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Hayashi Steinbeck collection

Identifier: SPEC-012

Scope and Contents

The collection contains the personal and professional papers of Dr. Tetsumaro Hayashi ranging in date from circa 1940 to 2009. Records include personal correspondence with friends, family, colleagues, and other Steinbeck scholars; both published and unpublished manuscripts; various accumulated professional and administrative papers; records from professional organizations and services, including the Steinbeck Society of America and the Steinbeck Quarterly journal; personal publications; research and teaching files; over 2500 written senryu poems and 31 short stories published in Japanese in the United States; scrapbooks; photographs and photograph albums; audiovisual recordings; born-digital computer files; and numerous books and monographs accumulated by Hayashi about Steinbeck and other subjects.


  • Creation: circa 1940-2009

Language of Materials

Materials in English and Japanese.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Archives and Special Collections, Ball State University Libraries, Muncie, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Archives and Special Collections.

Biographical Note

Tetsumaro Hayashi was born in Sakaide City, Japan on March 22, 1929. From childhood, Hayashi was expected to become a priest of the Jodo Shinshu Sect temple, which would have continued a family tradition of priesthood that stood at twenty generations. But after graduating from Okayama University in Japan and coming to the United States for graduate school, he chose to become a college professor. This resulted in his excommunication from his priestly family by not succeeding his father as the chief priest of the Seichoji Temple. As Hayashi commented in a 1984 interview, “I just became a teacher instead of a preacher. The two aren’t that different, really. Besides, I think I’m teaching with missionary zeal, so I don’t feel I’ve disappointed my father.” This “missionary zeal” was sparked during his graduate studies in American literature at the University of Florida. It was in Florida that Hayashi first developed an interest in John Steinbeck and his literature. Despite his other academic pursuits, including a master’s degree in library science from Kent State University and a later interest in Shakespeare and Robert Greene, Hayashi’s fascination with Steinbeck literature never waned.

After completing his library science degree at Kent State, Hayashi married Akiko Sakuratani in April 1960, and their son Richard was born in 1962. The following year, Hayashi pursued his academic interests in Steinbeck, Shakespeare, and Elizabethan Drama through the doctoral program at Kent State. While at Kent State, he founded the Steinbeck Bibliographical Society with friend and fellow Steinbeck scholar Preston Beyer in 1966. A year later, the organization was renamed the Steinbeck Society of America. Along with Beyer and other Steinbeck scholars, Hayashi founded the Steinbeck Newsletter (renamed Steinbeck Quarterly in 1969) in 1968 and personally financed its production during the first year. In addition to these endeavors, he completed a dissertation on English novelist/playwright Robert Greene that later provided the foundation for three books and numerous academic articles. By the time Hayashi accepted a teaching position at Ball State University in 1968, the basis for his professional caeer had been built. In 2002, Hayashi received the Distinguished English Alumnus Award from Kent State University's graduate program in English.

During his career at Ball State (which lasted until his retirement in 1993) Hayashi became recognized as one of the world’s leading educators on the work of Steinbeck. As the founder, director and eventual president of the Steinbeck Society of America, he developed the Steinbeck Quarterly into a commercial publication that eventually reached 44 countries. Hayashi developed several other projects under the Steinbeck Society umbrella as well, including the Steinbeck Monograph Series (lasting from 1971 to 1991) and the Steinbeck Essay Series (1986-1991). Hayashi’s leadership in Steinbeck studies also contributed to the 1970 establishment of the Steinbeck Collection in Archives and Special Collections at the Ball State University Libraries. In addition to these activities, Hayashi produced books, articles and monographs at a highly prolific rate, and maintained a strong reputation as a lecturer and an advisor to students. Although Steinbeck was the central subject of his research and teaching, he also taught and wrote about Shakespeare, Robert Greene, Hemingway, and other figures of British and American literature.

Hayashi followed his retirement from Ball State by accepting a teaching position at Kwassui Women’s College in Nagasaki, Japan in the fall of 1993. His “self-willed, happy, temporary ‘exodus’” continued in April 1996 as a Graduate Professor and Vice President at Yasuda Women’s University in Hiroshima City until 2001.


34 Cubic Feet (76 boxes)


Arranged in the following series and subseries:

Series 1: Correspondence, 1968-2009

Subseries 1.1: General correspondence, 1968-2009

Subseries 1.2: Special correspondence with Elaine Steinbeck, Elizabeth Otis, and others, 1968-2004

Series 2: Manuscripts, 1968-1999

Subseries 2.1: Hayashi personal manuscripts, 1973-1999

Subseries 2.2: Steinbeck Monograph Series manuscripts, 1971-1981

Subseries 2.3: Steinbeck Quarterly manuscript submissions, 1970-1994

Subseries 2.4: Steinbeck Quarterly issue manuscripts, 1968-1991

Series 3: Publications, 1957-2006

Subseries 3.1: Hayashi personal publications, 1957-circa 2000

Subseries 3.2: Ball State University affiliated publications, 1976-2006

Series 4: Senryu poetry, 1974-1990

Series 5: Research files, 1919-2012

Subseries 5.1: English language articles, 1919-2012

Subseries 5.2: Japanese language articles, 1957-2006

Subseries 5.3: Index cards, circa 1993

Series 6: Professional and administrative files, 1954-2014

Series 7: Steinbeck Quarterly subscriber files, undated

Series 8: Steinbeck Society of America records, 1967-1988

Series 9: Professional organizations and service, 1976-2007

Series 10: Teaching Files, 1940-2000

Subseries 10.1: Lecture notes and teaching materials, 1970-2000

Subseries 10.2: Annotated books, 1940-1986

Series 11: Scrapbooks, 1957-1993

Series 12: Photographs, 1983-1992

Series 13: Oversize materials, 1964-1997

Series 14: Artifacts, undated

Series 15: Audio recordings, 1953-1998

Subseries 15.1: Audio books, 1973-1996

Subseries 15.2: Lectures and discussions on tape, 1962-1998

Subseries 15.3: Oversize recordings, 1953-1975

Subseries 15.4: Film strips and audio cassettes, 1971-1976

Series 16: Video recordings, 1954-1998

Series 17: Digital records, circa 1989-1997

Custodial History

This collection was received by Archives and Special Collections as a donation from Professor Tetsumaro Hayashi and Mrs. Akiko Sukuratani Hayashi. Between 2001 and 2004, Dr. Hayashi and Mrs. Hayashi donated the Hayashi Steinbeck collection to the Ball State University Libraries in honor of Dr. and Mrs. John J Pruis and Dr. and Mrs. Richard W. Burkhart, and former Ball State Presidents and First Ladies. Archives and Special Collections continues to receive regular additions to the collection from Dr. Hayashi.


Further additions are expected.

Separated Materials

Books and monographs have been individually cataloged and added to the "Hayashi Steinbeck Collection and Archives" book collection available in Archives and Special Collections.

Processing Information

Many graduate and undergraduate student assistants and staff members of Archives and Special Collections have contributed to the arrangement and description of this collection. Student assistants who have worked to process the collection include graduate assistants Chris Martin and Anne Tonne, and undergraduate assistant Matthew Gorham. Archives and Special Collections staff members who have worked on the collection include Andrea Childers, Joan Dutour, and Brandon Pieczko.

Hayashi Steinbeck collection
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Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Alexander M. Bracken Library
2000 W. University Avenue
Muncie Indiana 47306 USA