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Guide to the R. Buckminster Fuller Papers
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The papers of this 20th century polymath contain his personal archive the Dymaxion Chronofile, manuscripts, drawings and audio-visual materials relating to his career as an architect, mathematician, inventor and social critic.
Richard Buckminster Fuller was born July 12, 1895, in Milton, Mass. Fuller was descended from a long line of New England Nonconformists, the most famous being his great-aunt, the Transcendentalist Margaret Fuller. Fuller's father died when he was a child, and the young Bucky-as he was known throughout his life-grew up in genteel but straightened circumstances. Among his extended family, at Milton Academy, and then at Harvard University, he was a bright but marginal figure. He was suspended from Harvard after his freshman year, then expelled the next year; he never earned a degree. Instead, like his fellow New Englander Herman Melville, a yard-arm-or in Fuller's case, a rescue boat-would be his Harvard and Yale. During World War I, he received a commission in the U.S. Navy, and spent a year in officer candidate school at the Naval Academy. The blend of practical and theoretical knowledge he found at Annapolis, and an officer culture that valued technical skill and hard work, contrasted strongly with the Brahmin decadence he had encountered in Cambridge. Even decades later he still remarked on the difference.
1200 linear ft.
Property rights reside with the repository. Literary rights reside with the creators of the documents or their heirs. To obtain permission to publish or reproduce, please contact the Public Services Librarian of the Dept. of Special Collections.
Collection is open for research; materials must be requested at least 24 hours in advance of intended use.