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HUA 636.29

Foster, Margery Somers. Preparatory matter for Out of Smalle Beginings : an inventory

Harvard University Archives

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Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: HUA 636.29
Repository: Harvard University Archives
Creator: Foster, Margery Somers
Title: Preparatory matter for Out of Smalle Beginings,
Date(s): 1955-1962
Quantity: 1.6 cubic feet (3 document boxes, 3 card file boxes)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: Margery Somers Foster (b. 1914) earned her Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College in 1934 and her Ph.D. in Economics from Radcliffe College in 1958. Her dissertation focussed on the early financial history of Harvard and was later published. This collection contains the research and manuscript materials for her book.

Acquisition Information:

  • Accession number: 17584; 2007 January 18
  • Processing Information:

    Processed January 2007 by Dominic P. Grandinetti.
    Processing included re-housing materials in the appropriate containers, establishment of a series hierarchy, and the creation of this finding aid. The archivist placed the documents into acid-free folders, re-housed the materials into archival document boxes, and examined the folder contents to establish the date of the material.
    Materials that did not meet the collection guidelines of the Harvard University Archives were returned to Doctor Helen Johnston, trustee for Margery Somers Foster.
    These materials are:
  • Yellow transcript of Foster's 1958 thesis, March 1958
  • Rough draft of the 1961 manuscript
  • Final typescript of Foster's book, with corrections, April 1962
  • Sixth copy of Foster's thesis
  • Second copy of Foster's thesis, Summer 1960
  • Incomplete transcripts
  • Photostats of seventeenth century financial ledgers
  • Book index notes
  • A Harvard University report found among these papers, Endowment Funds of Harvard University, Supplement, June 30, 1954, was placed with the University Archives Historical Collections.

    Conditions on Use and Access:

    Permission of the University Archives is required for access to this collection. Please consult the reference staff for further details. Additional restrictions may apply.

    Related Material

    Biographical Essay

    Margery Somers Foster (b. 1914) earned her Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College in 1934 and her Ph.D. in Economics from Radcliffe College in 1958. Her fields of interest were public finance,economic development and economic history. Her doctoral thesis focused on the economic situation of Harvard College in the Puritan Period and how the general economic factors of the period influenced the College. Foster's interest in this topic began in 1955 when she worked as a researcher for Seymour E. Harris, Professor of Economics at Harvard University. Foster's thesis was later published in 1962 as Out of Smalle Beginings: An Economic History of Harvard College in the Puritan Period, 1636-1712. In this work, Foster explored the sources of college income, analyzed disbursements, and traced the investments of Harvard college funds, providing a picture of the financial life of Harvard College and its relationship to the Puritan economy.
    The daughter of Brent and Grace (Butler) Foster, Margery Foster was an assistant actuary for the New England Mutual Life Insurance Company from 1934-1943. During World War II, she spent four years as an administrator in the U.S. Naval Reserve, leaving as a lieutenant. After the war, Foster served as the deputy comptroller (1946-1948) and director of development (1948-1954) for Wellesley College. She taught economics at Harvard College (1956-1958), Mount Holyoke College (1958-1964), and Hollings College (1964-1967). Later, Foster was the dean of Douglas College of Rutgers University (1967-1975) and a professor of economics (1975-1980).

    References:

    Series in the Collection

    Scope of the Collection

    This collection contains Margery S. Foster's research files and manuscript materials for her book, Out of Smalle Beginings: An Economic History of Harvard College in the Puritan Period, 1636-1712) It contains draft material, correspondence, notes, graphs, plates, audograph disks, and a paper given to the Cambridge Historical Society.

    Inventory update

    This document last updated 2016 November 2.

    Container List


    hua02007