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Collection Overview

Historical Note

Scope and Content Note

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Collection Overview
Name of Creator:Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law
Title:School of Law records
Date:1900-1998
Reference Code:A06
Location Code:22/4, 23/1
Extent:9.05 cubic ft. (27 boxes)
Scope and Content Abstract:The records of the Northeastern University School of Law (A6) document the institution's administrative and educational activities from 1900 to 1998. The collection includes material on the evolution of the School of Law from a series of evening courses sponsored by the Boston YMCA into a formal program of legal education. The collection also contains some information on the closing of the School of Law in 1953. Also included are the records of the Law Alumni Association, development and fund-raising records, student newspapers and newsletters, admissions catalogs and brochures, facebooks, cooperative education handbooks, and placement and career services information. Researchers should note that there is some chronological overlap between this collection and the School of Law records (A44), 1960-2001.
Historical Abstract:The Northeastern University (NU) School of Law is recognized for training attorneys to practice law in the public sector. Founded by the Boston Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) in 1898 as a series of evening courses, it was the first evening law program in Boston. In 1904, the program was incorporated as the Evening School of Law of the Boston YMCA with the power to grant the Bachelor of Law (LLB) degree. Its primary goal was to prepare students for the Massachusetts Bar Examination. Because of increasing enrollment, divisional campuses were established in Worcester and Springfield in 1917 and in Providence in 1920. In 1922 it was renamed the NU School of Law; in the same year women were admitted for the first time. In 1938 it began to offer day courses. In the early 1950s, the School of Law faced financial hardship and declining enrollment and closed in 1953. With the urging of NU's Law Alumni Association it reopened on May 13, 1966, becoming the first law school in the country to operate on the cooperative education model. In contrast to its predecessor, the new School of Law began as a four-year, daytime graduate program that awarded the Juris Doctor (JD) degree.  The School's transition from the LLB degree to the JD degree reflected the changes in the level of education required to practice law.  In 1970, the School of Law's program was reduced to three years and two summer quarters with rotating cooperative educational studies.  In 1971, the School received full accreditation from the American Bar Association.
Language and Scripts:Materials are entirely in English.
System of Arrangement:The collection is arranged into seven series: 1. Early History; 2. Office of the Dean; 3. Development/Alumni(ae) Relations; 4. Admissions; 5. Cooperative Education; 6. Placement/Career Services; and 7. Publications.
Subjects and Contributors:
  • Belmore, Bruce W.
  • Boyd, Philip C.
  • Crane, Joseph O.
  • Churchill, Everett Avery, b. 1892
  • Givelber, Daniel J.
  • Hall, David
  • Hallgring, Robert W.
  • Meltsner, Michael C., b. 1937
  • Nicholson, Lowell S.
  • Oberg, Rudolf O.
  • O'Byrne, John C.
  • O'Toole, Thomas J.
  • Schofield, Sydney Kenneth
  • Speare, Frank Palmer, 1869-1954
  • Wright, Stuart M.

  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law -- Alumni and alumnae
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law -- Admissions
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law -- Accreditation
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law. Office of the Dean
  • Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.). School of Law Alumni Association
  • Young Men's Christian Association of Greater Boston. Evening Law School

  • Education, Cooperative
  • Class reunions
  • Public interest law
  • Educational fund raising
  • College publications -- Massachusetts
  • College student newspapers and periodicals
  • Law schools

Conditions Governing Access:Records are closed for 25 years from the date of their creation unless researchers have written permission from the creating office.
Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use:Copyright restrictions may apply.
Finding Aids:School of Law records (A44)
Processor:Finding aid prepared by Michelle Lee, February 1996; updated by Abigail Cramer, December 2011.