Ludwig was professor, librarian and expert in rare books
By Patricia Allen
Princeton NJ -- Richard Ludwig, 82, emeritus professor of English at Princeton and the former associate University librarian for rare books and special collections, died April 28 at his home in Princeton.
"His major triumph was shepherding the Howard Behrman donation to the University," said Stephen Ferguson, curator of rare books at the library and former colleague of Ludwig. "Dr. Behrman did not have a connection to Princeton -- he was a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania. Dick Ludwig developed that very important relationship for the University. Behrman's donations added substantially to the library's endowment and enriched our holdings of important 19th- and early 20th-century American authors."
Ludwig was regarded as an outstanding teacher and academic adviser whose students stayed in touch with him throughout their adult lives, Ferguson said. In 2001, one of his former students, Michael Spence, the winner of a Nobel Prize in economics, established the Richard Ludwig Endowment Fund for the purchase of rare books and manuscripts for the University library. The New York collector Leonard Milberg, a member of Princeton's class of 1953, donated major collections -- one in American poetry and one in Irish poetry -- to the library in Ludwig's honor. The Viscountess Eccles presented the Raymond Mortimer Papers to the library to mark Ludwig's achievements when he retired in 1986.
Born in Reading, Pa., Ludwig received his A.B. in English from the University of Michigan in 1942 and his M.A. from Harvard University in 1943. After serving in the army during World War II, he returned to Harvard University and earned a Ph.D in English in 1950. He joined Princeton's Department of English faculty in 1950 as an instructor and was named a full professor in 1968. In 1974, Ludwig was appointed the head of the University library's Department of Rare Books and Special Collections.
Ludwig was the editor of several reviews and monographs, including "Aspects of American Poetry" and "Letters of Ford Madox Ford." He was co-editor of "Guide to American Literature Since 1890," "Literary History of the United States," "Major American Writers," "Nine Short Novels" and several other titles. He was a member of the English Literature Board at McGraw-Hill and general editor of the Pegasus American Authors Series.
He received many University awards, including a Bicentennial Preceptorship and the McCosh Faculty Fellowship, one of the highest honors for faculty members.
The son of the late Ralph Ludwig and Millie Ludwig, he has no survivors. At Ludwig's request, there will be no memorial service.