Collection Freedom's Fortress: the Library of Congress, 1939-1953

Biographical Sketches

  • Librarians of Congress

    Luther Harris Evans (1902-1981) Portrait of Luther Harris Evans, June 18, 1945. Manuscript Division, Library of Congress Archibald MacLeish appointed Luther Harris Evans director of the Legislative Reference Service (currently the Congressional Research Service) in 1939 and as Chief Assistant Librarian in 1940. For a time, he was also the director of the Reference Department. While Acting Librarian from December 19, 1944 through June ...

  • Consultants of Poetry

    Joseph Auslander (1897-1965) Portrait of Joseph Auslander, undated. Papers of David C. Mearns, 1918-1979, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress. Photo Credit: Bachrach Studio. Joseph Auslander, poet and editor, became the Library's first Consultant in Poetry in 1937. He vigorously carried out his responsibilities — seeking sponsors for the Library's literary programs, gifts of manuscripts, and organizing public readings by poets of note. Librarian MacLeish ...

  • Key Staff Members

    Verner W. Clapp (1901-1972) Portrait of Verner W. Clapp, undated. Manuscript Division, Library of Congress. Photo Credit: Leet Brothers Photography Verner W. Clapp began his Library of Congress career in 1921 in the Manuscript Division. Over the years he held a number of administrative positions, including Chief Assistant Librarian of Congress (1947) and Acting Librarian of Congress (1953-54). During his years at the Library ...

  • Donors

    Lessing J. Rosenwald (1891-1979) Photograph of Lessing J. Rosenwald (left) and Luther Harris Evans, 1947. Manuscript Division, Library of Congress. In 1943 Lessing Rosenwald, a Sears, Roebuck and Company executive and bibliophile, gave the first of many gifts to the Library of Congress. His initial gift of illustrated books and manuscripts consisted of about five hundred titles. The gift included books, plates, proofs, and ...

  • External Figures

    Felix Frankfurter (1882-1965) Letter from Felix Frankfurter to Franklin D. Roosevelt, May 11, 1939. Papers of Archibald MacLeish, 1907-1981, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress Appointed by President Franklin D. Roosevelt to the Supreme Court in 1939, Justice Frankfurter served until 1962. Frankfurter had a long-established relationship with Roosevelt. When Roosevelt was governor of New York (1929-32), he served as his legal adviser; he advised ...