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COLLECTION Identifier: HOLLIS 601624

A. James (Andrew James) Casner papers


Correspondence, notes, memoranda, and printed matter relating to Casner's activities in various professional organizations.


  • 1927 - 1984

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.


44 linear feet (100 Hollinger, 6 paige, )

The Andrew James Casner Papers consist documents relating to Casner's career as legal scholar, law professor, author and editor. The papers date from 1928-1978; the bulk are from 1950-1978.

The papers include correspondence, brochures, typescripts of speeches and articles, and printed materials. They are divided into fifteen series. The largest series are those relating to Casner's work on various committees of the American Bar Association, his activities at the Harvard Law School, and his many speaking engagements nationwide.

Although the collection offers a good deal of information about the nature of Casner's professional activities, there is very little substantive discussion of legal matters and virtually nothing of a personal nature. Much of the correspondence deals with travel arrangements, course scheduling, or social functions, or is limited to brief notes expressing concurrence or disagreement on matters unknown. Most of the correspondence is in the form of carbon copies of typewritten letters.

Historical/Biographical Information

Andrew James Casner was born in Chicago in 1907. He received an LL.B. degree from the University of Illinois in 1929, and an A.B., also from the University of Illinois, a year later in 1930. He received a J.S.D. degree from Columbia University in 1941, and an LL.D. from Harvard University in 1969.

During the Second World War, Casner served as a colonel in the USAAF (1942-1945), and received the Legion of Merit and the Bronze Star.

Casner was an instructor of law at the University of Illinois from 1929-1930, a Professor of law at the University of Maryland from 1930-1935, Professor of Law at the University of Illinois from 1936-1938. He joined the Harvard faculty as a Professor of Law until 1938, and held the Austin Wakeman Scott emeritus professorship from 1961. In addition, Casner served as Harvard's Associate Dean and Acting Dean.

A member of the bar in Illinois (1929), Maryland (1934), and Massachusetts (1940), Casner was an associate of the Boston firm of Ropes, Gray, Best, Coolidge & Rugg from 1945-1958. He was also a member of the American Law Institute, for which he served as adviser on numerous projects from 1930.

In addition to numerous articles in law journals, Casner was the author of Estate Planning, published in 1953 (5th edition 1985), and its annual supplements, as well as Cases and Texts on Property (coauthored with W.B. Leach), published in 1959 (3rd edition 1982) and its supplements. He was editor-in-chief of American Law of Property (1951) and its supplement, chairman of the law editorial board of Little Brown & Co., and a reporter for Restatement of Property.

Casner died on August 31, 1990, in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Series List

  1. Series I: American Bar Association (ABA), 1949-1978. 1949-1978. Boxes 1-27. This SERIES is divided into 13 SUBSERIES.
  2. ___ Subseries 1A: ABA: Standing Committee on Professional Ethics, 1950-1962 (bulk 1959-1962). 1950-1962 (bulk 1959-1962). Boxes 1-14. Mostly correspondence concerning issues brought before the Ethics Committee. It is arranged according to case number; most run chronologically. At the end of the subseries are opinions agreed upon by the entire committee.
  3. ___ Subseries 1B: ABA: Standing Committee on Unauthorized Practice of the Law, 1949-1959. 1949-1959. Boxes 15-22. Correspondence and other materials relating to matters before the Unauthorized Practice Committee. The letters (mostly carbon copies) are arranged chronologically within subject (e.g. Accountants, 1950-1954, etc.). Boxes 20-22 contain general correspondence, materials relating to committee meetings, printed materials and reports relating to issues of unauthorized practice.
  4. ___ Subseries 1C: ABA: Standing Committee on Continuing Education of the Bar (Film Subcommittee), 1963-1977. 1963-1977. Boxes 23-24. Correspondence, film scripts (including drafts), outlines and clippings relating to estate planning films produced under the auspices of the Film Subcommittee. Casner appeared in several of these films, and was involved in the creation and revision of their scripts.
  5. ___ Subseries 1D: ABA: Special Committee on Evaluation of Ethical Standards, 1964-1970. 1964-1970. Boxes 25-27 (see also Box 102 ). Correspondence, professional codes, articles, and printed materials. Box 27 includes a directory of committee members. Printed proceedings of committee meetings of 1965 and 1966 are in Series 15, Box 102. Each box is arranged chronologically.
  6. ___ Subseries 1E: ABA: Standing Committee on Professional Grievances, 1964-1971. 1964-1971. Boxes 28-30. Correspondence re: specific cases, general correspondence, and materials re: committee meetings. Each Category is arranged chronologically.
  7. ___ Subseries 1F: ABA: Meetings, 1950-1978. 1950-1978. Boxes 31-32. Correspondence, programs, et. al. relating to ABA meetings. (Much of this material concerns travel arrangements or social activities.) Arranged chronologically.
  8. ___ Subseries 1G: National Conference of Lawyers and Liability Insurers, 1963-1972. 1963-1972. Box 33. Correspondence, minutes, reports, materials re: Kaudern v. Allstate Insureance Co., materials re: guiding principals. Arranged chronologically.
  9. ___ Subseries 1H: Section on Real Property, Probate, and Trust Law, 1950-1969. 1950-1969. Box 34. Correspondence, reports, roster of officers and committees, materials from the committee on Draftsmanship, Wills, and Trusts and the Estate and Tax Planning Committee. Arranged chronologically.
  10. ___ Subseries 1I: Special Committee to Study Current Needs in the Field of Legal Education, 1960-1961. 1960-1961. Box 35. Correspondence, minutes, reports, printed materials. Arranged chronologically.
  11. ___ Subseries 1J: Special Committee on Legal Services and Procedure (See also Hoover Commission), 1955-1957. 1955-1957. Box 36. Includes drafts of legislation, minutes, correspondence, reports, and lists of members and advisory groups. Arranged chronologically.
  12. ___ Subseries 1K: Joint Committee on Professional Responsibility, 1952-1959. 1952-1959. Box 37. Includes correspondence, minutes, and materials relating to Committee Statement. (Note: materials make no mention of the other participant in the joint committee.) Arranged chronologically.
  13. ___ Subseries 1L: ABA Miscellany, 1939-1969. 1939-1969. Boxes 38-39. Includes correspondence, reports, typescripts. Organizations represented include National Conference of Lawyers and Representatives of the American Bankers Association, Subcommittee on Deduction of Estate Planning Expenses, Committee on Accreditation of Law Schools, Special Committee on Canons of Ethics.
  14. ___ Subseries 1M: Printed Materials (Pamphlets are not in folders), 1934-1963. 1934-1963. Box 40. ABA publications on a variety of issues. Includes reprints, briefs, reports, bylaws, proceedings, and ABA directory. Arranged chronologically.
  15. Series II: Harvard Law School, 1949-1972, 1949-1972, Boxes 41-48.
  16. ___ Subseries 2A: Associate Dean's Files, 1961-1967. 1961-1967. Boxes 41-44. Mostly correspondence with various faculty members concerning teaching schedules. There are also memoranda concerning the law school's teaching programs and other academic matters. Correspondence with faculty members is arranged alphabetically; papers pertaining to other matters are arranged chronologically.
  17. ___ Subseries 2B: Committee on Legal Education, 1958-1963. 1958-1963. Boxes 45-46. Includes correspondence, minutes of meetings, and memoranda to and from faculty members.
  18. ___ Subseries 2C: Harvard Law School Miscellany, 1949-1972. 1949-1972. Boxes 47-48. Correspondence, memoranda, copies of speeches et al. Included are papers pertaining to the summer programs, HLS's sesquicentennial celebration, model trial transcripts, and law school catalogues. Arranged chronologically within subject.
  19. Series III: Speaking Engagements, 1946-1984. 1946-1984.

    Boxes 49-59. Correspondence, brochures, and speeches from Casner's speaking engagements at tax and estate seminars around the country. Arranged chronologically.

  20. Series IV: Alphabetical Correspondence Files, 1929-1954. 1929-1954.

    Boxes 60-64. Social and professional correspondence. Arranged alphabetically by correspondent.

  21. Series V: Subject Files, 1932-1968. 1932-1968.

    Boxes 65-68. Includes correspondence, reports, and printed materials. Subjects include All Saints Episcopal Church in Belmont, Mass., the Arden House Conference on Continuing Legal Education, a radio broadcast on taxation, and materials from the Harvard Cooperative Society, of which Casner was a board member. Box 66 contains published international agreements from a seminar on defense policy. There is also one folder of correspondence relating to Casner's son's wedding in London. Arranged alphabetically.

  22. Series VI: Student/Early Teaching Career Materials, 1927-1941. 1927-1941.

    Boxes 69-74. Notes from Casner's years as a law student at the University of Illinois and early teaching years at the University of Maryland. Boxes 69-72 contain class notes. Box 73 contains questions from final examinations. Box 74 contains miscellaneous materials pertaining to this part of Casner's career. Although the bulk of the materials are undated, it may be presumed that they are from the late 1920s and early 1930s. Boxes 69-73 are arranged alphabetically by subject; box 74 is arranged chronologically.

  23. Series VII: Hoover Commission (Task Force on Legal Services and Procedure in the Federal Administrative Agencies), 1938, 1950-1956. 1938, 1950-1956.

    Boxes 75-77. Includes correspondence, memoranda, reports, drafts of legislation, working papers, and printed materials. Each box is arranged chronologically.

  24. Series VIII: House Subcommittee on Internal Revenue Taxation: Advisory Group on Subchapter J of the Internal Revenue Code of 1954, 1952-1958. 1954, 1952-1958.

    Boxes 78-80. Correspondence, reports, and printed materials concerning the revision of the 1954 tax code. Arranged chronologically.

  25. Series IX: Estate Planning Casebook; Other Estate Planning Materials, 1947-1965. 1947-1965.

    Boxes 81-85. Materials pertaining to Casner's casebook, Estate Planning. Boxes 81-83 contain materials relating directly to the casebook; boxes 84-85 contain other materials on estate planning, which were placed in the same file and presumably were used in work on the casebook. Includes drafts, correspondence, teacher's manuals, and reviews. Arranged chronologically within genre.

  26. Series X: Little, Brown & Company, 1940-1967. 1940-1967.

    Boxes 86-88. Correspondence pertaining to Casner's projects as Chairman of the Law Editorial Board. Box 86 contains general correspondence, minutes of meetings, and chapter outlines, and is arranged chronologically. Boxes 87 and 88 contain correspondence concerning specific individuals, and are arranged alphabetically by correspondent.

  27. Series XI: American Law Institute, 1933-1962. 1933-1962.

    Boxes 89-93 (Printed materials in box 103). Mostly correspondence. Includes reports, memoranda, and minutes. Materials are arranged chronologically. (Note: Box 103 (Paige box), included in series 15, contains printed ALI reports.)

  28. Series XII: Association of American Law Schools, 1938-1968. 1938-1968.

    Boxes 94-95. Series includes correspondence, memoranda and reports. Arranged chronologically.

  29. Series XIII: Other Professional Activities, 1946-1980. 1946-1980.

    Boxes 96-99. Mostly correspondence relating to Casner's professional activities outside academe. Organizations represented are:

    • Box 96: American Banker's Association Graduate School of Banking
    • Box 97, Folders 1-4: American Bar Foundation
    • Box 97, Folder 5: American Law Foundation
    • Box 97, Folder 6: Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Committee on Professional Ethics
    • Box 97, Folder 7: Boston Bar Association
    • Box 98: Federal Tax Institute of New England
    • Box 99: Practising Law Institute
    Arranged chronologically within each organization.

  30. Series XIV: Materials re: Revenue Act of 1948, 1947-1951. 1948, 1947-1951.

    Box 100. Includes correspondence, lecture outlines, typescripts of speeches, copy of legislation, and printed materials. Materials are arranged chronologically.

  31. Series XV: Printed Materials, 1939-1957. 1939-1957.

    Boxes 101-103. Box 101 contains reprints of articles by Casner; box 102 contains Proceedings of ABA Special Committee for the Evaluation of Ethical Standards (see also series 1D ); box 103 (Paige box) contains American Law Institute reprints (see also series 11 ).

  32. Series XVI: Addenda

Arranged chronologically within each organization.

  1. Box 96: American Banker's Association Graduate School of Banking
  2. Box 97, Folders 1-4: American Bar Foundation
  3. Box 97, Folder 5: American Law Foundation
  4. Box 97, Folder 6: Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Committee on Professional Ethics
  5. Box 97, Folder 7: Boston Bar Association
  6. Box 98: Federal Tax Institute of New England
  7. Box 99: Practising Law Institute

Physical Location

Harvard Depository

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Contact Curator of Modern Manuscripts and Archives.

Processing Information

Processed by Janet Hayashi, June 1993.

Casner, A. James (Andrew James). Papers, 1927-1984: Finding Aid
Harvard Law School LibraryCambridge, 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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