The American School of Classical Studies at Athens



Samuel Eliot Bassett was born in 1873 in Wilton, Connecticut. He studied at Yale University, where he was a Macy Fellow in the Greek and Greek Archaeology Program and was awarded the Soldier’s Memorial Fellowship. Bassett was a student at the American School of Classical Studies at Athens (ASCSA), 1899–1900, and a fellow, 1901–1902. Upon his return to the United States, he taught Greek at Yale until he received his PhD in 1905. He immediately accepted a position at the University of Vermont where, as Professor of Greek, he taught until his untimely death on the eve of his departure to deliver the Sather Lectures on Homer at the University of California in 1936.

Samuel Bassett was a member of the ASCSA Management Committee, 1905–1936; Chairman of the Committee on Fellowships, 1917–1936, and Professor of Archaeology, 1932. He contributed many articles to the American Journal of Archaeology, including “The Palace of Odysseus” (AJA, xxiii, 1919) and “The Terra-cotta Lamps” (AJA, vii, 1903), which resulted from his participation in the excavation of the Cave at Vari. However, most of his work—over one hundred articles—dealt with classical authors ranging from Homer to Cicero. It was his contribution to Homeric scholarship, which culminated in his book, The Poetry of Homer, for which he is remembered.

Bruce Heiden wrote, that “after his death Bassett’s legacy as a Homerist lay largely unclaimed. . . . Yet quite unexpectedly, The Poetry of Homer and Bassett’s many articles began to influence Homeric scholarship in the mid-60s, with rapid acceleration since the mid-80s, as evinced by acknowledgements in the work of many scholars. Bassett’s Homeric scholarship was verifiably ‘ahead of its time’.” (http://www. Annual Meeting/01mtg/abstracts/heiden.html)

The papers of Samuel Eliot Bassett are in the Yale University Manuscripts and Archives, Humanities and Fine Arts Collection, 1813–1965, Collection Number MS 590; and at the University of Vermont. The American School of Classical Studies at Athens houses only those papers relating to Bassett’s association to the American School.


The following papers, relating to Bassett’s association with the ASCSA and earlier papers concerning the ASCSA, Committee on Fellowships, were donated to the Archives by Professor M. D. Usher of the University of Vermont in 2004. Although the bulk of this small collection concern the Committee on Fellowships, Box 1 contains Bassett’s correspondence with over fifty well-known colleagues—from Darrell Amyx to Saul Weinberg—about a variety of topics.

Box 2 chiefly contains papers relating to the ASCSA, Committee on Fellowships: correspondence of Harold N. Fowler, chairman of the committee (1904–1917); progress reports submitted by ASCSA fellows from 1896 to 1911; blank copies of fellowship examinations (1897–1936); and Committee on Fellowships reports (1900-1905).



BOX 1 Correspondence and Committee on Fellowships

Folder 1: Samuel Bassett Correspondence (1930-1932)*

Folder 2:  Samuel Bassett Correspondence (1933)*

Folder 3: Samuel Bassett Correspondence (1934)*

Folder 4:  Samuel Bassett Correspondence (1935)*

Folder 5:  Samuel Bassett Correspondence (1936)*

Folder 6:  Samuel Bassett Correspondence (nd)*

Folder 7:  Calling Cards presented to Samuel Bassett (nd)

Folder 8: Committee on Fellowships: Reports, Memos, Blank Applications, Drafts of Revised
          Guidelines for Fellowship Applications (1930s)

BOX 2 ASCSA Committee on Fellowship and Miscellaneous Papers (1896-1936)

Folder 1: Correspondence: Chairs of the Committee on Fellowships (1899-1914)

Folder 2: Committee on Fellowships: Fellows’ Progress Reports (1896-1905)**

Folder 3: Committee on Fellowships: Fellows’ Progress Reports (1909-1911)**

Folder 4: Committee on Fellowships: Benjamin Powell’s Progress Report and Correspondence about (1900)

Folder 5: Committee on Fellowships: Copies of Fellowship Examinations (1897-1924)

Folder 6: Committee on Fellowships: Copies of Fellowship Examinations (1925-1936)

Folder 7: Committee on Fellowships: Reports (1900-1905)

Folder 8: Etchings and Photographs

Folder 9: Map of Expropriated Properties in and around the Agora (1936)

Folder 10:  Some Agora and Corinth Weekly Reports (1934, 1936)

Folder 11: Miscellaneous
*Samuel Bassett’s correspondence (1930-1936) with Cordelia E. Alderson, John Alexander, James T. Allen, Darrell Amyx, Raymond Bassett, William N. Bates, Alfred Bellinger, Joseph Berger, Oscar Broneer, Frank Brown, Edward Capps, Marjorie Carpenter, Rhys Carpenter, John P. Carroll, Patricia Cassidy, George H. Chase, Paul Clement, Jr., Kenneth Conant, Bernice Brown Cronkhite, Adelaide M. Davidson, Gladys R. Davidson, William B. Dinsmoor, Sterling Dow, John Duffy, Homer Economos, G. Roger Edwards, George Elderkin, Richard P. Eldridge, Montgomery Feras, Chauncey E. Finch, Edwin Y. Fisher, Edward Fitch, Joseph E. Fontenrose, Clarence A. Forbes, A.D. Fraser, Sarah Elizabeth Freeman, Georgia Galenes, Caroline M. Galt, Alfred Gelstharp, Jr., S. H. Gould, Emily R. Grace, Virginia Grace, Suzanne Halstead, Josephine Harris, J. E. Harry, Ora Hays, Virginia Haynes, John L. Heller, B. Charles Henry, Leicester B. Holland, Lavinia V. Holm, Clark Hopkins, C. C. Hower, Joseph H. Hunsicker, Horace L. Jones, Tom B. Jones, Franklin P. Johnson, Martin H. Johnson, Charles Knapp, Edward Kohleriter, Basil C. Kolar, Casper J. Kraemer, Jr., Andronica M. Lampropolos, Jakob A. O. Larsen, Jeannette Le Saulnier, Mitchell Levensohn, Harold Levine, Elaine Lewis, R. Robert Lind,  Charles B. Lipman, Louis Lord, C. D. Lowe, Stephen B. Luce, Barbara P. McCarthy, George McCracken, Grace Macurdy, Mao-Te Lo, Susan Martin, Thomas Means, Benjamin Meritt, C. W. E. Miller, Harold William Miller, George Mylonas, John Oddy, Cyril M. Owen, Roger Pack, Charles W. Peppler, Edward Delavan Perry, Evelyn D. Poppel, L. A. Post, W. K. Pritchett, James Pugsley, Doris Raymond, C. A. Robinson, Jr., David M. Robinson, Henry S. Robinson, Grace L. Rose, Margaret St. Clair, Dorothy A. Schierer, Eugene Schweigert, Robert Scranton, Wilbur S. Sheriff, Lucy T. Shoe, Carol M. Siedler, M. L. Simpson, Gertrude Smith, H. R. W. Smith, Stanley B. Smith, John B. Stearns, Curtis G. Stephan, Charles H. Stevens, Richard Stillwell, Harold J. Stukey, R. Munn Suffern, R. F. Swann, Mary Hamilton Swindler, Rollin H. Tanner, Eugene Tavenner, Theodore Theodorides, Dorothy Burr Thompson, Homer A. Thompson, Dorothy Traquair, George Tyler, Eugene Vanderpool, LaRue Van Hook, Wilhelmina van Ingen, Edwin A. Vossman, Frederick O. Waage, W. P. Wallace, Roy E. Watkins, Francis R. Walton, Vernon E. Way, Maude Weekes, Saul Weinberg, Bradford Welles, Clifton H. White, Ruby Wolfe, Bernice Howland Wood, Elizabeth Wright, Thelma J. Yanofsky, and Lancaster Press Inc.

**Progress reports submitted to the Committee on Fellowships to John Williams White, B. F. Wheeler and Harold N. Fowler, between 1896 and 1911, by Harriet A. Boyd, Carroll N. Brown, George H. Chase, Herbert F. De Cou, William Bell Dinsmoor, Arthur Fairbanks, Bert Hodge Hill, A. C. Johnson, Linda Shaw King, Louise Nichols, Clyde Pharr, C. A. R. Sanborn, Charles G. Welles, J. R. Wheeler.

Note: The collection was processed by Lizabeth Ward Papageorgiou.

For more information, please contact the Archivist:
Dr. Natalia Vogeikoff-Brogan
The American School of Classical Studies at Athens
54 Souidias Street, Athens 106 76, Greece,
phone: 210-723-6313 Fax: 210-725-0584
Contact via E-mail