Billy Graham Center

Records of the Campus-in-the-Woods - Collection 184

[Note: What follows is a description of the documents in this collection which are available for use at BGC Archives in Wheaton, Illinois, USA. The actual documents are not, in most cases, available online, only this description of them. Nor are they available for sale or rent.]

Since we are migrating our website to a new platform, we will no longer be updating this earlier version our site. Please visit our Archon database for online guide descriptions. In early 2018, look for our new site, currently under construction, linked in the BGC Archives section on the Library and Archives page. (12/11/2017)

Table of Contents

Brief Description of This Collection

Title Page and Restrictions

Historical Background of Campus-in-the-Woods and Biography of Lois N. Ottaway

An Essay on the Contents of the Collection (Scope and Content)

Other Information Which Will Be Helpful to the User of This Guide

List of Photographs in This Collection (Location Record)

List of the Contents of Boxes of Paper Records in This Collection (Container List)

Brief Description.
Personal correspondence, cards, resumes, and mission newsletters from a group of Canadian and American students who attended an Inter-Varsity summer camp, 1951, near Toronto, Canada. This collection documents an eighteen-year period of the lives of those who communicated with Lois Ottaway with information which was compiled by her for an informal, annual Campus-in-the-Woods Newsletter.

Collection 184 [April 4, 2001]
Campus-in-the-Woods, 1951; Newsletters
Records; 1961-1981
2 Boxes (DC; .8 cubic feet), Photographs


There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Historical Background

Campus-in-the-Woods was the name given to summer camps held by Canadian Inter-Varsity to train college and university students in discipling. The newsletter and correspondence in this collection were informal personal projects of Lois Ottaway, who with about one hundred others from the United States and Canada attended one of these camps in 1951 on Bracebridge Island, about 150 miles north of Toronto. Because of her interest and training in journalism, she undertook the publication of an annual mimeographed newsletter designed to keep many of these students in touch with each other. Campus-in-the-Woods newsletters originated from her home in Wheaton, Illinois.



Lois N. Ottaway was born October 9, 1931, in Wichita, Kansas. She received a B.S. degree in technical journalism in 1953 at Kansas State University, where she won the Fay N. Seaton scholarship, and was a member of Phi Kappa Phi, Mortar Board, Phi Alpha Mu honor societies. In 1958 she graduated from State University of Iowa with an M.A. in journalism. At the University she was editorial assistant for the Alumni Review and worked as Press Box Assistant during the football season. Between 1960 and 1980, Lois did special studies in theology at Wheaton College, Wheaton, Illinois.

Lois began her career in journalism on the Kansas State campus where she held a number of positions including business manager of Royal Purple, the yearbook, editor of K-Book, and collegiate editor of Who's Whoot, 4-H yearbook for the state of Kansas. The summer of 1951 she attended Campus-in-the-Woods, directed by a staff which included Ed Cornell, D. Stacey woods, H. Wilbur Sutherland, director of Canadian Inter-Varsity, and Edward C. Pentecost, missionary to Mexico, one of the principal speakers. In 1958 Lois accepted a position as assistant to the Director of the News Service at Wheaton College, a job which included advising for student publications and assisting the Director of Public Relations. From 1965 to 1981 she was manager of the News Service of the College.

[NOTE: In the Scope & Content section, the notation "folder 2-5" means box 2, folder 5.]

Scope and Content

The collection consists of nineteen folders arranged in chronological order for the years 1961 to 1981. Each folder contains selected correspondence to Ottaway for each year, which was then compiled by her for the annual Campus-in-the-Woods newsletter. Included are postcards and Christmas cards, Christmas letters, personal letters, mission newsletters, and a few newspaper clippings and pamphlets. They document a nineteen year span of the lives and careers of this group of former students who had attended the summer camp together. Also included is correspondence from Edward C. Pentecost, speaker at the camp.

Two-thirds of the correspondence is from those who were serving in foreign mission fields. A list of these families, in alphabetical order, the country in which they served, and the mission, if known, is included in this guide. Folders in which their correspondence can be found are noted. These letters contain details of daily life, facts about the people and country, the mission work, problems and successes with schooling, churches, evangelizing, translation, etc. Not all letters from each family are from the country listed because of furlough years, change of vocation, or return to the United States for other reasons.

A second group of letters is from individuals not in full-time Christian service but living in foreign countries where their professional lives have taken them. Comments in these letters range over reactions of Christian families living in cultures alien to them, their contacts with other Christians in those countries, and personal events of significance. A third group of families includes those who remained in this country or Canada, most of them involved with Christian work, either as vocation or avocation. Some of these are: professor of religion, Earlham College (Baer); staff member of Christian Home for Children (Hardwick); pastor, Calvary Bible Church (Jones); minister of Christian Education (Hoffman); tutor, PACE Institute, Cook County Jail (Ottoway); member of Christian Medical Society, Medical University of South Carolina (Rambo); Child Evangelism Follow-up, Chicago Billy Graham Crusade (Robinson).

Copies of Campus-in-the-Woods newsletters are found in folders 1-2 to 1-6, 1-8, 2-1, and 2-3.



The materials for this collection were received at the Center in August, 1980.

Accession 80-104
December 14, 1981
Frances L. Brocker
J. Nasgowitz


The following list includes family names of those for whom there is substantial correspondence, except as indicated.

Name Country Mission
Beattie, Dr. Lillian M. Congo Republic American Baptist Foreign Mission Society
Chapman, Robert and Dorothy Ethiopia Sudan Interior Mission
Corry, Kay
(folders 1-1, 1-2 only)
Philippines Wycliffe Bible Translators, Inc.
Dresser, Dr. C. Kenneth and Sylvia Indonesia The Evangelical Alliance Mission
Fletcher, Ruth
(folders 1-4, 1-7 only)
India Canadian Baptist Mission
Hughlett, John and Mary Jane Congo Republic,
Milne, William and Lucie Gobbel India C. P. Mission
Pentecost, Edward and Margaret --- ---
Piersma, Norman and Donna Colombia Latin America Mission
Rhodes, Dr. Charles and Marilyn Central African
Baptist Mid-Missions
Roberts, Alan and Doris
(folders 2-2 to 2-4, 2-9 only)
Kenya Africa Inland Mission
Secondino, Rosalie
(folders 1-3, 1-5 only)
Philippines Evangelical Free Church in America
Stewart, Ruth E. Algeria North Africa Mission
Torsch, Rev. Edward and Mary Africa, Brazil, Iran Presbyterian Mission
Wakefield, Gordon L. and
Peru Emmaus Bible Correspondence
School, Lima

Accession 80-104
Type of material: Photographs
The following items are located in the PHOTO FILE. Request by the boldfaced folder title at the beginning of each entry below.


DENNY, DUANE, BILLIE, AND FAMILY. Christmas card. 1 b&w.

GORDON, ROY, JUDITH, "GEFF". Christmas card. 1 color.

HOFFMAN, FAMILY. Christmas card. 1 color.

KNUDSON, RON, JANE, AND FAMILY. Christmas card. 1 b&w.

Box Folder Item
Missionary Newsletters, Correspondence, Cards
1 1 1961, n.d.
1 2 1962
1 3 1963
1 4 1964
1 5 1965
1 6 1966
1 7 1967
1 8 1968
1 9 1969
2 1 1970
2 2 1971
2 3 1972
2 4 1973
2 5 1974
2 6 1975
2 7 1976
2 8 1977
2 9 1978
2 10 1979, 1981

Send us a message

Return to BGC Archives Home Page
Last Revised: 4/4/01
Expiration: indefinite