Henry M. Hart '26, Dane Professor of Law, died yesterday after a brief illness, at the age of 64. He had served on the faculty of the Harvard Law School since 1932.
Hart was an authority on American legal institutions. At Harvard, he developed a course on Legal Process to investigate society's ways of solving its problems. His was one of the first attempts to relate the resources of our legal system to the demands made upon it. Other major law schools later adopted Hart's model for similar teaching experiments.
Paul A. Freund, Carl M. Loeb University Professor, and Hart were fellow students at the Law School. Freund said that Hart, as a professor, influenced the students at the Law School by his dedication to the rational aspect of law. He explained that "students had a deep respect for his own commitment to the morality of reason and his rejection of mere expediency or opportunism in law."
As an undergraduate at Harvard College, Hart served as the Editorial Chairman of the CRIMSON. At the Law School, he was President of the Law Review. In 1926, Hart received his A.B. degree summa cum laude and in 1930 took his LL.B. magna cum laude.
After post-graduate work under Professor Felix L. Frankfurter, Hart became law clerk to Justice Brandeis of the United States Supreme Court. Except for brief periods of government service, for which he received the Presidential Certificate of Merit, Hart's career centered on the Harvard Law School.
Archibald Cox '34, Samuel Williston Professor of Law, said, "Professor Hart was one of the finest minds at the Law School. The best students always had an admiration for him because he demanded the best of them." Cox had studied at the Law School while Hart was teaching there and was later his colleague for twenty years.
A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday at Memorial Church in Harvard Yard