Gift will enhance library and Musical Society

July 16, 1999

Gift will enhance library and Musical Society

ANN ARBOR—Two endowments to the University of Michigan totaling at least $1 million will establish the JoAn and Roy Wetzel Library Endowment Fund and the JoAn and Roy Wetzel Endowment fund at the University Musical Society (UMS). In addition to the gift from U-M alumni JoAn (’58) and Roy (’59) Wetzel, Roy Wetzel, a retired NBC executive, will give the University Library his NBC Elections Collection, consisting of video and audio recordings as well as documents.

Once received, 10 percent of the distributions to the Library will be used to acquire German language research materials in support of the teaching and research of the faculty and students of U-M’s Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures. The remainder of the distributions will fund acquisitions and preservation of these materials and will be used to support maintenance and expansion of the Wetzel Elections Collection.

“The bequest by JoAn and Roy is important to the Library in two ways,” says William A. Gosling, the Library’s director. “First, we will be able to augment U-M’s German language research materials as well as collections in the areas of communication, political science, history and media. Second, but of equal importance, we will be able to maintain and preserve these materials. JoAn and Roy are to be commended for remembering this significant, but often forgotten, component of building valuable collections. Through their support, the Wetzels have ensured that these collections will be expanded and preserved for future researchers.”

“The generous gift from the Wetzels to the Musical Society will be used to carry on important aspects of our programming that have been cherished by Roy and JoAn,” says Kenneth Fischer, president of UMS. “Their gift will help us in our ability to continue to provide the great recitalists, international orchestras and chamber ensembles as well as artists’ residencies that are a part of the 120-year tradition of UMS.”

In retirement Roy Wetzel continues his lifelong passion for collecting German stamps. “Stamps reflect history,” Wetzel says. “They mirror, for example, the terrible inflation of 1923 when new stamps and stamp rates appeared every week.” A native of Detroit’s German neighborhood, Wetzel has in recent years been devoting much effort to the study of German language and history. His studies have prompted work on building a computer database of German history, covering the period from 1870 to the present.


U-M News and Information Services
University of Michigan

University Musical SocietyDepartment of Germanic Languages and Literatures News and Information ServicesUniversity of Michigan