School for Communication."



The collection documents the development of the Annenberg School for Communication since its founding in 1959. It includes correspondence between the head of the School (first entitled Director and then Dean) and the central administration of the University on the planning and organization of the School in its formative years; Dean's annual reports, 1959-1989; minutes of the Executive Committee of the School, 1970-1989; faculty meeting minutes, 1970-1989; budgets, 1959-1990, and the records of the School's Washington Program, 1982-1988.

Return to the top