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Dartmouth College Library
Dartmouth College Library Research Guides

History of Dartmouth College: History of Dartmouth College

A guide to researching the history of Dartmouth College in the Rauner Special Collections Library

Featured Item

Math Funeral Documents

Math Funeral

In the 1800s students were required to study math only for the first two years. Beginning sometime in the 1830s the sophomores would celebrate the end of their math studies by burying their textbooks in a pseudo funeral on the Green. Pictured are black bordered and coffin shaped programs invitations and announcements.

About this Guide

This guide is designed to help individuals researching the history of Dartmouth College in Rauner Special Collections Library.

The main sources of materials in Rauner related to College history will be found in the College Archives. The Archives are made up of a rich array of materials including documents, such as minutes, accounts, correspondence, reports and publications, generated by the College, and its affiliated schools, as well as various student groups, student organizations and fraternal organizations. In addition, the archives holds approximately 400,000 photographic images of the College, audio recordings (including oral histories) and video recordings.

 

 

 

Getting Started

Secondary Sources

The history of Dartmouth College should always be viewed in the context of American and world history. For secondary, or background, resources consult the subject guide for History

Histories of the College

While there are many histories of the College the two most complete are History of Dartmouth College by Leon B. Richardson, covering Eleazar Wheelock's (founder of the College) early life through about 1930 and A History of Dartmouth College and the Town of Hanover New Hampshire by Frederick Chase, covering the founding through 1909 [Available online via HathiTrust].

 

 

Vertical Files

Vertical Files are files compiled by librarians and archivists in Rauner on subjects, issues, events, people or places that are frequently asked about by researchers. These files contain everything from documents to newspaper clippings to event programs. Vertical files are a great place to begin your research. If your research is not in-depth, you may be able to find everything you need in a vertical file. Vertical files can be requested at the Ruaner Reference Desk.

 

The Dartmouth

The Dartmouth (a daily student newspaper published from 1839-1842 and again from 1867 to the present) is another useful resource for researching Dartmouth's history. Rauner maintains two indexes to The Dartmouth. The first index covers The Dartmouth from its inception in 1839 to about 1983 and is in the form of a card file. The second index covers 1983 to the present and is in the form of a FileMaker database. Both of these resources are only available in Rauner’s Reading Room.

General Catalog 1769-1940

The General Catalog contains lists of all trustees, officers and faculty with dates of service. In addition it has brief biographical sketches of all graduates and non-graduates arranged by class for the undergraduate College and for each of the associated schools. It provides lists of all advanced and honorary degree recipients. There is a general index to graduates, a geographical index, as well as an index of officers.

Alumni and Affiliates Files

Rauner keeps files on most deceased alumni/ae of the College, faculty, administrators and honorary degree recipients. These files contain college records--such as alumni questionnaires, military service forms, newspaper clippings, and photographs. Alumni and affiliates files are an excellent place to begin research on an individual associated with the institution. As with vertical files you will need to request these files at the Rauner Reference Desk

Information on Buildings

The best overview of the history of Dartmouth's built environment is at Dartmo a Website maintained by Dartmouth alumnus Scott Meacham.

College Archivist

Peter Carini
Contact:
Rauner Special Collections Library

6065 Webster Hall

(603) 646-3728
Website / Blog Page