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Goetz A. Briefs papers 1

Identifier: GTM-820610

Scope and Contents

The Goetz A. Briefs Papers comprise four (4) boxes. Box 1, Folders 1 to 7, comprises Briefs' correspondence from 1930 to 1974 and arranged chronologically. Magazine and newsclippings with Briefs' holograph notations and additions make up folders 8, 9, and 10 in Box 1. Georgetown University related materials are found in Box 1, Folder 11. Loose manuscript materials with holograph additions, corrections, and notations, some dated, are to be found in Folders 12 to 16, Box 1. Typewritten, usually "titled", manuscripts with holograph additions, corrections, and notations by Briefs' comprise Folders 17 to 35 in Box 1 and Folders 1 to 36 in Box 2, all of which are arranged alphabetically by title.

Box 2, Folders 37 to 45 make up a miscellaneous materials' section, i.e., symposium materials, Mont Pelerin Society items. Box 3 contains copies of papers not assocaited with Georgetown University comprise Folders 1 to 22 and are arranged alphabetically by last name. Geprgetown University students' papers make up Folders 23 to 29 in Box 3. Georgetown University's Faculty papers and projects make up the remaining Folders in Box 3 (Folders 30 to 35). The last box, no. 4, contains a 1909 copy of Bretano's "Political Economy" along with Briefs' various printed publications as well as publications of his colleagues and autographed by them for Briefs.

Biographical material on Goetz A. Briefs is on the following page of this Finding Aid. The material was copied from additional material on Goetz A. Briefs in the Faculty Files of the Georgetown University Archives. Permission for usage must be obtained from the University Archivist.

Goetz A. Briefs, after a long and varied career in Germany and in the United States, retired as professor emeritus at the age of 82 in May of 1971. He died in 1974 at the age of 85.


  • 1930-1974

Conditions Governing Access

Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Booth Family Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections in advance of any visit.

Conditions Governing Use

Researchers are solely responsible for determining the copyright status of the materials being used, establishing who the copyright owner is, locating the copyright owner, and obtaining permission for intended use.

Biographical / Historical

Dr. Goetz A. Briefs was born Janaury 1, 1889 in Eschweiler, Germany. He was educated in Munich, Bonn and Freiburg, Germany, receiving a Ph.D. from Freiburg in 1912. He did research in London in 1912. Dr. Briefs has been awarded various study grants; a grant from the German Foundation for Social Research to study in the United States (1928), a grant from the German Minsitry of Education to study in Spain (1931), and study grants from the Volker, Relm, and A.P. Sloane Foundations. Dr. Briefs' prior teaching experience includes lecturer at Freiburg, germany (1913). substitute professor of economics at Giessen, Germany (1916-1918), assistant professor at Freiburg, Germany (1919), professor of economics at Wuerzburg, Germany (1921-1923), professor at freiburg (1923-26) and professor at Berlin University (1926-34). He served as visiting professor during the summers of 1926-32 at the Universities of Vienna, Berne, and Salzburg.

Dr. Briefs came to the United States in 1934 and became a visiting professor at Catholic University in that year. He joined the Georgetown faculty as a full professor in 1937. Dr. Briefs has served intermittently as a visiting professor at Columbia University Summer School (1934-48). He was appointed to the rank of professor emeritus at Georgetownn in 1957.

Dr. Briefs is a member of the American Economic Association, the American Catholic Economic Association, the German Sociological Association, the Mont Pelerin Society and the Association for Free Enterprise (Germany).

He has received honorary doctorates from St. Mary's College (Calif.), 1946, the University of Milan, 1958, the University of Munich, 1959, St. Gallen, 1960, Freiburg, 1963, and the Technische Hochschule in Berlin, 1967. He was awarded the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany in 1959.

Dr. Briefs has been active in government service, both in Germany anhd the United States. In Germany he was the economics expert for the Ministry of Interior, 1915-16, director of the Institute of Industrial Relations, 1926-34, and a member of the Unemployment Insurance Commission of the German Minsitry of Labor, 1929. He was twice offered cabient positions in the Weimar Republic. In the United States, Dr. Briefs has served as a consultant to the antitrust division of the DEpartment of Justice, the Office of Strategic Service and the Department of Defense.

He has given guest lectures throughout the United States and Europe, to university classes and to professional groups. Dr. Briefs also has delivered several papers in the field of economics.

He is the authot of numerous articles in the field of economics and on the "ethos problem." His articles have appeared in the Review of Politics, Social Order, Review of Social Economy, Max Weber's Archive, and Schmoller's Economic Yearbooks. Dr. Briefs is the author of more than 10 books, among them Decline of the West, Sociology of Industrial Enterprise, Proletariat; A Challenge to Western Civilization,and Unionism Reappraised.


4 Linear Feet (4 Hollinger Record Storage boxes)

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Henry Goetz.

Goetz A. Briefs papers 1
Georgetown University Library Booth Family Center for Special Collections.
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Repository Details

Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository

Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
37th and O Streets, N.W.
Washington DC 20057