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Identifier: R-MC 051

Robert H. Neilson Papers


  • 1921-1940

Scope and Content Note

The papers document Robert Neilson's relationship with Rutgers University, both as an alumnus and later as a member of the Board of Trustees, a position which he held for four years until his death in 1940. In the latter capacity, he served on three committees: finance, honorary degrees, and the New Jersey College for Women. The records consist primarily of correspondence, minutes and memoranda; they also include other documents such as wills and Neilson's literary contributions to the Rutgers Alumni Monthly. The files were originally created while Neilson was attached to Cravath, and at some point were transferred to his own firm, They were received at Rutgers shortly after his death.

The papers have been divided into two series: I. Board of Trustees and II. Alumnus Activities. The first series is divided by Committee (Finance, Honorary degrees, New Jersey College for Women); there is also a folder on general Trustee matters. The second series consists of records pertaining to the Alumni Association, Class of 1903 and the Rutgers Luncheon Club. The series is an amalgamation of Neilson's categories of "Class of 1903" and "Rutgers University," which were often unclear distinctions. There is therefore so me overlap of materials.

The collection provides useful information on the financial problems which Rutgers was undergoing in the first part of this century -- one reason for the proposal of for state funding -- and on its dependence upon alumni contributions, bequests and financial support for maintenance. There is also correspondence in which Neilson discusses the proposal by the Trustees to dissassociate Rutgers Preparatory School from the university and the conditions under which this could take place.


0.8 Cubic Feet (2 manuscript boxes)

Language of Materials



Papers of Robert H. Neilson, Rutgers College Class of 1903, relating to his activities with the Alumni Association and members of his class, and his service on the Rutgers Board of Trustees, 1936-1940, including his membership on the Committees for finance, honorary degrees, and the New Jersey College for Women.

Biographical Sketch of Robert Hude Neilson

Robert Hude Neilson was born in New Brunswick on June 11, 1882. He attended Rutgers Preparatory School and Rutgers University, graduating in 1903 with an A.B. degree; he later gained an LL.B. degree from Harvard Law School in 1906. Neilson became associated with the New York firm of Cravath, Henderson and de Gersdorff becoming a partner there seven years later. In 1922, he founded the firm of Wickes and Neilson, later Wickes, Neilson & Riddell.

Guide to the Robert H. Neilson Papers, 1921-1940 R-MC 051
Edited Full Draft
Denise Shorey
August 1989
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Revision Statements

  • June 3, 2004: neilson converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).

Part of the Rutgers University Archives Repository

Rutgers University Libraries
Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
169 College Avenue
New Brunswick NJ 08901-1163
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