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Arthur M. Harding Papers

Identifier: MC 531

Scope and Content Note

Many of the papers in this collection concern President Harding's avocation, astronomy. He wrote many popular articles on the subject, lectured nationally on astronomical topics, (including the Chautauqua circuit), contributed weekly newspaper columns on astronomy to the Arkansas Gazette and the Chicago Tribune, co-authored four astronomy textbooks, and authored a popular best-seller, Astronomy.

The papers include letters, speeches, scrapbooks, programs, handbills, photographs, slides, and artifacts. The scrapbooks contain primarily newspaper clippings of events concerning Harding's presidency of the University of Arkansas. The approximately six hundred glass slides were used by Harding as visual aids for his speaking engagements.


  • Creation: circa 1900-1948, 1960


Access Information

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Use Information

No Use Restrictions Apply.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical Note

Harding was the first Arkansas native named president of the University of Arkansas. Born September 3, 1884 in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, Harding was raised in Fayetteville, Arkansas, where he attended public schools. After receiving his B.A. degree in mathematics from the University of Arkansas in 1904, Harding joined the mathematics department as an instructor. He then earned his master's and doctoral degrees in 1913 and 1916 in mathematics from the University of Chicago, and returned to Fayetteville to accept a professorship.

Harding served as the University of Arkansas's first examiner and as registrar during World War I. He was also secretary of the Alumni Association for twenty-five years, founder of the Arkansas Alumnus (which he edited for twenty years), manager and operator of radio station KUOA for ten years, and in 1919 organized the General Extension Service (later to become the Division of Continuing Education), which he administered until 1941. In that year, he succeeded J. William Fulbright as president of the University of Arkansas, a post he held for six years.


9.38 Linear Feet (17 boxes)

Language of Materials


Arrangement of the Papers

Materials are arranged by format.

  1. Series 1. Writings and Speeches
  2. Series 1. Subseries 1. Drafts
  3. Series 1. Subseries 2. Publications
  4. Series 1. Subseries 3. Speeches
  5. Series 2. Scrapbooks
  6. Series 2. Subseries 1. U of A President Scrapbook
  7. Series 2. Subseries 2. Miscellaneous Clippings
  8. Series 3. Correspondence, Clippings, and Personal Items.
  9. Series 4. Photographs
  10. Series 4. Subseries 1. Photographs of Harding from his youth through his assumption of the University of Arkansas Presidency in 1941
  11. Series 4. Subseries 2. Formal portraits of Harding sitting at desk as U. of A. President
  12. Series 4. Subseries 3. Commencement, 1943
  13. Series 4. Subseries 4. Outdoor commencement reception, 1943
  14. Series 4. Subseries 5. Indoor commencement reception and Somervell party at airport, 1943
  15. Series 4. Subseries 6. Miscellaneous Photographs
  16. Series 5. Glass Slides
  17. Series 6. Artifacts

Acquisition Information

The Arthur M. Harding Papers were donated to Special Collections by Mary Frances Harding Newbern of Fayetteville, Arkansas, September 22, 1984.

Processing Information

Processed by Leon C. Miller; completed in August 1987.

Arthur M. Harding Papers
Leon C. Miller
August 1987
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Materials are in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444