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UAI 5.168.XX

Harvard University. President's Office. Records of the President of Harvard University, James Bryant Conant, 1933-1955 : an inventory

Harvard University Archives


Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: UAI 5.168.XX
Repository: Harvard University Archives
Creator: Harvard University. President's Office.
Title: Records of the President of Harvard University, James Bryant Conant, 1933-1955
Date(s): 1933-1955
Quantity: 175 cubic feet (525 containers)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: These records document the actions, speeches, and writings of James Bryant Conant as President of Harvard University. In documenting the presidency, these records document events in the administration of Harvard University and its involvement with world events for the years 1933-1953.

Custodial Information:

Records were received irregularly by the Harvard University Archives directly from the Office of the President ca. 1949-ca. 1955.
No accruals are expected.

Processing Information:

Processed by Harvard University Archives staff 1953-1991; comprehensive finding aid created by Jackie Dean and additional folder lists created by Richard Currier, Rachel D'Agostino, and Keith Anderson under the direction of Kate Bowers October-November, 1998.
The original order of the records as received by the Harvard University Archives (HUA) has been preserved. However, HUA staff created a series and subseries hierarchy and assigned titles to the series and subseries. HUA staff also constructed folder lists for the Official Correspondence, Congratulatory Correspondence, Gift File, and Speeches: Final Drafts subseries. Staff created box lists for the remaining subseries. See series descriptions for arrangement of each series and subseries.

Conditions on Use and Access:

University Records are restricted for 50 years from the date of creation; student records and personnel records are restricted for 80 years from the date of creation; there is no restriction on published material. Consult Harvard University Archives reference staff for details.
Additional notations concerning restrictions appear throughout this inventory.

Allied Material in the Harvard University Archives

Researchers may wish also to consult two collections in the Harvard University Archives: The Papers of James B. Conant

History Note: Conant's Harvard Presidency, 1933-1953

James Bryant Conant held the office of President of Harvard University from 1933 to 1953. Accomplishments from his administration include enhancing Harvard's position as a national institution with an international reputation for academic achievement. He established the National Scholarships which allowed talented young men to attend Harvard regardless of their economic circumstances or proximity to Cambridge.
His tenure as President was notably marked by World War II. Before the United States entered the war, he was a vocal supporter of U.S. involvement. Conant served on the National Defense Research Committee directing atomic research and the implementation of atomic warfare. Under Conant's leadership, Harvard used its facilities and personnel to support the war effort with defense training and research.

Series and Sub-series in the Records of the President of Harvard University, James Bryant Conant

Scope and Content of the Records of President James Bryant Conant

These records document James B. Conant's tenure as President of Harvard University and illustrate his involvement in national affairs, his administrative duties, and the major events in Harvard's history that occurred during his presidency. The records include his official and unofficial correspondence, annual reports, handwritten and final drafts of speeches, manuscript notes and various drafts for Conant's book, Education and Liberty: the Role of the Schools In a Modern Democracy, and Conant's office calendars.

Inventory update

This document last updated 2016 June 21.


Some records may be stored in an off-site facility. Researchers are advised to contact Reference Staff of the Harvard University Archives for more information concerning retrieval of material.

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