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American Notables Collection: 19th and 20th Century U.S. Writers

Identifier: MS-Retro-010
This collection primarily consists of correspondence with some miscellaneous papers and documents of prominent writers, theatrical, and public figures. The earliest correspondence includes a cover letter by Elihu Burritt, a journalist and writer, submitted to the New York Ledger in 1862 related to an article written by him on time spent with Alexander von Humboldt (1769-1859). It also includes a play written by John Baldwin Buckstone (1802-1879) in 1851 titled “Good for Nothing: a comedy in one act.” Other prominent correspondence are addressed to and from WIlliam Gillette; an American stage actor, involving visits to his newly constructed castle in the early 1930s, as well as the American poet, Nikki Giovanni, primarily relating to a teleconference with Norman Mailer in 1973 for a poetry class at the University of Florida. The collection also includes letters from John Ernst Steinbeck to his publisher in 1933.

This collection contains the works of other 19th century writers such as Horace Greeley, Edwin Wilson Morse, and several letters by Nathaniel Hawthorne. The correspondence by Greeley relates to his perspective on the Civil War in the United States, while the correspondence by Morse are sent to James Arthur Tufts relating to personal matters. The letter by Hawthorne dates from 1860 and deals with articles sent to Hawthorne from Calvin Stowe.

Some of the folders contain accompanying biographical files of writers.


  • 1831 - 1992


Language of Materials

Collection is in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.


.75 Cubic Feet (2 flat boxes)

Biographical / Historical

This composite collection consists of materials from the following prominent writers, actors, and public U.S. figures from the 19th and early 20th centuries: William R. Denham, John Dos Passos, William H. Gillette, Nikki Giovanni, Horace Greeley, Ferde Grofé, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Thomas Wentworth Higginson, Washington Irving, Edwin Wilson Morse, Eugene O'Neill, James Whitcomb Riley, Aurelia Gay Mace, Winfield Townley Scott, and John Steinbeck.


Collection is arranged alphabetically by author.

Repository Details

Part of the Watkinson Library Manuscripts Repository

Trinity College Library
300 Summit St.
Hartford Connecticut 06106