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Babcock, Robert Weston (1893-1963) | Purdue University Libraries, Archives and Special Collections

Name: Babcock, Robert Weston (1893-1963)

Historical Note:

Robert Weston Babcock was born in 1893 in Chicago, Illinois.  He attended the Hill School, Williams College, and University of Michigan.  In 1917 Babcock received the LLB degree from Northwestern University.  He practiced law in Arizona and homesteaded as a rancher in Arizona.  Babcock then joined the American Extension University for a few months.  In 1920 he joined the Purdue faculty as an instructor in English.

In 1927 Professor Robert W. Babcock became the first university editor, on a part-time basis, and soon was engaged on a project close to President Elliott’s heart, the preparation of the University Code.  The first edition of Part I of the Code, which dealt with legal matters, was issued in the fall of 1927, and Babcock then worked through years of faculty and board of trustee minutes preparing Part II, “Regulations for the Internal Administration of the University,” for publication in 1929.  During his tenure at Purdue, he would occasionally read Shakespeare on Saturday mornings on the local public radio station.

On February 1, 1963 he went on terminal leave of absence, and would have retired as Professor Emeritus of English on June 30, 1963.

He was known as the Shakespearean scholar and ex-cowboy.  He was the author of several books and many articles and reviews.  For many years he taught very popular courses in Shakespeare.


Purdue University Board of Trustee minutes, June 1, 1963

Knoll, Horton Budd (1963).  Story of Purdue Engineering.  West Lafayette, Indiana: Purdue University Studies.

Topping, Robert W. (1988). A century and beyond: the history of Purdue University.  West Lafayette, Indiana: Purdue University Press.

Note Author: Mary Sego

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