Sam Fleming Papers
Scope and Contents
These papers five Hollinger boxes ( 2.1 linear feet), flat box and accompanying woodcut prints are made up primarily of materials relating to Sam Fleming and Vanderbilt and include items from his time as an undergraduate (1924-1928), his tenure on the Board of Trust (1952-1981), the Athletic program and building of the new stadium, speeches and remarks by Fleming and others, and the Merger of Vanderbilt with Peabody College in 1979, when Fleming was chairman of the Board of Trust.This collection also includes nine items, historic documents or concerning historic documents, given by Stanley Horn to Sam Fleming, dating from 1617 to 1958.
There are also typescripts of Supper at the Maxwell House with author’s notes by Alfred Leland Crabb as well as an interview with Crabb in Nashville! magazine. There is a box of 28 official documents signed by Tennessee Governors during the years 1808 – 1930.
- 1924 - 1981
Biographical Note - Sam Fleming
Samuel Milton Fleming was born on April 29, 1908 in Franklin, Tennessee. He graduated from Battle Ground Academy in 1924 and from Vanderbilt University in 1928. Fleming served in active duty with the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1942-1945. After college he worked for a time in New York and then came to Third National Bank in Nashville in 1931 and by 1950 was appointed president where he served until his retirement in 1970. He was active in many areas of business and commerce in Nashville and in committee, fundraising, and other charitable work.
He served on the Board of Trust of Vanderbilt University from 1952 until 1981 and as its Chairman from 1975 to 1981 . He was Chairman of the Board of Trust at the time of the merger with George Peabody College for Teachers in 1979 and as such played an important role in bringing the two institutions together. He also was instrumental in the creation of the Owen Graduate School of Management in 1969 and for the creation of the Blair School of Music at Vanderbilt in 1981.
Sam Fleming held many civic memberships and served in leadership roles as community activist and philanthropist in Nashville and nationally, and was an elder of the First Presbyterian Church.
He was honored at Vanderbilt with the dedication of the Fleming Yard on November 6, 1987.
Yours to Count On: a biography of Nashville banker extraordinaire Sam M. Fleming by Ridley Wills, II was published by Vanderbilt University Press in 2007.
He was married to Josephine Cliffe Fleming who preceded him in death and then to Valerie Ellis Fleming. He and Josephine had two children, Joanne and Daniel. Sam Fleming died on January 21, 2000.
Sam Fleming was a great patron of the Vanderbilt Library and in addition to donating a number of important Bibles from the late 16th and early 17th centuries ( the Geneva version of the so-called “Breeches” Bible, reference to Genesis 3:7), in his will he endowed the Sam Fleming Southern Civilization Collection in Special Collections, a growing collection of books on the history, culture, literature, and biography of the South since 1865.
2.1 Linear Feet (5 Hollinger boxes)
Language of Materials
These papers are made up primarily of materials relating to Sam Fleming and Vanderbilt and include items from his time as an undergraduate (1924-1928), his tenure on the Board of Trust (1952-1981), the Athletic program, and building of the new stadium, speeches and remarks by Fleming and others, and the Merger of Vanderbilt with Peabody College in 1979, when Fleming was chairman of the Board of Trust. This collection also includes nine items, historic documents or concerning historic documents, given by Stanley Horn to Sam Fleming, dating from 1617 to 1958.
Special Collections & Archives
- Finding Aid for the Sam Fleming Papers
- Molly Dohrmann
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
Part of the Vanderbilt University Special Collections Repository
Special Collections Library
1101 19th Ave. S.
Nashville TN 37212 United States