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Resources on Yale History: Alumni Information

Sources for Biographical Information on Yale Alumni

To determine the year a student graduated, check the Catalogue of Graduates of Yale University (in 2 vols., 1701-1924 and 1925-1954). The Catalogue will give the type of degree(s) received and year. Biographical information on Yale College graduates can be found in class books, class histories, and reunion books. All of these have a call number beginning with Ybb and are arranged in the Manuscripts and Archives reading room by year of graduation. The collection of these class-related books in Manuscripts and Archives begins with 1797 and there are sporadic gaps through the late 19th century. Sheffield Scientific School class books and class histories have a call number beginning with Ybc and are arranged by year of graduation in the Manuscripts and Archives reading room.

Manuscripts and Archives has only sporadic class books for graduates of the Law School (call numbers begin with Ybf), Medical School (call numbers begin with Ybd), and Divinity School (call numbers begin with Ybe), and these are housed at the Library Shelving Facility and must be requested through Orbis, the library's online catalog, at least 48 hours in advance of your planned use of them. You should also consult with staff at the library at each of these professional schools to see if they have a more complete run of class books and histories for that school.

In addition, biographical information on graduates can be found in the following sources:

In addition, Manuscripts and Archives holds other printed and manuscript sources that can assist a researcher in assembling biographical information about many, though not all, Yale alumni. 

There are no compiled catalogs of students who have attended Yale, but did not graduate. The following resources can be useful for non-graduates of a certain time period:

  • 1910 and 1914 Directory of Living Non-Graduates and in some issues of the Alumni Directory. All of these are found in the Manuscripts and Archives reading room with the call number Yb25 A2. The last printed alumni directory to be published by Yale University was in 2005.

Generally, checking the list of students that appears each year in the University Catalogue is the best way of determining the students who attended Yale each academic year. 

Note that many of these volumes have been digitized and are available through the HathiTrust Digital Library.

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