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Charles M. Smith Collection

Identifier: SMITH

Scope and Contents

This collection includes newspaper clippings/reviews of his books, correspondence, manuscripts with drafts and prepublished copies of his written work, legal documents, and a few photographs and a portrait. All twelve of his books are included in the collection with twelve religious texts he had in his personal collection.

This collection is organized into seven series:

    1. Biographical Material

    2. Correspondence

    3. Legal Documents

    4. Manuscripts

    5. Newspaper Clippings/Reviews

    6. Publications

    7. Special Formats


  • 1964 - 1986


Biographical / Historical

Charles Merrill Smith was born June 29th, 1918 in Shidler, Indiana. He received a Bachelor of Arts at Earlham College and later a Master of Divinity at Garrett Theological Seminary. As a Methodist minister, he served various parishes in Indiana, Illinois, and New Jersey, including four years as director of the Wesley Foundation and instructor at Purdue University. He was senior pastor at First United Methodst Church, Valparaiso, IN; Wesley United Methodist Church, Bloomington, IL; First Congregational Church, Montclair, NJ. He briefly retired as pastor but came out of retirement to serve at The United Methodist Church, Troy, KS. Charles received an honorary degree, Doctor of Divininity, from Depauw in 1958. Charles was a member of the Illinois Wesleyan Board of Trustees from 1958-1966. Charles also had a successful career as a writer. He wrote seven nonfiction books, three of them satires, and six detective fiction books. He is best known for his Reverend Randolph mystery series, starring Reverend “Con” Randolph, a former professional football player turned clergyman and detective in Chicago. Charles Merrill Smith died in 1986, shortly before he'd finished his last book, which was completed for him by his son Terrance Lore Smith.


7 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Physical Location

Collection is located in Special Collections.

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Illinois Wesleyan University Special Collections Repository

P.O. Box 2899
Illinois Wesleyan University
Bloomington IL 61701 US