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College of Arts and Sciences
Department of Religious Studies Records, 1957 - 1984

UPB 1.9 RS

2 Cubic ft.
Prepared by Kaiyi Chen
May 1993

Access to collections is granted in accordance with the Protocols for the University Archives and Records Center.


The collection transferred from the Department of Religious Studies in 1992.



The collection has been divided into the following series:

  1. Department Records, 1958-1984
  2. Robert Evans File, 1957-1974
  3. Robert Kraft File, 1982.

The Department Records series is fundamentally in its original order. It was organized alphabetically by subject.



The College of Arts and Sciences established the program of Religious Thought and appointed Edwin E. Aubrey as its first chairman in 1949. From his first semester, however, Aubrey taught both undergraduate and graduate courses, and beginning in the 1950 Bulletin, the graduate courses are cross-listed in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. The program developed into a department in 1960 under the chairmanship of Claude Welch, who remained chairman until 1971. Succeeding Welch from 1971 to 1983 were Van A. Harvey (1971-1976), and Robert Kraft (1977-1983). Robert F. Evans was Chairman of the graduate program from 1971 until his death in 1974. The department name changed to Religious Studies in 1977.



The Department Records series documents the department administration from 1958 to 1984. The series is a mixture of material concerning the department in general and material concerning the individual department chairmen (or chairman of the graduate program in the case of Robert F. Evans) of different periods. Included is a folder of the correspondence of the department chairmen correspondence, which covers the period of 1961-1982.

The Robert Evans File consists of material of both personal and professional nature. Researchers interested in his role in Penn's undergraduate admissions, specifically in the capacity of Chairman of the University Council Committee on Undergraduate Admissions and Financial Aid, will find a resource in this series.

Finally, the Robert Kraft File relates exclusively to an inquiry about his publication interest.


Related material may be found in the Edwin E. Aubrey Papers (UPT 50 A895). Aubrey served as the first professor in the Religious Thought program from 1949 to 1956.

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