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Roy F. Nichols papers

Ms. Coll. 1016

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Pennsylvania. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts
Creator:
Nichols, Roy F. (Roy Franklin), 1896-1973
Title:
Roy F. Nichols papers
Date [bulk]:
1948-1963
Date [inclusive]:
1893-1963
Call Number:
Ms. Coll. 1016
Extent:
2.4 linear feet (6 boxes)
Language:
English
Abstract:
Roy F. Nichols (1896-1973) was an author and a historian who studied 19th century American history and won the Pulitzer Prize in history for his book, The Disruption of the American Democracy. This collection consists of manuscript and typescript drafts for his biography on Franklin Pierce,  The Disruption of the American Democracy,  The Stakes of Power, 1845-1877, and  Blueprints for Leviathan: American Style; as well as a scrapbook of correspondence and newspaper clippings of articles and reviews from the  Philadelphia Press written by Francis Newton Thorpe.
Cite as:
Roy F. Nichols papers, 1893-1963 (bulk: 1948-1963), Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts, University of Pennsylvania
PDF Version:

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Biography/History

Roy Franklin Nichols was born March 3, 1896 in Newark, New Jersey to Franklin Coriell and Annie Cairns Nichols. He obtained his education from Rutgers University (B.A., 1918 and M.A. in 1919) and Columbia University (Ph.D., 1923) and began his career in history at Columbia, first as a fellow from 1920 to 1921 and as an instructor from 1921 to 1925. In 1925, he was appointed assistant professor of history at the University of Pennsylvania. From 1930 to 1966, he was professor of history at Penn, but over the years, he also served as Dean of Graduate School of Arts and Sciences (1952–1966) and Vice Provost (1953–1966). He also served as a visiting professor at Columbia University from 1944 to 1945, at Cambridge University from 1948 to 1949, and at Stanford University in 1952. In 1962, he taught as a Fulbright lecturer in India and Japan.

His work extended beyond the classroom and he served as president of Middle States Association of History Teachers from 1932 to 1933; president of Pennsylvania Federation of Historical Societies from 1940 to 1942; member of Pennsylvania Historical Commission from 1940 to 1943; Member of Council, American Historical Association from 1943 to 1947; chairman of Social Science Research Council from 1949 to 1953; president of Association of Graduate Schools of the American Association of Universities from 1963 to 1964; vice president of American Historical Association from 1964 to 1965; president of American Historical Association from 1965 to 1966; and Chairman of Council of Graduate Schools in the United States. He was married to Jeannette Paddock Nichols (1890-1982), who was also a historian and an author.

Nichols published a number of books on American history and politics. He won the Pulitzer Prize for History for The Disruption of American Democracy in 1949. A few of his other publications include  The Democratic Machine, 1850-1854 (1923),  Advance Agents of American Destiny (1956), a biography of Franklin Pierce (1958),  Religion and American Democracy (1959),  Stakes of Power, 1845-1877 (1961),  Blueprints for Leviathan: American Style (1963), and  The Invention of American Political Parties (1967). He received the Haney Medal for Literary Excellence in 1961 and the Athenaeum Literary Award in 1961. He also received a number of honorary degrees from universities such as Rutgers University and Cambridge University. Nichols died in 1973.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists primarily of manuscripts and typescripts for several of Nichols' works, as well as a scrapbook of newspaper clippings of articles from the Philadelphia Press written by Francis Newton Thorpe. Researchers will find handwritten and annotated typescript drafts of manuscripts for Nichols' biography of Franklin Pierce and his book  The Disruption of the American Democracy, as well as typescripts for  The Stakes of Power and  Blueprints of Leviathan: American Style. Nichols' books address democracy, the Democratic Party, and politics in the United States, generally, during the 19th century.

The last item in the collection consists of a scrapbook of articles, correspondence and reviews written by Francis Newton Thorpe from 1893 to 1895 for the Philadelphia Press. Thorpe (1857-1926) was born in the town of Swampscott, MA. After pursuing graduate studies at the University of Pennsylvania, he became a University Fellow at the age of twenty-eight, holding the title of Professor of American Constitutional History from 1885 to 1898. He was an active member of the Pennsylvania Historical Society and a leading member of the American Historical Association, and was admitted to the Pennsylvania bar in 1885. Thorpe's scholarship on state constitutions remains some of the most influential and foundational work in the field of state constitutional development.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

University of Pennsylvania: Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts,  29 July 2014

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Devorah Sperling-Billings

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Copyright restrictions may exist. For most library holdings, the Trustees of the University of Pennsylvania do not hold copyright. It is the responsibility of the requester to seek permission from the holder of the copyright to reproduce material from the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books and Manuscripts.

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Controlled Access Headings

Form/Genre(s)
  • Clippings (information artifacts)
  • Drafts (documents)
  • Typescripts
Personal Name(s)
  • Pierce, Franklin, 1804-1869‏
  • Thorpe, Francis Newton, 1857-1926
Subject(s)
  • Authors
  • Authors, American--20th century
  • United States--Politics and government--1849-1877

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Collection Inventory

Franklin Pierce or  Franklin Pierce, Young Hickory of the Granite Hills, 1958.

Manuscript.

Box Folder

"Autobiography of Benjamin Pierce," "Youth in the Land of Hills", circa 1958.

1 1

"The Initiation of Esquire Pierce into Law and Politics", circa 1958.

1 2

"The Gentleman from Hillsboro", circa 1958.

1 3

"A Fitting Prelude", circa 1958.

1 4

"A Political Honeymoon", circa 1958.

1 5

"Senator-elect", circa 1958.

1 6

"The Youngest Senator," "Wider Horizons", circa 1958.

1 7

"Retirement from Public Life," "Punishing Isaac Hill", circa 1958.

1 8

"Temperance Crusader," "The Menace of Free Soil", circa 1958.

1 9

"The Politician Goes Forth to War", circa 1958.

1 10

"Elusive Glory," "Zenith", circa 1958.

1 11

"A Pawn in the Game," "Satisfying Conscience," "Another Digression into Politics," "A Staggering Possibility", circa 1958.

1 12

"Running for President," "Preparing to Assume a Burden", circa 1958.

1 13

"A New Way of Life," "Distributing the Patronage", circa 1958.

1 14

"Shaping Administrative Policies", circa 1958.

1 15

"The Administration on the Defensive," "The President Administers Party Discipline," "Preparing the Administration Program for Congress", circa 1958.

1 16

"Congress Assembles," "'Society' Receives its Due," "Interludes," "Opening Skirmishes", circa 1958.

1 17

"Reaching an Accord with the Senate," "Inaugurating a Foreign Policy," "The First Administration Measure", circa 1958.

1 18

"Entering World Politics," "Midsummer with Congress," "Another Cuban Hope", circa 1958.

1 19

"Popular Reactions," "The End of Cuban Annexation," "Salvaging the Administration Program", circa 1958.

1 20

"The Routine of Administration," "Putting Down the Know Nothings," "Diplomatic Fencing", circa 1958.

1 21

"The Territorial Problem," "Summer Miscellany", circa 1958.

1 22

"Choosing to Run," "Assuming Leadership," "An Unpleasant Turn of Fate", circa 1958.

2 1

"Coping with Treason in Kansas," "Defiance of Great Britain at Last," "Preparing for the Convention", circa 1958.

2 2

"A Kansas-ridden Summer," "Preparing for Retirement", circa 1958.

2 3

"The Final Accounting," "A President Departs", circa 1958.

2 4

"A Proposal for an Historical Verdict," "Wandering," "Striving to Save the Union", circa 1958.

2 5

"Opposition to the War," "The Dissolution of a Personality", circa 1958.

2 6

"Biographical Material," "Campaign Literature," "New Hampshire History," "Official Publications," "Newspapers," "Miscellaneous," "Articles in Periodicals", circa 1958.

2 7

Typescript.

Box Folder

Intro and pages 1-52, circa 1958.

2 8

Pages 53-105, circa 1958.

2 9

Pages 106-165, circa 1958.

2 10

Pages 166-212, circa 1958.

2 11

Manuscript sheets between pages 213-270, circa 1958.

2 12

Pages 270-323, circa 1958.

2 13

Pages 324-373, circa 1958.

2 14

Pages 374-431, circa 1958.

2 15

Pages 432-466, circa 1958.

2 16

Pages 467-522, circa 1958.

2 17

Pages 523-575, circa 1958.

2 18

Pages 576-634, circa 1958.

3 1

Pages 635-681, circa 1958.

3 2

Pages 682 - Notes 31, circa 1958.

3 3

Notes 32-67, circa 1958.

3 4

The Disruption of the American Democracy, 1948.

Manuscript.

Box Folder

Preface, Chapter I, circa 1948.

3 5

Chapters II and III, circa 1948.

3 6

Chapter VI, circa 1948.

3 7

Chapters V and VI, circa 1948.

3 8

Chapters VII and VIII, circa 1948.

3 9

Chapter IX, circa 1948.

3 10

Chapter X, circa 1948.

3 11

Chapter XI, circa 1948.

3 12

Chapters XII and XIII, circa 1948.

3 13

Chapter XIV, circa 1948.

3 14

Chapter XV, circa 1948.

4 1

Chapters XVI and XVII, circa 1948.

4 2

Chapter XVIII, circa 1948.

4 3

Chapter XIX, circa 1948.

4 4

Chapter XX, circa 1948.

4 5

Chapter XXI, circa 1948.

4 6

Chapter XXII, circa 1948.

4 7

Chapter XXIII, circa 1948.

4 8

Chapter XXIV and XXV, circa 1948.

4 9

Chapter XXVI and XXVII, circa 1948.

4 10

List of Dramatis Personae, circa 1948.

4 11

Bibliography of Chapters 1-13, circa 1948.

4 12

Bibliography of Chapters 14-end, circa 1948.

4 13

Typescript.

Box Folder

Chapter I, complete and incomplete, circa 1948.

4 14

Chapters II and III, circa 1948.

4 15

Chapters V-IX, circa 1948.

5 1

Chapters XI-XII, circa 1948.

5 2

Chapters XIII-XVI, circa 1948.

5 3

Chapters XVIII-XXVII, circa 1948.

5 4

Chapters XXVIII-XXX, circa 1948.

5 5

Indexes, table of contents, notes, circa 1948.

5 6

Notes and miscellany, circa 1948.

5 7

Dramatis personae, circa 1948.

5 8

3rd draft: chapters 1-6, circa 1948.

5 9

3rd draft: chapters 7-11, circa 1948.

5 10

3rd draft: chapters 12-17, circa 1948.

5 11

3rd draft: chapters 18-19, circa 1948.

5 12

3rd draft: chapters 20-24, circa 1948.

5 13

3rd draft: chapters 25-end, circa 1948.

5 14

The Stakes of Power, 1845-1877, 1961.

Box Folder

Editorial notes and bibliography, circa 1961.

5 15

Introduction to chapter two, circa 1961.

5 16

Chapters three and four, circa 1961.

5 17

Chapters five, six, and seven, circa 1961.

5 18

Chapters eight, nine, and ten, circa 1961.

5 19

Chapters eleven, twelve, and thirteen, circa 1961.

6 1

Chapters fourteen and fifteen, circa 1961.

6 2

Blueprints for Leviathan: American Style, 1963.

Box Folder

Foreword to chapter two, circa 1963.

6 3

Chapters three and four, circa 1963.

6 4

Chapters five and six, circa 1963.

6 5

Chapter seven, circa 1963.

6 6

Chapters eight and nine, circa 1963.

6 7

Chapter ten and eleven, circa 1963.

6 8

Chapter twelve and thirteen, circa 1963.

6 9

Notes, appendices, and bibliography, circa 1963.

6 10

Scrapbook by Francis Newton Thorpe on current events from the Philadelphia Press, 1893-1895.

Box
6
Folder
11