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Ernest P. Kuhl Papers

Identifier: RG99.0064

Scope and Contents

The Kuhl Paers comprehensively document the life of a university professor, involved in teaching and research, confronting the changing academic atmoshere and the bureaucratic problems of institutions of higher education. A large part of the collection consists of correspondence to Kuhl from fellow scholars and students, including most of the important Chaucer and Shakespeare scholars who, with Kuhl, laid the groundwork for 20th century Medieval and Renaissance studies. The collection also includes a book length manuscript concerning the historical context of Shakespearean drama and the role of Shakespeare within his own epoch. Kuhl's letters to his family (1960--1974) disclose the alert, sensitive erudition cultivated during eight decades of academic activity.


  • 1855-1979


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply; please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

Biographical / Historical

Ernest Peter Kuhl was born in Milan, Ohio, October 10, 1881 of German immigrants. He attended Sandusky Business School, Valparaiso University, received a BA from Indiana University (1907) and his MA from Harvard (1908).

On September 9, 1909 he married Lucy Van Dyke Leech whom he met at Valparaiso University and with whom he had two children, Robert Wolfe Kuhl and Lucy Elizabeth Kuhl Belting.

Kuhl taught English and rhetoric at the University of Michigan for four years (1908--1912), then returned to Harvard for his Ph.D (1913). He taught at Radcliffe, Dartmouth (1914--1916), University of Minnesota (1916--1918), Goucher College (1918--1926) and in the extensions department of Johns Hopkins (1919--1926), before coming to Iowa in 1926. He taught summers at Maine, Michigan, Stanford, Radcliffe, and Washington.

He was a lifetime member of the Modern Language Association and the University of Iowa Research Club.

Kuhl retired from the University of Iowa in 1952. He continued to research works of William Shakespeare well into his 90s. Kuhl died at the age of 99 in Iowa City on April 26, 1981.


9.00 linear feet


Professor of English at the University of Iowa for 26 years. The collection is largely correspondence with important Chaucer and Shakespeare scholars.

Method of Acquisition

These papers were given to the University of Iowa Libraries by Ernest Kuhl in 1977, 1978, and after his death in 1981. Processed by Earl Rogers, Daniel Farber, and Robert Franciosi, 1977-1978. Guide posted to Internet December 2004; updated January 2008.

Related Materials

Folder, "Kuhl, Ernest P.", in Faculty and Staff Vertical Files Collection (RG01.0015.003)

E.P. Kuhl Collection of Photographs (RG30.0001.002)

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Repository Details

Part of the University of Iowa Archives Repository

100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242