Guide to the Elon Clark Papers, 1958-1970


Elon Clark was a professor in the Duke Medical Center's Division of Audiovisual Education. His collection includes drawings, sketches, correspondence and other materials used to design the Duke University shield, mace, academic gowns, flags and university colors.

Collection Details

Record Group
Elon Clark papers
Clark, Elon H., 1909-2001
2.2 Linear Feet, 200 Items
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Material in English

Collection Overview

Collection contains drawings, sketches, correspondence, and other materials used in the design of the Duke University shield, mace, academic gowns, flags, and university colors. Only representative examples of preliminary designs were retained. Drawings and sketches were interleaved with archival paper and placed in buffered folders for preservation. The oversize container includes drawings by Professor Ransom Patrick (Art Department) as suggested for new design for Duke Shield (1) and flag (2). Also present is an original drawing by Elon H. Clark that was presented to and accepted by the Trustees.

More Biographical / Historical Info

Using These Materials

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 2 full business days in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access to the Collection

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

In off-site storage; 48 hours advance notice is required for use.

warning Use & Permissions

Copyright for Official University records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

More copyright and citation information

How to Cite

[Identification of item], Elon Clark Papers, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Contents of the Collection

News Clippings, 1966
Box 1
Scrap Patterns for Seal and Flag
Box 1
Duke Family Coat of Arms
Box 1
Shield: Trial Sketches
Box 1
Shield: Sketches, Ideas
Box 1
Official Duke Emblem: Current
Box 1
Shield: Early Design, Opinions
Box 1
Design Selected to Present to Committee, 1965
Box 1
Shield: Sketches, Ideas
Box 1
Shield: Correspondence, 1961-1966
Box 1
Shield: Suggested Changes
Box 1
Proposed Mace
Box 1
Correspondence Re: Duke Patch, 1967
Box 1
Football Helmet
Box 1
Duke Blue: Fabric, Paint Swatches, Brochure, Correspondence
Box 1
Mace Correspondence
Box 1
Mace and Costume, Official Duke Blue: Correspondence and Clippings
Box 1
Medical Center Flag Design by Elon Clark
Box 1
Academic Gown
Box 1
Insignia, shield and flag
Oversize-box 2
Duke University flag (2)
Box 1
Duke University shield (8)
Box 1
School of Medicine shield (2)
Box 1
Shield explanatory text
Box 1
Unused shields (3)
Box 1

Historical Note

Biographical/Historical note

Elon H. Clark was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1909, grew up in Rochester, NY and received degrees from the Rochester Institute of Technology and from the Johns Hopkins School of Medical Art in 1933. Employed at Duke Hospital from 1934 to 1974, he founded what is now the Medical Center's Division of Audiovisual Education, where he specialized in improving cosmetic prostheses, and especially facial restorations. In 1949, he took a six-month leave from Duke to serve an appointment with the Veterans Administration in Washington, D.C. Clark also designed several important University symbols including the flag, a new shield, academic apparel and the presidential mace and chain of office. Clark died in 2001 in Black Mountain, NC at the age of 91.

Related Material

  • Art and Artifacts (University Archives) Records, 1915-2005. (University Archives. Duke University.)
  • Sports Information (Office of) Subject Files, 1932-1991. (University Archives. Duke University.)
  • Elon H. Clark papers, 1940-1978. (Medical Center Archives, Duke University.)

Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.


The Elon Clark Papers were received by the University Archives as a transfer in 1984-1985.

Processing Information

Processed by Jessica Wood, October 2006

Encoded by Sherrie Bowser, November 2006

Accession A85-32 is described in this finding aid.