The Catholic University of America

Patrick W. Skehan

An inventory of the Patrick W. Skehan Papers at The American Catholic History Research Center and University Archives


Contact Information:

Mailing Address: The Catholic University of America, Washington, D.C. 20064

Telephone: 202-319-5065

Email: lib-archives@cua.edu

URL: http://archives.lib.cua.edu/

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Descriptive Summary

Repository: The American Catholic Research Center and University Archives
Creator: Patrick W. Skehan, 1909-1980
Title: The Patrick W. Skehan Papers
Dates: 1930-1980
Extent: 2.5 linear feet; 5 boxes
Abstract: The collection largely consists of correspondence and subject files as well as some business records, photographs, and a manuscript with marginalia.
Collection Number: ACUA 143
Language: English

Biographical Note

Patrick W. Skehan was born on September 30, 1909 (feast of St. Jerome) in New York City. He attended Fordham University, receiving his B.A. in 1929, and St. Joseph's Seminary (known as Dunwoodie), where he was ordained on September 23, 1933. He studied in The Catholic University of America's Department of Sacred Science (later School of Religious Studies). Much of his course work was done in the Department of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures, where he was instructed by Henri Hyvernat, Arthur A.Vaschalde, and Romain Butin. His dissertation for his doctorate in Sacred Theology was entitled The Literary Relationship Between the Book of Wisdom and the Protocanonical Wisdom Books of the Old Testament and was directed by Dr. Edward P. Arbez. His dissertation was published in the Catholic University monographic series Studies in Sacred Theology (no. 54).

Skehan was appointed to teach in the Semitics Department for the 1939-1940 academic year. For the next twenty years he taught courses in Hebrew, Aramaic, Syraic, and special Scripture seminars for graduate students in the Department of Sacred Scriptures. Skehan became head of the Semitics Department on November 23, 1951. He was named Professor Emeritus when he retired in August of 1980. He died shortly thereafter on September 9, 1980.

Skehan was appointed member of the Committee of the Institute for Christian Oriental Research (ICOR) by Rector McCormick on July 6, 1943. Three years later he was appointed Secretary of the Advisory Committee for the Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium (C.S.C.O.).

In 1947 when William Foxwell Albright went on archeological exploration in Egypt, he asked Skehan to be a visiting lecturer in his place at Johns Hopkins. He agreed and did this for Albright at other times between 1947 and 1956. Skehan was also a visiting professor for the 1969 - 1970 academic year at the Pontifical Biblical Institute in Rome.

Skehan was involved with many organizations and their projects including the Catholic Biblical Association, the Confraternity of Christian Doctrine, the American Schools of Oriental Research, the American Oriental Society, and the Pontifical Biblical Commission.

In 1953, Skehan was chosen as a member of the Dead Sea Scrolls editorial team, along with Frank Moore Cross, John Allegro, John Strugnell, Dominique Barthélemy, Jean Starcky, Claus-Hunno Hunziger, and Josef T. Milik. Roland de Vaux was the project director.

Skehan's work and contribution to the study of Scripture was recognized and honored by the Holy See. He was named Monsignor by Pope Pius XII on June 17, 1954, appointed Domestic Prelate by Pope John XXIII on December 2, 1958, and awarded Benemerenti Medal by Pope Paul VI on December 29, 1964.

Skehan had the respect and friendship of his students and colleagues. In 1974 The Catholic Biblical Quarterly issued a festschrift in his honor, edited by one of his students, Roland E. Murphy, O.Carm. One of his students, Alexander A. Di Lella, O.F.M, wrote a tribute to him published in The Catholic Biblical Quarterly. Of his teacher Di Lella says: "He was more than a dedicated teacher and scholar. He was above all a loyal churchman and devout priest, a Christian gentleman, and a superlative human being."

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Scope and Contents

There are five series within the Patrick W. Skehan Papers: (1) General Correspondence, (2) Business Records, (3) Subject Files, (4) Photographs, and (5) Manuscript with Marginalia.

Series 1, General Correspondence, includes correspondence to and from colleagues and students. This series contains fifty-four folders arranged alphabetically, contained in boxes 1 through 2. Folders include correpondence to and from William Foxwell Albright, Raymond Brown, Frank Moore Cross, Roland de Vaux, Josef T. Milik, Jean Starcky, and John Strugnell over their work together as the Dead Sea Scrolls editorial team. There is additional correspondence to and from Dr. Edward P. Arbez, Louis F. Hartman, Edwin O'Hara, and Fulton Sheen. These correspondence files contain mostly letters, with only a few postcards, newspaper clippings, and photographs.

Series 2, Business Records contains one folder related to personal affairs, mainly tax returns, medical benefits information, and receipts. This folder is located in box 2.

Series 3, Subject Files, contains additional correspondence. There are 38 folders arranged alphabetically in this series. The material in this series is contained in boxes 3 through 5. (Example: For more correspondence with William Foxwell Albright, see folder 92 "Teaching and Lecture Appointments"). There are also files from organizational meetings, exhibits, clerical appointments, curriculum vitae versions, doctoral disseration abstracts, Palestine, religious studies, lectures, awards, liturgy, the New American Bible, the New Catholic Enclyclopedia, Phi Beta Kappa, and the Semitics department.

Series 4, Photographs, is comprised of two folders. One is labeled "People" and the other is labeled "Dead Sea Scrolls." The Dead Sea Scrolls folder contains photographs of three small Qumran fragments sent to Skehan from John Strugnell. The photographs of these fragments are wrapped in clear plastic. The folder labeled "People" only contains photographs of Patrick W. Skehan, also kept in clear plastic. Both folders are contained in box 5.

Series 5, Manuscript with Marginalia, contains Skehan's annotated, bound copy of The Catholic Biblical Association Proceedings and Quarterly 1937 - 1939. It includes a book review written by Skehan of Ira Eisenstein's "What We Mean By Religion". These bound volumes are contained in box 5.

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Arrangement

The Patrick W. Skehan Papers consist of five series:






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Restrictions

Restrictions on Access

None.

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Administrative Information

Acquisition Information

The Patrick W. Skehan Papers were donated by Bro. Aloyisius Fitzgerald for the Dept.of Semitics and Monica Blanchard for Dept. Of Semitics/ICOR on August 26, 1983, January 9, 1984, and on February 2, 2000.

Processing Information

Processing completed in May 2000 by A. Agnew. EAD markup completed in April 2006 by Cathey Dugan and Jordan Patty. EAD revisions in 2013 by Michael J. Dobbs.

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Related Material

The Catholic University Archives also contains:

Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium Collection

The Edwin Vincent O'Hara Papers

The Fulton John Sheen Collection

The Catholic University of America also contains related materials at:

The Semitics/ICOR Library (including Dr. Skehan's personal library and slides of Qumran materials)

Other repositories include:

Mahon Smith, 'Dead Sea Scrolls', Rutgers University

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Index Terms

This record series is indexed under the following controlled access subject terms.


Persons:
Albright, William Foxwell
Allegro, John
Arbez, Dr. Edward P.
Barthélemy, Dominique
Cross, Frank Moore
de Vaux, Roland
Hunziger, Claus-Hunno
Milik, Josef T.
Starcky, Jean
Strugnell, John

Organizations:
American Oriental Society
American Schools of Oriental Research
Catholic Biblical Association
Confraternity of Christian Doctrine
Corpus Scriptorum Christianorum Orientalium (CSCO)
Institute for Christian Oriental Research (ICOR)
Pontifical Biblical Commission

Places:
Egypt
Rome

Subjects:
Dead Sea Scrolls
Languages - Aramaic
Languages - Egyptian
Languages - Hebrew
Languages - Syraic
Semitic Studies


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Bibliography

"Patrick William Skehan: A Tribute" by Alexander A. Di Lella, O.F.M. The Catholic Biblical Quarterly. Vol. 42, no. 4 (October 1980). 437.

Patrick W. Skehan Festschrift. The Catholic Biblical Quarterly. Vol. 36, no. 4 (October 1974).

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Detailed Description of the Collection

                       
Series 1: General Correspondence, 1942-1980 (2 boxes)
Series 1 contains correspondence with colleagues and students. There are fifty-four folders total. These folders are arranged alphabetically.
Box Folder
1 1 Albright, W.F., 1947 - 1971
        5 obituaries from newspapers; a piece of paper on which Skehan wrote a quote by Albright dated August 19, 1946; letters and postcards dated from 1947 - 1971 and one undated letter; 2 letters from John E. Wise, Dean of the Evening school at Johns Hopkins University, regarding Skehan teaching there in Albright's absence (1947); letter from Ruth Albright (wife of W.F., 1947); letter from the Rector of Hopkins, P.J. McCormick (1947)
  2 Arbez, Dr. E.P., May 1947 - February 1957; December 1967 - January 1968
        typed copy of [eulogy] delivered by Skehan at Arbez's funeral; attached two letters of thanks for the speech; copy of the CUA Bulletin from January 1968 (v. 2 no.1) with obituary for Arbez ; letters from Arbez (including one postcard)
  3 Bellet, Dom Paulinus, [n.d.]
        letters and copies of documents concerning Bellet's appointment as a professor in the Dept. of Semitic and Egyptian Languages and Literatures in 1962 ; photocopy of an entry from The Glazier Collection of Illuminated Manuscripts; full name: Julius (Paulinus) Bellet Renye
  4 Benoit, Pierre O.P., November 1972 - November 1978
        most correspondence regarding Dead Sea Scrolls and Discoveries of the Judaean Desert; letters from Skehan to Benoit; Benoit to Skehan; a copy of letter from the The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, Department of Antiquities to the Board of Trustees of Ecole Biblique et Archeologique Francaise; a copy of an unidentified fragment from first Qumran Cave
  5 Brown, Raymond, 1957 - 1980
        letters from Joseph Jensen on Brown's behalf regarding conservative Catholic publications attacking him; some of Brown's own letters to others, clippings from Catholic periodicals about by and about Brown
  6 Burrows, Millar, October 1950 - June 1954
        letters concering DSIa (Qumran scroll of Isaiah) ; typed copy of a report by James F. Ross mentioning Burrows' work (undated)
  7 Cazelles, H., n.d.
        letters concerning Skehan's contribution to Supplement au Dictionnaire de la Bible; letter concerning Skehan's contribution to a Festschrift for Cazelles
  8 Ceroke, Chris, n.d.
        published in ?
  9 Clifford, R., 1978, 1980
        a typed carbon copy of letter concerning Fitmyer taking the editorship of CBQ; letters concerning the typed manuscript (included) of an article Clifford published in Harvard Theological Review; published in HTR vol. 73 (Ja - Ap 1980), p. 35-47
  10 Cody, Aelred, 1975 - 1976?
  11 Cross, F.M., 1954 - 1979
        includes one newspaper clipping and one typed copy of a manuscript entitled The Fixation of the Text and Canon of The Hebrew Bible
  12 Daly's N.H./N.Y., 1960 - 1976?
        letters are personnal and contain information about the Daly family.
  13 de Vaux, R.P. Roland (also P.A.M. problem), n.d.
  14 Ellis, John Tracy, 1969 - 1975
  15 Fitzmyer, J.A., 1957 - 1976
  16 Frank, Richard M., 1953 - 1954
        some undated materials; picture of Richard Frank (n.d.) moved to folder "People"
  17 Freedman, D.N., 1956 - 1970
  18 Fulco, W.J., August 22, 1973
        cover letter and curriculum vitae submitted for a position at the Ecole Biblique
  19 Goshen-Gottstein, M.H., 1970 - 1980
  20 Griffith, Sidney, 1979
        letters regarding Dumbarton Oak's Fellowship for 1980-1981
  21 Guinan, Michael D., 1972 - 1980
  22 Hartman, L., 1952 -1970
  23 Higgins (Family), 1967 - 1979
        materials related to Msgr. Martin Higgins' illness, death, and will
  24 Higgins, Martin J., 1967, 1969, 1976, 1979
  25 Isaac, Ephraim, n.d.
        Regarding Ge'ez Classics Project
  26 Johnson, David, 1973
        notes
  27 Kahle, Paul, 1957, 1959
        letters and one typed manuscript copy of an article by Kahle entitled "The Greek Bible and the Gospels; Fragments from the Judean Desert"
Box Folder
2 28 Lapp, Paul, 1969
        Regarding the Hamra Dom Expedition; CV - n.d.; photograph
  29 Louis, Conrad, 1943, 1944
        Regarding dissertation and oral examination
  30 MacKenzie, R.A.F., n.d.
  31 Martin, D.W., 1942 - 1945, 1952
  32 Milik, J.T., 1956 - 1976
  33 Murphy, Roland E., 1950 - 1958
        some letters undated
  34 O'Callaghan, n.d.
        two articles and a list of his claims of [biblical origins/allusions in Qumran frags...?]
  35 O'Connell, Kevin, 1980
  36 O'Connor Michael P., 1980
  37 O'Hara, Edwin, 1946 - 1957
        Regarding Confraternity of Christian Doctrine - Old Testament translation and translators
  38 Peterson, T.C., 1945 - 1952
        Regarding C.S.C.O. and Coptic; undated newspaper clipping
  39 Quasten, 1979, 1980
        mention of Herta Hatzfeld
  40 Ricciotti, n.d.
        Regarding translation of his Storia d'Israele (History of Israel)
  41 Sanders, J.A., 1962 - 1979
  42 Sheen, Fulton, 1975, 1979
        newspaper clippings, pamphlet East meets West; 2 letters
  43 Siegman, E., 1956
  44 Sloyan, G.S., 1969, 1979
        newsclipping from America; letter regarding Sloyan's father's death
  45 Sokolowicz, J., 1971
  46 Starcky, J., 1957 - 1959, 1977
  47 Strugnell, 1957, 1967, 1968, 1972,
        many letters undated; three photographs of Dead Sea Scroll fragments moved to folder "Dead Sea Scrolls" (the numbers on the fragments are apparently not PAM; unsure of numbering system, perhaps Stugnell's own)
  48 Suelzer, Alexa, 1974
  49 Sullivan, K., 1973
  50 Talmon, 1974 - 1975
  51 Ulrich, E., 1977 - 1980
  52 Vawter, B., 1960 - 1980
        typed copy of "Prov 8:22: Wisdom and Creation"
  53 Wevers, 1979
  54 Wright, Addison, 1967 - 1980
        typed copy of "'Through Envy of the Devi Death Entered the World...' (Wis 2,24)"
                       
Series 2: Business Records, 1968-1980 (1 box)
Series 2 contains one folder related to personal affairs, mainly tax returns, medical benefits information, and receipts.
Box Folder
2 55 Personal, 1968-1980
                       
Series 3: Subject Files, 1913-1980 (3 boxes)
Series 3 contains additional correspondence and various subject files. There are 38 folders arranged alphabetically in this series.
Box Folder
3 56 Academic Correspondence, 1956 - 1960
  57 American Oriental Society / National Association of Professors of Hebrew, 1952 - 1953
  58 American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) 1, 1954 - 1964
  59 American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) 2, 1967 - 1970
        includes Newsletters and a memo from Skehan resiging from the Schools and the Dead Sea Scroll Project
  60 Biblical Colloquium 1, 1966 - 1973
        Skehan was elected to the Biblical Colloquium in 1967
  61 Biblical Colloquium 2, 1974 -1979
        includes CVs from various members, and notes taken at various colloquium meetings.
  62 Biblical Institute Proposals/Planning, 1913 - 1967
        Includes pamphlet from 1913 entitled "The Biblical Institute at The Catholic University of America" (authored by Franz J. Coeln)
  63 Byzantine Exhibit, n.d.
        contains letter to Leslie [MacCoull?] giving a detailed account of a Byzantine Exhibit - original title of the folder was "Hermitage."
  64 Catholic Biblical Association Editorial Matters, 1968 - 1977
        first item dated 12/11/27 (sic) is probably about Habel's article which appeared in CBQ 34 1972 entitled "He who stretches out the heavens : [Isa 40:21-23, 42:5, 44:24, 45:12, 48:13, 51:13: Job 26; Ps 18, 104, 144]"; other letters regarding various editorial comments; style guides and font examples; minutes of the editorial board of CBA
  65 Catholic Biblical Association Financial, 1976 - 1980
        includes financial reports
Box Folder
4 66 Catholic Biblical Association Old Testament Revision, CCD, 1939 - 1979
        includes "Principles Governing the Revision of the Old Testament" ; "The Revision of the Challoner-Rheims New Testament Prepared by the Catholic Biblical Association of America for the Episcopal Committe on The Confraternity of Christian Doctorine" (a copy of this is in the Committee for Revision of the New Testament Papers); official correspondence especially that of the CBA to the Episcopal Committee of the CCD.
  67 Catholic Biblical Association Public Relations, 1937, 1969, 1971, 1974
        most of the materials are related to a letter to the editor Skehan wrote which appeared in the National Catholic Register; also included are the Catholic Biblical Association Constitituion and By-Laws from 1937
  68 Catholic Biblical Association Syrian Survey Project, 1978
        copies of cover letters and resumes (of five individuals) submitted to Fr. Joseph Jensen for consideration for the Syrian Survey Project
  69 Clerical Appointments, 1934 - 1977
  70 Common Bible, 1964 - 1969
  71 Contract from Ancient Biblical Manuscript Center, 1980
        also includes letter from Pierre Benoit and a letter of Skehan to Father de Vaux
  72 Corpus Instrumentorum, 1966, 1971
  73 Curriculum Vitae, 1939 - 1979?
  74 Doctoral Dissertation Abstracts, 1973 - 1978
        CUA Semitics students: Francis J. Morrow, David W. Johnson, Burton MacDonald, Homer Heater, Sidney Griffith CUA Celtic student: Robert Headley Columbia Univ. student: William M. Shea
  75 Dropsie College, 1957 - [1958?]
        Includes correspondence between Skehan and the President of Dropsie College (1957), Dr. Abraham Neuman.
  76 Formation of School of Religious Studies, Dept. of Biblical Studies, 1972 - 1975
  77 Felistin (Palestine), 1967 - 1979
        Ryan's article on Zionism, letters to Gerald Ford, Six Day War in Palestine - Summer of 1967
  78 Harvard University Press, 1969 - 1973
  79 Lagrange Lectures, 1963, 1964, 1978
        includes a copy of the lecture Skehan gave in honor of Pere Marie-Joseph Larange, O.P.
  80 Liturgy, 1966? - 1979
  81 Memorandum on New Catholic Encyclopedia, 1958
  82 New Catholic Encyclopedia 1, 1958 - 1974
        contains mostly correspondence with other editors
Box Folder
5 83 New Catholic Encyclopedia 2, n.d.
        contains guidlines and directives for New Catholic Encyclopedia editors and contributors
  84 New American Bible, 1970 - 1972
        photographs of Skehan moved to folder "People"
  85 Occidental College, 1967
        all materials concerning a lecture he delivered there in October
  86 Pontifical Biblical Commission, 1965, 1967
        mostly letters of congratulations on his appointment to the commission in 1965
  87 Revision of New American Bible, 1978
  88 M%5/ Phi Beta Kappa, 1963
  89 Semitics Department and the Institute for Christian Oriental Research, 1915, 1930, 1941
        carbon copy of contract to establish ICOR, schema of courses offered in Semitics Dept. in 1915, Skehan's notes on Hyvernat and founding of the Semitics Dept. and ICOR, short (incomplete?) bibliography of Arbez's articles
  90 National Endowment for the Humanities, 1977
        Regarding request for recommendation for NEH proposal; Skehan objects.
  91 Studies in Israelite Poetry and Wisdom, 1971
        letters acknowledging receipt of gift copy of his monograph, included is list of persons to whom a gift copy was sent, and a short reveiw of book out of ZAW
  92 Teaching/Lecture Appointments and Awards, 1937 - 1980
  93 "St. Jerome and the Canon of Holy Scriptures", 1946 - 1953
        includes correspondence regarding Skehan's article, "St. Jerome and the Canon of Holy Scriptures," in A Tribute to St. Jerome
                       
Series 4: Photographs, n.d. (1 box)
Series 4, Photographs, is comprised of two folders. One is labeled "People" and the other is labeled "Dead Sea Scrolls." The Dead Sea Scrolls folder contains photographs of Qumran fragments sent to Skehan from John Strugnell. The photographs of these fragments are wrapped in clear plastic. The folder labeled "People" only contains photographs of Patrick W. Skehan, also kept in clear plastic.
Box Folder
5 94 Dead Sea Scrolls, n.d.
        From the "Strugnell" file - 3 fragments (the numbers on the fragments are apparently not PAM; unsure of numbering system, perhaps Stugnell's own) ; letter from Strugnell (also from "Strugnell" file) included
  95 People, n.d.
        Skehan (2 photos from the "New American Bible" Folder); Richard Frank (from the "Frank, Richard M." folder); Skehan 2 photos with the following on the back: "Camera Reflection by Chase Studios LTD. 1904 M.N.W. Washington S.D.C."
                       
Series 5: Manuscript and Marginalia, 1937-1939 (1 box)
Series 5, Manuscript with Marginalia, contains Skehan's annotated copy of The Catholic Biblical Association Proceedings and Quarterly 1937 - 1939. It includes a book review written by Skehan of Ira Eisenstein's "What We Mean By Religion".
Box Folder
5 96 C.B.A. Proceedings and Quarterly, 1937 - 1939
        transfered from Mullen stacks, call number BS 410.C36

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents

Arrangement

Restrictions

Administrative Information

Related Material

Index Terms

Bibliography

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: General Correspondence, 1942-1980

Series 2: Business Records, 1968-1980

Series 3: Subject Files, 1913-1980

Series 4: Photographs, n.d.

Series 5: Manuscript and Marginalia, 1937-1939

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