Collection Creator: Princeton University. Office of the President..
Dates: Mostly 1933-1957.
Extent: 78 boxes
Materials generated by the office of the president are closed for 40 years from
the date of their creation. Some records relating to personnel or students are
closed for longer periods of time.
Subseries 15A: Correspondence, 1896-1988 [bulk: 1933-1957], the largest
of the six subseries that comprise Dodds's records, is arranged
alphabetically by correspondent or topic. Correspondence that does not
warrant its own folder is grouped under A, B, C and so forth in the
general alphabetical sequence. This subseries illustrates the complexity
of a modern university and the extent to which Princeton University had
expanded, even during Dodds's own time. Correspondence concerns such
subjects as academics, administrative offices and committees,
associations and clubs, athletics, endowments and foundations, financial
aid, the Library, the ROTC, and the Board of Trustees, as well as
numerous individuals. Material relating to academics can be found under
the appropriate department — from biology to philosophy — and includes
discussions of budgets, grants, hiring and recruiting, office space and
equipment, research, and meetings. The largest concentration of academic
subject matter pertains to the School of Public and International
Affairs (known as the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International
Affairs since 1948), with which Dodds was closely associated. Of
particular interest may be Dodds's Princeton University-related post-
retirement correspondence in Box 138, Folders 10-12, which contains,
among other topics, recommendations for his successor, Robert Goheen;
mention of the Alger Hiss controversy and its impact on financial
contributions; correspondence about the early days of the School of
Public and International Affairs; bequests for fellowships; and Dodds's
views on co- education.
Some topics and individuals command more attention than others. The
importance of financial issues, particularly under the exigencies of
World War II, is reflected in the 11 folders of material pertaining to
George A. Brakely, Princeton University's financial vice president and
treasurer during much of Dodds's tenure. The Library, which acquired its
current home under Dodds, is also well documented, not only in folders
with "Library" as their title but also in those relating to librarians
Julian P. Boyd and William S. Dix. The development of Firestone Library
(the argument for which can be found in Dodds's files as early as 1934)
is understandably prominent, but other matters are addressed as well,
among them, the procurement of collections, notably those of Messrs.
Parrish, Scheide, Witney, and Gest; the creation of a regional
depository for seldom-used books in New York and Philadelphia libraries;
and wartime dangers, including a memorandum dated March 19, 1941
concerning the removal of rare materials to safety in the event of
bombing. The Association of American Universities, though not specific
to Princeton, is another topic that consumes a substantial number of
folders in this subseries. Among the topics addressed in this material
are testing, accreditation, federal aid to education, taxes, and the
draft. Finally, many folders contain information concerning foundations
and the grants they awarded to Princeton University. The Rockefeller
Foundation was especially generous, extending support for research in
subjects ranging from Arabic and Islamic studies and organic chemistry
to public opinion and literary criticism.
No arrangement action taken or arrangement information not recorded at the time of processing.
Subseries 15A: Correspondence; 1896-1988 (mostly 1933-1957); Office of the President Records : Jonathan Dickinson to Harold W. Dodds
Subgroup, Princeton University Archives, Department of Rare Books and Special Collections, Princeton University Library.