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Beth Schmidt Papers

 Collection
Identifier: Mss.Coll.#044

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of the papers of Beth Schmidt, former mayor of the Town of Elon. It includes documents created by Mayor Schmidt, as well as items collected by her, in the course of her career of service to the town. Topics covered by the collection include municipal business, personnel issues, town planning, construction projects, and important events in the history of the town. Items include correspondence, newspaper clippings, photographs, programs, speeches, certificates, budgets, job descriptions, legal documents, agendas, meeting minutes, newsletters, maps, and architectural drawings. This collection will be of interest to researchers of the history of Alamance County, the Town of Elon, its relationship with Elon College and Elon University, as well as those interested in the growth of small towns in North Carolina during the mid- to late- 20th century

Dates

  • 1930 - 2016

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research

Conditions Governing Use

The nature of the Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. The Archives and Special Collections of Belk Library claims only physical ownership of most materials. The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to the U.S. Copyright Law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research of otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

Biographical / Historical

Note: The numbers cited in parenthesis refer the researchers to the Series#: Folder# in which that name/topic will be found (example: 1:5) Early Years, Family Life, Education, and Death: * Beth Schmidt was born Roxie Elizabeth Denman on October 12, 1934, in Bryan, Texas. She was the daughter of a minister. Her family later moved to Roswell, New Mexico. Her mother died when she was a teenager; at that time, she dropped out of high school to help raise four younger siblings (7:26, 8:42) * She married Bill Hetzel, a career soldier in the U.S. Army, in 1954. During her time as an army wife, she raised two children and lived in thirteen cities in seven states and Germany (8:42) * Bill Hetzel left the military in 1971, and the Hetzel family moved to Burlington so that Bill could go into business with Beth's brother. Beth and Bill Hetzel later divorced (7:26) * In 1972, she received a general education diploma from the Technical Institute of Alamance, now Alamance Community College. She also took business courses at the school (8:25, 8:63) * She married John Schmidt in 1988. John Schmidt had been mayor of Elon between 1952 and 1960, and then again from 1962 to 1966. He died in 1994 (7:26, 8:63) *Beth Schmidt passed away on September 26, 2016. She was buried in Magnolia Cemetery in the Town of Elon, NC, on October 1, 2016 (9:7) [Text Wrapping Break] Career with Town of Elon: * On August 15, 1972, Schmidt was hired as the Town Clerk of the Town of Elon College, one of six town employees. Her duties included collecting taxes, taking minutes at the monthly town council meetings, and doing the town's books. She served as the police and fire dispatcher, and handled the town's water and sewer bills (1:2) * In 1982, Schmidt became the Town Manager after the town changed its charter to allow her to be appointed to the new position. To prepare for this position, she attended the Institute of Government at UNC-Chapel Hill to become certified in municipal government administration. During her time as Town Manager, the town acquired a new fire truck. She also oversaw the town's savings to construct a town hall. The hall was built and completed in 1989. She retired from the position of Town Manager the same year (1:2, 7:10, 8:63) * In 1994, Schmidt was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board of Alderman due to the death of Alderman Robert Olsen. In 1995, she was elected alderman and served two more years in this capacity (1:2, 7:10) * In 1997, Schmidt was elected Mayor of the Town of Elon College, replacing retiring Mayor Jerry Tolley. Schmidt, the first female mayor of Elon College, ran unopposed (7:26) * Schmidt was re-elected in 2001, serving a total of eight years. During her tenure, Mayor Schmidt negotiated intergovernmental agreements with the City of Burlington, the Town of Gibsonville, and Alamance County. She developed and maintained positive working relations with Elon University, the Twin Lakes community, and the Elon Homes for Children (1:2) * Among her accomplishments as mayor: the Town of Elon changed its form of government from Mayor/Council to Council/Manager. Furthermore, in 2001, when Elon College transitioned to Elon University, the Town of Elon College changed its name to the Town of Elon. In addition, the town realized a number of major capital programs, including the significant expansion of the water and sewer system, as well as the construction of the town's first park (1:2) * In 2004, the new town park was named after Schmidt to honor her many years of service to the Town of Elon (1:2) Other Activities and Honors: * In addition to her work for the Town of Elon, Schmidt has served as a deacon and trustee for the Elon Community Church, served on the church's Mission Board, and she also helped organize a support group for widows called "The LunchBunch" (1:2) *In 2008, Schmidt was awarded the Order of the Long Leaf Pine by the State of North Carolina, in recognition of her career of long public service (8:63)

Extent

3 Linear Feet (6 Archival Boxes)

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

This collection consists of the papers of Beth Schmidt, former mayor of the Town of Elon. It includes documents created by Mayor Schmidt, as well as items collected by her in the course of her career of service to the town. Topics covered by the collection include municipal business, personnel issues, town planning, construction projects, and important events in the history of the town. This collection will be of interest to researchers of the history of Alamance County, the Town of Elon, its relationship with Elon College and Elon University, as well as those interested in the growth of small towns in North Carolina during the mid- to late-20th century. This collection is arranged by series, where each decade represents a series. Each series is arranged chronologically and then alphabetically by type of material.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift. 2013. Additional Gift. 2016.

Related Materials

Please see University Archivist for other related matrials.

Processing Information

Processed by Katie Nash, March, 2014 Encoded by Katie Nash, April, 2014 Additional processing by Randall Bowman, September 2016

Author
Katie Nash
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Belk Library Archives & Special Collections Repository

Contact:
Belk Library, Room 204
Campus Box 2550
Elon U.S.A. - North Carolina 27244