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May Swenson Papers (MSS111)

Overview

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

Correspondence

Manuscripts

Material Toward Books

Manuscripts By Others

Personal Papers

Ephemera

Audiovisual

Realia



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May Swenson Papers (MSS111), 1929-1998 | MSS Manuscripts

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Collection Overview

Title: May Swenson Papers (MSS111), 1929-1998Add to your cart.

Predominant Dates:1929-1998

ID: MSS/MSS/111

Primary Creator: Swenson, May (1919-1989)

Extent: 224.0 Boxes

Languages: English

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The May Swenson Papers contain manuscript and editorial material toward most of her books including Another Animal (1954), A Cage of Spines (1958), To Mix with Time: New and Selected Poems (1963), and Half Sun Half Sleep (1967). This material includes drafts of individual poems as well as letters to and from various editors, friends, and readers. Swenson’s correspondents include John Hall Wheelock, and Burroughs Mitchell, but the most fascinating portion of the May Swenson Papers is her correspondence with the American poet Elizabeth Bishop. The two were close friends and Washington University holds 268 of their letters written from 1950 to 1979, the year of Bishop’s death.

Collection Historical Note

Anna Thilda May "May" Swenson (May 28, 1913 – December 4, 1989) was an American poet and playwright. Born in Utah, Swenson grew up as the eldest of 10 children in a Mormon household where Swedish was spoken regularly and English was a second language. She received a B.S. from Utah State University in 1939 and taught poetry at as poet-in-residence at Bryn Mawr, the University of North Carolina, the University of California at Riverside, Purdue University and Utah State University. From 1959 to 1966, she worked as a manuscript reviewer at New Directions publishers. Swenson left New Directions Press in 1966 in an effort to focus completely on her own writing. She also served as a Chancellor of the Academy of American Poets from 1980 until her death in 1989.

Her poems were published in Antaeus, The Atlantic Monthly, Carleton Miscellany, The Nation, The New Yorker, The Paris Review, Saturday Review, Parnassus and Poetry. She received much recognition for her work, including: Guggenheim fellowship (1959), Amy Lowell Traveling Scholarship (1960), Ford Foundation grant (1964), Bollingen Prize for poetry (1981), and MacArthur Fellowship (1987).

Since her first collection of poems, Another Animal, was published by Scribner in 1954. Swenson's other collections of poems include A Cage of Spines (1958), To Mix with Time: New and Selected Poems (1963), Half Sun Half Sleep (1967), Iconographs (1970), New & Selected Things Taking Place (1978), and In Other Words (1987). Posthumous collections of her work include The Love Poems (1991), Nature: Poems Old and New (1994), and May Out West (1996). She is also the author of three collections of poems for younger readers, including Poems to Solve (1966) and More Poems to Solve (1968); a collection of essays, The Contemporary Poet as Artist and Critic (1964); and a one-act play titled The Floor, which was produced in New York in the 1960s. As translator, she published Windows and Stones: Selected Poems of Tomas Tranströmer (1972), which received a medal of excellence from the International Poetry Forum.

Administrative Information

Repository: MSS Manuscripts

Access Restrictions: Open

Use Restrictions:

Users of the collection must read and agree to abide by the rules and procedures set forth in the Materials Use Policies.

Providing access to materials does not constitute permission to publish or otherwise authorize use. All publication not covered by fair use or other exceptions is restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder, which may or may not be Washington University.

If you wish to publish or license Special Collections materials, please contact Special Collections to inquire about copyright status at (314) 935-5495 or spec@wumail.wustl.edu. (Publish means quotation in whole or in part in seminar or term papers, theses or dissertations, journal articles, monographs, books, digital forms, photographs, images, dramatic presentations, transcriptions, or any other form prepared for a limited or general public.)

Acquisition Source: Gift and Purchase

Acquisition Method:

Accession number 1448. Laid in material, January 2, 1976

Accession number 1541. Gift of May Swenson, January 22, 1982

Accession number 1640. Purchase, November 5, 1984

Accession number 1646. Purchase from May Swenson, December 17, 1984

Accession number 1801. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, September 12, 1989

Accession number 1829. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, March 10, 1990

Accession number 1843. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, September 26, 1990

Accession number 1847. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, October 9, 1990

Accession number 1854. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, October 28, 1990

Accession number 1856. Gift of the Harry C. Smith, October 4, 1990

Accession number 1868. Gift of Diane Ackerman, March 6, 1991

Accession number 1869. Gift of Peggy Lockard, Pepper Publishing, March 6, 1991

Accession number 1876. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, May 2, 1991

Accession number 1885. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, June 11, 1991

Accession number 1918. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, June 28, 1991

Accession number 1927. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, August 7, 1991

Accession number 1935. Rozanne Knudson, October 21, 1991

Accession number 1936. Gift of Rozanne Knudson, December 30, 1991

Accession number 1948. Unknown, April 22, 1992

Accession number 1951. Gift of the Estate of May Swenson, July 27, 1992

Accession number 22750. Unknown, October 23, 2003

Accession number 22770. Unknown, October 23, 2003

Accession number 22780. Unknown

Accession number 22915. Purchase from Rozanne Knudson, October 13, 2003

Accession number 22942. Purchase from Carole Berglie, December 2, 1999

Accession number 22943. Unknown, Purchase

Accession number 22944. Estate of May Swenson, unknown

Accession number 23017. Unknown

Accession number 23018. Unknown

Accession number 23019. Unknown

Accession number 23020. Unknown

Accession number 23021. Unknown

Accession number 23029. Gift of Rozanne Knudson, November 3, 2003

Accession number 23035. Purchase from Rozanne Knudson, 2004

Accession number 23046. Rozanne Knudson, unknown

Accession number 23055. Unknown, September 8, 2004

Accession number 23056. Rozanne Knudson, unknown

Accession number 23070. Rozanne Knudson, January 2005

Accession number 23913. Gift of unknown, 2007

Accession number 23925. Gift of unknown, October 23, 2007

Accession number 23960. Purchase from the Estate of May Swenson, August 10, 2010

Accession number 2013.009. Purchase from Carole Berglie, January 1, 2013

Accession number MSS2016-015. Purchase from Carole Berglie, May 15, 2016

Preferred Citation: Name of the Collection, Washington University Libraries, Department of Special Collections


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence],
[Series 2: Manuscripts],
[Series 3: Material Toward Books],
[Series 4: Manuscripts By Others],
[Series 5: Personal Papers],
[Series 6: Ephemera],
[Series 7: Audiovisual],
[Series 8: Realia],
[All]

Series 3: Material Toward BooksAdd to your cart.
Material Toward Books consists of page proofs, galley proofs, business, typescripts/manuscripts, drafts, notes, and changes and corrections for the different books by Swenson. Arranged alphabetically by title.
Sub-Series 3.1: Another AnimalAdd to your cart.
Box 157Add to your cart.
Folder 5256: TypescriptAdd to your cart.
Folder 5257: Galley proofAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize.
Folder 5258: Table of contentsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5259: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5260: Miscellaneous business papersAdd to your cart.
Folder 5261: Drawing of book coverAdd to your cart.
Folder 5262: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5263: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.2: A Cage of SpinesAdd to your cart.
Box 157Add to your cart.
Folder 5264-5265: TypescriptsAdd to your cart.
Box 158Add to your cart.
Folder 5266: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5267: Miscellaneous business materialAdd to your cart.
Folder 5268: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5269: Reviews and noticesAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.3: The Guess and Spell Coloring BookAdd to your cart.
Box 158Add to your cart.
Folder 5270: DraftAdd to your cart.
Folder 5271: NotecardsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5272: Galley proofAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize
Folder 5273: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5274: ClippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.4: Half Sun Half SleepAdd to your cart.
Box 158Add to your cart.
Folder 5275: Draft of Six Contemporary Swedish PoetsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5276: Material concerning translation of Swedish poetsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5277: NotesAdd to your cart.
Folder 5278: Galley proofAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize
Folder 5279: Table of contentsAdd to your cart.
Box 159Add to your cart.
Folder 5280: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5281: Miscellaneous business materialAdd to your cart.
Folder 5282: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5283: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.5: IconographsAdd to your cart.
Box 159Add to your cart.
Folder 5284: TypescriptAdd to your cart.
Folder 5285-5286: ProofsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5287: Title ProofsAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize.
Folder 5288: Preface and table of contentsAdd to your cart.
Box 160Add to your cart.
Folder 5289: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5290: Miscellaneous business materialAdd to your cart.
Includes notes.
Folder 5291: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5292: TransparenciesAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize.
Folder 5293-5294: Reviews, notices and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.6: In Other WordsAdd to your cart.
Box 160Add to your cart.
Folder 5295: DraftAdd to your cart.
Folder 5296: Miscellaneous business papersAdd to your cart.
Box 161Add to your cart.
Folder 5297: Hardcover book jacketsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5298-5299: Reviews, notices and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.7: More Poems to SolveAdd to your cart.
Box 161Add to your cart.
Folder 5300: DraftAdd to your cart.
Box 162Add to your cart.
Folder 5301: ProofAdd to your cart.
Folder 5302: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5303: Miscellaneous business papersAdd to your cart.
Folder 5304: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5305: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.8: New and Selected Things Taking PlaceAdd to your cart.
Box 162.1Add to your cart.
Folder 5306.1: DraftAdd to your cart.
Box 162.1-.2Add to your cart.
Folder 5306.2-.5: Draft - Labeled copy 2Add to your cart.
Box 162.2Add to your cart.
Folder 5307.1-.2: Master galley proofAdd to your cart.
Box 163.1Add to your cart.
Folder 5307.3: NotesAdd to your cart.
Folder 5307.4-.6: Typescript - printer's copyAdd to your cart.
LOCATED IN BOX 224
Folder 5308: Table of contentsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5309: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5310: Miscellaneous business papersAdd to your cart.
Folder 5311: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5312-5313: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5314: National Books AwardsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.9: Poems to SolveAdd to your cart.
Box 163.2Add to your cart.
Folder 5315: DraftAdd to your cart.
Folder 5316: Paste-upsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5317: Galley proofAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize
Folder 5318: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5319: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Folder 5320: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Sub-Series 3.10: To Mix With Time: New and Selected PoemsAdd to your cart.
Box 164Add to your cart.
Folder 5321-5322: Typescript - printer's copyAdd to your cart.
Folder 5222.1-.2: TypescriptAdd to your cart.
LOCATED IN BOX 225
Folder 5323: Galley proofsAdd to your cart.
Located in oversize.
Folder 5324: Book contractAdd to your cart.
Folder 5325: Miscellaneous business papersAdd to your cart.
Folder 5326: PhotographAdd to your cart.
Folder 5327: Book jacketAdd to your cart.
Box 165Add to your cart.
Folder 5328-5329: Reviews, notices, and clippingsAdd to your cart.
Folder 5330: Notes, introduction, and prospectus about The Scribner Book / Cassette SeriesAdd to your cart.

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence],
[Series 2: Manuscripts],
[Series 3: Material Toward Books],
[Series 4: Manuscripts By Others],
[Series 5: Personal Papers],
[Series 6: Ephemera],
[Series 7: Audiovisual],
[Series 8: Realia],
[All]


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