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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 2355

Henry William Rankin letters from William and Henry James


Letters on miracles and demonic possession from the American philosopher and psychologist William James and his son Henry James to the Rev. Henry W. Rankin.


  • Creation: 1895-1921

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.


.5 linear feet (1 box)

Includes letters from Henry James and William James to Rankin, as well as two letters from Rankin to Harvard University's William Ernest Hocking, professor of philosophy. Also includes typescript of Josiah Royce's Lectures on Metaphysics.

Biographical / Historical

Rev. Henry W. Rankin of E. Northfield, Massachusetts, was the librarian at the Northfield Mount Hermon School. He corresponded with William James, the American philosopher and psychologist, concerning conversion, miracles, and demonic possession. William James's son Henry later edited the correspondence of his father and uncle (Henry James).


Arranged alphabetically by author.

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

67M-96. Deposited by Professor Richard Hocking, Madison, New Hampshire; received: 1967 December 28.

Rankin, Henry William, recipient. Henry William Rankin letters from William and Henry James, 1895-1921: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, archives, and more. Houghton Library's collections represent the scope of human experience from ancient Egypt to twenty-first century Cambridge. With strengths primarily in North American and European history, literature, and culture, collections range in media from printed books and handwritten manuscripts to maps, drawings and paintings, prints, posters, photographs, film and audio recordings, and digital media, as well as costumes, theater props, and a wide range of other objects. Houghton Library has historically focused on collecting the written record of European and Eurocentric North American culture, yet it holds a large and diverse number of primary sources valuable for research on the languages, culture and history of indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

Houghton Library’s Reading Room is free and open to all who wish to use the library’s collections.

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