James Vorenberg papers
The James Vorenberg Papers encompass Vorenberg's career as both an educator and a public servant. Most of the collection reflects his time at Harvard as both Law School Dean and Professor. His government work is evidenced by records from the Massachusetts State Ethics Commission and the Watergate files.
- 1961 - 2000
Conditions Governing Access
Due to the nature of Vorenberg's work, many files in the collection are closed for research. Files containing student information, such as grades, are closed for 80 years; those with Harvard Law School or Harvard University administrative records are closed for 50 years. All restrictions are noted in the container list below. 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 Historical and 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 Historical and 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.
Extent36 boxes (17 linear feet)
The James Vorenberg Papers cover the entirety of Vorenberg's professional career as professor, dean, and public servant. The collection spans the 1960s up to his death in 2000, and contains correspondence, teaching materials, memos, reports, publications, photographs, and audio-visual materials. The majority of the collection is of a professional nature, though there are some personal materials, as well.
Due to the nature of Vorenberg's work at Harvard Law School - both as professor of law and dean - there is a lot of sensitive material in the collection. Restrictions on personal student information and official univeristy administration records are noted in the container list below.
- 1928Born in Cambridge, MA
- 1948Graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College.
- 1951Graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School.
- 1951Served as first lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
- 1953Clerked for US Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter.
- 1954Joined the law firm Ropes and Gray. Named a partnet in 1960.
- 1962Joined the faculty at Harvard Law School.
- 1964Appointed director of the Office of Criminal Justice in the Department of Justice.
- 1965President Johnson appointed Vorenberg as executive director of the President's Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice.
- 1969Selected to chair the Center for the Advancement of Criminal Justice at Harvard Law School.
- 1973Served as principal assistant to Special Investigator, Archibald Cox, during the Watergate investigation.
- 1978Appointed as Associate Dean of Harvard Law School.
- 1978Appointed chair of the Massachusetts State Ethics Commission.
- 1981Appointed Dean of Harvard Law School.
- 1989Resigned from position as Dean.
- 1991Returned to teaching criminal law, legal ethics and criminal justice at Harvard Law School.
- April 12, 2000Died in Boston, MA.
- Born in Cambridge, MA
- Graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College.
- Graduated magna cum laude from Harvard Law School.
- Served as first lieutenant in the United States Air Force.
- Clerked for US Supreme Court Justice Felix Frankfurter.
- Joined the law firm Ropes and Gray. Named a partnet in 1960.
- Joined the faculty at Harvard Law School.
- Appointed director of the Office of Criminal Justice in the Department of Justice.
- President Johnson appointed Vorenberg as executive director of the President's Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice.
- Selected to chair the Center for the Advancement of Criminal Justice at Harvard Law School.
- Served as principal assistant to Special Investigator, Archibald Cox, during the Watergate investigation.
- Appointed as Associate Dean of Harvard Law School.
- Appointed chair of the Massachusetts State Ethics Commission.
- Appointed Dean of Harvard Law School.
- Resigned from position as Dean.
- Returned to teaching criminal law, legal ethics and criminal justice at Harvard Law School.
- April 12,2000
- Died in Boston, MA.
- Series I. Harvard, 1971-2000 1971-2000 This series reflects work completed by Vorenberg whileserving as either Dean or Professor at Harvard Law School. Most ofthe teaching files are course packs and lecture notes for Crimal Law,Government Lawyer, and Criminal Justice Administration courses. Theadministrative files span both his teaching years and his deanship,and cover a wide variety of topics. Many of these files containsensitive student and administrative information and have beenrestricted. Some files from Vorenberg's deanship were transferred toHarvard University Archives.
- ___ Subseries A. Dean, 1981-20001981-2000
- ___Subseries B. Teaching, 1979-20001979-2000
- ___ Subseries C. Administrative, 1971-20001971-2000
- Series II. Correspondence, 1968-19811968-1981
This is adiscrete run of correspondence in the papers, ending with Vorenberg'sappointment as Dean. It is mostly professional innature.
- Series III. Personal Files, 1961-20001961-2000
This seriesreflects Vorenberg's original arrangement of materials, many of whichhe had identified as personal. Several records in this series coverVorenberg's professional activities, though, including teaching,administrative work, and committee appointments. Many files in thisseries are closed due to sensitive student and administrativeinformation.
- Series IV. Committees/Commissions, 1967-2000 1967-2000 Vorenbergserved on several governmental and professional committees andcommissions, and this series reflects some of that work. ThePresident’s Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration ofJustice subseries consists of reports to the Commission. TheMassachusetts State Ethics Committee subseries includescorrespondence and memos, and documentation from both the DiCarlo andMacKenzie and Cawley investigations. The final subseries containsfiles from the Vera Institute of Justice, the Urban Institute, andthe Department of Justice.
- ___ Subseries A. President’s Commission on Law Enforcement andAdministration of Justice, 1967-19971967-1997
- ___ Subseries B. State Ethics Committee, 1974-19831974-1983
- ___ Subseries C. Other work, 1968-20001968-2000
- Series V. Watergate, 1973-19951973-1995
TheWatergate series contains reports, memos, notes and some publishedmaterials regarding the Watergate investigation.
- Series VI. Writings, 1969-20001969-2000
Writingscontain some of Vorenberg's publications, including an annotated copyof the Criminal Law and Procedure Casebook. The series also containsoffprints written by Vorenberg's colleagues.
- Series VII. Audio-Visual Materials, 1986-19901986-1990
To see theAudio-Visual materials, please contact the Curator of ModernManuscripts and Archives.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Donated to the Harvard Law School Library by Elizabeth Vorenberg, October 2000.
Processed by Margaret Peachy, April 2012
- Criminal justice, Administration of
- Criminal law -Study and teaching
- Harvard Law School
- Justice, Administration of -United States
- Law enforcement
- Law teachers
- Massachusetts State Ethics Commission
- Public officers
- United States. President’s Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice
- Watergate Affair, 1972-1974
- Vorenberg, James. Papers, 1961-2000
- Harvard Law School Library, Cambridge, MA 02138
- Language of description
- EAD ID
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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