[OASIS] Harvard University Library
OASIS: Online Archival Search Information System
http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HLS.Libr:law00276View HOLLIS Record   Frames Version
Questions or Comments   Copyright Statement
HOLLIS 000601595

Surrey, Stanley S. Stanley S. Surrey papers, 1913-1981: Finding Aid

Harvard Law School Library, Cambridge, MA 02138


Harvard Law School
August 2017

© 2017 The President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Harvard Law School Library, Harvard University
Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: HOLLIS 000601595
Creator: Surrey, Stanley S.
Title: Stanley S. Surrey papers, 1913-1981
Quantity: 192.5 linear feet (428 boxes)
Abstract: Contains agenda, casebooks, correspondence, documents, memoranda, minutes, notes, newspaper clippings, printed materials, testimony and reports mainly concerned with Surrey's national and international interests and work; and his policy planning and implementation of laws and programs as Assistant Secretary of the Treasury and Chief Reporter of the American Law Institute Income Tax Project. Also includes materials relating to his teaching and writing.

Processing Information:

Processed by Rachel Parker, 2017
While processing the Surrey Papers staff came across boxes of two distinctive groups of material. All of the boxes were marked as “File Cabinet Drawer” along with a draw number. The groups of material were distinguished by their housing with one in legal size folders with printed labels, and the other in letter size folders with handwritten labels. The material itself was very similar to that is Series I; Subseries A (reference files sorted topically by Surrey containing a variety of material (correspondence, printed material, newspaper clipping, reports, memos, and handwritten notes). The main difference was this material dated from the 1970s whereas the material in Subseries A dated pre-1960.
Originally, a decision was made to place the “labeled folders” and “unlabeled folders” as distinct record groups and organize them into separate subseries. The thinking being that the labels indicated an intentional organizational decision on the part of Surrey or his Faculty Assistant. However the content of this material, other than the differences in folders, was largely the same so the decision was made to interfile the two “File Cabinet Drawer” groups into one Subseries (B) along with other reference files post-1969.

Acquisition Information:

Donated to the Harvard Law School Library by Stanley Surrey in 1981.

Access Restrictions:

Files containing student information, such as grades, are closed for 80 years; those with Harvard Law School or Harvard University administrative records are closed for 50 years. All restrictions are noted in the container list below. Access to these papers is governed by the rules and regulations of the Harvard Law School Library. This collection is open to the public, but is housed off-site at Harvard Depository and requires 2 business-day advance notice for retrieval. Consult the Historical and Special Collections staff for further information.

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 Historical and 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 Stanley S. Surrey Papers cover Surrey's entire career as a public servant in the Roosevelt, Kennedy, and Johnson administrations, and as a Professor of Law at Berkeley and Harvard. The collection spans the 1910s up to Surrey’s death in 1984. The majority of the collection is of a professional nature, though there are some notable personal materials including the draft of an unpublished memoir.
Surrey kept extensive subject files on national and international taxation. These personal reference files encompass almost Surrey’s entire career and contain essays, documents, memoranda, newspaper clippings, notes, printed material, reports, testimony, and material sent to him from colleagues for Surrey’s reference in his function as professor, author, and consultant. This collection also contains files Surrey kept as Assistant Secretary to the Treasury on Tax Policy. As Assistant Secretary to the Treasury (1961-1969) Surrey coined the term "tax expenditure" and was instrumental in defining and regulating tax expenditures.
Other material covers his role as Chief Reporter for the American Law Institute Income Tax Project, an extensive project which addressed issues in the United States Tax Code, and resulted in a series of publications; reference files and drafts for Pathways to Tax Reform (1973), Surrey’s seminal work; teaching files kept during Surrey’s time at Berkeley and Harvard; and files for Surrey’s work as a consultant to the government and to law firms in his many functions, most notably as consultant to the George McGovern presidential campaign, and to John F. Kennedy, as creator and director of the Harvard Law School International Program in Taxation, and as member of and contributor to a number of professional associations.

Series List/Description

Biographical Information


Related Materials

For related material, see Fifty Years (A Half-Century) with the Internal Revenue Code. , Copy of Surrey's unpublished memoir. An earlier version is available in box 402.

Selected Search Terms

The following catalog entries represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Researchers seeking related materials should search under these terms in Hollis.
American Law Institute
Harvard Law School
Harvard Law School -- Faculty
Harvard Law School. International Program in Taxation
Law teachers
Law -- Study and teaching -- United States
Surrey, Stanley S.
Public officers
Tax administration and procedure
Tax expenditures
Taxation -- Developing countries
Taxation -- Law and legislation
Taxation -- Study and teaching
University of California, Berkeley. School of Law


Within each series and/or subseries individual items or folders are identified by box and folder number. For example, the number 5-12 corresponds to box 5, folder 12.