Hickman Price, Jr. Papers: 1918-1968
Summary Information
Title: Hickman Price, Jr. Papers
Creator: Price, Hickman, 1911-
Inclusive dates: 1918-1968
Extent: 9 linear feet
Abstract:
Executive with the Kaiser-Frazer Corp., later with Willys Motor Inc. Corporate correspondence, including files concerning his work with Willys-Overland in Brazil; also materials relating to his interest in Latin America, including summary reports prepared for President-elect Kennedy in 1960; miscellaneous correspondence with Adlai Stevenson; and photographs.
Call number: 85345 Aa 2
Language: The materials are in English.
Repository: Bentley Historical Library
1150 Beal Ave.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-2113
Phone: 734-764-3482
Fax: 734-936-1333
e-mail: bentley.ref@umich.edu
Home Page: http://www.bentley.umich.edu/
Finding aid prepared by: Nika J. Kayne

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

The collection was donated by Hickman Price, Jr. (donor no. 4711) in 1975.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

To protect fragile audiovisual recordings (such as audio cassettes, film reels, and VHS tapes), the Bentley Historical Library has a policy of converting them to digital formats by a professional vendor whenever a researcher requests access. For more information, please see: http://bentley.umich.edu/research/duplication/.

Copyright:

Copyright is held by the Regents of the University of Michigan but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright is not held. Patrons are responsible for determining the appropriate use or reuse of materials.

Preferred Citation:

item, folder title, box no., Hickman Price, Jr. Papers, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan


Biography

Hickman Price, Jr. was born on August 14, 1911, in Nashville, Tennessee. He attended Taft School, Philips Exeter Academy, and Columbia University. From 1932 to 1934, he assisted his father as a young man farming wheat in the Texas Panhandle; he then moved on to become a member of the Bankers Trust Company in New York City. After leaving here in 1941, he was appointed chief of the American Economic Mission to the Belgian Congo. Upon returning in 1945, Price was named executive assistant to the president, Graham-Paige Motors Corp. From 1945 to 1952, he was vice president and director of the Kaiser-Frazer Corporation in Willow Run, Michigan. In 1952, Price became president and director of Willys Overland Export Corp., and Willys Overland of Canada, Ltd. In 1954, he was named to be vice president of Willys Motors Inc.

Hickman Price Jr. was a notable figure in the post-war automotive industry. Because of his leadership position with Kaiser-Frazer and Willys Overland, Price helped shape the character of the overseas car market. Widely respected as a businessman, Price was also an influential social and political figure. He was an active Democrat and a staunch supporter of Governor G. Mennen Williams of Michigan and of the presidential aspirations of Adlai Stevenson and John F. Kennedy. Often consulted on matters of relations between the United States and Brazil, Price shared his expertise with members of the Kennedy administration. He further served his country with his appointment as Assistant Secretary of Commerce, a position he held from 1961 to 1963.


Collection Scope and Content Note

The papers of Hickman Price, Jr. document the workings of Willys Overland, Inc. and Kaiser-Frazer Corp, the two corporations which merged in 1953 and which became the principal international producers of the Jeep. Because so much of Price's career was spent in the development of the South American market, the collection includes much information about the role of American businesses in less well-developed economies. The collection is only partially processed.

Subject Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the finding aid database and catalog of The Bentley Historical Library/University of Michigan. Researchers desiring additional information about related topics should search the catalog using these headings.


  • Automobile industry and trade -- Brazil.
  • Brazil.
  • Latin America.
  • South America.
  • Assembly-line methods.
  • Automobile industry.
  • Automobiles.
  • Brazil.
  • Industrial buildings.
  • Interiors.
  • Laborers.
  • Photographs.
  • Kaiser-Frazer Corp.
  • Kennedy, John F. (John Fitzgerald), 1917-1963.
  • Price, Hickman, 1911-
  • Willys-Overland Motors, Inc.
  • Price, Hickman, 1911-
  • Ramos, Joóao Farias.
  • Willys-Overland Motors, Inc.
  • Stevenson, Adlai E. (Adlai Ewing), 1900-1965.
Contents List
Request materials for use in the Bentley Library
Container / Location Title
 
Personal Materials [series]

Personal Materials consists of various family papers, speeches, reports, and financial information. Especially interesting among these materials are several letters addressed to Price from his father, Hickman Price, a prominent agriculturalist.

Box   1  
Price Family Papers 1918-1939
Box   1  
Speech entitled, "A Look Ahead in Agriculture" delivered at annual convention of the Farm Equipment Manufacturers 1930
Box   1  
Papers concerning agricultural inspection tour of the Soviet Union 1931-1932
Box   1  
Memorandum on German Companies prepared for Bankers Trust Co. 1934
Box   1  
Reports prepared for the Bankers Trust Co. 1938, 1940
Box   1  
Income Tax returns 1935-1940
 
Kaiser-Frazer Corporation Files [series]

The bulk of the collection relates to Price's activities as an executive with the Kaiser-Frazer Corporation. Most of this consists of outgoing correspondence, 1945-1956. Although much of this is fairly typical office correspondence, it does provide some indication of the daily routine of a high-level automobile executive.

Box   1  
Board of Director Minutes 1945-1952
Box   1  
Outgoing Correspondence June 1945-May 1947
Box   2  
Outgoing Correspondence June 1947-April 1948
Box   3  
Outgoing Correspondence August 1948-September 1949
Box   4  
Outgoing Correspondence October 1949-May 1951
Box   5  
Outgoing Correspondence June 1951-July 1953
Box   6  
Outgoing Correspondence April 1954-September 1956
 
Correspondence 1949-1960 [series]

The Correspondence series (1949-1960; 1 linear ft.) consists of letters dealing with business affairs, and social and personal affairs of Hickman Price, Jr. Included here is Price's correspondence as Assistant Secretary of Commerce, family correspondence, and social communications with business and political figures. The bulk of the correspondence relates to the business of Willys Overland and Kaiser-Frazer. This includes correspondence with suppliers and distributors, personnel, foreign branch offices, and domestic divisions within the corporation. A sizeable amount of the correspondence is in Portuguese, but the bulk is in English.

Box   7  
Accident 1957
Box   7  
Assistant Secretary of Commerce 1961-1963
Box   7  
Biography: John Ewing Price 1945-1946

(Includes information about Price's biography of his grandfather as submitted to The National Cyclopedia of American Biography)

 
Family Correspondence
Box   7  
1945-1951
Box   7  
1952-1954
Box   7  
1956
Box   7  
1957
Box   7  
1958-1959
Box   7  
1960
 
Ingoing and outgoing correspondence
Box   7  
1944-1945
Box   7  
1946
Box   7  
1947
Box   7  
1948-1949
Box   7  
1950
Box   7  
1951
Box   7  
1952 (2 folders)

(includes correspondence with Adlai Stevenson)

Box   7  
1953 (2 folders)
Box   7  
1954
Box   7  
1955-1956
Box   7  
1957 (2 folders)
Box   7  
1958-1959
Box   7  
1960
Box   7  
1961-1963
Box   7  
1968
Box   7  
Merger 1953

(Correspondence relating to the merger of Kaiser-Frazer and Willys Overland)

Box   7  
Product Demonstrations 1951
Box   7  
Undated

(Contains administrative and legal documents concerning the expansion of Willys Overland of Brazil; and procedures for obtaining the Douglas Long Beach Plant)

Box   7  
Williams, G. Mennen 1955-1959
 
Administrative 1947-1956 [series]

The Administrative series (1947-1956; .5 linear ft.) consists of records and minutes of various departmental divisions within Willys Overland and Kaiser-Frazer; official reports and policies and goals of the corporation; lists of cable codes designed to insure privacy in cabled messages; mailing lists; legal documents; and some organizational charts. The reports are especially interesting in that they portray the extent to which Willys Overland was involved in international economic and political affairs. Most of these reports were written by Price, and his predecessor Marcel DeMuller.

Box   8  
Cable Codes, Willys Over 1952
Box   8  
Export Policy and Service, Willys Over 1946-1952
Box   8  
Fleet Sales Program, Willys Over 1949-1953
Box   8  
Legal Documents and Agreements 1949-1959
Box   8  
Minutes, Willys Over 1947-1952
Box   8  
Organizational Charts undated
Box   8  
Proposed Farm Equipment, Willys Over 1948
 
Reports 1947-1963
 
DeMuller (1 folder)
Box   8  
"Export Sales Outlook," 1948
Box   8  
Speech on the Geneva Conference, New York Times Export Issue 1947
Box   8  
"World Report," 1947
 
Price (1 folder)
Box   8  
"Address At The Opening of the U.S.A. Exhibit in Rio," 1963
Box   8  
"American Week Speech, Brazilian Business," 1959
Box   8  
"An American Industrialist Speaks To Us"
Box   8  
"Background Notes and Suggestions of Policy on Latin America," 1960
Box   8  
"Holland, Germany, and Switzerland," 1948
Box   8  
"President-Elect Janio Quadros of Brazil," 1960
Box   8  
"Report on Middle East," 1947
Box   8  
"Report on India," 1947
Box   8  
"Survey of the Far East," 1947
Box   8  
Re United States cooperation on Brazilian economic life 1959
 
Financial 1945-1967 [series]

The Financial series (1945-1967; .5 linear ft.) is divided into two subseries: corporate and personal. The corporate subseries documents some of the financial affairs of Willys Overland and Kaiser-Frazer. Included are account books, budgetary information, and financial statements. This subseries is valuable for its financial overview of the two companies in the period from 1945 to 1952. To be found in these files are annual expenditures, product prices, and other figures that reflect typical transactions. The second subseries included here deals with personal finances and consists of personal receipts, tax information, and stocks and securities of Price and his family.

 
Corporate
 
Kaiser-Frazer
Box   8  
Account Books (3 volumes)
Box   8  
1945-1946
Box   8  
1947-1948
Box   8  
1949-1950
Box   8  
General Financial Statements 1949-1951
 
Willys Overland
Box   8  
Brazil Plant and Production Expenses 1954 (1 volume)
Box   8  
Cost Reduction Check List
Box   8  
Expense Vouchers 1950-1954 (1 volume)
 
Financial Statements (4 volumes)
Box   8  
September 1952
Box   8  
October 1952
Box   8  
November 1952
Box   8  
February 1953
Box   8  
General Financial Information
Box   8  
Price Bulletins 1952
Box   8  
Revised Budget 1952 (1 volume)
Box   8  
Supplier Agreements 1952 (1 volume)
 
Personal
Box   8  
General Family Finances 1946-1959
 
Income Tax, U.S. and Brazil
Box   8  
1955
Box   8  
1956
Box   8  
1957
Box   8  
1958
Box   8  
1959
Box   8  
1960
 
Published and Printed Information 1947-1959 [series]

Printed And Published Information (1947-1959; .5 linear ft.) consists in part of advertisements for the products of the Willys Overland and Kaiser-Frazer companies. This series documents the public face of a car company and the strategy it used to sell its product. Other materials in this series include magazines, pamphlets, product description brochures, and other materials published by Willys Overland advertising their products and outlining their ongoing activities.

 
Newspapers

(Contains a number of newspaper clippings, mostly from Brazilian papers, in Portuguese)

Box   9  
1946
Box   9  
1951
Box   9  
1955-1956
Box   9  
1957
Box   9  
1958 (2 folders)
Box   9  
1959
Box   9  
1961-1962
 
Product Materials 1947-1950
Box   9  
Export Sedan, 4-63 1947
Box   9  
Model MC 38 Military Jeep 1950
Box   9  
Technical Specifications, Jeep Commercial and Truck Chassis 1947
Box   9  
Published materials circa 1950-1960 (4 folders)
 
Scrapbooks 1950-1960
Box   9  
Scrapbook 1952 (1 volume)

(newspaper clippings in Portuguese)

Box   9  
Scrapbook 1957 (1 volume)

(newspaper clippings from the Sao Paulo paper in Brazil, in Portuguese)

Box   9  
Dauphine Project Report 1959 (1 volume)

(in Portuguese)

Box   9  
Assistant Secretary of Commerce Scrapbook

(includes congratulatory and laudatory letters addressed to Mr. Price at the conclusion of his post)

 
Photographs 1950-1960 [series]

The last series, Photographs (1950-1960; .5 linear ft.) consists of photographs of Hickman Price, Jr. and his business associates in many different countries, but especially in South America. Also to be found here are photos of Marcel DeMuller, the previous president of Willys Overland. Many vehicles produced by Willys Overland and Kaiser-Frazer are also documented here. The photographs are divided into six topical categories: DeMuller, Marcel; Family photos and portraits; Hickman Price, Jr. and Business Associates; Margaret Bayne Price; Production and Manufacture; and Vehicles.

Box   9  
DeMuller

(Previous president and general manager of Willys Overland, killed in 1952)

Box   9  
Family photos and portraits

(Includes photos of Price, Mrs. Price, and their two sons)

Box   9  
Hickman Price, Jr. and Business Associates

(Various pictures of Price with other businessmen, in both large and small groups, mostly South American)

Box   9  
Price, Margaret Bayne

(Photos of Mrs. Price receiving an award at South American ceremony; newspaper article attached, in Portuguese)

Box   9  
Production and Manufacture

(Documents various stages of the production and manufacture of the Willys Overland vehicles)

 
Vehicles
Box   9  
Jeeps
Box   9  
Jeep Truck
Box   9  
Triumph Sportscar