- 109 words typed on a sheet of 11-inch high by 8-1/2 inch wide paper. Signed "Houston Peterson". The lower right edge of the paper is creased. The top edge is slightly darkened & the top left corner is creased with 2 pinholes where the letter has been stapled. Folded 3 times for mailing. Good.
Peterson writes to Rugg suggesting dates for a proposed lunch meeting with Rugg's group at Teacher's College; "I am exhausted, just having listened to the fifth game of the world's series while working on a lecture -- and tomorrow night I leave for a fortnight in the southwest. So this will be brief!..."
Houston Peterson [1897-1981] was a professor of philosophy at Rutgers University who specialized in the philosophy of literature. He was known for his dramatic lectures both in an out of the classroom and appeared frequently on radio and television in the 1950s. In one early television series, "The Mahatma and the Professor" he discussed philosophy and baseball with Branch Rickey, a former owner of the Brooklyn Dodgers. He was also known for his free forum at Cooper Union where leading thinkers and writers of the day, such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Thomas Mann and Margaret Mead, addressed as many as 54,000 people a year.
Harold Rugg [1886-1960] was an educational reformer associated with the Progressive education movement. Originally trained in civil engineering, he went on to study psychology, sociology and education at the University of Illinois. After teaching at the University of Chicago from 1915 to 1920, he took a job at the Columbia University Teachers College where he stayed until he retired in 1951.