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R. John Rath papers

Identifier: 2001-33

Scope and Content

The collection contains general and miscellaneous correspondence, unpublished and published manuscripts, cards, photocopies of papers, lecture notes, speeches and a photograph album.


  • circa 1930s-2000


Language of Materials


Use of Materials

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


Requests for permission to quote from the R. John Rath papers should be arranged with the University of Minnesota Archives head.

Biographical Sketch of R. John Rath (1910-2001)

Reuben John Rath was born on December 12, 1910 in St. Francis, Kansas. He earned his B.A. from the University of Kansas, M.A. from the University of California at Berkeley and his Ph.D. in history from Columbia University. In 1937-1938, he was in Austria conducting research. In March 1938, Rath found himself assisting Austrian nationals flee from the Nazi invasion of Austria. Rath served in the Army during World War II and worked with the United Nations Relief and Rehabilitation Administration in Germany and Austria after the war was over.

In 1947, Dr. Rath joined the faculty at the University of Colorado (Boulder). He moved on to the University of Texas at Austin in 1951 and remained there until 1963, when he joined the faculty as professor and chair of the department of history at Rice University. In 1965, Dr. Rath founded the Austrian History Yearbook, which became the preeminent scholarly publication on Austrian history and remains the only English-language journal devoted to the history of Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and parts of Italy, Poland, Ukraine, Romania and Serbia. In 1966, with the assistance of Charles Jelavich, he organized the Conference on Nationality in Central Europe, held at Indiana University. This conference is considered a milestone in the study of Austrian history. He retired from Rice University in 1980 as the Mary Gibbs Jones emeritus professor of history.

In 1980, the Center for Austrian Studies at the University of Minnesota invited Dr. Rath to join the faculty of the department of history and to continue the publication of the Austrian History Yearbookat Minnesota. For five years, Dr. Rath served as professor of history and worked closely with the Center for Austrian Studies, retiring from the University of Minnesota in 1985 as professor emeritus. R. John Rath died on February 18, 2001.


12 boxes (15.6 linear feet)


Collection contains the papers of R. John Rath, professor of history at the University of Minnesota.

Other Finding Aid Available

A finding aid with a contents list is available in University Archives.

Source of acquisition

The collection was deposited in University Archives on October 3, 2001 by John Wright.

Related Materials in University Archives

Austrian History Yearbook (MKC/Au79y)

R. John Rath papers, circa 1930s-2000
Karen Spilman
July 2005
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Collecting Area Details

Contact The University Archives Collecting Area