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Chalmers Gaston Davidson Papers

Identifier: DC059

Scope and Contents

Dr. Davidson corresponded with a variety of different persons. The first three boxes contain letters written to and from Dr. Davidson to authors, politicians, businessmen, educators, etc. Persons with a great amount of correspondence were given their own folder. Box 4 contains copies of tests, lecture notes and class outlines for two of Dr. Davidson's history courses that he taught at Davidson College. The two courses are "Social & Intellectual History to 1860" and "Social & Intellectual History From 1860-1960." there also is information on the Clan Davidson Society and the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Historic Landmarks/Properities Commission. Box 5 contains items directly related to Chalmer Davidson's life. Much of this information will be duplicated in his deceased alumni file. Box 6 contains information on local authors of Mecklenburg County. Most of the information is correspondence between the authors and Dr. Davidson, although, some files do have newspaper clippings about the various authors. Box 7 contains research materials collected by Dr. Davidson for the history courses that he taught at Davidson. The files are arranged according to time period, i.e., Antebellum Period, Civil War and Reconstruction Period, etc. Some of the information does relate to the areas surrounding Davidson College, but the vast majority of the information is more general in nature. Box 8 contains copies of various talks/speeches given by Dr. Davidson. Some of these speeches appear in a bound form in the Davidsoniana Room. Information on Dr. Davidson's personal views are found here, i.e., his personal view towards abolishing fraternities on campus (he was against it), etc. Box 9 contains class files collected by Dr. Davidson. Most of the files contain letters from students enrolled in that particular class or from parents asking Dr. Davidson to write a recommendation on behalf of their son or daughter to "help" the student get accepted to Davdison. These files are restricted. However, the information on the Class of 1928 is not restricted. There are many photographs of the class at various alumni reunions, etc. Dr. Davidson served as the class alumni president for many years. Box 10 contains an unpublished novel written by Dr. Davidson entitled "Alenda Lux." This novel is written in the epistle form (letters) and follows the lives of 3 Davidson students at different points in the history of the college. The oversize contains a Boundary/Physical Survey for the Trustees of Davidson College of the property of the Chalmers Gaston Davidson Estate. This is the property on which Beaver Dam is located.


  • Creation: 1998

Conditions Governing Access

yes -- Box 9 is restricted as is the file on William Styron in Box 2

Biographical / Historical

Chalmers Gaston Davidson was born in Chester, South Carolina and graduated summa cum laude from Davidson in 1928. He completed graduate degrees at Harvard, and then returned to Davidson to serve as professor of history, library director and archivist for 58 years. He died on June 25, 1994 at the age of 87. Dr. Davidson's life's work was the study of regional history and service to Davidson College. He published several books including The Plantation World Around Davidson. This book focuses on prestigious families and their plantations in Mecklenburg, Catawba, Iredell and Gaston Counties.


4.17 Linear Feet (11 boxes + oversize)



Physical Location

Carrel Storage

Immediate Source of Acquisition

2006-150 ( Major John Davidson, typescript)|2013-081 McWhorter correspondence

Chalmers Gaston Davidson Papers
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscript Collections Repository