Brigham Young University and the J. Reuben Clark Law School
Brigham Young University is a private university that seeks to develop students of faith, intellect and character who have the skills and the desire to continuing learning and to serve others throughout their lives. Tracing its roots to Utah’s rich pioneer heritage and to Brigham Young Academy, the original school established in 1875, the university continues to provide an outstanding education in an atmosphere consistent with the ideals and principles of its sponsor, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In March 1971 President Harold B. Lee, counselor in the First Presidency, announced that a law school was going to be established at BYU and in November 1971 Rex E. Lee was appointed as the first dean of the J. Reuben Clark Law School. Classes at the new law school began during fall semester 1973 and were held temporarily in the St. Francis of Assisi School. The JRCLS Building was completed and dedicated in 1975, and the School graduated its first class in 1976. The J. Reuben Clark Law School has maintained its success and acclaim since its foundation 40 years ago, graduating many of the best and brightest students of the university. The remarkable history of Brigham Young University’s Law School can be uncovered through many of the collections held in the University Archives. The following source materials can get you started on your exploration of the J. Reuben Clark Law School.
Secondary Sources and General information
Collections held by the University Archives will be more useful to your specific research topic after you understand more about the general history of the university. The following resources are available to help you develop that understanding.
- Histories of Brigham Young University
- Wilkinson, Ernest L. Brigham Young University: The First One Hundred Years (4 volumes). Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Press, 1975
- Wilkinson, Ernest L. and W. Cleon Skousen. Brigham Young University: A School of Destiny. Provo, UT: Brigham Young University Press, 1976
- Secondary Sources regarding the J. Reuben Clark Law School
- KF 292 .J34 H38 1999 The founding of the J. Reuben Clark Law School Gives a history of the founding of the Law School and the years following. Discusses the decision and motivation behind its founding, key appointments, faculty recruiting, preparations, student recruiting, accreditation, progress through the years, etc. The author concludes with his personal reflections of the era.
- Sample materials dealing with the J. Reuben Clark Law School: A sample of the materials that contain information about the BYU Law School. To map out a research strategy, please schedule an appointment with the University Archivist at 422-5821 or firstname.lastname@example.org for additional help in discovering what other collections we may have that pertain to your research topic.
- MSS 2017 Personal papers, 1910-1996 The Rex E. Lee personal papers document the varied aspects of Lee’s life. They include materials regarding the establishment of Brigham Young University’s J. Reuben Clark School of Law, his tenure as dean of the law school , his tenure as president of Brigham Young University, etc.
- UA 1000 Personal papers, 1917-1978 The Ernest L. Wilkinson personal papers consist of three series I. Personal Papers (1923-78), II. Corporate Records (1954-78) and III. Oversized Material (1917-75). The Personal Papers series documents Wilkinson’s personal and professional life. The Corporate Records series documents his extensive career as president of Brigham Young University. The Oversized Materials series contains scrapbooks kept by Wilkinson as well as three films about his administration. Wilkinson was heavily involved in the planning of the new law school.
- UA 735 Papers of Bruce C. Hafen, 1971-1977 This collection was generated by Bruce C. Hafen as he served as Assistant to the President under Dallin H. Oaks. Includes correspondence, minutes, contracts, legal case reports, speeches, Bass-Billings research papers, drafts of the Honor Code, materials for religion and law classes, and research materials for the biography of Dallin H. Oaks. Hafen was also involved in the planning of the law school. Restricted permission required Bruce Hafen or President’s office.
- 378.2 a1 no.77 Speech given at opening of law school, August 27, 1973 Addresses given by Dallin H. Oaks and Marion G. Romney.
- MSS 2185 J. Reuben Clark Law School history files, 1974-1998 Information compiled in preparing his book, “The Founding of the J. Reuben Clark Law School,” published in 1999. Includes memoranda, letters, speeches, news articles, brief history essays, and magazines such as “The Clark Memorandum” and “Brigham Young Magazine.” Also includes a videocassette and an audiocassette.
- UA 839 Law School Dedication remarks, 5 September 1975 Recording of the remarks at the dedication of the J. Reuben Clark Law School. Tape 1 contains the remarks of Dallin H. Oaks and Tape 2 contains the remarks of United States Chief Justice Warren Burger.
- KF 292 .C53 .S44 1983 Self study for review of accreditation Submitted for the Law School accreditation team, American Bar Association, Section of Legal Education and Admission to the Bar, Fall 1983.
This Popular Search Topics page offers only samplings of materials included in the University Archives that document the history of the J. Reuben Clark Law School. Be sure to visit Special Collections to discover other material.