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Arch GA 35

Gras, Norman Scott Brien, 1884-1956. Norman S.B. Gras Papers, 1906-1953: A Finding Aid

Baker Library Historical Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University

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Harvard Business School, Boston MA 02163.

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: Arch GA 35
Repository: Baker Library Historical Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University
Creator: Norman Scott Brien Gras, 1884-1956
Title: Norman S.B. Gras papers
Date(s): 1906-1953
Quantity: 6.25 linear feet (6 cartons)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: Correspondence, professional activities, teaching material, and writings of Harvard Business School professor Norman Scott Brien Gras.

Processing Information:

Processed: September 1995
By: Jeff Mifflin

Conditions Governing Access:

Appointment necessary to consult collection.

Preferred Citation:

Cite as: Norman S.B. Gras Papers. HBS Archives. Baker Library Historical Collections. Harvard Business School.

Related Materials:

Business Historical Society Records, 1925-1962 (Arch E10A.14)
Henrietta Larson Papers, 1947-1962 (Arch GA.46)
Business History Foundation, 1937-1993 (Arch E10.10A)

Biographical Note:

Norman Scott Brien Gras was born July 18, 1884 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada and spent most of his youth in Ridgeton, Ontario. Gras earned his undergraduate degree in 1906 from the University of Western Ontario. Emigrating to the United States, he entered Harvard University, studied under Edwin F. Gay, America's first economic historian, and earned his doctorate in 1909. Gras traveled to Europe following graduation and returned to begin his academic career at Clark University. After holding junior faculty positions at Clark, he became full professor of Economic History at the University of Minnesota in 1918.
Increasingly respected as a leading scholar in his field, Gras eventually yielded to repeated attempts to entice him to join the Harvard Business School faculty. His former mentor, Edwin F. Gay, introduced him to Dean Wallace Donham, and in September 1927, Gras accepted a faculty appointment. As the first Isidore Straus Professor in Business History, Gras taught a class in business history as well as editing the Harvard Studies in Business History from 1928-1932. In addition, he organized the Business History Foundation, the purpose of which was to research and write the history of large corporations in America, and he served as its president from 1949-1956. Professionally, Gras was active in the American Historical Association, the American Economic Association, the Economic Society of England, and the Medieval Academy of America. He retired from the faculty of Harvard Business School in 1950.
Norman S. B. Gras married Ethel G. Culbert, a scholar in her own right, in 1915; the couple had four children. He died in Cambridge, Massachusetts on October 9, 1956.

Series Outline

The collection is arranged in the following series:

Scope and Content Note:

The papers of Norman S.B. Gras contain correspondence, agreements, minutes, reports, memoranda, reading lists, exam questions, articles, book reviews, and notes. The bulk of the material date from 1927 through 1953 and pertain to his professional interest in business history. Included are research, writing, and teaching files as well as his correspondence with colleagues and organizations dedicated to the promotion of historical studies. Also of interest are a number of reprints from 1910 through the 1920s and minutes of meetings regarding the planning of Harvard Business School, 1906-1908.

Container List


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