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Raymond Dexter Havens papers

 Collection
Identifier: MS-0024
Raymond Dexter Havens, educator and author, was born in Rochester, New York in 1880. In 1925, he joined The Johns Hopkins University faculty as Caroline Donovan Professor of English, a post he held until his retirement in 1949. In 1931, Havens was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.The collections consists of correspondence; reprints, articles, and clippings; outlines, course note, study guides, and bibliographies; an autograph album contains holographic messages from Robert Frost, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and others.

Dates

  • 1769-1954

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is housed off-site and requires 48-hours' notice for retrieval. Please contact Special Collections for more information.

Conditions Governing Use

Collection is open for use.

Extent

3.93 Cubic Feet (3 letter size document boxes, 1 letter half-size document box, 5 legal size document boxes, 1 legal half-size document box, 1 over-sized folder)

Biographical / Historical

Raymond Dexter Havens was born in Rochester, New York in 1880. After graduating from the University of Rochester in 1898, he taught mathematics at the Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, New York. He did graduate study in English at Harvard University, receiving his Ph.D. in 1908. He returned to the University of Rochester, where, with the exception of two years overseas during World War I, he remained until 1925. Havens served as a volunteer with the Y.M.C.A. in France, 1917-1919. In 1925, he joined The Johns Hopkins University faculty as Caroline Donovan Professor of English, a post he held until his retirement in 1949. In 1931, Havens was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Havens was a contributor to scholarly journals and served as a joint editor of Modern Language Notes, 1928-1948. His particular interest was the literature of the 17th and 18th centuries. He was the author of The Influence of Milton on English Poetry (1922) and The Mind of a Poet, a Study of Wordsworth's Thought with Particular Reference to The Prelude (1941). Havens was also interested in the life and works of Robert Southey. He collected letters and other published material of the poet laureate.

Raymond Dexter Havens was appointed Professor Emeritus in 1947. Havens died in 1954.

Scope and Contents

The correspondence covers a period, 1922-1954, and consist in part of advice and editorial skills sought by students and colleagues. Havens served as a joint editor of MLN from 1928-1948, and much of the correspondence deals with the research of other scholars. The letters also offer a view of political conditions and human concerns in the periods of World War II and immediately after.

The material in the Research Series includes reprints, articles, and clippings which Havens assembled on writers and subjects of literary interest. Annotated volumes of English literature and material of Robert Southey form a large part of the Series.

Within the Writings Series are reprints of Havens's articles, 1912-1953. Drafts and notes which formed speeches he presented are included, as well as classroom notes from Harvard, 1907. Havens spent the greater part of his career at The Johns Hopkins University. Outlines, course note, study guides, and bibliographies demonstrate the scope of his teaching career.

While serving as chairman of the English Department, he produced newsletters, 1943-1944, which give a view of the effect of World War II on Hopkins. The newsletters and a proposed curriculum for the postwar years are part of the collection.

Havens gave great attention to collecting material which enriched his study of literature. Facsimiles of documents and newspapers which describe significant events in English history are part of the collection. Of particular interest are holographic letters of Thomas Warton, Joseph Warton, Robert Southey, and Henry James.

Havens' personal life and his career were closely aligned. Apparently, he was well-acquainted with other contemporary writers. An autograph album contains holographic messages from Robert Frost, Edna St. Vincent Millay, and others. In July, 1940, ELH published a volume dedicated to Havens. Two copies of The Havens Volume are contained with the personal items. Information regarding the commissioning of Havens's portrait, and a list of bequests are the final items in the collection.

Arrangement

The collection consists of six series: Correspondence, Research, Writings, The Johns Hopkins University, Collectors, and Personal.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The papers were given to The Johns Hopkins University in 1954 at the bequest of Raymond Dexter Havens.

Accruals

Accession Number 1993-94.MS.30 (material removed from the Cage, added June 1998).

Processing Information

Processed by Joan Grattan in October 1989.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Repository

Contact:
The Sheridan Libraries
Special Collections
3400 N Charles St
Baltimore MD 21218 USA