Harold Gosnell Papers

Institution: Chicago History Museum
Address:
1601 N. Clark Street
Chicago, IL 60614
Phone: (312) 642-4600
Website
Date: 1922-1967
Extent: 2 Linear Feet
Finding Aid: None

Abstract
Biographical/Historical Note:
Harold Foote Gosnell (1896-1997) was a professor in the University of Chicago's Department of Political Scienceand Gosnell produced three pioneering books: Non-voting, Causes and Methods of Control (1924, with Merriam) and Getting out the Vote: An Experiment in the Stimulation of Voting (1927), Negro Politicians: The Rise of Negro Politics and Chicago (1935) and Machine Politics: The Chicago Model (1937). In 1941 Gosnell began a career with the federal government, accepting a job with the Bureau of the Budget. In 1946 he moved to the State Department, where he remained until 1960. During this period Gosnell also served as faculty at American University, where he conducted research on the Soviet Union for the school's Special Operations Research Office. In 1962 he was invited to teach at Howard University, where his scholarship on African-American politics was particularly admired.

Scope and Content Note:
Clippings, correspondence, statistics, reports, ballots, brochures, and other research files of Harold Foote Gosnell (1897-1997). In the 1920s and 1930s Gosnell applied experimental and statistical methods to the study of political behavior, particularly voter turnout, African-American politics, and Chicago’s Democratic machine. Also included are files on politicians, such as Paul Douglas, and materials related to the writing and publication of Gosnell’s books Negro Politicians: The Rise of Negro Politics in Chicago and Machine Politics: Chicago Model. Materials date from 1922 to 1967.

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