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Introduction to the Papers of Harold Sherman

The papers of Harold M. Sherman consist of correspondence, publications, family papers, photographs, both audio and visual recordings and memorabilia. They reflect the long and prolific life of the author, lecturer and humanitarian, Harold Sherman, and reveal the family ties between Harold, his wife Martha and their two daughters, Mary and Marcia.

Harold Morrow Sherman wrote numerous books and magazine articles on a variety of subjects ranging from sports stories for boys to self-help books, and books dealing with psychic phenomena and ESP. He also wrote many plays, some of which were produced on Broadway. The screenplay for the movie Mark Twain produced by Warner Brothers was also to his credit, as well as the movie Are We Civilized. He was world renowned in the field of psychic research and conducted experiments with such prominent persons as Sir Hubert Wilkins, famous Arctic explorer, Dr. J.B. Rhine of Duke University who coined the terms parapsychology and ESP, and astronaut Edgar Mitchell. Not among the least of his accomplishments were his activities for the betterment of Stone County and Arkansas, his adopted state.

Harold Morrow Sherman was born July 13, 1898 in Traverse City, Michigan. Graduating in 1917 from Traverse City High School, he attended the University of Michigan for one semester until his career there was cut short by World War I. After a brief stint in the Army he moved to Detroit to do clerical work for the Ford Motor Company. He married Martha Bain, also of Traverse City, on September 26, 1920, and the couple moved to Marion, Indiana, where Sherman took a job as a newspaper reporter. Shortly afterward, the family, which now included daughter Mary, moved to New York where Sherman  launched his writing career as a popular author of boys' sport books. Later his work took him to Hollywood and Chicago, and finally to Arkansas. Most of Sherman's best-selling self-help books were written in their little home near Mountain View, where he continued to write and answer voluminous mail almost until his death on August 19, 1987 at age 89.

An energetic person, Harold Sherman was active in local, state and national politics and was avidly interested in world affairs. These interests and activities, however, did not prevent his helping individuals who sought his advice from around the world. Volumes of correspondence came from those in distress from all stations of life, and each letter was thoughtfully answered. The citizens of Stone County can be grateful to Harold Sherman for road improvement, the development of recreation areas and tourism and for electricity being brought to the Kahoka and Ben areas in 1950. In residence in Arkansas since 1947, the Shermans were contributors to, and staunch supporters of their adopted state.