The Faculty


Description: Description: 42-43 debate coach john ackley

John Ackley

John William Ackley, A.M. Assistant Professor of English, A.B., University of Redlands; A.M., University of Southern California, Instructor, and Director of Forensics


Description: Description: 1945-46 Ray Keesey

An additional faculty member perhaps Ray Keesey

Ray Keesey, A.M. Assistant Professor of English; A.B., A.M., Ohio University; Ohio State University; joins the school in 1945; becomes assistant professor in 1946; unclear when he leaves because in 1946 Newcomer arrives.


No picture

Ann Hirt, taught speech and dramatic arts.


Description: Description: 1946-47 dean davis

Dean Davis, DSR Faculty Advisor


Whitman News


I.                 Whitman College in 1944-1945

A.     The college added eight new professors to the faculty.

1.     In the social sciences, Philip M. Smith was added as a sociology professor.

2.     In letters and art, Louis F. Anderson was added to teach Greek, Charles J. Armstrong became the new Classics professor, Sterling P. Kincaid was added to teach English, Ann Hirt would teach speech and dramatic art, and Ernest Stowell would teach modern languages.

3.     In basic sciences, Glenn J. Woodward was added to the staff to teach chemistry.

B.     The war had left ASWC a mess.

1.     Fred Stevens should have been the student body president, but he enlisted in the Marines.

2.     Ivan Ferguson should have been secretary, but he transferred to Midshipmen’s School.

3.     Vice President Liz Tertsagain took over the executive post.

4.     Bonnie Busch took over vice presidential and secretarial duties.

C.    Winslow S. Anderson was the college president, having taken over for the deceased Walter Bratton two years before.

D.    John Ackley was the debate coach.

II.               At Whitman College

A.     The college was redesigned to accommodate wartime conditions.

1.     Accelerated programs allowed for graduation in three years.

2.     Navy V-12 training programs readied our courageous young men to war. 327 of Whitman’s 399 male students were enrolled.

3.     The school went on a trimester schedule in 1943.

4.     The war left student programs virtually absent of men. Most yearbook pictures were filled with women and little or no men.

B.     ASWC moved into its new home called The Cabin, a little white house near a neighborhood church.

C.    The Pioneer ran ads for Coca-Cola and dresses which looked ready for a high school prom.

D.    As usual, green dinks were required on campus and the rule was enforced by a group, including most of the linemen. Just before Thanksgiving, the Freshmen got to burn their green dinks.


Description: Description: 42-43 debate coach john ackley

John W. Ackley, "Uncle John", Debate coach.

As Whitman's debate coach Uncle John Ackley has molded many a trembling freshman into a creditable debater. His office overflows with students who come in to "talk it over with coach" and his genial smile reflects his enthusiasm for Whitman and its students. Whitman has held an enviable debate record under his able guidance and we wish him many more years of equal success.


Prizes awarded at this time

The John Brining Prizes in Extemporaneous Speaking of $12.50 each are awarded to the best man and woman speakers in a speaking contest that is open to all members of the freshman class.


The Delta Gamma Reading Prizes of $25, $15, and $10 are awarded at Commencement to the students who read during the year with intelligence and appreciation the largest amount of good literature, apart from their required college work.


The Dovell-Gose Prizes in Oratory of $30 and $20 are awarded at Commencement to students upon the basis of a contest in oratory. The contest is open to sophomores, juniors, and seniors.


The Austin Rice Debate Trophy is awarded to the champion women's intramural debate team.


The John W. Ackley Debate Trophy is awarded to the champion men's intramural debate team.


The Hugh Elmer Brown Debate Trophy is awarded to the man who is adjudged to be the best intramural debater.


Speech Courses within the English Department

Discussion class is added.


ENGLISH 1 or 2. Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing. An introduction to the English department basics course.

ENGLISH 15 or 16. Orientation and Speaking, A public speaking course with a diction emphasis.

ENGLISH 27. Reading Aloud.

ENGLISH 29. Theory and Practice of Discussion.

ENGLISH 46. Oral Interpretation.

ENGLISH 47. Argumentation and Debate.

ENGLISH 56. Public Speaking.

ENGLISH 57-58. Dramatic Interpretation

ENGLISH 73-74. Radio Speech

ENGLISH 75 or 76. Advanced Public Speaking.




Speech and Dramatic Art


29 Theory and Practice of Discussion 2 or 3 hours, one trimester. Ackley

The theory and practice of informal group discussion, panel discussion, the symposium, and the forum. Current problems are studied through discussion techniques.


The John Brining Prizes in Freshman Extemporaneous Speaking—

Emily Elizabeth Stanton

Harry Bragg


The Dovell-Gose Prizes in Oratory—

Katherine Rena Webster

Ralph Emerson Breshears



World News


III.              In the World

A.     The tide of World War II was turning. The Normandy invasion occurred and Germany was beginning to lose the war.

B.     The three big allies had been drawing up plans for the post-war organization of the world, but President Franklin D. Roosevelt would die in office, leaving the work to Harry S. Truman.

C.    In the Pacific, MacArthur and the American forces were fighting their way toward the Philippines.

                        D.        As the 1944-45 year begins:

                                    1.         Roosevelt and Truman were running for reelection against Dewey

                                    2.         Top Films:

                                                a.         Hail the Conquering Hero (a make-believe Marine hero comes home)

                                                b.         Kismet (Ronald Colman & Marlene Dietrich)

                                    3.         Best Selling Books:

                                                a.         The Razor's Edge by W. Somerset Maugham

                                                b.         The Rob by Lloyd C. Douglas

                                    4.         Top 5 Popular Songs:

                                                a.         I'll Walk Alone

                                                b.         Swingin' on a Star

                                                c.         I'll be Seein' You

                                                d.         It Had to Be You

                                                e.         You is or is you ain't

                                    5.         Byron Nelson won the Nashville tournament (total purse, $10,000). He won several other tournaments that year.

                                    6.         Pravda reports that soldiers who have "all outward signs of death" have been "returned to life" by pumping air directly into the lungs and by manually pumping the heart--CPR was invented

                                    7.         Harvard Medical school decides to admit women

                                    8.         The St. Louis Browns played the St. Louis Cardinals for the World Series--the Cardinals won the series 4 games to 2.

                                    9.         The US Army Air Force reported that it had flown 1,500,251 sorties.

                                    10.       Tokyo and Berlin are both being attacked.

                                    11.       In a speech in early November, Roosevelt reports that the war against Japan is many months ahead of schedule, that the European front is on track, and that the Republican party threatens to "build a fence between us and the peace."

                                    12.       General MacArthur captured Capas in the Philippines (the "Batan death march" prison camp location)

                                    13.       Near the end of the academic year:

                                                a.         Roosevelt dies on April 12

                                                b.         Truman takes over

                                                c.         May 2, Italy surrenders and Berlin falls

                                                d.         May 4, German Army surrenders

                                                e.         May 7, unconditional German surrender

                                                f.          In August, Russia declares war on Japan

                                                g.         August 6, Truman announces the development and first use of the Atomic bomb against Hiroshima


Team Awards

IV.             Debate at Whitman

A.     The intercollegiate topic was "Resolved that the federal government should enact legislation requiring compulsory arbitration of all labor disputes when voluntary means have failed.”

B.     In intramural debate, Elaine Finkenstein and Emily Stanton won the women’s competition. George Neiswanger and David Holstead won the men’s competiton.

C.    Intercollegiate tournaments

1.     Whitman hosted and won the triangular debates.

2.     Four teams attended the Underclassmen’s Tournament in Moscow, Idaho, and two of the teams had records of 3-1.

3.     At the Linfield Tournament in Oregon, four first-year teams tied for second place in regular debate, while Mark Abernathy and Helen Hurley tied for first place in one-person competition.

4.     Ralph Breshears won the state championship in oratory.

5.     Breshears, Abernathy, and Hurley all attended regional competition in Los Angeles against 70 other teams in the west. Breshears and Abernathy both placed second in oratory while Hurley was a finalist in extemporaneous speaking.


1. John Ackley

2. Debate Manager: Jo Parsons

E. SCHEDULE appears to have included:

1. Triangular Debates Dec. 8 and 9‑‑Whitman won 9, Idaho 9 and Wash. St. Coll. 6‑‑meaning Whitman won "The Cup" because we won or tied for the win in 3 of these competitions.

2. Washington St. Jan. 13‑‑The "Underclass" Tournament

3. Linfield Late Feb.‑14th annual tournament

4. Pepperdine‑‑early April‑‑Pacific Forensic League Meeting Apr. 19, 20, 21--Harry Bragg, previous year's winner of the John Brining contest was to attend. The meeting consists of progression discussions and extempore speaking.




Leslie Smith and Ralph Breshears

Pat King and Betty Tobey (went 8‑0 and won first place at Pepperdine; won first place in women's division at the Linfield tournament)

Dorothy Corkhill and Phyllis Garrison

Pat Berg and Adele Harris



Patty Latourette and Emily Stanton

Dewey Mulnolland and Charles Rawe or Ran

Laurie Johnson and Ann Westfall

Dewey Mulholland and Charles Ran

Bernadine Smith and Jane McMullen

Phyllis Garrison and Louise Dekker

Harold Howard and Sayre Stevens



Janice Nye was the President; Ye Talke members served as chairmen of the triangular debates



John Brining Contest was an extemp contest held on campus. Advisors/consultants included Mrs. WR Davis, John Ackley and Dr. Stirling Kincaid. Ackley managed the competition.

Finalists were Phyllis Garrison, Shirley Hayes, Laurie Johnson, Mary Lee Masterson, Sherman Mitchell, Henry Pappas, Gordon Reiss, and Frank Schnabel.



Independent men won. Independent women and Alpha Chi Omega women tied for first. Women's competition started in the fall; Men's intramural was to start immediately after the Jan. 13 Washington State tournament.



DSR chapter started here on campus in 1922; Ralph Breshears was the Whitman chapter president.


I. Some key facts about forensics in 1942-1945

1.     In 1942-43 there were about 4 regular individual events (extemp, oratory, after dinner, and impromptu)

2.     In 1943 there was primarily one type of debate--oxford and the innovation of Lincoln/Douglas.

3.     In 1945 Whitman celebrated its 163rd triangular debate.

4.     In 1943 Whitman attended 4 tournaments in 4 states.

5.     In 1943 a big tournament attracted 30 schools and 50 debate teams.