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Walter Muir Whitehill (1905–1978)

Walter Muir Whitehill was an American medievalist and Americanist historian and author. He was born in Cambridge, Massachusetts, on September 28, 1905. He received his BA and MA degrees from Harvard University in 1926 and 1929, then went to England, where he received a PhD from the University of London in 1934. He served as the director and librarian of the Boston Athenaeum between 1946 and 1973, and as the publications editor of the Colonial Society of Massachusetts between 1946 and 1978. He was a faculty member at Harvard University, becoming associated with the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology in 1951 and serving as a lecturer in history in 1956–1957. At the request of Mildred Barnes Bliss, he authored Dumbarton Oaks: The History of a Georgetown House and Garden, 1800–1966, which was published by Harvard University Press in 1967. In the 1970s, he worked with William Royall Tyler to annotate the correspondence between Elisina Tyler and/or Royall Tyler and Mildred Barnes Bliss and/or Robert Woods Bliss (the Tyler Papers), which exists as an unpublished Typescript at the Harvard University Archives. He died in Boston on March 5, 1978.

Wendell D. Garrett, "Walter Muir Whitehill," Proceedings of the Massachusetts Historical Society, 3rd ser., 90 (1978): 131–39.

Robert M. Thomas, Jr., "Walter Muir Whitehill Dies at 72, A Leading Boston Preservationist," New York Times, March 6, 1978.

Dictionary of Art Historians, s.v., "Whitehill, Walter Muir."