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COLLECTION Identifier: HOLLIS 601616

Edward Dumbauld papers


Material in this collection deals with Interstate Commerce Commission Cases, Harvard Law School matters, and Dumbauld's appointment as U.S.. District Judge.


  • Creation: 1936 - 1983

Conditions Governing Access

Access to these papers is governed by the rules and regulations of the Harvard Law School Library. This collection is open to the public, but is housed off-site at Harvard Depository and requires 2 business-day advance notice for retrieval. Consult the Special Collections staff for further information.

Conditions Governing Use

The Harvard Law School Library holds copyright on some, but not all, of the material in our collections. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be directed to the Special Collections staff. Researchers who obtain permission to publish from the Harvard Law School Library are also responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations who hold copyright.


26 boxes

The papers of Edward Dumbauld (1905-1997) span the years 1936 to 1983. There is a small amount of historical research material relating to the Judicial Conference of the United States which covers the years 1922 to 1975. Papers include correspondence (both letters received and carbons of letters sent); drafts; galley proofs; research notes; memoranda; agenda; minutes of meetings; reports; bibliographies; pleadings; legal briefs; printed court opinions; lists; tabulations; questionnaires; clippings; cards; and telegrams.

Judge Dumbauld's papers relate to activities other than his tenure on the benches of the Common Pleas and U.S. District Courts. They document his years of service with the U.S. Department of Justice; his participation in the affairs of the American Society of International Law, especially during his years as a member of its Executive Council; his historical interests and authorship; and his Harvard attachments and other friendships.

While with the U.S. Department of Justice, Judge Dumbauld served in their Antitrust Division, first as Special Attorney (1936-1938) and subsequently as Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney General (1939-1949). In these capacities he was in charge of litigation that arose under acts regulating transportation and communication. His Series Interstate Commerce Commission represents cases that he argued before the ICC on behalf of the Government. These suits were brought to review or set aside orders of the ICC. The majority of these cases were civil actions that were heard in U.S. District Courts. The Series includes motions, briefs, reply briefs, memoranda, hand written notes, orders, opinions, per curiam opinions, notices of settlement, affidavits, drafts, findings of fact, answers, complaints, petitions, carbon copies of memoranda, letters, lists, assignment of error, statement as to jurisdiction, and petitions for leave to intervene.

Although Judge Dumbauld was actively involved with the American Society of International Law for many years prior to 1961, his papers cover only the period 1961 to 1981. During this period he served as Secretary of the Society's Executive Council. His ASIL papers include agenda and minutes of Council meetings, annual reports of the Treasurer, some ad hoc committee reports, and reports of the following Committees: Finance; Financing and Endowment; Library (Tillar House Library of the ASIL); Membership; Local and Regional Activities and Meetings; Selection of Honorary Members; U.S. Department of State and United Nations Publications; other Publications, including the American Journal of International Law; Annual Awards, including the Manley O. Hudson Medal; and Nominating. Additional papers relate to the nomination of ASIL members to the International Court of Justice and to Ford Foundation Grants awarded to the ASIL.

Judge Dumbauld was a serious student of the Constitution of the United States, of Thomas Jefferson and of Hugo Grotius, and his legal scholarship is reflected in his papers (for a list of his writings see MS box 22, folder 6, and the Biographical Note). The Series Writings includes holograph and typed drafts of manuscripts; galley proofs; notes; bibliographies; and correspondence. Correspondence is with law school faculty member, editor of law journals, and with the University of Oklahoma Press who were Judge Dumbauld's publishers. Major correspondents are: Thomas W. Christopher, Merrill Jensen, Philip C. Jessup, and W. J. M. van Eysinga. The Series also contains copies of a number of memorials written by Dumbauld.

The Series Miscellaneous Correspondence ties in with the Writings Series, as it contains much correspondence relating to Dumbauld's publications such as inquiries from others concerning his research, his own inquiries, discussion of his ideas, acknowledgements of gifts of his books, and correspondence with editors of the papers of post-revolutionary American historical figures, e.g. the Adams Papers, a project at the Massachusetts Historical Society. Other correspondence relates to his judicial appointments, professional engagements, invitations to participate in symposia and seminars, the America Law Institute, the Corcoran Department of History at the University of Virginia, the West Publishing Company, and historical societies. The Series covers the years 1961 through 1980, with a few items dating 1936, 1944, and 1959. Major correspondents are: William J. Brennan, Jr.; Derek C. Bok; Warren E. Burger; Lyman H. Butterfield; John P. Frank; George L. Haskins; John S. Hastings; Frank A. Kaufman; Edward H. Levi; Dumas Malone; Nathan Pusey; Albert M. Sacks; Bernard G. Segal; Collins J. Seitz; Joseph H. Smith; and Edwin C. Surrency.

From 1975 to 1981 Judge Dumbauld served on the Bicentennial Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States. The main focus of the Committee was concentrated on planning productions relating to the Judiciary, e.g. a documentary film series for television, "popular" books, biographical directories, and court histories. The papers that Judge Dumbauld retained of his membership on the Bicentennial Committee reflect these plans and their implementation. They consist of correspondence, agenda, schedules, minutes of meetings, reports, handwritten notes, lists, questionnaires, synopses, and clippings. Major correspondents are: Warren E. Burger, James M. Carter, Merrill Jensen, Clement F. Haynsworth, Jr., Howard T. Markey, and Stephen B. Presser.

The last Series, Harvard Law School/Biographical, consists of fifteen folders of Harvard and personal miscellany, e.g., material relating to his duties as a member of the Harvard University Board of Overseers' Committee to Visit the Law School (1967-1973), to his resignation from the Court of Common Pleas (1961), and to his nomination to the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania (1961). Types of material included are correspondence, telegrams, memoranda, agenda, lists, reports, handwritten notes, receipts, schedules, clippings, and a bibliography of his writings. Major correspondents in this Series are: Derek C. Bok, Andrew James Casner, Joseph S. Clark, R. Ami Cutter, Oliver W. Hammonds, Albert M. Sacks, and Robert Shenton.

Historical/Biographical Information

Dumbauld, Edward, lawyer, government attorney, judge, legal historian/author.

b. October 26, 1905, Uniontown, Pennsylvania.

s. Horatio S. and Lissa Grace (MacBurney) Dumbauld.

m. Mary Ellen Whelpley, January 1, 1941.

A.B., Princeton University, 1926.

LL.B., Harvard University, 1929; LL.M., 1930; Sheldon Traveling Fellowship, 1930-1932.

LL.D., University of Leyden, Netherlands, 1932.

LL.D. (hon.), Findlay College, 1981.

Admitted to Pennsylvania bar, 1929; District of Columbia bar, 1929; U.S. Supreme Court bar, 1936.

In private law practice in Uniontown, Pennsylvania, 1932-1936, 1949-1957.

Attorney, Anti-Trust Division, U.S. Department of Justice, 1936-1949; Special Assistant to the U.S. Attorney General, 1939-1949.

Judge, Court of Common Pleas, Fayette County, Pennsylvania, 1957-1961.

U.S. District Judge, Western District of Pennsylvania, 1961-1976, appointed by President John F. Kennedy; Senior Judge, 1977 -

Member, Pennsylvania Bar Association, chairman of its Committee on Lawyers' Referral Service.

Member, American Bar Association.

Honorary Vice-President, American Society of International Law.

Director, American Society of Legal History, 1976-1979.


  1. Interim Measures of Protection in International Controversies. 1932.
  2. The Political Writings of Thomas Jefferson. 1955
  3. The Bill of Rights and What it Means Today. 1957.
  4. The Constitution of the United States. 1964.
  5. The Life and Legal Writings of Hugo Grotius. 1969.
  6. Thomas Jefferson and the Law. 1978.
  7. "Monopolies and the Courts" (with Robert H. Jackson), 86 University of Pennsylvania Law Review 231 (1938).
  8. "John Marshall and the Law of Nations," 104 University of Pennsylvania Law Review 38 (1955).
  9. Also numerous other articles on legal and historical subjects. [See MS box 22, folder 6.]

Series List

  1. Series I. Writings
  2. Series II. Interstate Commerce Commission Cases
  3. Series III. American Society of International Law
  4. Series IV. Miscellaneous Correspondence
  5. Series V. Bicentennial Committee of the Judicial Conference of the United States
  6. Series VI. Harvard Law School / Biographical

Physical Location

Harvard Depository

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers of Edward Dumbauld (1905-1997), lawyer, government attorney, judge, legal historian/author, were presented to the Harvard Law School Library by Judge Dumbauld as a gift on July 26, 1983.

Processing Information

Prepared by Judith W. Mellins and Erika S. Chadbourn, June 1985.

Dumbauld, Edward. Papers, 1936-1983: Finding Aid.
Harvard Law School Library Cambridge, MA 02138
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Harvard Law School Library, Historical & Special Collections Repository

Harvard Law School Library's Historical & Special Collections (HSC) collects, preserves, and makes available research materials for the study of the law and legal history. HSC holds over 8,000 linear feet of manuscripts, over 100,000 rare books, and more than 70,000 visual images.

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