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HOLLIS 601667

Chafee, Zechariah. Papers, 1898-1957: Finding Aid.

Harvard Law School Library, Cambridge, MA 02138


Harvard Law School

© 2003 The President and Fellows of Harvard College

Summary Information

Repository: Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University
Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: HOLLIS 601667
Creator: Chafee, Zechariah, 1885-1957
Title: Papers, 1898-1957
Quantity: 93 boxes
Abstract: This collection includes materials relating to Chafee's activities as law teacher, legal scholar, historian, and defender of civil liberties. Includes research material for drafts of the Federal Interpleader Act of 1936.

Processing Information:

Prepared by Erika Chadbourn.

Acquisition Information:

The Papers of Zechariah Chafee, Jr., law professor, legal scholar and historian, were presented to the Harvard Law School Library in 1957 by Zechariah Chafee 3rd and Peter Seamans, Esq., except for two Paige Boxes of student notes which were given to the Library by Prof. Chafee himself in 1956.

Access Restrictions:

Access to these papers is governed by the rules and regulations of the Harvard Law School Library, and by the special terms of access as stated in the letters of Zechariah Chafee 3rd dated Sept. 18, 1957 and Dec. 26, 1969, respectively, and Mr. Earl C. Borgeson's letter of Jan. 6, 1970. Most of this collection is open to the public without restriction. This collection is housed off-site at Harvard Depository and requires 2 business-day advance notice for retrieval. Consult the Special Collections staff for further information.
There is material relating to Harvard Law School Admissions and Faculty appointments that is governed by the University rules for administrative records and these may be closed to researchers (Boxes 54, folders 14-22; 55-19 and 20; 56-8-18; 57-9 and 10; 57-14 through 59-4, and box 61-11).

Use Restrictions:

The Harvard Law School Library holds copyright on some, but not all, of the material in our collections. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be directed to the Special Collections staff. Researchers who obtain permission to publish from the Harvard Law School Library are also responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations who hold copyright.

Scope and Content

The 22,000 items in the personal papers of Zechariah Chafee, Jr. (1885-1957) span the years 1898-1957, with the bulk of the material covering the years from 1916 to 1956. There is also a small group of materials of Zechariah Chafee, Jr.'s father and grandfather, originating between 1840 and 1882.
The collection includes professional correspondence; a small amount of personal and family correspondence; teaching notes; student notes; statistical surveys in the field of legislation; reports; minutes of meetings; drafts of writings, speeches, lectures, and legislation; pamphlets, photographs, and clippings.
The papers of Zechariah Chafee, Jr. relate to his activities as law teacher, legal scholar, and historian. There is only a small amount of material in these papers relating to his family and personal life. His professional activities dominate the papers.
The Chafee Papers include Prof. Chafee's research and correspondence in connection with the drafting of the Federal Interpleader Act of 1936, of which he was the "author," and his editorial contributions to the post-humous publication of Prof. Edwin Merrick Dodd's American Business Corporations until 1860 (1954).
Among Prof. Chafee's correspondents were U.S. Supreme Court Chief Justice Charles Evans Hughes, Jr.; U.S. Supreme Court Justices Black, Brandeis, Burton, Cardozo, Douglas, Frankfurter, Holmes, and Stone; Judges Charles F. Amidon, Amos N. Blandin, Armistead Dobie, Laurence I. Duncan, Learned Hand, Frank R. Kenison, Raymond S. Wilkins, and Charles E. Wyzanski, Jr.; Harold Laski, Archibald MacLeish, Allan Nevins, Frank W. Taussig, Alfred North Whitehead, and Herbert Croly.

Alternative Form Available:

The Zechariah Chafee Papers is available on microfilm; see the HOLLIS record for more information. Researchers are required to use the microfilm copy of the collection.

Series List

The arrangement that Prof. Chafee had imposed upon his files, including folder headings, was preserved throughout. For convenience of handling of these papers, large, bulky folders were broken up into thinner folders.

Historical/Biographical Information

Zechariah Chafee was a Fellow at Brown University, a member of: the American Philosopical Society; American Bar Association; Colonial Society Of Massachusetts; American Academy Arts and Sciences; Massachusetts Historical Society ; Alpha Delta Phi; and Phi Beta Kappa. He was also a member of the Harvard Club (Boston); Tavern Club; and Century Club (New York). Chaffee was an Episcopalian.



Cases on Equity (Chafee, Simpson and Maloney), 1934, 2nd ed., 1946; Return to Freedom, 1944.
Brannan's Negotiable Instruments of Law (4th ed.), 1926.
Wrote legal introduction to Suffolk Co. Court Records (1671-1680), 1933.

Additional Index Terms

The following catalog entries represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. An entry for each appears in the Harvard On Line Library Information System (HOLLIS) and other automated bibliographic databases. THIS IS NOT AN INDEX.
Amidon, Charles F.
Black, Hugo LaFayette, 1886-1971.
Blandin, Amos N.
Brandeis, Louis Dembitz, 1856-1941.
Burton, Harold Hitz, 1888-1964.
Cardozo, Benjamin N. (Benjamin Nathan), 1870-1938.
Chafee, Zechariah, 1885-1957.
Croly, Herbert David, 1869-1930.
Dobie, Armistead Mason, 1881-
Douglas, William O. (William Orville), 1898-
Duncan, Lawrence.
Frankfurter, Felix, 1882-1965.
Hand, Learned, 1872-1961.
Holmes, Oliver Wendell, 1841-1935.
Hughes, Charles Evans, 1862-1948.
Laski, Harold Joseph, 1893-1950.
MacLeish, Archibald, 1892-
Nevins, Allan, 1890-1971.
Stone, Harlan Fiske, 1872-1946.
Taussig, F. W. (Frank William), 1859-1940.
Whitehead, Alfred North, 1861-1947.
Wilkinson, Raymond.
Wyzanski, Charles E. (Charles Edward), 1906-
Civil rights.
Actions and defenses -United States.
Freedom of speech.
Law -Study and teaching.
Law -United States.
Law teachers.


Other Descriptive Data

Material elsewhere
Comparative Literature 181 (Course given in Harvard College): Legal Protection of Literature, Art and Music.

Other Descriptive Data

Photos transferred to Art Collection (all black and white) from Zechariah Chafee, Jr., Papers
17 June 1985