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The Hurst Collection

Series XI: Artifacts

Series 11 contains Hurst’s typewriter, an Olympia DeLuxe.  The typewriter is housed in the University of Wisconsin Law Library's Rare Book Room.

That Hurst continued to use this manual typewriter throughout his career at Wisconsin was fondly remembered by many, including Alfred Konefsky in his article, “The Voice of Willard Hurst,” 18 Law and History Review 147 (2000):

 “In any appreciation of Hurst's work, some mention must be made of his body of unpublished work—that is, through the medium of his correspondence, his constant and unflagging encouragement of the work of younger legal historians.  Most of us experienced Hurst's kindness through the mail.  Hurst's letters to colleagues were legendary for a variety of reasons.  First, there was his typing.  Let's just say it was engagingly erratic and that over time it got worse.  It only made me look forward even more to his letters.  Somehow the letters seemed more endearing, charming, and useful because of the personal effort that went into them.  Second, there was that venerable, old typewriter on which Hurst obviously hammered out his correspondence himself.  I have Hurst's letters to my father in the 1950s and 1960s, and Hurst's letters to me in the 1970s through the 1990s and, though I am hardly an FBI expert on the subject, it certainly looks like all of them were typed on the same typewriter, a machine that probably belongs in the Smithsonian to commemorate the impact it had on the writing of American history, particularly the history of American law.”

 For other remembrances, see:

•    Aviam Soifer, "In Retrospect: Willard Hurst, Consensus History, and The Growth of American Law," 20 Reviews in American History 124, 128 (1992).

•    William N. Eskridge, Jr., "Willard Hurst, Master of the Legal Process," 1997 Wisconsin Law Review 1181, 1189 (1997).

•    John P. Frank, "J. Willard Hurst—Memorial Remarks," 1997 Wisconsin Law Review 1131, 1133 (1997).

•    Lawrence Friedman, "Remembering Willard," 1997 Wisconsin Law Review 1137, 1138 (1997).

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