University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Clarence Darrow Papers 1913-1944

© 2006 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


Darrow, Clarence. Papers




1 linear foot (2 boxes)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


Clarence Darrow (1857-1938) Lawyer and social reformer. Contains correspondence, speeches and articles, copies of press releases relating to the Scopes trial, the manuscript of an unpublished story, and material written after Darrow's death, including letters to his widow, Ruby H. Darrow.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Darrow, Clarence. Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Clarence S. Darrow (1857-1938) was a lawyer and social reformer who made his home and practiced law in Chicago. Throughout his life he was an active campaigner for the rights of the individual, especially the underprivileged. Darrow had a national reputation in labor law and was the counsel for labor interests throughout the country. His later legal career was mainly in criminal law. A series of spectacular trials, in particular the Leopold-Loeb case in Chicago, 1924, made him world-famous. Perhaps his most famous case was his defense of John Thomas Scopes in 1925 for violation of a Tennessee law banning the teaching of evolution in the public schools. He wrote several books expounding his views and published many lectures and debates as pamphlets. His essays and short stories were published in popular magazines and small journals.

Scope Note

The collection of his papers deposited in the University of Chicago Library contains mimeographed press releases issued by Darrow during the Scopes trial that contained the testimony of various defense witnesses and experts in their scientific fields. Also included are several speeches and articles. Most of the latter are based on true stories and describe the encounter of the underprivileged and the uneducated with the law and the inequities they met. The original manuscript of an unpublished short story by Darrow, written very late in his life, is also a part of the collection. There are several pieces of correspondence, the closing argument of one of his court cases, and other miscellaneous documents. Also included in the collection are letters to Mrs. Darrow after his death, memorials on his death, and speeches and articles written about him.

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Subject Headings


Series I: State of Tennesse vs. John T. Scopes, Statements for the press by various defense witnesses

Box 1   Folder 1

Dr. Fay-Cooper Cole

Box 1   Folder 2

Dr. Winterton C. Curtis

Box 1   Folder 3

Charles Hubberd Judd

Box 1   Folder 4

Jacob G. Lipman

Box 1   Folder 5

Kiktley F. Mather

Box 1   Folder 6

Maynard M. Metcalf

Box 1   Folder 7

Wilbur A. Nelson

Box 1   Folder 8

Horatio Hackett Newman

Box 1   Folder 9

Horatio Hackett Newman

Series II: Speeches

Box 1   Folder 10

"Whitman in Literature", Walt Whitman Fellowship, May 31, 1913

Box 1   Folder 11

City Club, Chicago, March 28, 1919

Box 1   Folder 12

Walt Whitman Fellowship, May 31, 1924

Box 1   Folder 13

Wisconsin Open Forum, October 1925

Box 1   Folder 14

"What to do about Crime", Nebraska State Bar Association, December 28, 1926

Box 1   Folder 15

"Is Zionism a Progressive Policy for Israel and America?", a debate between Dr. Stephen S. Wise (affirmative) and Clarence S. Darrow (negative), Sinai Temple, Chicago, October 24, 1927

Box 1   Folder 16


Series III: Articles

Box 1   Folder 17

"The Doctrine of Fellow Servant"

Box 1   Folder 18

"The Doctrine of Assumed Risk"

Box 1   Folder 19

"The Andover Jail"

Box 1   Folder 20

"Johnny McCaffery- The Breaker Boy"

Box 1   Folder 21

"Little Louis Epstine"

Box 2    Folder 1

"Results of Law's Delay"

Box 2    Folder 2

"Jimmie Stone"

Box 2    Folder 3

"A Story with a Pleasant Ending"

Box 2    Folder 4

"The Triumph of Justice"

Box 2    Folder 5

"The Influences that make the Law"

Box 2    Folder 6

"The Doctrine of the Fellow Servant"

Box 2    Folder 7


Box 2    Folder 8

Preface to a new edition of Farmington

Box 2    Folder 9

Short story (fiction), original manuscript

Box 2    Folder 10

Short story (fiction), carbon copies

Box 2    Folder 11

People of the State of Illinois vs. Faherty and Detwiler, Closing argument of Clarence Darrow, March 5, 1924

Series III: Miscellaneous Material

Box 2    Folder 12

"Schopenauer" (printed) Program, Cugahoga Lawyers Association. November 26, 1927; Clippings

Box 2    Folder 13


  • Letter (carbon) to William C. Ewing (Massachusetts Council for the Abolition of the Death Penalty) in re homicide and liquor and capital punishment, January 23, 1928, 10pp;
  • Letter (copy; signed) to Frederick A. Stokes on A.G. Keller's Man's Rough Road, August 16, 1932, 1p;
  • Letter (copy) Thomas H. Malone to Darrow, June 12, 1926, 2pp. on Scopes’ Trial
Box 2    Folder 13a

Darrow, Clarence, Chicago, to Paul Goldblatt, Harrisburg, PA, March 18, 1933, ALS 2pp.

Box 2    Folder 14

Correspondence to Mrs. Clarence Darrow 1938-1944

Box 2    Folder 15

Seminar report by Lilyan Z. Goff at the University of Southern California on Darrow

Box 2    Folder 16

Biographical texts

  • Speech, J. Harold Maloney, "Clarence Darrow and His Contribution to Criminal Law", July 29, 1943
  • Statement of Anton Johannsen on Darrow
  • Poem by Edgar Lee Masters, "Clarence Darrow,” (carbon copy), September 27, 1922
Box 2    Folder 17

Miscellaneous material (not about Darrow)

Box 2    Folder 18

Memorials in Chicago Bar Record, Congressional Record

Box 2    Folder 19

Miscellaneous material

  • "The Truth Seeker"
  • Reviews of Irving Stone's Clarence Darrow for the Defense
  • Suggested table of contents for Stone's collection of Darrow's works
  • List of gaps in Darrow material
Box 2    Folder 20

Funeral Book, Funeral Oration of Judge William H. Holly, List of Visitors