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Herbert C. Brown papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: MSF 4

Scope and Contents

The Herbert C. Brown Papers [360 cubic feet] document the professional life and some of the personal life of Herbert Brown, winner of the 1979 Nobel Prize for Chemistry and former Purdue University professor. The collection consists of professional papers, personal papers, publications, professional and personal correspondence, research records, university and departmental papers, graduate student work and records, photographs, awards, memorabilia, and artwork.


  • 1928-2005
  • Other: Majority of material found in 1940s-1990s
  • Other: Date acquired: 06/12/2005


Conditions Governing Access

There are a few boxes that contain personal or sensitive information and a viewing restriction has been placed on them.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright is retained by the Brown family


400.00 Cubic Feet

338 boxes other_unmapped

0.00 items

0.00 Linear Feet

2.00 Cubic Feet

2.00 Linear Feet

360.00 Cubic Feet

0.00 Linear Feet

1.00 flat_box

1.00 flat_box

1.00 flat_box

1.00 shoe_boxes

3.00 flat_box

0.00 folders

0.00 items

1.00 flat_box

Language of Materials


Arrangement Note

The Herbert C. Brown Papers are organized into three series: 1. Vertical Files, circa 1930s-2003 2. Herbert C. Brown’s Chemistry Library contents, circa 1930s-2005 3. Memorabilia and Artwork, donated by Charles A. Brown, circa 1930s-2005

Physical Access Requirements

Collection is open for research. The collection is stored offsite; 48 hours notice is required to access the materials.

Custodial History

The Herbert C. Brown Papers were donated to Purdue University by Herbert C. Brown when he was on the faculty at Purdue. Brown’s papers were originally housed in the small library room adjacent to his office that was provided to Brown when he became a Professor Emeritus in 1978. The papers remained as part of the Purdue Chemistry Department until Brown’s death in 2004, when they were transferred to the archives. Subsequent additions from Brown’s home were received from his son, Charles Brown.

Acquisition Information

Collection materials donated by Herbert C. Brown and Charles A. Brown.

Separated Materials

One item, a binary rule, was removed from the Chemistry Library boxed contents, and wrapped and placed with the artifacts collection in the Archives Stacks to protect it from damage.

Processing Information

An effort has been made to numerically and/or chronologically order each individual box where feasible. Some contents, such as photographs, have been sleeved for protection. Some historical or fragile materials were wrapped in archival tissue for preservation. The memorabilia and artwork donated by Herbert C. Brown's son, Charles A. Brown, has been wrapped in acid-free tissue and placed in sleeves and boxes, and an initial inventory is compiled. Oversized materials have been individually wrapped and labeled. Unframed photographs are stored in archival sleeves and boxes. Artifacts have been wrapped and stored in archival boxes. Also, materials from some boxes were consolidated, so there are no numbered boxes: 77, 81, 82, 83, 89, 90 126, 181, 218, 224, 225, 226, 320
Herbert C. Brown papers
In Progress
Margaret Morris
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Purdue University Archives and Special Collections Repository

504 Mitch Daniels Boulevard
West Lafayette Indiana 47907 United States