Princeton University History

The Princeton University Archives consists of over 15,000 linear feet of records including administration records (presidents, provosts, deans, and department records, faculty files, undergraduate and graduate alumni files); photographs and other audiovisual materials; and publications that document the history of Princeton University. The University Archives is also the repository for Princeton senior theses and doctoral dissertations.

Additional historical information about Princeton University

Alexander Leitch's A Princeton Companion (Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press, 1978) contains biographies of University presidents, trustees, deans, noted alumni, and prominent professors. Other topics include academic department histories, athletics, campus buildings, research, and student activities. This resource is available online and is searchable by keyword.

A host of historical facts about Princeton University are available online through the University's main web page.  In addition to A Princeton Companion, researchers will find links that provide further details on the Presidents of Princeton University, Princeton's History, the Princetoniana Committee, and information on the American Revolution and Princeton.

The Daily Princetonian Archives are available online as well.

Collections with Divisional Holdings

  • Seminar on Research in Progress Papers

    The collection consists of papers produced by department faculty and doctoral
    candidates as part of the Department of Economics' Seminar on Research in Progress.
    The papers typically combine theoretical approaches to economics with statistical
    analysis and practical research. A contributor on several of the papers is Harold T.
    Shapiro, who would in later years go on to become president of the University.

  • Arthur J. Horton Collection on Coeducation

    Since these are the records of one member of the committee–a member with a particular perspective–this collection will not give an unbiased view of the coeducation debate at Princeton. Since Horton wrote many letters and saved them all, the collection clearly presents his participation in the committee's work and his opposition to coeducation.

  • Princeton Scientific Expeditions Collection

    The manuscript, printed and photographic materials in the collection are duly
    noted in the folder descriptions. Folders labeled as “Archival description and
    notes” contain information on the expeditions randomly gathered by the compiler
    of this collection, with pertinent xeroxes and relevant correspondence that
    document each expedition. The geological expeditions are most fully represented.
    The journeys of other categories are noted by scant documentation.

  • Princeton University Federal Credit Union Records

    Consists of the organizational records of the Princeton University Federal Credit Union including meeting minutes, financial audits, memos, policies, and committee reports.

  • John Foster Dulles Collection

    The John Foster Dulles Collection consists of a small group of materials documenting Dulles' connection to Princeton. Included are clippings, memos, invitations, press releases, and other documents which cover such topics as the opening of the Dulles Library at Princeton, and Dulles' record as an undergraduate. Also included is one copy of  The Panama Canal Controversy autographed by John Foster Dulles and a complete sheet of commemorative John Foster Dulles postage stamps.

  • Patrick J. Kelleher Papers

    Consists of correspondence, publications, notes, press releases, schedules, and photographs collected by Patrick J. Kelleher over the course of his directorship of the Princeton University Art Museum. Also included are syllabi and course materials from a museology seminar Kelleher taught, and awards received from other museums and institutions.

  • Hedges family papers

    This collection contains scrapbooks, photographs, newspaper clippings, correspondence, lecture notes, and more belonging to Benjamin van Doren Hedges and his three sons Benjamin Jr., Robert, and John, as well as other friends and family members, including material produced at Princeton and in other locations.

  • Office of Communications Records

    The Office of Communications Records document a wide range of public University activities and dealings. Most files contain press releases, clippings of University publicity and outside press coverage, and, in some cases, correspondence. Subjects include regular University business as well as special events, University policies, individual departments, faculty members, student activities and life, and dealings with alumni and donors. The records also contain large numbers of photographs and contact prints created by Office of Communication staff photographers.

  • Design in America Conference Records

    Consists of one bound volume containing the program schedule of the Design in America
    Conference, lists of those who participated, and a copy of each paper presented at
    the conference.

  • Veterans of Future Wars Collection

    Consists of records of the Veterans of Future Wars, founded by Princeton University undergraduates Lewis Gorin (Class of 1936), Jack Turner (Class of 1936), Thomas Riggs (Class of 1937), and Robert Barnes (Class of 1937). The collections consists primarily of correspondence of the National Council members (the founding Princeton students), the organization's nation-wide posts, and its various auxiliary support groups.

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