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COLLECTION Identifier:  601612

Livingston Hall papers


Papers relating to Hall's membership on Massachusetts District Court Survey, Massachusetts Judicial Survey Commission, Massachusetts Judicial Council, Massachusetts Criminal Law Revision, and Governor'S Committee on Law Enforcement and Administration of Criminal Justice.


  • Creation: 1947-1973

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.


50 boxes

The 3000 items in the Papers of Livingston Hall, attorney, educator, and legal scholar, span the years 1947 to 1973.

The collection includes correspondence; reports; memoranda; agenda and minutes of meetings; charts; tables; maps; drafts; forms; legal and other documents; bibliographies; newspaper clippings; and printed items.

The Papers relate to Professor Hall's activities as a member, and frequently chairman, of study groups, surveys, commissions, and councils which were charged with monitoring law enforcement agencies and the judicial system of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, and with presenting recommendations and/or drafting legislation for the revision of existing laws and codes. Professor Hall participated in specific studies by the following: Massachusetts District Court Survey; Massachusetts Judicial Survey Commission; Massachusetts Judicial Council; Massachusetts Criminal Law Revision Commission; and the Governor's Committee on Law Enforcement and Administration of Criminal Justice. Professor Hall assisted in drafting the Massachusetts District Court reorganization bill of 1953, with its subsequent amendments, and the drafting of the new Massachusetts Criminal Code of 1972.

Correspondence in these papers is minimal and is confined to the scheduling of meetings and other extraneous matters.

Historical/Biographical Information

Hall, Livingston, professor of law, lawyer.

b. May 5, 1903, Chicago, Ill.

s. James Parker and Evelyn Hallam (Movius) Hall.

Ph.B. University of Chicago, 1923.

LL.B. magna cum laude, Harvard, 1927.

m. Elizabeth Blodgett, September 13, 1930; children: Thomas L., Margaret R., Elizabeth C., and John K.

Admitted to New York Bar, 1934.

Law practice with firm of Rood, Clark, Buckner, Howland, and Ballantine, New York, NY, 1927-1931.

Assistant U.S. attorney Southern District, NY, 1931-1932.

Assistant Professor of Law, Harvard, 1932-1937; Professor of Law, 1937-; Vice Dean, 1938-1958; Acting Dean, 1959.

Regional price and enforcement attorney O.P.A. (on leave from Harvard) Boston, 1942-1943.

Moderator: Town of Weston, 1947-1949, Town of Concord, 1957-1967.

Commissioned Lt. Col. AC, A.U.S. in Manilla P.I., Feb. 1945; served as dep. chief Operations Analysis sects., overseas with 13th and Far East Air Forces, 1943-1945, and in Washington, D.C. with 20th Air Force, 1945.

Awarded Medal of Freedom, 1946.

Member of American and Massachusetts Bar Associations (pres. 1963-1964); Massachusetts Judicial Council; Phi Beta Kappa; Rep. Episcopalian Clubs; Curtis; Social Circle 1782.


  1. (with Sheldon Glueck) Cases on Criminal Law and Enforcement, 1958.
  2. (with Warren Seavey) Cases on Agency, 1956.
  3. (with Yale Kamisar) Modern Criminal Procedure, 1966.

Series List

  1. Series I. Massachusetts District Court Survey

    The District Court Survey was organized in September of 1951 and was sponsored by the law schools of Massachusetts. Livingston Hall chaired the committee, and Lawrence Urbano was director.

    The survey committee proceeded with their study in three stages: (1) analyzed published materials on District Courts, (2) conducted a statewide survey to collect facts and opinions, and (3) made recommendations to the General Court for the solution of existing problems and revisions of pertinent laws and codes.

    This group of papers is divided into two parts: (1) survey of caseloads, and (2) chronological file.

  2. Series II. Massachusetts Judicial Survey Commission

    The Judicial Survey Commission was formed by Governor Herter in December of 1954 to make a study of the administration of all the courts in Massachusetts. The commission drafted legislation and made other recommendations for change within the frame of the current Constitution.

    The commission was divided into seven subcommittees: on the administration of the courts; district courts; criminal justice; probate courts; land court; supreme judicial court's rule making power, procedure and practice and jury commissioners; and internal operation of the courts.

    Livingston Hall served on this commission, and was a member of the subcommittee on administration of the courts, rulemaking power and others.

    This group of papers is divided into three parts: (1) official file, (2) subcommittee file which is arranged alphabetically, and (3) unsorted miscellany.

  3. Series III. Massachusetts Judicial Council

    The Judicial Council is "an official body charged with the duty of continuous study of the judicial system and its functioning, and the devising of methods for the improvement of the system and its adaptation to present day needs." The council was created as an advisory body by the Judicature Commission of 1919-1920, to aid and direct the legislature in making decisions on judicial reform.

    Livingston Hall was first appointed a member of the Mass. Judicial Council in August of 1955 by Massachusetts Governor Christian Herter and reappointed for successive terms in 1960, 1964, 1965, and 1969.

    The papers consist of minutes and drafts of reports made at committee meetings. [Hall was inconsistent in his use of the terms "items" and "agenda" as indicated by folder headings; both presumably refer to reports made.] Final reports are in two bound volumes in MS box #7, 1951-1967.

  4. Series IV. Massachusetts Criminal Law Revision Commission

    Livingston Hall served as chairperson of the MCLRC from its inception in May of 1968 to its termination in 1971-1972. This commission was formed by the Attorney General of Massachusetts to help modernize the criminal law. In 1972 the commission filed Senate Bill No. 200 as a proposed revision of the substantive criminal law of Massachusetts.

    The work of the commission was done by an Executive committee which Hall served on, and four sub-committees. Each sub-committee had a "Reporter who would draft sections and commentary." Sub-committee A: general principles; sub-committee B: sentence, probation and parole; subcommittee C: offenses against person and property; and sub-committee D: offenses against family, decency and good order.

    The first meeting was held on May 27, 1968, and the final draft was approved on November 20, 1971 and filed in 1972.

  5. Series V. Governor's Committee on Law Enforcement and Administration of Criminal Justice

    Livingston Hall served on various subcommittees of the Governor's committee, such as: Governor's Public Safety Commission; Advisory Committee on Planning, Implementation and Research; and the Governor's Proposal Review Board.

    These papers cover the period 1967-1973. They consist primarily of reports made by the committees. [See also: Massachusetts Criminal Law Revision Commission which grew out of the Governor's committee.]

  6. Series VI. Addenda

    This series contains financial files of the Massachusetts Criminal Law Revision Commission, 1968-1978, which were not originally included in Series IV.

Physical Location

Harvard Depository

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers of Livingston Hall were transferred through gift to Harvard Law School Library in 1975 by Professor Hall.

Processing Information

Prepared by Virginia Agnew Gartrell, August, 1976.

Hall, Livingston. Papers, 1947-1973: 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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