Fonds MS-2-639 - John Willis fonds

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

John Willis fonds

General material designation

  • Textual record

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Edition statement

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Dates of creation area


  • [1945?] - 1971 (Creation)
    Willis, John

Physical description area

Physical description

22 cm of textual records

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1907 - 1997)

Biographical history

John Willis taught at Dalhousie Law School during the 1930s and 1940s, one of a generation of young scholars who challenged established legal thought under such banners as sociological jurisprudence, the socialization of law, and realism. Born in England in 1907, Willis was educated at Winchester and Oxford, graduating with a double first in classics and jurisprudence. In 1933, after studying at Harvard, he arrived at Dalhousie Law School for a one-year teaching contract. With the exception of a few years in practice and working at the International Monetary Fund, his life was spent teaching law at Dalhousie, York University, University of British Columbia, and University of Toronto, where he helped to re-imagine and reconstruct its law school. Following his retirement in 1980, Willis lived in Annapolis Royal until his death on June 16, 1997.

Custodial history

Records were donated to the Dalhousie University Archives in accession (1992-030) on 11 June 1992 by Heather Brenton.

Scope and content

Fonds consists of materials regarding John Willis' career as a law professor, including his notes on equity, tax income law, wills and trusts, and others subjects. Fonds also contains a manuscript and books with handwritten annotations possibly written by John Willis.

Notes area

Physical condition

Some of the documents are in poor conservation condition. Careful handling is required.

Immediate source of acquisition


Language of material

  • English

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Restrictions on access

There are no access restrictions on these materials. All materials are open for research.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Materials do not circulate and must be used in the Archives and Special Collections Reading Room. Materials may be under copyright. Contact departmental staff for guidance on reproduction.

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Further accruals are expected.

General note

Preferred citation: [Identification of item], John Willis fonds, MS-2-639, Box [box number], Folder [folder number], Dalhousie University Archives, Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada.

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