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Call No.: HUM 168
Repository: Harvard University Archives
Creator: Ackerman family
Title: Erich Segal collection compiled by the Ackerman family, 1952-2008
Quantity: 0.97 cubic feet (3 document boxes, 1 flat box)
Abstract: Erich Segal, author, playwright, and professor, was born on June 16, 1937; he received his Harvard AB in 1958, his AM in 1959, and his PhD in 1965. Best known as the author of the novel Love Story, Segal also wrote nonfiction in his field of the classics and screenplays. Assembled by A. Bernard Ackerman, his brother, James L. Ackerman, and their mother, Elizabeth Ackerman, the collection documents Erich Segal's personal and professional life and his close relationship with the Ackerman family; Segal first met A. Bernard Ackerman at Camp Onibar for Boys on Lake Como in Wayne County, Pennsylvania in 1952. The collection consists of correspondence, collected news clippings and magazine articles, photographs, and publications by Segal.
Collections in the Harvard University Archives
- General information by and about the Leverett House Dramatic Society, ca. 1950-1969 includes documentation of Erich Segal's 1961 production, Sing Muse! (HUD 3519.2xxx)
- Thesis, Unity of emotional expression in Catullus : a new approach to The attis / by Erich W. Segal, 1958 (HU 92.58.780)
- Dissertation, Roman holiday humor: the plays of Plautus as festival comedy / by Erich Segal, 1965 (HU 90.8861)
Collections in the Harvard Theatre Collection, Houghton Library
Erich Segal, author, playwright, and professor, was born on June 16, 1937, in Brooklyn, New York to Rabbi Samuel Segal and Cynthia Shapiro Zeger. He received his Harvard AB in 1958, his AM in 1959, and his PhD in 1965; he had the distinction of being the first class orator to also serve as the class poet at commencement. While at Harvard, Segal discovered his love of running: he completed the Boston marathon many times and was a color commentator for televised coverage of the marathon at the 1972 and 1976 Summer Olympics. As a graduate student, he wrote the musical comedy Sing Muse!, which was originally performed in the Leverett House dining hall and later produced off-Broadway. Segal taught classics at Harvard, Yale University, and Princeton University. Best known as the author of the novel Love Story, Segal also wrote nonfiction in his field of the classics and screenplays for movies including the Beatles' Yellow Submarine. He married Karen James in 1975; they had two daughters. Diagnosed with Parkinson's disease in the 1970s, Segal died of a heart attack in London on January 17, 2010.
Albert Bernard Ackerman, dermatopathologist and professor, was born on November 22, 1936, in Elizabeth, New Jersey to orthodontist A. Leon Ackerman and Elizabeth Lowell Ackerman. He received his AB from Princeton University and his medical degree from the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Columbia University, completing his third year of residency at Harvard University and a fellowship at the Massachusetts General Hospital; he interrupted his residencies to serve at Andrews Air Force Base for two years. Ackerman began teaching at the University of Miami in 1969, moving to the New York School of Medicine in 1973, where he was a member of the Department of Dermatology at New York University Medical Center until 1992, when he began teaching at Philadelphia's Jefferson Medical College. Ackerman co-founded the International Society of Dermatopathology in 1979 and served as its first president; established the Arbor Scribendi publishing company in 1997; and founded the Ackerman Academy of Dermatopathology in New York City in 1999. He received the Master Dermatologist Award in 2004 from the American Academy of Dermatology, and established the A. Bernard Ackerman Endowment for the Culture of Medicine at Harvard University in 2004. Ackerman died on December 5, 2008 in New York City.
James Lowell Ackerman, orthodontist, was born to orthodontist A. Leon Ackerman and Elizabeth Lowell Ackerman. He received his Dental degree in 1960 from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine. He was named chairman of the Orthodontics Department and C.M.F. Egel Associate Professor of Orthdontics at the University of Pennsylvania's School of Dental Medicine in 1968. Previously, Ackerman had a private orthodontics practice in Westfield, New Jersey with his father and held teaching appointments at Harvard University and Fairleigh Dickinson School of Dentistry. He later began practicing in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, before becoming an adjunct professor of orthodontics at the University of North Carolina School of Dentistry in Chapel Hill.
- I. Correspondence, 1952-1999
- II. Collected correspondence and clippings, 1960-1968 and undated
- III. News clippings and magazine articles, 1958-1998 and undated
- ___A. News clippings and magazine articles, 1961-1998 and undated
- ___B. Collected clippings, 1958-1973 and undated
- IV. Photographs and slides, 1952-1998 and undated
- V. Publications and articles, 1961-1979
Assembled by A. Bernard Ackerman, his brother, James L. Ackerman, and their mother, Elizabeth Ackerman, the collection documents Erich Segal's personal and professional life and his close relationship with the Ackerman family; Segal first met A. Bernard Ackerman at Camp Onibar for Boys on Lake Como in Wayne County, Pennsylvania in 1952. The collection consists of letters written to members of the Ackerman family by Segal, correspondence exchanged between members of the Ackerman family and others regarding Segal, news clippings and magazine articles written about Segal, photographs and slides, and novels, articles, and book reviews written by Segal. Topics documented in the collection include Segal's academic and writing career (especially the success of his novel Love Story), his love of running, and social activities.
This document last updated 2016 June 30.