Log In | Contact Us| View Cart (0)
Browse: Collections Digital Content Subjects Creators Record Groups

Jan Garden Castro Papers


Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description



Notebooks, Journals, Diaries

Research Materials

Manuscripts By Others

Print Materials

River Styx

Civic and Cultural Activities

Educational Materials

Personal Papers

Audiovisual Materials


Born Digital Materials (Electronic Records)

Contact us about this collection

Jan Garden Castro Papers, 1957-2014 | MS Manuscripts

By Alicia Detelich

Printer-friendly Printer-friendly | Email Us Contact Us About This Collection

Collection Overview

Title: Jan Garden Castro Papers, 1957-2014Add to your cart.

Predominant Dates:1970-2010

ID: MS/MS/ms136

Primary Creator: Castro, Jan Garden

Extent: 58.8 Linear Feet. More info below.

Date Acquired: 07/27/2005. More info below under Accruals.

Languages: English, French

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The Jan Garden Castro papers consist primarily of research materials, writings, and correspondence related to Castro's extensive career as a literary and art critic and her roles as a civic arts activist and co-founder/former Executive Director of River Styx literary magazine in Saint Louis, Missouri. Included are numerous original transcripts of Castro's interviews with notable artists and literary figures, as well as typescript drafts, photocopies and clippings of published book and art reviews written by Castro. Notable interviewees include Margaret Atwood, Allen Ginsberg, Quincy Troupe, Eavan Boland, Chakaia Booker, Howard Nemerov, and John Hollander. Additionally, the collection includes Castro's published and unpublished poetry, exhibit catalog essays, and other writings; materials related to the production of River Styx Magazine, Castro's educational and teaching materials, and assorted print materials and manuscripts collected by Castro throughout her career. The collection includes notebooks and diaries kept by Castro and a collection of audiovisual materials consisting of Castro's taped interviews with artists and poetry readings from the Duff's and River Styx PM Series. The original donations also included a large number of rare art books, which have since been transferred to Rare Books or the Art and Architecture Library. Finally, this collection contains 122 born-digital items (approx. 5 GB; 3871 total files); 71 floppy disks, 7 CDs, and 3 DVDs are currently accessible. The DVDs are surrogates; the files on these disks were compiled by former processing archivist Alicia Detelich and consist of scans, downloaded web content, and born-digital publications.For preservation and access purposes, most of the disks were imaged with either Guymager or FTK to maintain the original disk structure. In this collection, a disk image was not created for disks that Castro did not create herself, disks that would not boot, and disks that were inaccessible due to lack of hardware. Each item was assigned a Special Collections library identifier, scanned for viruses, run through a bulk-exractor program to remove Personal Identifiying Information (PII), and uploaded to WUSTL's server. Please contact Special Collections for more information about the born-digital material in this collection.

Collection Historical Note

Jan Garden Castro (1945-) is an American author, editor, poet, literary and art critic, teacher, and arts activist. Born and raised in Saint Louis, Missouri, and currently residing in New York City, Castro attended Cornell University and the University of Wisconsin at Madison for her undergraduate studies, earning a Bachelor of Arts in 1967. She later earned a Master of Arts in Teaching from Washington University in Saint Louis in 1974, and a Master of Arts in Art History from Washington University in 1994.

Castro's extensive writing career began in 1968, while she was living in San Francisco, with several features published in the Daily Californian and the San Francisco Express Times. Upon returning to Saint Louis around 1970, Castro wrote for several underground newspapers, often under the pseudonym Jasmine or Sunflower, and published poems in local and national literary journals. In 1972 she married Michael Castro in Graham Chapel at Washington University, and with him and several other local poets and artists founded River Styx literary magazine in 1975. Between 1975 and 1987 Castro served as an editor of River Styx, and eventually its Executive Director. She contributed significant material to the journal during this time, including poems, editorial notes, and interviews with Ansel Adams, Margaret Atwood, Allen Ginsberg, and many other well-known artists and writers. The River Styx group also organized many poetry readings and local cultural events, most notably the River Styx PM series at the Saint Louis Art Museum and Missouri Botanical Garden, and the Duff's Poetry Series, held at Duff's restaurant in the Central West End. In 1975 Castro wrote and self-published her first poetry compilation, Mandala of the Five Senses. She also served as a teacher at several local secondary schools and colleges during this period.

In 1985 Castro's first major book was published by Crown Publishers, a biography of George O'Keeffe titled The Art and Life of Georgia O'Keeffe. In 1988 she co-edited a compilation of scholarly essays on Margaret Atwood titled Margaret Atwood, Vision and Forms. During the 1980s Castro also published several poems and book reviews in local and national publications, and taught courses as an adjunct professor at Lindenwood College (now University) in Saint Charles, Missouri. In addition to her publishing and teaching activities, Castro also organized a number of cultural events in the Saint Louis area, including the 1987 Heart of Saint Louis Arts festival, and traveled throughout the country giving lectures on art history and the work of Georgia O'Keeffe.

During the 1990s Castro wrote extensively for the Saint Louis Post-Dispatch and the Riverfront Times, providing these publications with numerous pieces of literary and art criticism. She continued to publish poetry and read her poems at local artistic and cultural events, and otherwise kept up her involvement with local arts activities. Additionally, Castro participated in several continuing education institutes, including the Camargo Institute, the American Academy in Rome, and two National Endowment for the Humanities seminars. In 1996, Castro began writing art exhibit reviews and interviews for Sculpture Magazine, and has since published more than 16 cover stories for the journal. Her involvement with Sculpture continues to the present day, and has included significant interviews with Liza Lou, Richard Serra, Rachel Feinstein, and many other artists. Castro also writes articles for Ceramics: Art and Perception, has written catalog essays for many local and national artists, and also has published fictional works through the online journal The Adirondack Review.

In 2001 Castro guest-curated a retrospective exhibit on Sonia Delaunay in Tokyo, Japan. Delaunay was the subject of Castro's master's thesis, and Castro has done extensive research and writing on the artist. As part of her work for the Delaunay retrospective, Castro organized and wrote the catalog for the exhibit.

During her career Castro has published more than 425 articles, essays, and interviews for a wide variety of publishing outlets. As of March 2014 she continues to publish frequently for several publications.

Administrative Information

Repository: MS Manuscripts


Accession No. 23074, 23082. July 2005

Accession No. 23908. 28 August 2007

Accession No. 23962. 2010

Accession No. 2014.006. 19 March 2014

Alternate Extent Statement: 5 GB (approx.); 3871 files

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.)

Technical Access Note: The library cannot provide access to all born-digital materials due to lack of required hardware/software. Requests for born-digtial material may require advanced notice. Please contact Special Collections for more details.

Acquisition Source: Gift, Purchase

Related Materials:

See Jan Garden Castro collection of Margaret Atwood materials, located at the Thomas Fischer Rare Book Library, University of Toronto, Canada. Extent 8 boxes, 1.5 meters

See also Jan Garden Castro donation to Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Santa Fe, New Mexico.

See also Jan Garden Castro Writings: Artists Mapping the Future, an electronic archive of Castro's writings on comptemporary art and artists.

For more information please see http://www.jancastro.com/.

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

Processing Information:

The original order of the collection as established by Castro has largely been maintained, with the exception of a number of miscellaneous and unlabeled folders that contained a wide variety of materials. These materials were filed into the appropriate series or subseries as determined by the processor. The order of materials within folders has mostly been maintained, with the exception of obvious filing mistakes. Folder titles were generally maintained, with the exception of miscellaneous and unlabeled folders; dates were also added to folders where appropriate, and some additional specifics were added when titles were unclear (i.e. 'Writings' may have been changed to 'Unpublished Writings 1971-1972'). Additionally, color photos, slides, and audiovisual materials were separated from their original locations within the Research and Educational Materials series, and have been rehoused together for preservation purposes. Finally, please note that not all folders have series titles or folder numbers included. For details about arrangement refer to finding aid.

See mss23962_BD_AccReport for information about born-digital content.

Finding Aid Revision History: Revised on 8/15/2018 by Elizabeth Winter under the supervision of Robert Manley

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence],
[Series 2: Writings],
[Series 3: Notebooks, Journals, Diaries],
[Series 4: Research Materials],
[Series 5: Manuscripts By Others],
[Series 6: Print Materials],
[Series 7: River Styx],
[Series 8: Civic and Cultural Activities],
[Series 9: Educational Materials],
[Series 10: Personal Papers],
[Series 11: Audiovisual Materials],
[Series 12: Realia],
[Series 13: Born Digital Materials (Electronic Records)],

Series 10: Personal PapersAdd to your cart.
Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: Biographical MaterialAdd to your cart.
Washington University job placement materials, letters of recommendation on behalf of Castro, certifications, publication lists, 1970s-1990s
Folder 2: Castro C.V.sAdd to your cart.
Curriculum vitae and publication lists, 1980s-2000s
Folder 3: Job Correspondence and Applications, 1970s-1980sAdd to your cart.
Folder 4: Articles and Reviews about Castro IAdd to your cart.
Clippings and photocopies of articles and reviews about, or quoting, Castro in various publications, 1970s-1990s
Folder 5: Articles and Reviews about Castro IIAdd to your cart.
Clippings and photocopies of articles and reviews about, or quoting, Castro in various publications, 1970s-1990s
Folder 6: Rutgers Authors GuideAdd to your cart.
Materials towards Castro's entry in Rutgers publication
Folder 7: Poetry Acceptances and SubmissionsAdd to your cart.
Correspondence, contracts and related materials towards the publication of Castro's poetry in various local and national publications
Folder 8: Contract FulfillmentAdd to your cart.
Correspondence and contracts related to Castro's position as a guest curator of the Sonia Delaunay: La Moderne exhibition, 1999-2001
Folder 9: Book Sales IAdd to your cart.
Correspondence, contracts, and financial documents related to sales of books written or edited by Castro
Folder 10: Book Sales IIAdd to your cart.
Correspondence, contracts, and financial documents related to sales of books written or edited by Castro
Folder 11: Atwood Book SalesAdd to your cart.
Correspondence, contracts, and financial documents related to the sale of Margaret Atwood: Vision and Forms, published 1988 and co-edited by Castro and Kathryn van Spanckeren
Folder 12: PhotographsAdd to your cart.
Photographs taken by Jan Garden Castro at the International Writers Center offices. Subjects include William H. Gass (3), William Gaddis, Eavan Boland, J.M. Coetzee, Margaret Sayers Peden, David Hadas, and one unidentified. 9 items

Browse by Series:

[Series 1: Correspondence],
[Series 2: Writings],
[Series 3: Notebooks, Journals, Diaries],
[Series 4: Research Materials],
[Series 5: Manuscripts By Others],
[Series 6: Print Materials],
[Series 7: River Styx],
[Series 8: Civic and Cultural Activities],
[Series 9: Educational Materials],
[Series 10: Personal Papers],
[Series 11: Audiovisual Materials],
[Series 12: Realia],
[Series 13: Born Digital Materials (Electronic Records)],

Page Generated in: 0.675 seconds (using 237 queries).
Using 10.74MB of memory. (Peak of 11.03MB.)

Powered by Archon Version 3.21 rev-3
Copyright ©2017 The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign