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Papers of Myron Piper Gilmore


Myron Piper Gilmore (1910-1978) was Gurney Professor of History and Political Science and Director of the I Tatti Center for Renaissance Studies at Harvard. Gilmore received an AB from Amherst College in 1932 and an AM in 1933 and Ph.D. in 1937 from Harvard. He taught at Harvard from 1937 to 1978. The Papers of Myron Piper Gilmore document his career and include materials relating to his research, writing, teaching, administrative positions, membership in professional organizations, and personal life.


  • Creation: 1947-1980s


Researcher Access

Open for research with the following exceptions: Harvard University records are restricted for 50 years. Personnel and student records are closed for 80 years. Specific restrictions are noted at the series level. Requires review by archivist.


8.11 cubic feet (18 document boxes, 4 half document boxes, and 1 record carton)

The Papers of Myron Piper Gilmore document Gilmore’s research, writing, and teaching throughout his career. Materials relating to research and writing include manuscripts, notes, talks and lectures, grant applications, and correspondence. Includes records pertaining to Gilmore’s appointment as director of I Tatti as well as various appointments in Harvard administrative positions and professional organizations. Teaching materials include lectures, syllabi, exams, class roles, and letters of recommendation and evaluation. The collection contains correspondence with colleagues, including Theodore Baird, professor of English at Amherst College. Also contains biographical materials including Gilmore’s curriculum vitae, passports, birth certificate, and family genealogy.

Biographical Note on Myron Piper Gilmore

Myron Piper Gilmore was Gurney Professor of History and Political Science and Director of the Center for Renaissance Studies at Harvard. Gilmore was born on July 4, 1910 in Walpole, MA. He received an AB from Amherst College in 1932, an AM from Harvard in 1933, and a Ph.D. from Harvard in 1937. He married Sheila Dehn in 1938. Gilmore taught at Harvard for his entire career, as instructor of history from 1937 to 1942, associate professor from 1942 to 1954, professor from 1954 to 1974, and Gurney Professor of History and Political Science from 1975 to 1978. He was chair of the Department of History from 1957 to 1962. In 1964 he was named director of the Villa I Tatti Center for Renaissance Studies in Florence, Italy, a position he held until 1973. While in Italy, Gilmore was a leader in organizing rescue efforts to preserve cultural heritage following the 1966 flood of the Arno River, which affected libraries, museums, and archives in Florence. In September 1978, scholars from I Tatti presented Gilmore with a festschrift in his honor in Florence, published as Essays Presented to Myron P. Gilmore.

Gilmore studied Renaissance history. His doctoral dissertation was about the influence of Roman law on political thought in the 16th century. He also studied humanism, Erasmus, and Machiavelli. His major publications included The World of Humanism, 1453-1517 (1952) and Humanists and Jurists: Six Studies in the Renaissance (1963). Gilmore received honorary degrees from Amherst College (1962), Washington University in St. Louis (1967), and University of Florence (1976). He was a member of many professional organizations, including the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the American Philosophical Society, the American History Association, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the Accademia degli Intronati of Siena. He was also a founding member of the Renaissance Society of America. Gilmore died on October 27, 1978 in Cambridge, MA.


The collection is arranged in 14 series. The collection follows the arrangement of call numbers given to series upon receipt at the Harvard University Archives.

  1. Miscellaneous correspondence, 1976-1978 (HUGFP 32.10)
  2. Correspondence with Theodore Baird, 1952-1978 (HUGFP 32.12)
  3. Letters of recommendation and evaluation (HUGFP 32.15)
  4. Professional and research papers (HUGFP 32.45)
  5. Professional and research papers (HUGFP 32.45.2)
  6. Unpublished edition of Erasmus (HUGFP 32.50)
  7. Teaching papers (HUGFP 32.60)
  8. Teaching papers (HUGFP 32.60.2)
  9. Class rolls, grades, and examination records (HUGFP 32.65)
  10. Biographical material, circa 1950s-1980s and undated (HUGFP 32.70)
  11. Correspondence files, circa 1950s-1970s and undated (HUGFP 32.70)
  12. Subject files, 1952-1975 and undated (HUGFP 32.70)
  13. Talks and lectures, 1957-1976 and undated (HUGFP 32.70)
  14. Writings, 1947-1961 and undated (HUGFP 32.70)


Specific acquisition information is noted at the series level.

  1. Gift of Mrs. Myron Gilmore (Sheila Dehn), received 1979-03-13; accession 8611.
  2. Gift of Mrs. Myron Gilmore (Sheila Dehn), received 1979-07-12; accession 8690.
  3. Gift of Theodore Baird, received 1980-08-07; accession 8974.
  4. Gift of Theodore Baird, received 1984-04-13; accession 10028.
  5. Gift of Mrs. Myron Gilmore (Sheila Dehn), received 1994-03-18; accession 12839.

Related Materials

In the Harvard University Archives
  1. Gilmore, Myron Piper, 1910-1978. A collection of papers by Myron Piper Gilmore, mainly cuttings and reprints from various publications, 1959-1973. HUH 425.
In the Amherst College Archives and Special Collections
  1. Theodore and Frances Titchener Baird Papers, 1901-1996. MA.01013.
In Biblioteca Berenson, I Tatti - The Harvard University Center for Italian Renaissance Studies
  1. Committee to Rescue Italian Art Villa I Tatti office records.
  2. Committee to Rescue Italian Art Palazzo Pitti office records.

Inventory update

This document last updated 2022 April 26.

Processing Information

The finding aid was created by Erin Clauss in June 2021. Information in this finding aid was assembled from legacy paper inventories and container management data. Titles are transcribed. The collection was not re-examined.

Gilmore, Myron Piper, 1910-1978. Papers of Myron Piper Gilmore, 1947-1980s : an inventory
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Repository Details

Part of the Harvard University Archives Repository

Holding nearly four centuries of materials, the Harvard University Archives is the principal repository for the institutional records of Harvard University and the personal archives of Harvard faculty, as well as collections related to students, alumni, Harvard-affiliates and other associated topics. The collections document the intellectual, cultural, administrative and social life of Harvard and the influence of the University as it emerged across the globe.

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