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Guide to the Edgar J. Nathan, Jr. Papers
 MS 438

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400

New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Zora Arum

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on September 06, 2018
English using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Container List

Series III. New York Supreme Court, 1938-1965. 3.8 Linear feet in five record cartons and in oversize folders


The documents remain in their original subject folders, except for those that were relocated by the processing archivist from miscellaneous folders. However, the folders were originally unlabeled and titles were devised by the archivist. The subject files begin with campaign materials and correspondence from Edgar J. Nathan's appointment, election, and re-election to the New York Supreme Court, then advance to correspondence regarding cases that Nathan presided over, followed by reference letters that he wrote during his tenure. The series ends with clippings and seven scrapbooks, which are filled with clippings from law journals on Nathan's cases.

Scope and Contents

The series is made up of documents that relate to Edgar J. Nathan, Jr.'s tenure as a New York Supreme Court Justice, which lasted from 1946 until his death in 1965, as well as his failed campaign for the New York Supreme Court in 1939. These include promotional materials, sympathy and congratulatory letters (in response to Nathan's failure in 1939, appointment by Thomas Dewey to fill a vacancy in 1946, official election to the court that November, and his re-election in 1960), information on his cases in the form of clippings, scrapbooks, and correspondence, and general correspondence, including the vast quantity of reference letters that Nathan wrote while in office. The series also contains photographs and other miscellaneous documents, including an interview transcript in which Nathan speaks at length about his genealogy as a descendant of Abraham de Lucena.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 2 Folder : 16-18 Election Materials (3 folders)
Box: 2 Folder : 19-20 Congratulations on Nomination to NY Supreme Court (2 folders)

Scope and Contents

Includes endorsement from The New York Post, notes from family (including sons at college, Emily and Solomon Solis Cohen), congratulatory note from Charles C. Burlingham, and some enclosed four-leaf clovers. Includes letters from some New York politcians, including Edward Corsi and contemporary Manhattan Borough President Stanley M. Issacs. Some notes are addressed to Nathan's wife, Mabel.

Box: 2 Folder : 21 Sympathy Letters on Election Defeat

Scope and Contents

Like Folders 19-20, contains letters from New York politicians, including Stanley M. Isaacs. Contains many references to the political machine of Tammany Hall and political polarization.

Box: 3 Folder : 1-6 Congratulations on Appointment to NY Supreme Court (6 folders)
Box: 3 Folder : 7-12 Congratulations on Election to NY Supreme Court (6 folders)
Box: 3 Folder : 13-16 Supreme Court Cases and Correspondence (4 folders)

Scope and Contents

Folder 15 contains a letter from Governor Thomas E. Dewey and correspondence related to injuries Edgar J. Nathan, Jr. sustained in an automobile accident. Also contains rosters of certified psychologists and members of the National Republican Club. Folder 16 contains a clothing catalogue for robes.

Box: 3 Folder : 17-19 Reference Letters (3 folders)
Box: Oversize Large Oversize Supreme Court Campaign Poster

Scope and Contents

Endorses Edgar J. Nathan, Jr., Macdonald Dewitt, and Michael R. Matteo for Supreme Court.

Box: Oversize Small Folder : 2 Oversize Supreme Court Campaign Poster
Box: 2 Folder : 22 Misc. Print Matter

Scope and Contents

Contains book of court cases that Nathan presided over (corresponds to "Volume 4" of Supreme Court scrapbooks), address book of New York Supreme Court justices in 1958, a bound interview transcript of Nathan explaining his genealogy back to Abraham de Lucena, and Nathan's certificate of service as a retired Supreme Court justice.

Box: 2 Folder : 23 Photographs

Scope and Contents

Includes photographs of Nathan being sworn in as New York Supreme Court Justice by New York Secretary of State Thomas J. Curran, photographs of Nathan with Governor Thomas E. Dewey, and photographs of New York Supreme Court events.

Box: 2 Folder : 24 Typescripts of Campaign Clippings (Folder 1 of 3)
Box: 19 Folder : 19-20 Campaign Clippings (2 folders of 3)
Box: 19 Folder : 2-4 Clippings (3 folders)
Box: 19 Folder : 6 Yiddish Newspaper Clippings
Box: 15 Volume : 1-4 Clippings Scrapbook of Nathan Cases (4 volumes of 7)

Scope and Contents

Volume 1 contains some unrelated material, including some clippings about the Jewish Theological Seminary and the Constitutional Convention of 1938.

Box: 16 Volume : 1-3 Clippings Scrapbook of Nathan Cases (3 volumes of 7)

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