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Arch GA 13

Cherington, Paul Terry, 1876-1943. Paul T. Cherington Papers, 1915-1942: A Finding Aid

Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University


Harvard Business School, Boston MA 02163.

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: Arch GA 13
Repository: Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University
Title: Paul T. Cherington papers
Date(s): 1915-1942
Quantity: 1 linear feet (2 boxes)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: The Paul T. Cherington papers document his work as a professor of marketing at Harvard Business School.


Four notebooks of articles and speeches were donated by Cherington's daughter-in-law Rita Cherington in 1984. The manuscript of the report "The Power and the Plans" and the "Summary of Course in Business Policy, Stanford, 1929" were donated by Rita Cherington in 1978. The remainder of the material was donated by Cherington's son, Paul W. Cherington, on March 14, 1962.

Processing Information:

Processed: August 1994
By: Carole Foster
Reviewed: March 2004
By: Lisa Moorhead

Conditions Governing Access:

Collection is open for research. Materials stored offsite; access requires advance notice. HBS Archives collections require a secondary registration form, please contact specialcollectionsref@hbs.edu for more information.

Preferred Citation:

Cite as: Paul T. Cherington Papers. HBS Archives. Baker Library Historical Collections. Harvard Business School.

Biographical Note:

Paul Terry Cherington was born on October 31, 1876 in Ottawa, Kansas. He attended Ohio Wesleyan University for three years and then transferred to the University of Pennsylvania where he earned a BS in 1902 and an MA in 1908. From 1899 to 1902 Cherington worked as Assistant Editor of The Manufacturer published by the Manufacturers Club of Philadelphia. Cherington was a staff member of the Foreign Trade Bureau at the Philadelphia Commercial Museum from 1902 to 1908.
Paul T. Cherington was invited by Dean Edwin Gay to teach economics at HBS in 1908. His first course was "Business 11 – Commercial Organization and Methods" which attracted seven students. Cherington rose from instructor to assistant professor to full professor of marketing during his eleven years at HBS. In 1919 Cherington worked in the Textile Section of the Division of Planning and Statistics of the U.S. Shipping Board located in Washington D.C. Following the first World War, Cherington became Secretary-Treasurer of the National Wool Association.
In 1922, he was appointed Director of Research at the J. Walter Thompson Company where he remained until 1931. While at J. Walter Thompson, he moved from New York to San Francisco and taught marketing and distribution at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Eventually, Cherington moved back to New York and opened his own marketing and distribution consulting firm while lecturing on marketing at New York University from 1932-1935.
In 1934 he joined two others to form Cherington, Roper & Wood – a polling company which accurately predicted the outcome of the 1936 presidential election. Roper went on to gain success in this field, but Cherington left the company to continue private consulting work until 1939 when he became a general partner in McKinsey & Company, a management consulting firm.
Cherington married Marie Louise Richards of Montclair, New Jersey on August 16, 1911 and the couple had two children: Charles Richards and Paul Whiton. He died on April 24, 1943.

Series Outline

The collection is arranged in the following series:

Scope and Content Note:

The papers of Paul T. Cherington, instructor of the first marketing courses taught at HBS, documents the years he taught at HBS and continue through the end of his business career. The bulk of these materials range from 1920-1930.
Cherington's records contain teaching materials, speeches, articles, clippings, and correspondence. These records document early examples of HBS marketing courses taught by Professor Cherington before World War I and his subsequent career as marketing consultant, economist, and author.
Of particular note in this collection are HBS teaching material which chronicle the schedules and reading lists of Marketing, Foreign Trade, and Modern Retail Business courses. Also of interest are the materials pertaining to speeches and articles written while Cherington was Director of Research at the J. Walter Thompson advertising agency.

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