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Board of Trustees/Council of Trustees of West Chester University Records

Identifier: 021
This collection is divided into 5 Series: Meeting Minutes, Business, Correspondence, Reports, and Public Relations. Series 1: Meeting Minutes (1869-present) contains the minutes, agendas, and documents that accompany the meetings held by the Council or Board of Trustees. Series 2: Business (1870-2012) contains all items pertaining to the professional and operational concerns of the Trustees. This series is divided into four subseries: By-Laws, Business Documents, Legal Documents, and Policies. The By-Laws and Policies subseries pertain to rules and regulations that the Trustees created to govern the organization. Business Documents and Legal Documents include materials produced or observed by the Trustees and were used to to carry out procedures, recommendations, proposals, etc. to uphold the wellness of the school. Series 3: Correspondence (1874-1993) contains letters either to, from, or between the Trustees and announcements. Many involve correspondence to the President of the University at the time seeking approval for actions. This also contains Announcements, which contains announcements of meeting times and dates. This series is divided into two subseries: Announcements and Letters. Series 4: Reports (1876-1982) contains reports of special committees organized within the group to investigate important actions and decisions effecting operations at the school, along with budget reports and other organized documents that were delivered to or generated by the Trustees. Series 5: Public Relations (1910-1992) contains items which the Trustees released to the public. There are two subseries, Events and Publications. The events are mostly invitations to receptions and other events held by the Trustees. Publications include newspaper articles written about actions of the Trustees as well as informational publications created by the Trustees for public knowledge. Series 6: Collection Information (1967-1993) contains miscellaneous materials related to the collection.


  • 1870-2012

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state rights to privacy laws and regulations. Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which West Chester University assumes no responsibility.


44.00 Boxes


The Council of Trustees at West Chester University was formally founded in 1871 when the Trustees from the West Chester Academy officially established the West Chester State Normal School and became the new school’s Board of Trustees.  The earliest materials in this collection contain the minutes of the West Chester Academy Board of Trustees, who worked with interested West Chester citizens to found the Normal School Each University under the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education has a Board or Council of Trustees to carry out policies and handle local issues.  This collection includes meeting minutes, By-Laws, business and legal documents, policies, announcements, letters, reports, events, and publications produced by or involving the Trustees.

Arrangement See individual series descriptions.

Biographical or Historical Information

The Council of Trustees is a group of eleven people, at least two of which are alumni and one of which is a student, who are elected by the Governor of Pennsylvania and are to uphold the Board of Governor’s policies as well as deal with local issues.  Members serve for six-year terms and can be reappointed.  The Chancellor of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) is an ex-officio member of every PASSHE school’s Council of Trustees.  According to WCU Council of Trustees website:

The duties, responsibilities, and powers of West Chester University’s Council of Trustees are set by Act 188.  The Council meets at least five times a year and publishes an agenda prior to each meeting.  Meetings are open to the public.  The Council reflects the University’s diverse population and possesses an array of professional expertise.  Currently six members are alumni who provide a sense of University history and context.

The trustees are an active, valuable supporting force for West Chester University.  The President frequently consults with trustees on University issues and initiatives important to the future success of the University.  The Council of Trustees greatly assists with advancing the reputation of West Chester University and representing WCU throughout the state and nation.

                                                                          From:,12/04/2015. In April 1869, the Board of Trustees of the now-defunct West Chester Academy met to discuss establishing a Normal School at West Chester.  By August 1869, the board would hold a meeting with West Chester citizens and under the direction of Dr. William Darlington, created a three-part resolution that: recognized the importance and need to establish a State Normal School in West Chester; transferred the property, museum, library, and Trustees of the West Chester Academy to the proposed Normal School; and established a committee to work with the board to establish the school by selling stocks.  At a meeting on September 9, 1869, a set of agreements was adopted, which began the transition of the West Chester Academy to the West Chester State Normal School. By January 1870, a Board of Managers was established to oversee the business of moving from an Academy to a Normal School as well as purchasing land and hiring an architect to build the school.  An act by Chester County legislature on March 10, 1870 officially authorized the Board of Trustees and Contributors to the West Chester Academy to become the West Chester State Normal School.  By February 22, 1871, land was purchased and a building constructed and the Normal School was officially listed as a State Normal School for the First District.  On May 1, 1871, the stockholders met to elect the first Board of Trustees for West Chester State Normal School.  These nine men were: Dr. Wilmer Worthington, William S. Kirk, R.T. Cornwell, John G. Robinson, William E. Moore, Marshall B. Hickman, William B. Waddell, Evan Rodgers, and Hosiah Hoopes. The Board of Trustees was renamed to the Council of Trustees in 1984.  The Trustees hold meetings numerous times a year to carry out business, recommendations, policy changes, and approvals in order to better West Chester University of Pennsylvania.Note written by Taylor L. Getty

Processing Information

Processed by Taylor L. Getty, 2016.
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Repository Details

Part of the West Chester University Archives Repository