Skip to main content

Merlo J. Pusey papers

Identifier: MSS 1532

Scope and Contents

Contains Pusey's personal and professional papers, primarily related to his career as an editorialist and associate editor for the Washington Post and a biographer. These materials include his correspondence, his research notes for books on the Supreme Court, Charles Evan Hughes, and Eisenhower's presidential administration, as well as an edited typescript copy of Reed Smoot's diaries. Also included are editorials, press releases and newspaper articles written or collected by Pusey and the clippings and notes used to write these articles. Materials date from approximately 1875 to 1985.


  • approximately 1875-1985


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from Merlo J. Pusey papers must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Board of Curators.

Biographical History

Merlo J. Pusey (1902-1985) was a biographer and newspaper editor in Washington, D.C.

Merlo John Pusey was born on February 3, 1902, in Woodruff, Utah. He attended school at the Latter-Day Saint University in Salt Lake City where he was a member of the debate team and elected to the editorship of the school paper, the Gold and Blue. It was during this time at school that Pusey decided to pursue journalism as a career. After he graduated, he worked for the Deseret News as a proofreader, cub reporter, reporter on regular assignments, and assistant city editor. During this time he attended school at the University of Utah, where he majored in English and was awarded a B.A. degree with high honors. After graduation he moved to Washington, D.C. and in November of 1928 he obtained a position as editorial writer for The Washington Post. In 1946 he was promoted to associate editor of The Washington Post, a position he held until his retirement in 1971. Pusey was the author of several books, namely The Supreme Court Crisis, Charles Evans Hughes, and Big Government: Can We Control It?, as well as numerous other articles and publications. Pusey was a member of several organizations that were directed towards the advancement of public welfare. During the depression he filled a part-time position with the Senate Finance Committee. He married Dorothy Richards on September 5, 1928, and they had three sons together. Merlo Pusey died in 1985 at the age of eighty-three years old.


15 cartons (15 linear ft.)

63 boxes (31.5 linear ft.)

Language of Materials



Arranged into fifteen series: 1. Merlo J. Pusey correspondence, 1941-1971. 2. Merlo J. Pusey papers on The Supreme Court Crisis, 1935-1940. 3. Merlo J. Pusey papers on Charles Evan Hughes, 1875-1974. 4. Merlo J. Pusey clippings and research notes, 1932-1975. 5. Merlo J. Pusey papers on Ezra Taft Benson and Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1952-1960. 6. Merlo J. Pusey editorials and press releases, 1928-1971. 7. Merlo J. Pusey collection of newspaper articles, 1930-1984. 8. Merlo J. Pusey editied diaries of Reed Smoot, 1916-1928. 9. Merlo J. Pusey papers on Eugene Meyer, 1930-1970. 10. Merlo J. Pusey papers on the power controversy, 1958-1965. 11. Merlo J. Pusey papers on the Central Arizona Project Association, 1967. 12. Merlo J. Pusey papers on “The Way We Go to War”, 1960-1970. 13. Merlo J. Pusey papers on “Big Government”, 1928-1945. 14. Merlo J. Pusey papers on "Builders of the Kingdom", 1979. 15. Merlo J. Pusey papers on “Stepchild of Democracy”, Circa 1960s.

Other Finding Aids

A detailed folder-level inventory is available in the repository.

Custodial History

Donated in parts by John R. Pusey, Merlo's son, from 1977 to 2000.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated; John R. Pusey; 1977-2000.


This collection includes the papers of a leading 20th Century Mormon journalist and author. Collected in LDS scholarship and historiography (20th Century Western and Mormon Manuscripts collection development policy 5.III, 2007).

Processing Information

Processed; Erin C. Rider, Mary Downs, and Peter Hoyt student processors, and John Murphy, curator; 2001-2012.

  • University of Utah graduation hood, and "Who'sWho in America" 40th edition, Volume 2.
Register of the Merlo J. Pusey papers
Mary Downs
2010 April 20
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States