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MS Am 2152

Gray, John Chipman, 1839-1915. John Chipman Gray correspondence, 1800-1932: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: MS Am 2152
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Gray, John Chipman, 1839-1915.
Title: John Chipman Gray correspondence,
Date(s): 1800-1932.
Quantity: 1 collection (1.5 linear feet (4 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Correspondence of Harvard professor and lawyer John Chipman Gray.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

47M-332. Gift of Roland Gray, 36 Larch Road, Cambridge, Massachusetts and Eleanor (Gray) Tudor,22 Larch Road Cambridge, Massachusetts; received: 1948 June 28.

Conditions Governing Access:

Restrictions on physical access, if any. This collection is not housed at the Houghton Library but is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. Retrieval requires advance notice. Readers should check with Houghton Public Services staff to determine what material is offsite and retrieval policies and times.

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

John Chipman Gray Correspondence, 1800-1932 (MS Am 2152). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

Gray (Harvard A.B. 1859; LL.B. 1861) ) was a legal scholar, founder (with classmate John C. Ropes) of the Boston law firm Ropes & Gray, and a professor of law at the Harvard Law School. His wife was Anna Lyman Mason.


Arranged alphabetically by author.

Scope and Contents

Consists chiefly of letters written to John Chipman Gray and his wife, Anna Lyman Mason Gray, many of which are RSVPs to social engagements from notable Boston and Harvard figures. Other topics include John Gray's legal writings and lectures and Anna Gray's poetry. Includes two autograph letters of Daniel Webster (addressed to others), and several letters of condolence from acquaintances such as Abbott Lawrence Lowell on the occasion of John Gray's death. The collection also includes letters to other members of the Gray family and some Gray family ephemera, such as stock certificates.
Items concerning Japan include a letter from Isabella Stewart Gardner describing her impressions of Japanese culture and society, a letter from Fanny MacVeagh, wife of the American ambassador to Japan, describing the landscape and culture, and a collection of letters from John Gray's former student Kentaro Kanako, a Japanese noble and diplomat, whose letters describe the politics, government, and society of Japan and express great nostalgia for Boston society. He also discusses newly published political science works and his translations of many such works. Kanako visited the United States several times and wrote to the Grays from both Japan and the United States.


This collection is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. See access restrictions below for additional information.

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