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The Isabel Briggs Myers Papers digital collection encompasses a large variety of material pertaining to the family life and personal writings of the Briggs and the Myers families from the late nineteenth century until the 1960s. The collection includes mainly handwritten diaries and letters between Isabel Briggs Myers (1897-1980) and her parents Lyman J. Briggs (1874-1963) and Katharine C. Briggs (1875-1968). Also accessible within this collection are personal and published writings by Isabel and Katharine, photographs of family members, postcards from domestic and international travel, as well as some diaries by Peter B. Myers (1927-2018), the oldest son of Isabel B. Myers and donor of the collection to the University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries and Archives.
Isabel Briggs Myers is well known for the widely-used personality assessment, the Myers Briggs Type Indicator®, which she began developing with her mother in the 1930s. Katharine had studied the writings of the Swiss psychiatrist Carl Jung (1875-1961) and his conceptualization of eight personality types. Subsequently, Briggs and Myers developed sixteen categories and they embarked upon a life-long mission of observing and examining peoples’ attitudes, perceptions and judgments about themselves. The first questionnaire was registered in 1943 and from that time, Isabel focused her life’s work toward refining the indicator to allow individuals to learn more about themselves and others through personality type.