Myron J. Files Papers, 1941 -- 1984


Title: Myron J. Files Papers
Dates: 1941 -- 1984
Bulk Dates: 1952 -- 1984
Creator: Files, Myron J.
Call Number: MS166
Size: 0.75 Cubic Feet
Language(s): English.  
Permanent URL:
    Digital Collections and Archives, Tufts University


The collection is composed of articles, correspondence, employment records, photographs and sketches. Most material dates from Files' retirement in 1955 until his death in 1984. The collection includes correspondence and sketches sent to Tufts Professor of History, Russell Miller, and Tufts presidents Jean Mayer, Nils Wessell, and Burton Hallowell, as well as Boston University professor Donald Winslow. The collection also contains a number of Files' sketches and jottings depicting and commenting on a wide range of subjects from nuclear proliferation to rain on your birthday. A number of his articles from Ipswich Today are also included.


The collection is organized into one series.


Biographical / Historical

Myron J. Files (1892-1984) served as a professor in the English Department at Tufts from 1914 to 1955. Myron Files was born in Fairfield, Maine, on May 5th, 1892. After graduating from Dartmouth College in 1914, Myron J. Files began his career at Tufts as an Instructor of English. While teaching, he also pursued his A.M. from Harvard University, which he received in 1916. On August 17th, 1917, Files married Esther Bockius, a cousin of the artist Andrew Wyeth. He then served in World War I until 1918. In 1918, Myron Files resumed his career as an instructor in the English Department at Tufts. He was promoted to Assistant Professor in 1923 and to Associate Professor in 1940. In 1945 he became the William Goldwaithe Professor of Rhetoric. He continued to teach under that title until his retirement in 1955.

After his retirement from Tufts, Myron Files moved to a farm in Appleton, Maine, where he continued his favorite pastimes, gardening and sketching. He also contributed frequent columns to a Massachusetts newspaper, Ipswich Today. Esther and Myron Files' three children; Myron J. Jr., George Everett, and Flora Ann, all attended Tufts. Myron J. Files died in Maine in November 1984 at the age of 92.

Access and Use

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Some material in this collection may be protected by copyright and other rights. Please see "Reproductions and Use" on the Digital Collections and Archives website for more information about reproductions and permission to publish. No documentation is available regarding the intellectual property rights in this collection

Collection History

Processing Notes

This collection was processed by MacKenzie Brigham, supervised by Susanne Belovari, in fall 2009. While processing this collection, a number of small sketches were found appended to letters and correspondence, as well as sketches housed separately in individual envelopes. Sketches found in one large mailing envelope were housed in a small archival box and each sketch was interleaved with unbuffered tissue paper for preservation. Many sketches were found between letters. These sketches were housed in separate folders including the preceding and subsequent letter, to maintain context. If an individual letter also had sketches attached to it, fasteners were removed and the letter was housed in a separate folder along with its sketches; envelopes containing historical information were preserved. Fall 2009 emails between Archivist for Reference and Collections, Susanne Belovari, and Charlotte Lindwin regarding the Lindwin/Winslow correspondence is included in Box: 001 Folder: 00001.

This collection is processed.

Custodial History

This collection was originally housed in the DCA vertical files, but was pulled due to the historical significance and size of the collection. The folders were kept in Russell Miller's order and re-named according to content.

Subjects and Genre Terms
Related Material
  • MS007, John A. Holmes, papers 1813-1976, DCA
  • MS146, Donald J. Winslow, papers 1918-2001, DCA
  • MS117, Russell E. Miller, papers 1853-1986, DCA

Series Description

  1. Letters, articles, and sketches, 1941 -- 1984

    This series contains articles, correspondence, and sketches documenting the period after Myron J. Files' retirement in 1955 up until his death in 1984. Few items date from before 1955. The series includes a considerable amount of correspondence between Files and Professor Donald Winslow and Ms. Charlotte Lindwin, as well as letters between Files and Russell Miller. Please note the sketch of Russell Miller drawn by Myron Files. This series also contains exchanges between Files and Tufts presidents Jean Mayer, Nils Wessel, and Burton C. Hallowell, including some sketches. Administrative records and letters regarding Myron Files' retirement from Tufts, and changes in retirement policies and annuity are also included. Also included are some articles written by Files published in a Massachusetts newspaper, Ipswich Today. A small box of sketches and jottings by Files document his musing and opinions. Also of note is a poem written by John Holmes about Prof. Myron Files on the event of his retirement.