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Fred E. Sabin papers

Identifier: MSS-169

Scope and Content

This collection documents Dr. Fred Sabin's activities as chairman of the Marquette County Republican Party and as a member of the Northern Michigan University Board of Control, known as the BOT. The collection is comprised of correspondence, reports, event announcements, invitations, and programs, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, and photographs from 1950-1973. The collection is a fairly accurate documentation of Republican politics in the 1960s. The bulk of the materials focus on the election of the 43rd governor of Michigan, George W. Romney (Republican). The collection documents Sabin’s interaction with politicians and political groups at the regional and national level, Marquette area community leaders, Northern Michigan University Administrators, and medical professionals. Also represented in the papers are the various groups and committees with which Sabin was involved, including, Young Republicans, Republican Women’s groups, the Republican State Central Committee, and the Marquette Rotary Club. Of particular use may be the project files which denote the handling of significant events in Michigan politics by the Republican party, such as the 1963 Constitutional Convention and recount, the reapportioning of Michigan voting districts, fundraisers and campaigning events, and elections.

Record Series 1. Administrative Documents, 1954-1969. 1 Cubic Foot (53 folders). This record series is arranged into five subseries: Correspondence; Committees, Conventions, and Project Files; Election Results and Voter Information; Candidate and Volunteer Information; and Reports and Correspondence of the Finance Committee.

The Correspondence subseries contains Fred Sabin’s written communication with major players in the Michigan Republican scene during the 1960’s. Some of the more known names found in the subseries are Governor George Romney, Ruth Butler, Ernest L. Pearce, Dominic J. Jacobetti, Kent Lundgren, John B. Bennett, Donald E. Holbrook, Alvin E. O’Konski, Stanley G. Thayer, Allison Green, Hilary Whittaker, James F. O’Neil, Edward A. Meany, William G. Milliken, John B. Martin, Jim Hayes, Ogden E. Johnson, Steve Nisbet, Frank Russell, Roy E. Miller, Joseph Hunting, Edgar E. Harden, and John X. Jamrich. The Committees, Conventions, and Project Files subseries documents major events during Fred Sabin’s involvement in the Republican State Central Committee and Marquette County Republicans. The subseries also contains administrative documents of the various groups and committees in which Fred Sabin was involved. The Election Results and Voter Information subseries contains reports and analysis of election results and voter statistics, and voter registers. The Candidate and Volunteer Information subseries contains guidebooks and instruction pamphlets for campaign and election volunteers and election and campaign organizers. It also contains candidate biographies. The Reports and Correspondence of the Finance Committee subseries contains administrative documents of the Republican State Finance Committee, including correspondence, memos, and reports.

Record Series 2. Media, 1950-1986. 45 folders, 1 linear foot flat storage box, and one oversize drawer. This record series is arranged into five subseries; Publications/Campaign Materials and Mailers, Newspaper Clippings and Journal Articles, Scrapbooks, Photographs, and Separated Items.

The Publications/Campaign Materials and Mailers subseries contains pamphlets, guide books, and newsletter. The Newspaper Clippings and Journal Articles subseries includes mostly information about the George Romney campaign but also contains publicity about the NMU Board of Control and the Red Scare of the 1950’s-1960’s. There are four political scrapbooks covering the proceedings of the Republican party between 1960 and 1973. One of the scrapbooks was kept intact, the other three were digitized and the savable materials were foldered. The scrapbooks contained photographs, pamphlets and magazines, small artifacts and memorabilia, newspaper articles, event announcements and invitations, as well as significant correspondence. The Photographs subseries contains photos of the NMU Board of Control and NMU Commencement ceremonies as well as some events in Fred Sabin’s political life in the late 1970’s and 1980’s, including high profile political visitors to NMU. The Separated Items subseries consists mainly of two types of materials separated from the rest of the collection for special storage. The first type of material features one intact scrapbook as well as a pin, a CD-R containing PDF files of three of the scrapbooks, some candidate cards, event tickets and register cards, a printing plate concerning the Constitutional Convention, and a phonographic recording of a speech by John (Jack) Gibbs.


  • 1950-1986
  • Majority of material found within 1961 - 1964


Conditions Governing Access note

No restrictions. Open for research.

Conditions Governing Use note

Permission to publish material from the Fred Sabin papers, MSS-169, must be obtained from the University Archivist. The University Archivist may be reached by phone at 906-227-1225, or e-mail, The University Archivist may also be reached in Room 126 of the Learning Resource Center, Northern Michigan University, Marquette, MI.

Biographical note

Dr. Fred Sabin was born in Little Falls, New York in 1924, and died in Marquette, Michigan in 1997. After attending Albany Medical School, he completed his residency at the Mayo Clinic. He was recruited by Dr. Dan Hornbogan to come to Marquette, Michigan, and practiced ophthalmology there from 1957-1985. Together, their practice included the entire Upper Peninsula. Sabin spent three years in the United States Army and was a veteran of World War II. He was an active leader in the Republican party and served as chairman of the Marquette County Republicans, vice chairman of the 11th Congressional District Republican Committee, chairman of Citizens for Ruppe, and was a delegate to the Republican National Convention in 1964. Sabin was also involved with the Marquette Rotary Club, of which he was president 1963-1964. He served on the Northern Michigan University Board of Control (1967-1984), as well as serving on the Alma College Board of Trustees for twelve years. He helped to found the Marquette Medical Center, and served as a member of the Board of Directors of the MFC First National Bank and Trust. He served as president of the Association of Mayo Eye Fellows, and the Marquette-Alger Medical Society. Among several ophthalmology organizations, he was a Diplomat of the American Board of Ophthalmology and a Fellow of the American Academy of Ophthalmology.


3 boxes (One cubic foot box. One flat storage box. One small box. One oversize drawer.)

Language of Materials


Custodial History note

The Fred C. Sabin papers were donated to the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives by Sarah Niemi in 2011. Ms. Niemi's donation was added to a 2010 acquisition of scrapbooks created by Fred Sabin. Both acquisitions were performed by University Archivist Marcus Robyns, and the collection was processed by Archives Student Assistant Jaime Ganzel in 2012.

Related Archival Materials note

For more information on Fred Sabin or the subjects covered in this collection see the following collections at the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives.

University Series 058: Board of Control Minutes 0100-07: Board of Control 0100-02: Board of Control MSS-115: Rotary Club of Marquette records MSS-076: Charles H. Varnum papers MSS-077: Edgar L. Harden papers

Fred E. Sabin papers
Jaime Ganzel
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives Repository

Harden Learning Resources Center 126
1401 Presque Isle Ave
Marquette 49855 United States
906-227-1333 (Fax)


This collection guide includes collections from member organizations of UPLINK (the Upper Peninsula Digital Network) as well as the Central Upper Peninsula and Northern Michigan University Archives. UPLINK collections document the history of the Upper Peninsula broadly, while the Central UP & NMU Archives focuses on such topics as Northern Michigan University history, the local iron mining industry, and the politics, economics, religion, environment, and culture of the Central Upper Peninsula region.

These finding aids will give you an overview of the contents and context of each collection. Finding aids only exist for collections that each organization has shared with UPLINK or (in the case of the NMU Archives) for processed collections. For a more comprehensive list of collections that might help with your research, please contact the relevant heritage organization(s) directly.

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1401 Presque Isle Ave. • Marquette, MI 49855-5301 • 906–227–1000
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