Law Librarian at Several Ivies, Morris L. Cohen Dies

From the New York Times: Morris L. Cohen, a book lover who shunned the practice of law because it was too contentious and became one of the nation’s most influential legal librarians, bringing both the Harvard and Yale law libraries into the digital age, died Dec. 18 at his home in New Haven. He was 83.

Morris L. Cohen, at the University of Pennsylvania's law library in 1971, went on to be law library director at Harvard and Yale. The cause was leukemia, his wife, Gloria, said.

Mr. Cohen had worked at his Uncle Max’s law firm and on his own in Brooklyn in the 1950s before deciding that enough was enough. “He wasn’t cut out for practicing law,” Mrs. Cohen said. “He was not confrontational.”

Instead, he would become director of the law libraries at four universities: the former University of Buffalo, the University of Pennsylvania, Harvard and Yale. He brought to those positions a fascination with legal history — as evidenced in the six-volume Bibliography of Early American Law (1998), which he researched and compiled for 35 years — and with modernizing law libraries. He also brought that fascination to his classes in legal research.

Syndicate content