Janie Lataine Bartlett was born in Goldsboro, North Carolina on August 12, 1929, to Janie (Jackson) and Luther Osborne Bartlett. Her mother died from complications of childbirth. Luther Bartlett, jobless and struggling, gave his sickly infant to his cousin James R. Bartlett and his wife Bertha to adopt, while his two older children went to live with their grandmother. Janie Bartlett discovered that she was adopted when she was eight years old, although her adopted mother denied it. Raised as an only child, it was not until Janie Bartlett got married in 1951 that she learned she had older siblings and met her sister. Bartlett also learned that her father had remarried and she had two half-siblings and a stepsister. Bartlett found it difficult to get close to her siblings after being raised apart, but has formed lasting relationships with her sister, brother, and half-sister in adulthood.
Growing up, Janie Bartlett was active in the Methodist church. She credits her participation in church plays with giving her the acting bug, a passion that lasted Bartlett's entire life. Though Bartlett describes her adoptive mother as a lonely and sad woman, Bartlett credits her adoptive mother, who had to drop out of school after the fifth grade, with encouraging Bartlett to read and study. Bertha Bartlett died when Janie Bartlett was seventeen years old and the loss of her second mother had a profound effect on Bartlett.
Bartlett graduated from Goldsboro High School in 1948 and went on to attend High Point College (now University) in High Point, North Carolina where she graduated in 1951 with a B.A. in English. After graduation, Bartlett married Rodney T. Yates. They had two children, Tom Yates and Martha Yates Scarpellino. Bartlett spent the first years of her marriage in isolation, raising her two children while her husband attended an out-of-town seminary that kept him away from home except on weekends. Eventually the family moved to a town where both Rodney and Janie Yates secured teaching positions. Yates taught first at A.L. Brown High School in Kannapolis, North Carolina from 1959-1963, and then at New Hanover High School in Wilmington, North Carolina from 1963-1966. Yates attended graduate school at the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, receiving her M.A. in theatre in 1963 while teaching school and raising her two children.
In 1966 the family moved to Iowa City, Iowa. In 1967, Yates began teaching dram and English at City High School, a position she would hold until her retirement in 1991. Yates, and fellow teacher Mary Ellen Moore, designed Honors English courses, which became prototypes for other Iowa high schools. Yates also designed a Bible as Literature course that served as a prototype for area schools. During her tenure at City High, Yates also edited and wrote parallel texts for Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet," and "A Midsummer's Night Dream" for the Perfection Form Company. In addition to writing the above-mentioned texts and several journal articles during her teaching career, Yates designed five individualized reading packets for Interact Publishers of California.
Along with teaching duties, Yates was the theater director for high school productions. Many of her students participated in state and national competitions. Yates's passion for the theater extended into many activities besides teaching high school drama classes and directing high school productions. Yates also formed a traveling troupe of actors called the Cross Town Players, and she participated in and kept track of other local theater companies such as the University of Iowa Repertory Theater, Duck's Breath Theater, the Iowa City Community Theater, and Riverside Theater. When Yates's former student, TJ Meyers died from AIDS shortly after graduating from City High and beginning a successful professional career, Yates created the TJ Meyers Theater in his honor. The TJ Meyers Theater gave performances to benefit local AIDS relief organizations and to create public awareness about the AIDS epidemic.
While attending to her City High responsibilities, Yates attended the University of Iowa where she earned an Ed. S. in speech and theater in 1974 and a Ph.D. in education in 1978. Ironically, as 1951 was a year of Yates's first college degree and marriage, 1978 marked Yates' final college degree, her divorce from Rodney T. Yates, and her marriage to Gil Glandorf. Yates claims that her successes contributed to her first husband's dissatisfaction with her and her second husband's attraction to her.
Retiring in 1991 from teaching at City High only freed Janie Yates-Glandorf to pursue her theater and academic interests in other venues. Yates-Glandorf formed poetry readings at the Senior Citizen Center in Iowa City, many of which have been aired on Public Access Television (PATV) and taught literature at the Kirkwood Learning Center. Yates-Glandorf also formed SSRO (Senior Standing Room Only), a theatrical troupe of senior citizens that regularly perform at the Senior Citizen Center and around town. Though Yates-Glandorf has stepped down as the managing director of SSRO, she continues to participate in theater and literary activities in the Iowa City area, and she is continually working on her memoirs for her children, grandchildren and future researchers.
The Janie Yates-Glandorf papers date from 1943 to 2005 and measure 9 linear feet. The papers are arranged in nine series: Personal, Education, Teacher, Theater, Senior Citizen Center Activities, Joan Andersen Hemm, Miscellaneous, Oversized and Artifacts.
When Janie Yates-Glandorf donated her papers she had already organized her materials into scrapbooks and folders. The Iowa Women's Archives has maintained the integrity of the collection by leaving the scrapbooks intact and refoldering the loose items in the same arrangements made by Yates-Glandorf. The titles of both the scrapbooks and the folders are the original titles used by Yates-Glandorf. As a result, photographs have not been pulled together as a collected series. Instead, photographs may be found in each of the scrapbooks, and loose photographs are included in some of the folders as marked. Meriting attention are the notes Yates-Glandorf added to the beginning of most of the folders and scrapbooks when she donated the materials, describing the relevancy of the items and/or the events they represent to her life.
The Personal series, 1943-2002, consists of a genealogy of both Yates-Glandorf's biological and adoptive parents and family photographs, along with a diary Yates-Glandorf kept through her teen years. Also in the series is a folder of Yates-Glandorf's church activities, and another folder containing some of her political views and opinions. Two rough drafts of Yates-Glandorf's memoirs, which include her memories of discovering she was adopted, her divorce from Rodney Yates, and her bouts with depression, are also in the Personal series, along with correspondence from her friend and co-teacher, Mary Ellen Moore, a eulogy Yates-Glandorf wrote for Moore and correspondence with Moore's children following Moore's death in 1998.
The Education series, 1947-1978, represents Yates-Glandorf's educational experiences from high school through her doctorate degree. Included are two scrapbooks: "Education, Honors and Awards" and "Teachers, Mentors and Other Influences on Janie." Several folders contain Yates-Glandorf's various diplomas and writing assignments she saved. This series also contains a copy of Yates-Glandorf's master thesis, "Dramatic Art in the Secondary Schools of North Carolina," and her PhD dissertation, "Two Approaches to the Teaching of Literature: Oral and Standard."
The Teacher series, 1959-1991, represents the scholastic side of Yates-Glandorf's long and distinguished teaching career, particularly the twenty-four years she taught at City High in Iowa City, Iowa. The series contains two scrapbooks and several folders representing many of the courses Yates-Glandorf developed and taught, including her Bible as Literature course that became a proto-type in Iowa. The folders contain notes, tests, sample assignments and papers. Of special notice are an unpublished manuscript Yates-Glandorf wrote titled, "This Is God," written in conjunction with her Bible as Literature course, and two papers in the Miscellaneous Writings by Janie the Teacher folder, "Philosophy of Education," and "Drama is Academic."
Also contained in the Teacher series are copies of the Faculty-Staff Newsletter that Yates-Glandorf edited at City High, nomination papers for the National Teachers Hall of Fame, information on the Janie Yates Drama Scholarship and four folders containing letters from former students and their parents throughout Yates-Glandorf's teaching career. Several boxes of slides that Yates-Glandorf used to complement her courses accompany this series.
The largest series is Theater, 1945-1997, which encompasses Yates-Glandorf's long career as an actress, drama teacher, and director. This series is divided into several sub-series: General, 1945-1997, includes two scrapbooks of Yates-Glandorf's early theater experiences, along with folders that contain general notes on theater courses, rehearsal schedules, and other theater activities. Also included is Yates-Glandorf's nomination to the Educational Theater Association (ETA) Hall of Fame, a scrapbook representing Yates-Glandorf's involvement with the International Thespian Society, and slides from productions Yates-Glandorf directed while teaching in North Carolina, 1959-1965.
The largest part of the Theater series is City High School, 1972-1990, where Yates-Glandorf spent the bulk of her career. This sub-series contains a folder with notes pertaining to City High's drama activities, along with several scrapbooks Yates-Glandorf kept from 1969 until 1991. Slides Yates-Glandorf used in her drama classes, as well as slides of many of the productions she directed are shelved with the archive's slide collection. This sub-series also contains several videocassettes of City High productions including a "western" version of Shakespeare's "Taming of the Shrew" and a production of "Bus Station" shown on Public Access Television (PATV). It should be noted that these videocassettes are not of professional quality. Cross Town Players was a traveling theatrical troupe Yates-Glandorf created at City High. A charm bracelet, with a written explanation for each of the charms by Yates-Glandorf.
TJ Meyers Theater was created by Yates-Glandorf as a tribute to one of her former students who died from AIDS complications shortly after he began a successful professional acting career. This sub-series, 1977-1993, contains a folder of notes, two scrapbooks: one containing TJ Meyer's acting accomplishments and another covering TJ Meyers Theater, and three videocassettes of TJ Meyers Theater productions.
The sub-series Miscellaneous Theater contains a scrapbook, 1976-1991, which includes material Yates-Glandorf saved regarding Repertory Theater, Iowa City Community Theater and Riverside Theater, all in Iowa City, Iowa. SSRO (Senior Standing Room Only) is the theatrical troupe Yates-Glandorf created at the Senior Citizen Center in Iowa City, Iowa. This sub-series contains two scrapbooks of SSRO activities, 1993-1996, and two videocassettes shelved with the archive's audiovisual cassette collection.
The Playbooks sub-series, 1959-1989, contains two folders of playbooks used by Yates-Glandorf throughout her career that are either signed by the playwrights or include personal notes written to Yates-Glandorf from the playwrights.
The Senior Citizen Center Activities series contains two videocassettes of several Senior Spectrum shows, aired on Public Access Television (PATV) in 1997. These shows depict Yates-Glandorf in her capacity as a performer, with one of the videocassettes featuring poetry readings and another one containing a cutting from Foxfire for a discussion group at the Senior Citizen Center.
Joan Andersen Hemm was a student of Yates-Glandorf who excelled in designing costumes for some of City High's productions. Hemm went on to form "The Shady Ladies," a troupe in Colorado that depicts nineteenth century saloon performers along with other legendary figures. The Joan Andersen Hemm series, 1988-2004, contains three folders of clippings, correspondence and promotional materials regarding Hemm's achievements, photographs of Hemm and her "Shady Ladies" in various costumes and a scrapbook that includes photographs of Hemm's self-designed wedding dress.
The Miscellaneous series contains a folder of Yates-Glandorf's writings, 1983-1984 and undated, that include letters to the editor, outlines for future projects and notes. This series also includes a folder on Edna Englert, which includes correspondence and an article that Yates-Glandorf wrote for the Cedar Rapids Gazette on Edna Englert, and Yates-Glandorf's engagement calendars from 1994-1997.