Descriptive Summary
Hoffman, Stephen P.
Stephen Hoffman Papers
circa 1950-1960s
Materials are written in
English.
2013-048
8 in.
Dolph Briscoe Center for American
History, The University of Texas at
Austin
The Stephen Hoffman Papers document Hoffman’s career as a
mathematician, particularly as a graduate student at Yale in the early 1950s.
Biographical Note
Stephen P. Hoffman, Jr. was an American mathematician. He was born April
10, 1926 in Connecticut, where he attended high school at Norwich Free Academy. His undergraduate and
graduate education took place at Yale University, where he received his bachelor’s (1949), master’s
(1951), and doctoral (1957) degrees, all in mathematics. His doctoral thesis was entitled “Second-Order
Linear Differential Operators Defined By Irregular Boundary Conditions,” which he completed under
Shizuo Kakutani and Jacob T. Schwartz.

Hoffman taught at the Polytechnic Institute of Brooklyn while completing his doctoral work. In 1957, he
began teaching at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut. In the mid-1960s, he taught at State
University of New York (SUNY) Cortland, possibly serving as chair of the mathematics department from
1967-1968. He moved to Bates College in Lewiston, Maine, in September 1968, where he was hired as chair
of the mathematics department. A mathematical analyst, Hoffman taught courses in real analysis, as well
as first-year calculus.

Hoffman published several textbooks, including

Basic Analysis (1959),
Modern Intermediate Algebra with Margaret Frances Willerding (1969), and
Advanced Calculus (1970). He was well-known in mathematical circles and
was friends with several prominent mathematicians, including Gian-Carlo Rota and Henry Pollak. Upon
retiring from Bates in the early 1980s for health reasons, Hoffman moved to Hawaii. He passed away in
1985.
Scope and Contents
The Stephen Hoffman Papers document Hoffman’s career as a mathematician, particularly as a graduate
student at Yale in the early 1950s. The bulk of the collection consists of Hoffman’s notes, both
handwritten and typed, from courses he took at Yale. These notes describe courses by Warren Ambrose,
G. A. Hedlund, Einar Hille, Nathan Jacobson, and Shizuo Kakutani. Also included for many courses are
final examinations and term papers written by Hoffman.

The collection also contains some typed draft manuscripts, including Nathan Jacobson’s

Lectures in
Abstract Algebra, Vol. 2: Linear Algebra and a work by Hoffman on real variables.
Forms part of the Archives of American Mathematics.

Access Restrictions
Unrestricted access.

Use Restrictions
This collection is stored remotely at CDL. Advance notice required for retrieval. Contact repository for retrieval.

Index Terms
Subjects (Persons)
Ambrose, Warren A.
Hedlund, Gustav Arnold, 1904-
Hille, Einar, 1894-1979
Hoffman, Stephen P.
Jacobson, Nathan, 1910-1999
Kakutani, Shizuo, 1911-2004
Subjects (Organizations)
Yale University.
Subjects
Mathematics--Study and teaching.
Preferred CitationStephen Hoffman Papers, circa 1950-1960s, Archives of American Mathematics,
Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, University of Texas at Austin.

Processing InformationThis
collection was processed by Kristin Law and Elliot Williams, July 2013.

Acquisition Information
This collection was donated to the Briscoe Center in 2013 by David Haines, one of Hoffman’s
mathematics colleagues at Bates College.

Detailed Description of the Papers
Inventory
2013-048/1
Einar Hille, Complex Variables, notes and final exam,
circa 1949-1950
2013-048/1
G. A. Hedlund, Differential Geometry, notes and final exam,
circa 1949-1950
2013-048/1
[Mills], Introductory Algebra, notes and final exam,
circa 1949-1950
2013-048/1
Einar Hille, Analytical Theory of Semi Groups, notes,
circa 1950-1951
2013-048/1
G. A. Hedlund, Point Set Topology, notes and final exam,
circa 1950-1951
2013-048/1
Notes and exams, various,
1950-1952, undated
2013-048/1
Einar Hille, Fourier Analysis, notes and term paper,
circa 1951-1952
2013-048/1
Shizuo Kakutani, Topological Groups, notes,
circa 1951-1952
2013-048/1
Nathan Jacobson, Lie Groups and Algebras, notebook,
spring 1953
2013-048/1
Shizuo Kakutani, Stochastic Processes, notes,
circa 1950s
2013-048/1
[Nathan Jacobson, Lectures in Abstract Algebra, Vol. 2: Linear
Algebra], typed manuscript draft, circa 1950s
2013-048/1
[Warren] Ambrose, Continuous Groups, typed notes,
circa 1950s
2013-048/1
"Real Variables," notebook,
circa 1957-1960s