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Edmund F. Ball, "Genealogies of Progress" speech

 Collection — Folder: S2797
Identifier: S2797

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of the typed copy of a speech entitled “Genealogies of Progress,” delivered by Edmund F. Ball at a Chamber of Commerce Annual Meeting on October 20, 1981, in Muncie, Indiana. The speech traces the industrial development of Muncie, Indiana from 1870 to 1928. Among those mentioned are James Boyce, whose first investment in Muncie was a flax and bagging plant; George Carter, who found wealth in the first natural gas wells drilled in Delaware County; Frank Ball, who opened a glass plant in Muncie in 1888; Tom and Henry Warner, who pioneered Warner Gear Works and the Warner Electric Corporation; and William Crapo Durant, who died almost penniless. Early buildings of Muncie are mentioned: the Boyce Black, home of Muncie’s Commercial Club (forerunner of the Chamber of Commerce), and the Kirby House, “a strictly first-class hotel.” Also mentioned are Dr. and Mrs. Whitney’s hospital (which eventually became Ball Memorial Hospital) and the purchase of the Muncie Normal Institute (now Ball State University) by the Ball Brothers.


  • 1981/10/20

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Edmund Ferdinand Ball was born in Muncie, Indiana on January 8, 1905, the son of Edmund Burke and Bertha (Crosley) Ball. Ball attended Ashville (North Carolina) School (1920-23), Wabash College (1923-25), and Yale University, where he received the Ph.B. degree in 1928. He married Isabel Urban on January 11, 1936, by whom he had three children (Frank Edmund, Marilyn Bertha, and Frederick Crosley). Isabel Ball died in March of 1949. Ball’s second marriage was to Virginia Beall Stewart on June 28, 1952. This marriage produced two children: Robert Burke and Nancy Ball Teed. Following his first marriage, Ball served as a major in the United States Air Force.

As a businessman, Ball has remained identified with the Ball Corporation, serving as president (1948-1963, 1968-1970) and chairman of the board (1956-1969), among other positions. He has also been president of the Ball Brothers Foundation. Ball has been a member of the board of the National Association of Educational Broadcaster, a member of the board of directors of the Public Broadcasting Service, and a member of the National Council on Humanities. Additionally, he has been connected with various educational, community, youth and fraternal organizations, on both the local and national level, as a trustee or in other roles.


0.01 Cubic Feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a donation from Edmund F. Ball in 1981/11.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed in 1998 by Philip N. Williams. EAD finding aid created in 1998 by Philip N. Williams.
Edmund F. Ball, "Genealogies of Progress" speech
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.