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Gerard Thormann Collection

Gerard C. ThormannContents

  1. Descriptive Summary 
  2. Biographical Information
  3. Scope and Content
  4. Arrangement
  5. Series Descriptions
  6. Container List
  7. Access Points 
  8. Publications
  9. Administrative Information

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Thormann, Gerard C., 1922 -

Title: Gerard C. Thormann Collection

Dates: 1959 -1990

Size: 12 cubic feet

Biographical Information

Gerard C. Thormann was born in Frankfurt, Germany, on September 30, 1922.

His father, Dr. Werner E. Thormann, was a leading journalist and publisher in Germany during the Weimar Republic, from 1920 through the early 1930's.  Although his early elementary school years were in Germany, Dr. Thormann received a French education after the family relocated in 1933.  He holds a Bachelier ès Lettres from the Universitié d'Aix-Marseille, France, and his BA, MA and Ph.D. from Columbia University.

Reflecting his interest in French history, Dr. Thormann's dissertation was "Christian Trade Unionism in France: A History of the French Confederation of Christian Workers," completed in 1952.

After serving briefly in the French Army in 1940, Dr. Thormann moved to the United States in 1941, where he served in the U.S. Army from 1942 to 1946.  Upon completion of his tour of duty, Dr. Thormann taught at Notre Dame College of Staten Island, NY (1948-1959) as an Assistant Professor of History, a position he also held at the Fordham University's School of Education (1958-1959).  In 1959, he became an Assistant Professor of History at Manhattanville College, and was promoted to Professor in 1968.  Dr. Thormann served the College not only through the teaching of history and political science, but also through his participation on many committees.  Dr. Thormann retired in 1990 but maintains the position of Professor Emeritus.  The Gerard Thormann Award for Achievement in European History, established in 1990, is awarded each year at Manhattanville in his honor.

In addition to his academic work, Dr. Thormann served as United Nations Representative of the International Federation of Christian Trade Unions from the 1950's through 1962 and was a regular contributor to publications of Christian Trade Unions in Europe.  Since the 1960s Dr. Thormann has been very much involved in the activities of the Democratic Party, both on the county (Rockland) and the town (Clarkstown) level.

Among his other pursuits, Dr. Thormann currently serves on the Board of Trustees for the Islesford Historical Society in Islesford, Maine.

Scope and Content

Meeting minutes, memoranda, correspondence and college notices documenting life as a faculty member of Manhattanville College from 1959-1991.  The majority of the papers consist of meeting minutes, memoranda, and correspondence for the various committees on which Dr. Thormann served.  Additional material includes meeting minutes, memoranda and correspondence for the History and Political Science departments, other faculty-related materials, notices of student and college events, and personal research materials.  Also included a collection of periodicals related to trade unions, mostly in French and German.


The collection is arranged in the following six series:

  1. College Committees and Meetings
  2. Departmental Materials
  3. Teaching Materials
  4. Faculty Related Materials
  5. Co-Curricular Activities and College Events
  6. Personal and Research Materials

Series Descriptions

  1. College Committees and Meetings
    This series contains meeting minutes, memoranda and correspondence related to the faculty committees on which Dr. Thormann served.  Although some of the files are for a specifically named committee, most of the documents are mixed in files entitled "Faculty Committees."
    These committees include (but are not limited to):
    • Academic Association of University Professors - AAUP
    • Academic Policy Committee - APC
    • Board of Academic Standards - BOAS
    • College Judiciary Committee
    • College Life Task Force
    • Curriculum Study Project (NEH Grant H69-0-31)
    • Ethics Center
    • Executive Committee
    • Faculty Budget Committee
    • Faculty Review Committee
    • Grant Committee
    • Grievance Committee
    • Honors
    • Interdisciplinary Studies Committee
    • International Studies Committee
    • IPC Facilities Sub-Committee
    • Middle States Review Committee
    • Presidential Search Committee
    • Separation Committee
    • Space Committee
    • Status Committee
    • Steering Committee

    Included in this series is The 1989 Institutional Report of Manhattanville College Prepared for the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools and Exxon Project Minutes for the International Studies Committee by Kwan Ha Yim.
  2. Departmental Materials
    This series contains meeting minutes, memoranda and correspondence for both the History Department and the Political Science Department.  The study of Political Science at the College is referred to as the study of Government in the earlier documentation. Course offerings for both the History and Political Science department are included, as well as documentation on advising and fellowships.
  3. Teaching Materials
    This series contains a few documents relating to specific courses in History including several exams.
  4. Faculty Related Materials
    This series contains general faculty meeting minutes, memoranda and correspondence as well as various admissions department statistics.  Four faculty retreats have related documentation including: Tarrytown House, September 24-25, 1971; Arden House, February 24-25, 1973; Edith Macy, October 16-17, 1987 and an unnamed retreat in 1989.  In addition, this series contains memoranda relating to Summer School for 1970-1983.
  5. Co-Curricular Activities and College Events
    This series contains invitations, flyers and notices of student and general college events, mostly on campus.
  6. Personal and Research Materials
    This series contains a copy of Dr. Thormann's dissertation, and "History of Christian Trade Unionism in France," an unpublished manuscript from 1969.  Other materials include some personal papers, and miscellaneous materials including letters to the editors of the various college publications, and newspaper clippings.  Dr. Thormann's personal collection of materials is also included in this series:
    • Cahiers du Syndicalism  (Berne: Federation Suisse des syndicates chretiens-nationaux) Janvier 1955 - Janvier 1964 (incomplete)
    • Christlabor New Bulletin
    • (Utrecht: International Federation of Christian Labor Unions) English Language Edition 1952-1962 (incomplete)
    • Labor: Zeitschrift des internationalen bundes der Christlichen Gewerkschften. (Brussels) German Language Edition 1961-1962
    • Labor: revure mensuelle de la confedaration internationale des syndicates chretiens. (Utrecht) Julliet 1950-1962
    • Labor (Brussels: World Confederation of Labour) 1963-1970
    • Les etudes socials et syndicales (Paris) 1955-1981
    • Chronique Sociale de France (Lyon) 1955-1963 (selected issues only)
    • L'actualite religieuse dans le monde (Paris) 1954-1955 (selected issues only)
    • Informations: Catholiques internationale (Paris) 1955-1956 (selected issues only)
    • Various conference and commission reports from the 1940's through 1950's, mostly from the Confederation des syndicats chretiens.

Container List

Note: Photographs from the Thormann Collection are housed separately in Photo Collection Box 33.

Series 1. College Committees and Meetings

Box 1

  • Faculty Committees, 1960-1978, 1980-1982, 1987-1990
  • Manhattanville Case Study, 1970
  • Curriculum Study Project (NEH Grant H69-0-31)
  • Academic Quality and Quality Control Questionnaire
  • The 1989 Institutional Report of Manhattanville College Prepared for the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools

Box 2

Specifically named Committee Folders

  • Executive Committee
  • Board of Academic Standards
  • Grievance Committee
  • Presidential Search Committee
  • College Life Task Force
  • Academic Policy Committee
  • Separation Committee
  • Association of American University Professors
  • Steering Committee
  • International Studies Committee
  • Status Committee
  • Board of Trustees
  • Space Committee
  • Middle States Committee
  • IPC Facilities Committee

Series 2.  Departmental Materials

Box 3

  • History Department, 1966-1988
  • Political Science Department, 1966 - 1977

Series 3. Teaching Materials

Box 4

  • Questions Relating to Graduate Fellowships, 1959-1983
  • Information for Advisees, 1973-1975
  • MAT Advising
  • Advising, 1981-1990
  • Independent Work Senior Evaluation, 1980

Series 4. Faculty Related Materials

Box 4

  • Tarrytown House Conference, September 24-25, 1971
  • Arden House Conference, February 24-25, 1973
  • Edith Macy Conference, October 16-17, 1987
  • Retreat in 1989
  • Summer School, 1970-1979, 1981-1983
  • Exams, 1981-1983, 1989-1990
  • Course Offerings, 1959-1974

Box 5

  • Faculty Meetings, 1959-1990

Box 6

  • Memoranda for the Faculty, 1959-1990

Box 7

  • Faculty, Misc. Questions (Memoranda), 1959-1991

Series 5. Co-Curricular Activities and College Events

Box 8

  • Co-Curricular Events, 1959-1988
  • News releases, 1989-1990

Series 6. Personal and Research Materials

Box 9

  • "Christian Trade Unionism in France: a history of the French confederation of Christian Workers", Dr. Thormann's dissertation
  • "History of Christian Trade Unionism in France" an unpublished manuscript - an updated and expanded version of his dissertation
  • "The Ideological Evolution of French Christian Trade Unionism Since World War II", Thormann, Gerard. The Catholic Historical Review., Vol. LVI, No. 1, April, 1970
  • Personal Correspondence
  • Newspaper clippings
  • Dr. Thormann's Curriculum Vitae
  • "Happiness is...Correlates of Academic Satisfaction Among Undergraduates: I. The Senior Satisfaction Survey of the Class of 1972" by Miriam Lewin Papanek
  • "Prominent Writing By Freshman" from the 1980's
  • "Merlin: The Sorcerer's Guide to Survival in College" (An invitation to the art of studenting for Manhattanville Students) by Christopher F. Monte, Ph.D., Psychology Dept., 1987

Box 10

  • Periodicals

Box 11

  • Periodicals

Box 12

  • Periodicals

Access Points

Personal Names

  • Monte, Christopher F.
  • Thormann, Gerard C., 1922-
  • Yim, Kwan Ha

Topical Subjects

  • Catholic college students
  • Catholic labor unions
  • Catholic universities and colleges
  • Labor unions and Christianity

Corporate Names

  • Manhattanville College
  • Manhattanville College of the Sacred Heart


Thormann, Gerard C.  Review of Histoire du Mouvement Ouvrier Chretien en Belgique, edited by Emmanuel Gerard and Paul Wynants in The Catholic Historical Review 82.2 (1996): 273.

Thormann, Gerard C.  Review of La pensee de l'abbe Pottier (1849-1923): Contribution a l'histoire de la democratie chretienne en Belgique by Jean-Louis Jadoulle. in The Catholic Historical Review 80.3 (1994): 630.

Thormann, Gerard C.  Review of The Ideological Evolution of French Christian Trade Unionism Since World War II in The Catholic Historical Review 54.1 (1970): 67.

Administrative Information

Access: Unrestricted

  • Provenance: Gift of Gerard C. Thormann, December 2003.
  • Preferred Citation:
    Gerard C. Thormann Collection, Identification and date of item,  Manhattanville College Library Special Collections, Purchase, NY  10577.
  • Collection re-housed and finding aid compiled by Tara Van Tassell, June-August 2004 as part of an internship for the Palmer School of Long Island University.