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James Goode papers

Identifier: MS0670-UA

Collection Scope and Contents note

The materials of this collection include manuscript drafts and proofs, research notes, clippings, photographs, prints, correspondence, framed awards, diplomas, brochures, lecture notes, diaries, checking account ledgers, address books, appointment books, newspapers and magazines, school papers, personal records, organizational records, readings, exams, and reports. They range in date from 1903 to 2017, but the bulk of the material dates from 1950 to 2011.


  • Creation: circa 1860-2018
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1950 - 2018


Restrictions on Use

Some material is copyrighted or restricted. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections.

Biographical Note

James Moore Goode (1939-2019) is the author of numerous books relating to Washington, D.C. history, and earned his Ph.D. from The George Washington University in 1995. Dr. Goode was born September 17, 1939 in Stateville, North Carolina. He graduated with a B.A. from the University of South Carolina in 1964 and an M.A. from the University of Virginia in 1966. From 1966-68 he was an instructor at George Mason University, teaching undergraduate courses in American and European history. From there he went to the Library of Congress, working in the Prints and Photographs Division from 1968-70, providing reference services for researchers.

From 1970-1988 he served as Curator for the Smithsonian Institution Building, and he was responsible for planning, organizing, and directing an extensive restorations to the historic Castle building built between 1847 and 1855. He also prepared and presented lectures and tours of the building for scholars, docents, and the general public, and organized exhibits.

Beginning in 1988, he worked as a consultant in fine arts and architectural history, and served on the board of directors for two historic house museums: the Ruthmere in Elkhart, Indiana, and the Decatur House in Washington, D.C. During that time he researched and prepared five exhibitions for the Kiplinger Washington Editors art gallery, including Washington During the Civil War and Two Hundred Years of White House History, and one for the National Building Museum, based on his book "Best Addresses, One Hundred Years of Washington's Distinguished Apartment Houses."

Dr. Goode is the author of several books, including the aforementioned "Best Addresses" (1988), "Capital Losses: A Cultural History of Washington's Destroyed Buildings" (1979), "The Outdoor Sculpture of Washington, D.C." (1974), and Washington Scuplture (2009). A 300 photograph collection for his dissertation "Architecture and Politics: Thomas Ustick Walter and the Enlargement of the U.S. Capitol, 1850-65" was donated to the archives of the American Institute of Architects in 1996.

On May 27, 2015 Dr. Goode was presented the "Visionary Historian" award by The Historical Society of Washington D.C.

Dr. Goode was a member of numerous associations, and at one time served on the boards of the Historical Society of Washington, the Victorian Society of America, and the White House Historical Society.

The Library of Congress, University of Virginia Archive, and the Smithsonian Institute also have collections of papers related to James Goode.

James Moore Goode passed away on December 12, 2019 following a brief illness.


66.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



The collection include manuscript drafts and proofs, research notes, clippings, photographs, prints, correspondence, awards, lecture notes, personal papers, professional papers, and reports. They range in date from circa 1860 to 2017, but the bulk of the material dates from 1950 to 2011. The material relates to James Goode's graduate studies, his 2009 book on Washington sculptures, his collection of American self-portraits, his personal and professional life, and other research interests.

Arrangement note

Organized into eight series: Graduate studies, Washington Sculpture, American self-portraits, Kennedy-Warren Apartment House, Photographs, slides and framed awards, Personal papers, Professional papers, and Correspondence.

Location note

Some materials are stored off-site, and may require additional retrieval time. Please contact the Special Collections Research Center for more information.

Materials at another repository

The Smithsonian Institution Archives contains some biographical materials for Dr. Goode. These include:

Smithsonian Institution Archives Coll. No. 420 Box 5 Folder 24 (contains For the press clippings:)

Smithsonian Institution Archives Coll. No. 95-085 Box 2 Folder: "Goode,James 1987-90" (contains: the S. Dillon Ripley personal file on Dr. Goode, including a summary of Dr. Goode's career up to that point, and Mr. Ripley's draft letters of recommendation for Dr. Goode's application to graduate school)

Acquisition Information

This collection was donated to the University Archives by Dr. Goode in 1997. A second donation was made in 2007 (Accession 2007.027) and other donations were made in 2009 (Accession 2009.13 and 2009.25). Another donation was made in 2016 (Accession 2016.120).The material from this donation is housed in boxes 109, 110, and 111. Another donation was made in 2017 (accession 2017.043). That material is mostly housed in boxes 112, 113, and 114 (with two oversize items added to an existing box). Another donation was made in December 2017 (accession 2017.076) and was added to boxes 115-116.

Separated Material note

The following books have been separated from the collection and are kept in the Special Collections book collection:

James M. Goode. Washington Sculpture: A Cultural History of Outdoor Sculpture in the Nation's Capital. The Johns Hopkins University Press, 2009.

James M. Goode. Outdoor Sculpture of Washington D.C. Smithsonian Books, 1979.

Capital Houses historic Residences of Washington D.C. and its Environs 1735, 1965 by James Goode.

Capital Views Historic Photographs of Washington D.C., Alexandria and Loundoun County, Virginia and Frederick County, Maryland by James Goode.

Three Centuries of the American Bookplate by James Goode

The B.F. Saul Company Real Estate and Finance in the Nation's Capital Since 1892 by James Goode.

Processing Information

Please note that the box #s 37, 38, and 39 are not used in this collection.

Preliminary guide to the James Goode papers, Circa 1860-2018
University Archives, Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Research Center, The George Washington University Repository

George Washington University Gelman Library
2130 H Street NW
Washington DC 20052 United States of America