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Harvard Law School Graduates: A Biographical Research Guide

A list of biographical sources, which offer basic information regarding Harvard Law School graduates.

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Harvard Law School Graduates: A Biographical Research Guide

The Harvard Law School Library Historical & Special Collections Department has compiled the following list of biographical sources, which offer basic information regarding Harvard Law School graduates.

An increasing number of these sources are available online and can be accessed via links in this guide.

If you require further assistance, please plan on visiting Historical & Special Collections.

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Subject Guide

Contact Us:

Historical & Special Collections
specialc@law.harvard.edu
(617) 495-4550

Harvard Law School Library
Langdell Hall
1545 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138

Alumni Directories

Alumni Directory, 1958 – present

Harvard University Quinquennial catalogue of the officers and graduates 1636-1930

Quinquennial catalogue of the officers and students of the Law School of Harvard University

This is the precursor to the Harvard Law School Alumni Directory. It lists Law School faculty, as well as students. Student information is divided into three sections: chronological, geographical, and alphabetical, and usually includes the following information:
      • Date student entered and left Harvard Law School
      • Address at time of registration
      • Address as of publication date
      • Date and place of death

Triennial Catalogue

Directory of Black Alumni/ae

Lists black graduates of Harvard Law School since the first in 1869.

Women at Harvard Law School: Alumnae Directory

Lists alumnae from 1953 to 2013. For some, includes brief personal statements and career biographies.

Ames Moot Court Competition

Catalogs

Catalogs

Click the links below or select a page from the "Catalogs" drop-down menu for more information.

Before the Law School had its own course catalog, the Law School curriculum was included in the University catalog. For those years when we do not have Law School catalogs, try consulting the University catalog; the information in many of the Law School’s early catalogs was identical to the University catalog.

Harvard Law School Catalogs

Overview

Some of the Law School catalogs from the 19th century do not include student listings; this information can be found in the University catalog. For those years when we do not have Law School catalogs, try consulting the University catalog. The information in many of the Law School’s early catalogs was identical to the University catalog.

In addition to information on faculty, tuition, courses, and degree requirements these catalogs might also include the following:

      • List of students by class year (until WWII)
      • Residence at the time of entry to law school
      • Housing location (listed under “room”)
      • Previous degree(s)

These catalogs have been digitized. Please follow the Internet link from the HOLLIS record to access this material. There are some gaps in the collection.

Harvard Law School Catalogs

Harvard University Catalogs

Overview

Before the Law School had its own course catalog, the Law School curriculum was included in the University catalog. In addition to information on faculty, tuition, and courses, these catalogs also included the following:

      • List of University Overseers
      • List of students by class year
      • Residence at the time of entry to law school
      • Housing location (listed under “room”)
      • Previous degree(s)

Class Reports

Overview

Starting in the 1880s, the secretary of each graduating class published a report listing the class members and their places of employment. Over time, these reports have come to include brief biographical entries for some alumni/ae. Earlier class reports may also include club membership.

The present (2001) policy of the Harvard Law School Alumni Office is to sponsor publication of a class report every five years, up to and including the fiftieth anniversary of graduation.

Class Reports

Exams

Overview

Among the administrative changes and educational reforms introduced under Christopher Columbus Langdell’s deanship (1870-1895) was the publication of the School’s examinations. In 1877, the course for the degree of Bachelor of Laws at Harvard went from a two year to a three year program and in 1878, the Law School began to compile and publish these examinations annually. By 1969/1970 the first-year exams were issued separately from the second and third-year exams. Exam questions from 2002/2003 to the present are available online to HLS affiliates only.

Harvard Law Bulletin

Overview

The Bulletin has been published since April 1948 and is currently published two times per year. In previous years it was issued quarterly and in some cases six times per year. The magazine features articles on HLS alumni, campus events, and fundraising; it also includes class notes and obituaries. Beginning in the fall of 1997, the Bulletin was made available both in print and online. Access to digitized issues prior to 1997 is available to Harvard affiliates only.

Harvard Law Bulletin

Harvard Law School Bulletin (1948-1986)
v.1-38 n.1

Harvard Law Bulletin (1986-)
v.38 n.2- present

Harvard Law Bulletin (Online 1997-)

The Record

Overview

The Record is the oldest law school-affliliated newspaper in the United States. It includes Law School, national, and international news; scholarly articles; op-eds written by Harvard Law School students, professors, and guest contributors. It publishes several special editions, including an annual April Fool's Day issue and career guides. From Fall 2011 through 2014 the Record ceased print publication and was exclusively online. In September 2015 print publication resumed with a new volume numbering system.

Articles from 2002 to the present are searchable via hlrecord.org.

The Record

Access Full Text (July 1946-November 2001)

  • Search the full text of The Record by using the full text search box, which is in the upper-right corner of the ListView page.
  • Users can also select individual issues from the ListView page to view in the Page Delivery Service (PDS). Once in the PDS, users can search the full text within the opened issue.

More recent issues (2002-present) can be found by searching HLRecord.org.

Yearbooks

Overview

Yearbooks include listings and photographs of faculty, students, and student organizations. Earlier yearbooks include undergraduate information as well as current and permanent addresses.

No yearbooks were published from 1942/43 through 1944/45. However, the 1945/1946 yearbook includes a listing (without photos) of graduates since the previous publication in 1941/1942.

Yearbooks

Harvard Law School Scrapbooks

Overview

This collection of nine disbound scrapbooks contains ephemera relating to the administration of Harvard Law School from 1869-1913. It includes printed schedules of courses and examinations, as well as manuscript and printed announcements regarding lectures, faculty, examinations, and student prizes. The earliest three scrapbooks also contain indices.

Harvard Law School Scrapbooks, 1870-1913

Harvard Law School Scrapbooks: Harvard Law School Announcements, Tabular View, Examination Papers, 1869-1909

Harvard Law School Scrapbooks: Harvard Law School Miscellaneous Announcements, 1875-1913

HLS Dissertations, Theses, and JD Papers

HLS Student-Created Material

Harvard Radcliffe Online Historical Reference Shelf

Overview

A joint project of the Harvard University Archives and the Schlesinger LIbrary, this site provides access to frequently-consulted sources on the history of Harvard and Radcliffe.

Sources of note include Harvard Presidents' reports, 1825-1995. Most of these reports, up to and including the 1985/1986 issue, not only contain the report of the President of Harvard University, but also reports from the various Harvard faculties and departments, including the Law School.

Law School reports from the late nineteenth century through the early twentieth century include the following:
      • Number of students enrolled
      • Number and types of degrees conferred
      • Required courses, including faculty and textbook information, and how often the class met
      • Curriculum changes
      • Updates on the Library
      • Description of art holdings, including: paintings, etchings, photographs, etc.

Harvard Radcliffe Online Historical Reference Shelf

Harvard Law School Alumnae/i Who Became Justices of the Supreme Court of the United States

United States Supreme Court Justices

Secondary Sources

Secondary Sources

Click the links below or select a page from the "Secondary Sources" drop-down menu for more information.

Bench and Bar of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

Overview

Published in 1895, these two volumes include a brief history of the Massachusetts bench and bar. Additionally, it features an extensive illustrated biographical register of attorneys or judges in Suffolk County and much of Massachusetts through 1894.

Note: In 1894 Davis published Professional and industrial history of Suffolk County, Massachusetts . Vol. 1. of this earlier work contains similar information to the Bench and Bar and is available on-line through Making of Modern Law.

Bench and Bar of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts

By William T. Davis

Volume 1 and Volume 2 of this publication may be accessed through Google Books.

History of the Harvard Law School and of Early Legal Conditions in America

Overview

This three-volume work includes a detailed history of the Harvard Law School from its founding in 1817 until 1907. Of particular interest is the third volume, which contains the Harvard Law School alumni roll, a listing of biographical data by class year. This volume also includes reproductions of various Harvard Law School Class photographs.

The following information may be included:
      • Place and date of birth
      • Family information (parents, siblings,          spouses, children)
      • Degrees earned
      • Career highlights
      • Place and date of death

History of the Harvard Law School and of Early Legal Conditions in America

By Charles Warren

An online version of this three-volume publication may be accessed through Google Books (link to volume 3), as well as the e-resource, The Making of Modern Law. You must have a Harvard PIN if you are accessing the e-resource from outside of the library