Collection ID: 1987.0003

Collection context


The collection contains the research and publications of Evan Hill, journalism professor, and head of the journbalism department, at the University of Connecticut from 1965 to 1984.
14.4 Linear Feet


Acquisition information:
This collection was donated to Archives Special Collections at the Thomas J. Dodd Research Center in 1987.
Rules or conventions:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Scope and Content:

The collection contains the research and publications of Evan Hill, journalism professor, and head of the jourbalism department, at the University of Connecticut from 1965 to 1984. His papers include notes and research that he compiled about the history of the University of Connecticut, as well as his own correspondence. Included are published documents, unpublished manuscripts, biographies of university presidents and alumni, speeches, notebooks, reference books, photographs, annual reports, and other miscellaneous notes.

Biographical / Historical:

Evan Hill, born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvannia, was an emeritus professor of journalism at the University of Connecticut and the son of Marie Schmeltz Hill and Louis Hill. He received his Bachelor of Arts from Stanford University in 1948 and his Master of Science degree from Boston University in 1950. He married Priscilla Fiske in 1946.

As a young man, Hill worked as a reporter and editor on newspapers in the state of ashington and in the Alaska territory before World War II. In September 1941, he went on active duty with the Alaska National Guard as a second lieutenant. Hill volunteered for combat and fought with the 79th Infantry Division in Belgium and France. He was severely wounded in northern France and hospitalized for nearly four years, during which time he began to write non-fiction magazine articles, and sold an article on wounded soldiers to this first national publication, Liberty. Hill was discharged from the Army at the rank of captain.

Hill then served as editor of the Argus Champion, at that time a semi-weekly newspaper in Newport, N.H. After receiving his master's at Boston University, he stayed on for seven years as a journalism professor. In 1956, Hill joined the journalism faculty at Ohio State University, before beginning a seven-year stint working out of his office on Main Street in Newport as a fulltime freelance non-fiction magazine writer for the Saturday Evening Post, the Reader's Digest, Redbook, the New York Times Magazine, the Saturday Review, Yankee and others and reporting throughout the United States, Canada and Europe. His work has been translated into five languages. Hill also ghost-wrote books and magazines for U.S. cabinet officers, federal court judges and clergymen.

In 1965, Hill was appointed head of the journalism department at the University of Connecticut and served in that position until he retired in 1984. He published approximately 160 magazine articles and eight non-fiction books, twice with co-authors, including a college journalism textbook. Hill was an occasional consultant to several newspapers, including the Boston Globe and the Providence Journal. In 1950, he was the winner of the annual essay contest of the American Newspaper Publishers' Association, and Freedom Foundation award.

Hill was a director of The Day Publishing Company of New London, Connecticut and a trustee of the Bodenwein Foundation from 1978 to 1989, a trustee of the Richards Library in Newport and a member of the Newport School Board, the Budget Advisory committee and was an early member of the Newport Planning Board. For several years after his retirement he taught after school writing courses to Newport students and to adults in after-hours classes. Hill compiled a Historical Chronology of the History of Newport, designed to aid local historians, it is available on the web.

Hill was especially proud of the success of his former students, some of whom have been reporters and editors at the Boston Globe, New York Times, Time Magazine, the Wall Street Journal and other prominent publications. Many achieved executive positions in corporate public relations. Many of his students became his friends after their graduation and kept in touch with him until his death.

Hill died on Saturday April 10, 2010, at the age of ninety-one.


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