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Students in a glass stairwell.

An Anchor

The estate of the late Dorris Goodrich endows two UCSB Library collections

Dorris and Chauncey Goodrich met in Minneapolis, where she was enrolled in graduate school and he was finishing his officer training at Fort Snelling before being sent to Tokyo as a wartime translator. They married in 1945. After the war, the couple enrolled in graduate school at UC Berkeley. In 1952, Dorris became the first woman to receive a doctorate from the Department of Sociology, five years before Chauncey earned his Ph.D. in classical Chinese. When the Goodriches passed — Dorris in 2021 and Chauncey in 2013 — they left their legacy to the UCSB Library.

While Dorris formally left academia to raise four children, she was a lifelong scholar with research interests in the British education system, psychology, and art.

“My mother never felt she wasn’t equal,” said her son Christopher. “She enjoyed volunteering at the library and political activism. There’s an early photograph of me campaigning for Kennedy in 1960. Both my parents were very empathetic, which made it easy to be their child.”

Dorris’s connection to UC Santa Barbara began when Chauncey joined the faculty in 1964. He laid the foundation for the modern Department of East Asian Languages and Cultural Studies, from which he retired in 1987. Dorris and Chauncey hosted many international students during his career.

“My parents were great believers in education, and they were very conscious of how lucky they were to have a good education and mentors,” said son Chris. “The library was a natural place for them to invest.”

The Goodrich estate gift, created through a charitable remainder unitrust, will support the pre-existing Henry H. Tai East Asian Collection and the Art & Architecture Collection of the UCSB Library. The Henry H. Tai East Asian Collection focuses on the history and literature of East Asia. Containing over 160,000 print volumes, the bulk of the collection is in Chinese and Japanese.

“I didn’t have the opportunity to meet Dorris Goodrich, but I feel such a bond with her,” said Yao Chen, subject librarian for East Asian studies. “Dorris understood the growing interests and needs in East Asian studies at UC Santa Barbara. Among UCSB’s international student population, over 70% are students from Greater China, Japan, and Korea. In addition to research material, the East Asian Collection meets the leisure and enrichment needs of international students and creates a sense of community. The East Asian Collection is incredibly honored to receive her donation to strengthen our collection and support UC Santa Barbara scholars and students.”

The Art & Architecture Collection includes publications on architecture, sculpture, drawing, painting, prints, decorative arts, artistic photography, and interdisciplinary works on the arts covering all cultures and time periods. Collection strengths include medieval illumination, Northern and Italian Renaissance art, American art and architecture, and Chinese painting and calligraphy.

“To have this endowment is momentous,” said Chizu Morihara, subject librarian for art and architecture. “This is the collection’s first endowment, and it will provide support to researchers, faculty, graduate students, and undergraduate students. The Art & Architecture Collection is broad and deep, and we’re here to support anyone on our interdisciplinary campus who is working on a project within the visual arts. For Dorris to ensure our long-term success and sustainability is amazing. We’re so grateful and excited.”

“Endowed funds are critical to collection development over time, and this funding will allow both areas to significantly increase their holdings so that scholars and students can benefit from Dorris’s generosity in perpetuity,” said University Librarian Kristin Antelman.

Dorris remained engaged in scholarship in her later years. In her 70s and 80s, she researched and wrote a heavily illustrated book on the changing Christian imagery of “The Annunciation.” In 2017, a student in India requested a copy of her Ph.D. dissertation, and in 2019, an article Dorris published in 1945 was cited by a modern researcher as perhaps the first essay describing the inner workings of academic journals. Her family described her as an anchor, and thanks to the Goodrich estate, the family’s legacy will help secure UCSB Library collections forever.

“My mother was awestruck by university libraries and the worlds they contained,” said Chris. “It is gratifying to see her wish come to fruition.”