Sucher-Kroesen-Jebe Family Collection

Collection Overview

Title: Sucher-Kroesen-Jebe Family Collection

Record Series: 19/105

Record Group:

19 - Alumni Collections

Creator: Sucher family

Extent: 9 boxes (11.99 linear feet); 1 oversize item (3.58 linear feet)

Repository: Special Collections and University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

Language: Materials entirely in English.

Information for Users

Accessing the Collection:

No restrictions. Materials are open for research.

Physical Access: Scrapbook 3 is fragile and must be handled with care.

Technical Access: Two items are recorded on audio cassettes and require special playback equipment for access and use. They may require the production of a listening copy. SC&UA staff will determine options for use on a case by case basis.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

The majority of this collection was donated in the mid-1990s by Florence Sucher Jebe. Additional materials were donated by Richard Sucher II in 2014 and by Meredith Sucher Wade and Steven Sucher in 2015.

Sensitive Materials Statement: Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy or similar laws, and the Iowa Open Records Law (see Iowa Code § 22.7). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Northern Iowa assumes no responsibility.

Preferred Citation: [Identification of item], in the [Series Title] #[series number], [folder number or title when applicable], [Collection Name], Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

General Use, Reproduction, and Copyright Policies

Many items housed in the Rod Library Special Collections & University Archives, including unpublished images and manuscripts, may be protected by copyright, publication rights, trademarks, or model release rights which the library does not own and for which the library cannot grant permission or licensing. Materials currently under copyright are usually still available for research and limited reproduction under Fair Use laws. However, it is the sole responsibility of the patron to determine whether or not their use of a given material falls within Fair Use guidelines and to obtain permission for said use from the rightful copyright owner. If you are unsure where to begin, please consult the Copyright LibGuide. Please note that it is not the library's responsibility to locate or contact copyright holders for a patron, and neither the library nor library employees are responsible for copyright violations of the materials to which they facilitate research access.

Please see our full General Use and Service Policies for more information.

Historical Note

Richard Sucher (and his twin brother, Robert) was born in Cedar Falls, Iowa, in December 1911, to Harvey Sucher and Grace Kroesen Sucher. He graduated from Cedar Falls High School in 1929 before enrolling at the Iowa State Teachers College (ISTC, now the University of Northern Iowa). Sucher married Florence Coughlan in February 1939.

While at ISTC, Sucher was involved in a variety of activities, including the Minnesingers' Glee Club, the College Symphony Orchestra, Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia (Beta Nu chapter), band, the Stowaway Club, Phi Tau Theta (Eta chapter), and the YMCA. Also during his college years, Sucher founded the "Campus Playboys" band with his friends. They frequently performed at campus dances and later played on board the Cunard-Anchor Line ship, Carinthia, and toured Europe. Sucher graduated from ISTC in 1933 with a bachelor of science degree in Manual Arts.

Sucher worked as a teacher, musician, and bandleader, and was employed for 30 years by the Pfansteihl Company. He additionally helped organize Iowa's first State Band Festival in the mid-1930s and was active in the Iowa Bandmasters Association, was president of the Waterloo Junior Chamber of Commerce, and was a member of the Waterloo Lions and Elk Club.

He passed away in October 1989. For further information about Richard and the Sucher family, please see the "Richard Sucher Trip Essay," written by former University Archivist Gerald Peterson.


The collection is arranged into the following series:

  • Series 1: Ephemera
  • Series 2: Books
  • Series 3: Scrapbooks
  • Series 4: Audiovisual
  • Series 5: Correspondence & Documents
  • Series 6: Artifacts

Scope and Content

The Sucher-Kroesen-Jebe Family Collection dates from 1914 to 2000 and contains materials created by and related to the Richard Sucher family. A majority of the content relates to Richard Sucher's life, from high school to after his Iowa State Teachers College (ISTC) graduation. The materials are arranged into six series.

Series 1, Ephemera, contains family obituaries, dedication programs, and Sucher's 1973 ISTC reunion information. It also includes certificates, such as Sucher's admission to high school (May 1925), his charter member status for the Beta Nu chapter (May 1931), and a 1915 Church of the Brethren certificate. Additionally, there are news clippings about the Cedar Falls Band and Campus Playboys, of which Richard was a part, and his 1933 ISTC diploma and commencement program.

The Books series is comprised of assorted publications, including Sucher's high school and college yearbooks, ISTC campus publications, and Florence Sucher Jebe's autobiography. Please see the inventory for a complete list.

Series 3, Scrapbooks, consists of three items. Scrapbook 1 largely documents Sucher's 1934 trip to England with the Campus Playboys and includes photographs of well-known tourist sites and the group aboard the ship, Carinithia. Additionally, photocopied scrapbook pages feature family, family homes in Cedar Falls, band concerts, and more. Most of the photographs are captioned. Scrapbook 2 is titled, "4-H Club Activities of Richard Sucher" and has two sections. First is a set of pages from September 1924 with handwritten notes and typewritten correspondence about caring for a calf in relation to Sucher's club participation. The rest of the scrapbook dates from 1924 to 1929 and details Sucher's involvement in 4-H and the Black Hawk County Dairy Calf Club program. Included are photographs and information about Richard; letters of recommendation; news clippings; certificates of merit; correspondence about Dairy Calf Club judging, and a handwritten narrative of Sucher's club activities. This portion of the scrapbook also contains captioned photographs of the club. Scrapbook 3 consists of ephemeral content from Sucher and the Campus Playboys' 1934 England trip. Included is a Cunard-Anchor Line contract; Cunard ephemera such as luggage tags and schedules; postcards; coasters; menus; and more. Additionally, there are matchbooks, hotel information and British sightseeing booklets, and hostel receipts.

Series 4, Audiovisual, includes images dating from 1897 to 1995. Represented are some of Richard Sucher's relatives, including Harvey Sucher, Grace Kroesen Sucher, and Florence Sucher. There are also photographs from Sucher's time at ISTC, including of the Minnesingers, Phi Tau Theta, and the Cedar Falls Band. There are also two audiocassettes, labeled "Bob Goetchel Remembers RCS & the Campus Playboys" and "UNI Archives."

Series 5, Correspondence & Documents, consists largely of correspondence with steamship lines regarding the Campus Playboys' 1934 England trip. The correspondence includes letters of recommendation, rejection notices, and arrangements with the Cunard-Anchor Line, which employed the group in summer 1934. It also includes a photocopy of Sucher's journal from the 1934 Englad trip, which provides in-depth details about his experience.

The final series, Artifacts, contains objects from the Sucher family. They range from a silver cup awarded to Richer Sucher and Mary Cunningham as the Champion Dairy Demonstration team to a gold medal given to Grace Sucher Kroesen at her 50 year ISTC class reunion. Of note is a purple and gold ISTC banner given to the Campus Playboys by college president O.R. Latham prior to their 1934 European trip. Please see the inventory for a complete list of items.

The collection’s control file includes additional correspondence and family information; please consult the University Archivist with any questions.



Box 1

  • Folder 1: Ephemera [Series 1]
  • Folder 2: News clippings [Series 1]
  • Folder 3: 40th reunion materials, 1973 [Series 1]
  • Folder 4: ISTC diploma and commencement program, 1933 [Series 1]
  • Folder 5: Junior Chamber of Commerce - Waterloo Jaycee Clipper issues, 1947-1948 [Series 1]
  • Folder 6: The Lincoln Log yearbook, 1936-1937 [Series 2]
  • Folder 7: Red & Black yearbook, 1926; 1929 [Series 2]
  • Folder 8: Old Gold, 1933 [Series 2]

Box 2

  • Folder 1: Old Gold, 1934 [Series 2]
  • Folder 2: Student Life, Iowa State Teachers College, 1932 [Series 2]
  • Folder 3: The Alumnus, September 1973 & September 1976 [Series 2]
  • Folder 4: Sinfonia Songs, 1914 [Series 2]
  • Folder 5: Road Atlas of Great Britain, 1930 [Series 2]
  • Folder 6: My First Seventy Years, 1912-1982, Florence S. Jebe (1986) [Series 2]
  • Folder 7: My Life, the Bonus Years, 1982-1992, Florence S. Jebe (1995) [Series 2]

Box 3

  • Scrapbook 1: 1934 England trip and family photographs [Series 3]

Box 4 

  • Scrapbook 2: 4-H Activities [Series 3]

Box 5

  • Scrapbook 3: 1934 England trip [Series 3]

Box 6

  • Folder 1: Photographs - Grace Kroesen, Lulu Brown, Mary Kroesen, homes, campus (1897-1903) [Series 4]
  • Folder 2: Photographs - Cedar Falls Band with Harvey Sucher, 1903 [Series 4]
  • Folder 3: Photographs - Troubadours, ISTC Concert Band, campus, Homecoming (1930-1932) [Series 4]
  • Folder 4: Photographs - Phi Tau Theta, ISTC Symphony (1931-1938) [Series 4]
  • Folder 5: Photographs - Dick Sucher and the Campus Playboys, c. 1934 [Series 4]
  • Folder 6: Photograph - Minnesingers, 1934 [Series 4]
  • Folder 7: Photographs - Richard & Florence Sucher, reunions (1989, 1995) [Series 4]
  • Folder 8: Correspondence & Documents - 1934 trip to Europe, 1933-1934; 1937 [Series 5]
  • Folder 9: Richard Sucher journal, 1934 [Series 5] - available online
  • Folder 12: Audiocassettes [Series 4]

Box 7

  • Silver cup - Champion Dairy Demonstration team, Richard Sucher & Mary Cunningham, mid-1920s
  • Black wooden base for a loving cup, undated
  • White ceramic ashtray/dish, undated
  • Waterloo Junior Chamber of Commerce plaque, c. 1950
  • Gold medal, Chicagoland Festival, undated

Box 8

  • Framed Cunard-Anchor Line contract with the Campus Playboys, April 10, 1934 [Series 5]
  • Medals presented to Grace Kroesen Sucher and Richard C. Sucher [Series 6]

Box 9

  • Iowa State Teachers College felt banner


  • Playbill dance posters (reproductions)
  • Diploma
  • Rolled photo


  • 1934 yearbook, in record series 17/01/02/03 The Old Gold, in University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.
  • 1932 yearbook, in record series 17/01/02/03 The Old Gold, in University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.
  • 1933 yearbook, in record series 17/01/02/03 The Old Gold, in University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.
  • The Alumnus, vol. 23, no. 4 (October 1939), in 08/00/01 The Alumnus, in University Archives, Rod Library, University of Northern Iowa.

Processing Information

Inventory originally developed by University Archivist Gerald Peterson, 1995. Re-processed and described in greater detail by Library Associate Dave Hoing, February 2015 and updated by Gerald Peterson, April 2015. Collection reprocessed and scope and historical note written by Archival Processor Tessa Wakefield, April 2021.