Recorded before a live audience, this episode enters the life and times of Erwin D. Canham, the longest-serving editor of The Christian Science Monitor. Over the past year, The Mary Baker Eddy Library has embarked on an extensive archival project to open Canham’s papers. Massive in size and varied in content, the collection reveals significant moments in Canham’s career, as well as the day-to-day business of running a major international newspaper. Canham’s time as Monitor editor (1941–1964) and editor-in-chief (1964–1974) spanned a period of profound world transformation. This collection provides unique insight into how, as an editor and national thought leader, Canham engaged with the events and issues surrounding World War II, postwar reconstruction and decolonization, McCarthyism, and the social revolutions of the 1960s.
The episode includes answers to questions from the live audience and looks at how Canham brought a spiritual dimension to the Monitor’s journalistic approach.
Clayton Jones is chief editorial writer of The Christian Science Monitor. He began his work with the newspaper 50 years ago and knew Erwin Canham personally. He has since held many positions at the Monitor, including Washington correspondent and Far East bureau chief. When Jones was foreign editor, the Monitor won a 1996 Pulitzer Prize for International Reporting.
Charlotte Lellman, archival processing assistant, spent the past year working on the Erwin D. Canham papers. Charlotte has a bachelor’s degree in French language and literature from Haverford College and a master’s in library and information science, with a concentration in archives management, from Simmons College. While at Haverford, she worked on a research project that led her to eighteenth century police records in a Paris archive an experience that sparked her interest in archival work with the goal of supporting historical research.
Alison Kobierski is manager of records management at The Mary Baker Eddy Library. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English and history from Mount Holyoke College and a master’s in library and information science, with a concentration in archives management, from Simmons College. She has been passionate about preserving history since becoming involved with her local historical society at an early age, and particularly enjoys ensuring that researchers have access to well-organized records. In her spare time, Kobierski helps manage a historic house museum in western Massachusetts.