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Benjamin S. Galland collection

Identifier: COU:630

Scope and Contents

The Benjamin S. Galland Collection is organized into four categories: DRAFTS OF GALLAND’S LETTERS, LETTERS TO GALLAND, NEWSPAPER CLIPPINGS, and ITEMS SENT TO GALLAND.

The DRAFTS OF GALLANDS LETTERS are early copies of a law school newsletter that Professor Galland composed and sent to former students and friends involved in governmental or military activities during WWII (1942-1945). They have been organized chronologically and their content is briefly noted in the guide. These newsletters provide information about events and societal changes within the country, specifically at CU, during the war. Furthermore, they set the background for the reply letters to Galland.

The majority of the collection consists of LETTERS TO GALLAND. These letters are the replies sent back to Galland. It is important to note that Cicely Sherwood, the law school librarian, often included personal notes within Galland’s newsletters. Consequently, many of the reply letters are addressed to “Ben” and “Cis.” The letters are organized alphabetically by last name and then chronologically by date. A few of the letters are written by the wives or mothers of Galland’s students on their husband or son’s behalf. In this case, the letter is listed in the guide under the name of Galland’s student, followed by a note including the name/relationship of the actual author, which was done to stress the correspondent’s connection with Galland. If both husband and wife appear to have been well acquainted with Galland, their names are listed separately with a note that they were married.

The dates of the letters are listed after the names in the guide. Often the only date that could be found was the postmark, noted by a (pm) before the date. After the date, the type of correspondence is noted by letter, V-mail, etc. Where it could easily be deciphered, the origin of the letter is given. In many cases, this was difficult because the letters are simply stamped “Navy” etc. to protect the location of troops during the war.

Many of these letters discuss key issues of that time period such as: men’s attitudes toward the growing number of coeds in the law school, racism, prisoners of war, women in the armed forces, the war trails etc. The content of a few of the letters has been noted in the guide, but they may not be the only letters in the collection that deal with the listed issue. Also a small number of the authors were graduates of the US Navy Japanese Language School which was located at CU from 1942 to 1945. Because their work relates to several other significant collections in the archives, their involvement has been noted in the guide by writing (JLS graduate) beside their names. Where possible, cross references are provided between folders or persons when they deal with the same individual or event. As per archival practice, the envelopes were not kept. But photo copies of the envelopes can be found at the back of their respective folders.

NEWSPAPER CLIPPINGS and ITEMS SENT TO GALLAND include two newspaper clippings, a “welcome home book,” and a unit history/year book. For the newspapers, date, publication and (where determinable) sender have been noted in the guide. For the items, the title and sender are given in the guide. The Welcome Home Album was signed by many of the returning veterans. Along with their names, their rank, and duty stations are listed. Where the sender is known, there is a cross reference to their letter folder in the guide.


  • Creation: 1942 - 1945

Biographical Note

Benjamin S. Galland (1888-1960s) was born in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania. Galland began his collegiate career at Cornell University where he earned his A. B. In 1916, he enrolled in the Law School at the University of Colorado. As a student at CU, he became a member of Phi Beta Kappa and the Scribblers Club. He also served as President of Combined Laws and Junior Laws. After graduating from law school in 1919 with an L.L.B., he returned to Wilkes-Barre, PA where he set up his own law practice. In 1931, he returned to CU Boulder to take a teaching position at the Law School. As a professor, Galland was active in the Alumni Association and was involved in the founding of the Independent Students Association (ISA). At the time the students were both socially and politically divided between the Greek system and the non-Greek independents also known as “Barbarians” or “Barbs.” Despite this Galland associated with, and mentored, “Barb” students. As America entered WWII, Galland put together a law school newsletter to keep track of his former students as they were assigned across the globe and to send them news of home. The return correspondence indicates that, in keeping with the pre-1945 small-university atmosphere, Galland continued the tradition of faculty fraternization with his students including the frequent entertaining of student groups at his home. He retired from the law faculty in the early 1950s.

The majority of the collection consists of the letters sent to Galland by his students. They were mostly junior level officers serving in various branches of the military or employed in governmental work. A few of them later became key figures at the University. Ira Rothergerber became a prominent Denver attorney as well as a supporter of John F. Kennedy. For advice on his newsletter, Galland also sent copies to a few prominent friends including: Robert Stearns, Law Dean until 1939 then CU president until 1953; Edward King, Law School Dean; Wiley B. Rutledge Jr., US Supreme Court Associate Justice in 1943, and former classmate Brig. General Elbridge Gerry Chapman.

Also contributing to the newsletter, were Ms. Cecily Sherwood (who added many personal notes), and Fred Storke. Fred Storke was a professor in the Law Department and Cecily Sherwood worked in the Law Library.


.75 linear feet (2 boxs)

Language of Materials



The Benjamin S. Galland collection consists of drafts of newsletters written by University of Colorado law professor Galland for his friends and former students during WWII (1942-1945). Also included is return correspondence from these individuals (1942-1945), two newspaper clippings, a signed “Welcome Home Book” (1945), and a Unit history/year book of the 2766th Engineer Base Photomapping Company. Professor Galland taught at the University of Colorado from 1931 through the early 1950s.



Processed by Jennifer Hampson, 2003
February 6, 2003
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Colorado Boulder Libraries, Rare and Distinctive Collections Repository

1720 Pleasant Street
184 UCB
Boulder Colorado 80503 United States