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LibraryGeorge J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives


Board of Trustees: Votes and Records, 1788- , n.d.


51.50 linear feet.

Catalog Number: 1.1

Series List:

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Agency History /
Biographical Note:

The Governing Boards originally consisted of the Board of Trustees and the Board of Overseers. This bicameral system was created by the Charter of Bowdoin College in 1794. Most votes of the Trustees needed approval by the Overseers, who also approved the Chair of the Board of Trustees. In 1996, the charter was amended to abolish the Board of Overseers and establish a single governing unit, the Board of Trustees. Currently, the Board must meet three times each year, with one of the meetings held during Commencement week. Student charges are fixed by the Board, as is the College budget. The Board also has the power to appoint the President, Deans, and faculty, and grant or deny tenure to the faculty. The Board receives reports each year from its own committees and from the President of the College and the Treasurer of the College, among others.

Scope and Content:
The records of the Board of Trustees are the official records of Bowdoin College. Included in the records are the official minutes of the meetings of the Board of Trustees and the Board of Overseers (until 1996), and records of their votes, policies and decisions. There is a collection of printed by-laws and rules dating from 1817 to the present that document the changes in the nature and scope of the Boards' interests and power. There is biographical information on Board members, and printed directories of members. Also included are committee records and reports from both temporary and long-standing Board committees. See the series list for available committee records. Additional Governing Boards material can be found in the collections of the Office of the President: Administrative Records.

Cite as: Board of Trustees: Votes and Records. George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives. Bowdoin College Library.

Access Restrictions: Some material restricted. Consult series descriptions for specific restrictions.

George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives · Staff · Hours
Bowdoin College Library, 3000 College Station, Brunswick, Maine 04011-8421 · scaref@bowdoin.edu · (207) 725-3288