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Using the Collection
Note: some material may be restricted or offsite
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At a Glance
This collection is arranged in four series: Series I: Correspondence, 1933-1937; Series II: Administrative Files, 1933-1935; Series III: Legal Documents, 1933-1934; Series IV: Educational Files, 1942-1943.
Lynd's papers primarily consist of letters, memos, proposals, meetings' minutes, studies, newspaper and magazine clippings, releases, and legal documents pertaining to the National Recovery Administration regulation and the Consumer Advisory Board during the early 1930s. In addition, the collection contains policies and reports on educational reform in Great Britain and of the National Maritime Union.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
This collection has no restrictions.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Robert Staughton Lynd papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
Selected Related Material--At Other Repositories
Robert and Helen Lynd Family Papers, Staughton Lynd Collection Kent State University
Lynd Correspondence and Papers, 1922-1982, Ball State University Libraries
Middletown Studies Collection and Digital Archive Ball State University
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Cataloged Christina Hilton Fenn 08/--/89.
Papers processed Marilyn Chin, Queens College, 2011 2/--/2011.
Finding aid written Marilyn Chin, Queens College, 2011 2/--/2011.
2011-04-08 xml document instance created by Carrie Hintz
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Biographical / Historical
Robert Staughton Lynd was born on September 26, 1892 in New Albany, Indiana. He was a professor of sociology at Columbia University for thirty years (1931-1961.) He married Helen Merrell in September, 1922. They had two children, a son, Staughton, in 1929, and a daughter, Andrea, in 1934.
Lynd is best known for the book, Middletown: A Study in Contemporary American Culture, that he and his wife wrote. The book was based on a landmark study of a typical American community in 1929 from a cultural anthropological standpoint. It was one of the first sociological analyses done in the country of a modern, urban community. The book proved to be a bestseller and was noted for its scientific perspective. Lynd and his wife followed up with a sequel titled, Middletown in Transition in 1937 by returning to the same community to observe the effects of the Great Depression on its people. Known as the Middletown studies, these analyses are still used and referred to by American sociologists.
Lynd died on November 1, 1970 in Warren, CT, at the age of seventy-eight.