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Arthur Motley papers

Identifier: Mss058

Scope and Content Note

The bulk of the collection includes copies of his speeches, often reworked for different audiences, and tapes of his presentations. Other professional materials relate to his presidency of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and administrative office files. Also included are family correspondence and recordings.


  • 1940-1978


Language of Materials


Restrictions on Access

The collection is open and available for use in the Andersen Library Reading Room.

Restrictions on Use

Copyright has not been transferred to the Archives.

Biographical Sketch for Arthur "Red" Motley (1900-1985)

Arthur "Red" Motley was a master salesman and a prolific motivational speaker and writer who spent fifty years in the publishing profession. Born in Minneapolis in 1900, he graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1922. His career with Crowell-Collier Publishing Company began in 1928 as an advertising space salesman for Colliers; he then became manager of the Detroit office, then Western Manager of the company. In 1941 he was elected Vice President and Director of Crowell-Collier and appointed publisher of the American Magazine. In 1946 he became a partner in Parade Publications where he continued to work until his retirement as Chairman of the Board in 1978. During his tenure the magazine's circulation grew to more than 20 million in 1977.

He was a widely known speaker on the topic of selling and marketing. His favorite topic was "Nothing Happens Until Somebody Sells Something." He served as president of Sales Marketing Executives International, chairman of the marketing division of President Eisenhower's Conference on Small Business, president and chairman of the board of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.


135 Cubic Feet


The collection includes copies of his speeches, often reworked for different audiences, articles and publications, tapes of his presentations (1950-1956), and other materials. Also included are some personal correspondence and recordings.


The collection is organized in four general groups of materials:
  1. Professional
  2. Audio-Visual
  3. Monthly Letters to Anne
  4. Miscellaneous

Physical Location

AV (R1, D1, S2-4);HB (R5, D14, S1-11; R5, D15, S1)


Donated by Mr. Motley from 1974 to 1978.

Processing Information

The collection has not been thoroughly processed.
Arthur Motley papers
Archives staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Upper Midwest Literary Archives Collecting Area