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Elizabeth Jackson papers

Identifier: ua-00209

Scope and Content

The papers of Elizabeth Jackson consist of personal and professional correspondence, photographs, two diaries and an extensive set of notebooks from her undergraduate and graduate work at Radcliffe College. The notebooks are primarily class notes, but several include poetry and sketches. In addition, there is also a miscellaneous folder that contains a copy of a Certificate of Merit that was presented to Dr. Jackson in 1961 by University President Meredith Wilson.


  • 1908-1968

Language of Materials

Collection material in English

Use of materials:

Items in this collection do not circulate and may be used in-house only.


Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law (Title 17, U.S. Code). Requests to publish should be arranged with the University of Minnesota Archives.

Biographical Note of Elizabeth Jackson (d. 1968)

Elizabeth Jackson, bachelor's, master's, doctorate degrees awarded by Radcliffe. Her academic focus was the style and technique of English verse.

Elizabeth Jackson was born in Bridgewater, Massachusetts to William Dunham Jackson and Mary Vose Jackson. Elizabeth Jackson was raised in a family of educators. Her mother taught high school prior to her marriage; her father was professor of science and mathematics at the Normal School in Bridgewater, Massachusetts, now Bridgewater State College.

Jackson attended Radcliffe, earning her bachelor's, master's and Ph.D. degrees by the age of 23. After graduation, Jackson, along with her brother Dunham Jackson, came to the University of Minnesota. She began teaching at the University of Minnesota in 1916 as an instructor in the English Department. Dunham followed her a few years later and joined the Mathematics department in 1919, where he would continue to teach until his death in 1946. Jackson was promoted to the rank of assistant professor in 1920, associate professor in 1945 and to the rank of full professor in 1960.

Throughout Elizabeth Jackson's 45 year teaching career at the University of Minnesota she taught composition, the literature of the Bible, English literature and modern poetry. Her academic focus was the style and technique of English verse.

E.J., as she was affectionately known on campus, spent the years 1924-1925 on sabbatical leave in London. In 1933-1934 she took a second sabbatical and traveled extensively throughout Europe. She also worked as an exchange professor at the University of Hawaii in 1935-1936.

In 1944 the University of Minnesota Press published her only book The Faith and Fire Within Us: An American Credo. The book, as described by Jackson, is an attempt "to discover, describe, and estimate the beliefs that underlie American Society." Drawing heavily on quotes by prominent authors, politicians, philosophers and poets, the book is part pro-American propaganda for the war effort and part personal philosophy.

Other publications include a paper entitled "Project in Anti-Education Research" in which she analyzes modern education theory and ultimately dismisses much of it due to its lack of practical application. Elizabeth Jackson died November 25, 1968 at the Villa Maria nursing home in Minneapolis.


1.25 Cubic Feet (1 box)


The collection consists of the personal papers of Elizabeth Jackson, professor of English literature at the University of Minnesota. It contains correspondence, photographs and a set of notebooks.

Source of acquisition:

Donated to the University of Minnesota Archives by Dr. Jackson's two nieces: Anne Jackson Byess and Mary Eloise Jackson Thorpe. Material was also donated by Nancy Stubbs.
Elizabeth Jackson papers, 1908-1968
Greta Bahnemann
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Collecting Area Details

Contact The University Archives Collecting Area