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Records of the Radcliffe College Central Administration, 1883-1985


Records of the Central Administration including correspondence and financial records relating to buildings an construction, blueprints, legal papers, leases, and contracts.


  • 1883-1985

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Series 4.1 and Series 9 of RG III are unrestricted. All other series in RG III are closed for 50 years from date of creation and must be screened by the archivist.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the records created by the Radcliffe College Central Administration is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Records may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


270.90 linear feet ((234 cartons, 82 file boxes, 2 folio+ boxes) plus 72 volumes)

Series and sub-series arrangement including dates, physical description and volume:

Records are divided into the following major subject categories: accounting, payroll and personnel, gifts and funds, buildings and construction, student accounting, student financial aid, Treasurer, legal papers, and general office files. Each category is given a series number, except for accounting, which is divided into three series, arranged chronologically.

Series 1, Accounting (1889-1955)-1966 and Series 2, Accounting 1924-(1955-1971) are finite and will not be added to. Future accounting records are to be added to Series 11, Accounting 1971-. Series 8, Treasurer's Papers is finite and will not be added to: it consists of early records of the college, 1883-1924, when the Treasurer was the sole financial agent of the college, prior to the establishment of teh Business Office in 1924. Current Treasurer's records are in the following series: Treasurer's Reports 1971 and prior are found in Series 2, Accounting 1924-(1955-1971) and Treasurer's Reports, 1972- are found in Series 11, Accounting (1971-). Statements of the Fiduciary Trust are found in Series 5, Gifts and Funds. All other series are on-going and can be added where necessary.

Series are further divided into sub-series. In Series 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, and 11, sub-series are arranged by subject or record type. In Series 10, Office Files, sub-series are arranged chronologically. In both cases new sub-series can be added when necessary.

The format of the records varies: there are bound volumes (predominantly in Series 1), letter and legal size folders, and IBM printouts, unbound or in binders. The latter are designated as volumes.


Between 1883 and 1924 all the business affairs of Radcliffe College were managed by the Treasurer. In 1924 the Treasurer was given responsibility for investments and financial policy; and the newly appointed Business Manager took over accounting, disbursement, property and personnel functions. A reorganization occurred in 1960: an Administrative Vice-President was appointed to oversee property, grants, unions, and personnel, and a Comptroller to manage accounting. With the Harvard/Radcliffe agreement in 1971, Harvard undertook many of these functions and only a skeletal business office remained at Radcliffe until 1975. At that time, the position of Administrative Dean was created to direct the budget, financial planning and building operations of Radcliffe's "retained programs". The Central Administration was established in 1981 and consists of the Financial Vice President/Treasurer who manages the endowment and budget; the Controller who oversees accounting; and the Director of Physical Plant who is in charge of buildings and grounds.


The collection is arranged in eleven series:

  1. Series 1. Accounting, (1889-1955)-1966. Bound or loose-leaf volumes, arranged alphabetically by title. 51.5 linear feet
  2. Series 2. Accounting, 1924-(1955-1972). Arranged in sub-series by record type, and chronologically within sub-series. 55 linear feet
  3. Series 3. Payroll and Personnel, 1925- , arranged in sub-seriesby topic and chronologically within sub-series. 86.8 linear feet
  4. Series 4. Buildings and Construction: correspondence, financialrecords, blueprints, arranged alphabetically by name ofbuilding, 1922- 29.4 linear feet
  5. Series 5. Gifts and Funds, 1939- 19.1 linear feet
  6. Series 6. Student accounting, samples of each record type, 1967-1991. 1 linear foot
  7. Series 7. Student financial aid, arranged in sub-series by record type and within sub-series chronologically, 1920-1971. 14 linear feet
  8. Series 8. Treasurer's Papers, 1883-1924, arranged chronologically within subjects, 10 volumes, legal size folders. 3.3 linear feet
  9. Series 9. Legal Papers, leases, contracts, arranged alphabeticallyby subject, legal size folders, 1901-. 3.34 linear feet
  10. Series 10. Office files of the former Business Office and the Comptroller's Office, arranged in chronological sub-series, and within sub-series alphabetically by subject, name or title, 1920- 30 linear feet
  11. Series 11. Accounting, 1971-. Arranged in sub-series by record type and chronologically within sub-series. 8 linear feet

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Processing Information

Processed: August 1956; reprocessed August 1979

By: Jane Knowles, Joseph Ball, Eric Lindquist, Christine Sailer

Radcliffe College. Central Administration. Records of the Radcliffe College Central Administration, 1883-1985: A Finding Aid
Radcliffe College Archives, Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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