Guide to the J. Walter Thompson Company. Carroll Carroll Papers, 1934-1979 and undated
Founded in 1864, the J. Walter Thompson Company (JWT) is one of the largest and oldest enduring advertising agencies in the United States. Carroll Carroll was the Editorial Supervisor of JWT radio programs, working in both the New York and Hollywood offices. The Carroll Carroll Papers cover the years 1934-1979, with the bulk of materials covering the periods 1934-1956 and 1967-1968, when he worked as Editorial Supervisor of JWT radio programs. The collection consists of correspondence between Carroll and: other JWT employees; JWT clients; the Office of War Information; radio personalities; and family members. Also includes memoranda; scripts for radio programs; short announcements; three episode scripts for a proposed television series called Madison Avenue; speeches given at JWT meetings and dinners; and lead sheets for advertising jingles written by Carroll and others. Also includes a cassette recording and transcript of a biographical interview of Carroll, conducted by Les Tremayne in 1973. Companies and products represented in the collection include Ford, 7-Up, Chase & Sanborn, Shell, Kraft, Rinso and Kodak.
- Collection Number
- J. Walter Thompson Company. Carroll Carroll papers
- 1934-1979 and undated
- J. Walter Thompson Company
- 1 Linear Feet, 750 Items
- David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
- Material in English
The Carroll Carroll Papers cover the years 1934-1979, with the bulk of materials covering the periods 1934-1956 and 1967-1968, during which he worked as Editorial Supervisor of JWT radio programs. The collection consists of correspondence between Carroll and: other JWT employees; JWT clients; the Office of War Information; radio personalities; and family members. Also includes memoranda; scripts for radio programs; short announcements; three episode scripts for a proposed television series called Madison Avenue; speeches given at JWT meetings and dinners; and lead sheets for advertising jingles written by Carroll and others. Also contains a cassette recording and transcript of a biographical interview of Carroll, conducted by Les Tremayne in 1973. Companies and products represented in the collection include Ford, 7-Up, Chase & Sanborn, Shell, Kraft, Rinso and Kodak.
General Files were taken from a folder of miscellaneous memoranda and newsletters. Biographical materials were placed in a separate folder. The correspondence files arrived already foldered, labeled and arranged chronologically. Folders were replaced, but labels and order were retained. The scripts and speeches music arrived in unlabeled folders or bound and labeled report folders. Extended scripts and speeches in unlabeled folders were foldered and labeled according to title. Shorter scripts were placed in a folder of miscellaneous scripts. Scripts in bound report folders were removed from binding and placed in individual folders, with original labels retained. Sheet music arrived in one folder, with no obvious arrangement. Musical materials were foldered by song, and arranged by author and date.
The collection is organized into six series: General Files, Correspondence; Scripts; Speeches; Interviews; and Sheet music. The General Files include miscellaneous memoranda, newsletters, flyers and thumbnail biographical sketches of JWT accumulated during his second tenure at the company's New York office.
Access to the Collection
Collection is open for research.
Original audiocassettes are closed to research for preservation reasons; however, there is a transcript of the tape contents in the collection. Contact Research Services for more information.
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How to Cite
[Identification of item], J. Walter Thompson Company. Carroll Carroll Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
Contains miscellaneous memoranda and newsletters accumulated during Carroll's second tenure at JWT. Also includes various thumbnail biographies of Carroll, written near the time of his 1968 retirement from JWT. Series was compiled from folders of miscellaneous materials.
Contains correspondence between Carroll Carroll, his JWT associates, clients and affiliated artists. Also includes correspondence between Carroll and the Office of War Information during the years 1942-1944 relating to radio programs that Carroll developed for entertaining the U.S. troops. An index of the letters, compiled in 1970, appears at the beginning of the series. Original folder titles and chronological arrangement were maintained.
Contains scripts used for radio and television series, as well as for brief radio announcements and humorous skits to be circulated among JWT employees. Includes scripts for three episodes of a proposed fictional television series, "Madison Avenue," which portrayed the lives of advertising executives in New York City. Items were removed from report folder covers, with original labels maintained, and organized alphabetically.
Series contains speeches Carroll wrote for JWT meetings and company dinners. Original folder titles were maintained and materials were arranged alphabetically.
Includes cassette tape (closed to researchers for preservation reasons) and printed transcript of a 14 February 1973 interview of Carroll Carroll by Les Tremayne.
Includes lead sheets for advertising jingles with words and music primarily written by Carroll Carroll and Dick Manning. Includes some songs written by Carroll in collaboration with Manning and David Fleishhacker. Companies represented include Chase & Sanborn, Kodak, Rinso, Red Cross, Ford, 7-Up, and Shell. Items arrived in a single unlabeled folder. They were placed in individual folders by song and arranged alphabetically by author and title.
Born Carroll S. Weinschenk, Bronx, N.Y.
Chief copy writer, Sigmund Tann Agency
Free-lance magazine writer
Joined JWT New York office
Created and wrote Kraft Music Hour for JWT
Left JWT, became Vice President, Ward Wheelock advertising agency, Hollywood office
Returned to JWT, New York office
Retired from JWT
Instructor, New School for Social Research in New York, N.Y.
Died, West Hollywood, Calif.
Carroll Carroll grew up in Harlem, Buffalo, and Chicago. After graduating from Chicago's Hyde Park High School, he started work as chief copy writer at the advertising agency of Sigmund Tann, and stayed five years. Beginning in 1926, he worked as a freelance writer for several publications: the New Yorker, Life, Judge, College Humor, the Saturday Evening Post, and the New York World. He also ran a column in the magazine Canada Goblin, wrote review sketches for Garrick Gaieties, and was under contract to T. B. Harms as a lyric writer. For several years, he also contributed a rhymed motion picture review called Cinemetric Review to the Monday evening edition of New York Evening Sun.
In 1932, Carroll joined JWT, and subsequently went on the road with a JWT radio program featuring George Burns, Gracie Allen and Guy Lombardo. He eventually became Editorial Supervisor of all JWT radio shows, and helped produce many JWT comedy and variety shows, including Chase & Sanborn with Eddie Cantor. During his tenure at the JWT New York office, he also created and wrote a full hour variety program with Al Jolson known as Shell Chateau, and collaborated on the Rudy Vallee Hour. In 1934, he created and wrote the Kraft Music Hall, when it featured Paul Whiteman and Deems Taylor, and moved to Los Angeles to continue it when Bing Crosby took over. In Hollywood, he wrote radio shows for Kraft, Ford, Shell, Old Gold, Elgin, Swift, Lux and Standard Brands.
In 1946, Carroll left JWT to become Vice President in charge of the Hollywood office of the Ward Wheelock Advertising Agency; there, he wrote and produced radio shows for Bob Crosby and Walter O'Keefe. He returned to JWT at the New York office in 1957. At that point, he produced three Chase & Sanborn hour-long NBC specials for radio, worked with print and broadcast advertising for accounts of Kodak, Shell, Listerine, Ford, Lever Brothers, Liggett & Myers, American Petroleum Institute, Irving Trust Company, and Warner-Lambert.
Carroll also ghost-wrote two books for Bob Hope: I Never Left Home; and So This Is Peace; and wrote the Lux Radio Theatre adaptation of I Never Left Home. He created many television specials, including the Judy Garland Special and the 20th Century Fox Hour. He retired from JWT in 1968.
Biographical Sketch from Original Finding Aid
In a letter to Variety editor Abel Green on Dec. 20, 1946, Carroll Carroll (1902-) defended the role of advertising men in radio. Responding to the frequent suggestion that responsibility for radio ought to return to the “showmen,” Carroll wrote: “National advertisers and their agents do, today, exercise about 90% of the showmanship in radio...they would not be doing this if they were not better showmen and business men than those from whom they took over.” A showman himself, Carroll's opinions are based on fourteen years of experience as a writer for some of the most popular radio programs of the day. He was involved with the young medium of radio when advertising personnel were largely responsible for the development, writing, and production of programs.
Becoming a member of the Broadcasting Department of the J. Walter Thompson Company in 1932, Carroll immediately went on the road with the “Burns and Allen--Guy Lombardo” program, an association which lasted for several years. During radio's golden age, Carroll Carroll was involved with all of J. Walter Thompson Company's comedy and variety shows, including: the “Chase and Sanborn Hour” ; the “Rudy Vallee Hour” ; and “Shell Chateau.” He worked with such stars as Eddie Cantor, Joe Penner, Al Jolson, Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy.
In 1934 Carroll Carroll created and wrote the “Kraft Music Hall” featuring Paul Whiteman. When the program moved to Hollywood and Bing Crosby assumed the starring role in 1936, Carroll also moved west and took charge. For the next ten years he wrote for the “Kraft Music Hall,” establishing a continuity of programming that made Crosby's style familiar and likeable--the essential factors, Carroll maintained, to the program's success.
During World War II “Kraft Music Hall” became a vehicle through which the government programs and policies were regularly announced. Participation in the war effort included the promotion of War Bonds, the Junior Red Cross, and WAAC enlistment. Credit for “Kraft Music Hall's” role in providing the American people with information about the War and encouraging enthusiasm for government campaigns, was given to Bing Crosby and Carroll Carroll. In addition to writing the scripts for “Kraft Music Hall,” Carroll became a consultant to the Office of War Information on Oct. 28, 1942; was on the Writers' War Board; and in 1946 became a member of its successor organization, the Writers' Board.
Carroll Carroll did not limit himself to radio. He also wrote magazine articles, reviews, and ghosted for celebrities. Among his anonymous books are Bob Hope's I Never Left Home and So This is Peace. Upon retirement from J. Walter Thompson in 1968 he wrote a column for Variety on television advertisement and continued to write about the early days of radio.
Related materials may be found in the following Hartman Center collections within the J. Walter Thompson Company Archives: the Colin Dawkins Papers; the Howard Henderson Papers; the Bertram Metter Papers; the Dan Seymour Papers; Biographical Information; the New York Office. Broadcasting Department Records (later the Radio and Television Department); the Microfilm Collection Radio Scripts; the World War II Advertising Collection; and Writings and Speeches.
Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.
- Carroll, Carroll, 1903-1991
- Chase & Sanborn
- Eastman Kodak Company
- Ford Motor Company
- John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising & Marketing History
- J. Walter Thompson Company
- J. Walter Thompson Company
- J. Walter Thompson Company. Hollywood Office
- Kraft Foods Company
- Seven-Up Company
- Shell Oil Company
- Advertising agencies -- United States -- History
- Advertising agencies -- United States
- Advertising executives -- United States
- Advertising copy -- United States
- Advertising -- Music
- Kraft music hall (Radio program)
- Radio advertising -- United States
- Radio and music -- United States
- Radio programs, musical -- United States
- Television pilot programs -- United States
- Television advertising -- United States
- United States. Office of War Information
- World War, 1939-1945 -- Mass media and the war
The Carroll Carroll Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1982, 1993, 2004. The 1982 accession is comprised of photocopies of materials held at the Division of Rare Books and Special Collections, University of Wyoming.
Processed by Jessica Wood, September 2008
Encoded by Jessica Wood, September 2008
Accessions 82-413, 93-087, 2004-146 were merged into one collection, described in this finding aid.