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HUY 24

Burgis View of Harvard Collection, 1743-1942: an inventory

Harvard University Archives


Harvard University

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: HUY 24
Repository: Harvard University Archives
Creator: Burgis, William, active 1722-1736
Title: Burgis View of Harvard Collection
Date(s): 1743-1942
Quantity: 1.5 cubic feet (11 images in 1 accordion folder, 4 portfolio folders and 1 flat box)
Language of materials: English
Abstract: The Burgis View of Harvard Collection consists of reproductions of a view of Harvard College, drawn by William Burgis in 1726, and five related views, published between 1743 and 1833.

Acquisition information:

The images comprising the Burgis View of Harvard Collection were acquired through donation and purchase from 1837 to 1949. Wherever possible, the archivist noted acquisition information in the item list below.
The acquisitions are as follows:
  • 22.5.96 gratis
  • Donation by John Stark (formerly Samuel H. Newell), May 6, 1837
  • Purchased with the Bright Fund, October 15, 1909
  • Purchased with the Bright Fund, October 29, 1913
  • Donation by Curtis & Cameron, November 6, 1914
  • Donation by F. A. Foster, April 17, 1923
  • Donation by Ernest Lewis Gay, June 1927
  • Purchased from the American Library Service, May 1949.
  • Donation by the Harvard College Library Department of Printing and Graphic Arts, June 2, 1943
  • Processing Information:

    The views comprising the Burgis View of Harvard Collection were first classified and described in the Harvard University Archives shelflist prior to 1980. In November 2010, Juliana Kuipers re-processed the material. Re-processing included integrating the Burgis View and all related views into a single collection, rehousing material in appropriate containers, and the creation of this inventory.
    This finding aid was created by Juliana Kuipers in November 2010.

    Researcher Access:

    The Burgis View of Harvard Collection is open for research.

    Copying Restriction:

    Copying of fragile materials may be limited.

    Preferred Citation:

    Burgis View of Harvard Collection. HUY 24, Harvard University Archives.

    Historical note

    The view that forms the basis of the collection, titled "A Prospect of the Colledges in Cambridge in New England," is a copper-plate line engraving drawn by William Burgis in 1726; it is commonly referred to as the Burgis View.* The view shows the College as it appeared around 1726. Its three buildings, old Harvard Hall (built in 1769), the first Stoughton Hall (built in 1700), and Massachusetts Hall (built in 1720) form a courtyard containing a single large tree. Shown from the perspective of present Massachusetts Avenue, the courtyard is enclosed by a simple fence with a single entrance opposite Stoughton Hall.
    Five other views, published between 1743 and 1833, are based on the Burgis View. These include the Burgis-Price View, 1743; the Columbian Magazine View, 1788; the Ferrario-Fumagelli View, 1826; the Ferrario-Sasso View, 1827; and the Peirce-Burgis View, 1833.* Identifying characteristics for each of these views are described in the list below.

    * Note regarding names of views

    These names are taken from Hamilton Vaughan Bail's authoritative volume, Views of Harvard: a pictorial record to 1860. Within this finding aid, these names for the views are used both as series title and within descriptions. Image titles were taken from the images themselves, with additional title information added as necessary by the cataloger.



    The views are arranged in chronological order:

    Scope and Content

    This collection consists of reproductions of the 1726 Burgis View, entitled, "A Prospect of the Colledges in Cambridge in New England," and five related views, published between 1743 and 1833.


    This document last updated 2014 February 25.

    Container List