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Guide to the David Kelly Jackson Papers, 1850, 1925-1991 and undated

Abstract

Duke University alumnus and independent scholar on Edgar Allan Poe and 19th century American literature. Correspondence, research, and writings on Edgar Allan Poe and other 19th century American writers, including Hardin E. Taliaferro and Augustin L. Taveau. Prominent correspondents include Clarence Gohdes, Jay B. Hubbell, Thomas Ollive Mabbott, Joel Myerson, Dwight Thomas, and J.H. Whitty. Research notes and writings include material on Jackson's books Poe and the Southern Literary Messenger, and The Poe Log: A Documentary Life of Edgar Allan Poe, 1809-1847, as well as articles by Poe scholars Richard Kopley and Benjamin Franklin Fisher. The collection is part of the Jay B. Hubbell Center for American Literary Historiography.

Descriptive Summary

Collection Number
RL.00623
Title
David Kelly Jackson papers
Date
1850 1925-1991 and undated
Creator
Jackson, David Kelly
Extent
4.7 Linear Feet, 1860 Items
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Language
Material in English

Collection Overview

The David Kelly Jackson Papers span the years 1925 to 1991, with one item dating to 1850. The collection contains correspondence, research notes, and writings accumulated during Jackson's lifelong study of Edgar Allan Poe and other 19th century American writers. As documented by the Correspondence Series, Jackson's work in these areas led him to correspond with such literary scholars as Clarence Gohdes, Jay B. Hubbell, Thomas Ollive Mabbott, Joel Myerson, Dwight Thomas, and J.H. Whitty. A number of letters relate specifically to Jackson's research on two books: his first, Poe and the Southern Literary Messenger; and the 1987 book he co-authored with Thomas, The Poe Log. Drafts of the latter book, including a complete draft of Jackson's early, unpublished, solo version of it, comprise the bulk of the Writings Series. There is also a significant amount of his research on the Southern Literary Messenger, a Richmond, Virginia literary periodical that Poe once edited. The SLM files include a June 1850 letter to one of its contributors, Augustin L. Taveau. Finally, the series contains research materials pertaining to Hardin E. Taliaferro, a 19th-century North Carolina humorist whose writings Jackson collected into a book entitled Carolina Humor. The third series, Professional and Personal Activities, consists mainly of research in the form of various printed materials from such scholarly associations as the Poe Museum, the Edgar Allan Poe Society, the Poe Studies Association and the Society for the Study of Southern Literature. Also found here are articles written by Poe scholars Richard Kopley and Benjamin Franklin Fisher.

The David Kelly Jackson Papers are part of the Jay B. Hubbell Center for American Literary Historiography.

Restrictions on Access & Use

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. There may be a 48-hour delay in obtaining these materials.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the Rubenstein Library to use this collection.

warning Use Restrictions

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Contents of the Collection

1. Correspondence Series, 1929-1991

Organized into Alphabetical and Chronological subseries.

Alphabetical Subseries, 1929-1991

Contains correspondence between Jackson and his Duke mentors Clarence Gohdes and Jay B. Hubbell; exchanges with Poe scholars Thomas Ollive Mabbott and J. H. Whitty; and correspondence regarding the Poe Log between Jackson's collaborator Dwight Thomas and Joel Myerson, who suggested the partnership.

Gohdes, Clarence, 1932-1984
Box 1
Hubbell, Jay B., 1932-1950
Box 1
Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, 1930-1943
Box 1
Myerson, Joel, 1978-1987
Box 1
Thomas, Dwight, 1978-1984
(Folders 1-7 of 10)
Box 1
box 2
Box 2
Thomas, Dwight, 1985-1991
(Folders 8-10 of 10)
Box 2
Whitty, J.H., 1929-1937
Box 2

Chronological Subseries, 1929-1991

Correspondence with various people not represented in the Alphabetical Subseries. Of particular interest are two May, 1939 letters from publisher Alfred A. Knopf, in which he considers (but then declines) Jackson's project on the nineteenth-century writer Philip Pendleton Cooke.

1929-1949
(6 folders)
Box 2
box 3
Box 3
1950-1991
(4 folders)
Box 3

2. Writings Series, 1850, 1925-1987 and undated

Primarily manuscripts of Jackson's and Thomas's Poe Log, including a complete draft of Jackson's early, unpublished, solo version, entitled In Search of Eldorado, which has a foreword by Jay B. Hubbell. Other significant materials include Jackson's research for Poe and the Southern Literary Messenger (SLM), and for his book on 19th-century humorist Hardin E. Taliaferro. The remainder of the series includes such items as his work as an undergraduate and graduate student at Duke University, a number of books reviews, a draft of an article on Politian, and a listing of Jackson's Poe library. Arrangement is roughly chronological with some overlap, following the sequence of projects on which Jackson worked during the course of his life.

Student Notes and Papers from Duke University, 1925-1934, 1942
(4 folders)
Box 3
Research Notes on The Southern Literary Messenger, 1850, circa 1930-1934
(Folder 1 of 5)
Box 3
Research Notes re: The Southern Literary Messenger, circa 1930-1934
(Folders 2-5 of 5)
Box 4
Hardin E. Taliaferro Research, circa 1934-1951
Box 4
Book Reviews by Jackson, 1939, 1946
Box 4
Drafts of Jackson's Politian article, undated
Box 4
Draft of In Search of Eldorado, circa 1970-1978
(Folders 1-2 of 4)
Box 4
Draft of In Search of Eldorado, circa 1970-1978
(Folders 3-4 of 4)
Box 5
Drafts/manuscripts of The Poe Log, circa 1978-1987
(Folders 1-5 of 18)
Box 5
Drafts/manuscripts of The Poe Log, circa 1978-1987
(Folders 6-11 of 18)
Box 6
Drafts/manuscripts of The Poe Log, circa 1978-1987
(Folders 12-18 of 18)
Box 7
Index to The Poe Log, circa 1980-1987
Box 8
David K. Jackson's Poe Library catalogue, undated
Box 8

3. Professional and Personal Activities Series, 1934-1991

Contains materials derived from Jackson's affiliations with various scholarly associations and institutions, including the Poe Museum, the Poe Society, the Poe Studies Association and the Society for the Study of Southern Literature. The remainder of the series consists of a variety of printed materials: clippings about Poe, the Southern Literary Messenger or Jackson himself; articles by Richard Kopley and Benjamin Franklin Fisher; “Observations on Poets and Poetry” by Thomas O. Mabbott; “Pioneers in English at Trinity and Duke” by Clarence Gohdes; publicity materials and reviews concerning The Poe Log; an author's contract for American Studies in Honor of William Kenneth Boyd (Duke University Press, 1940); a royalty report for Carolina Humor; eight issues of “The Pleasures of Publishing” , printed by Columbia University Press (1941-1946); and a facsimile copy of Lincoln's Gettysburg Address. Arranged alphabetically by category.

Organizations, circa 1974-1991
(2 folders)
Box 8
Printed Materials
Financial and Legal Documents, 1940, 1943
Box 8
Fisher, Benjamin Franklin, articles, 1988-1989
Box 8
Kopley, Richard, articles, 1991
Box 8
Newspaper and magazine clippings, 1934-1987
Box 8
Other publications, 1941-1989
Box 8
Publicity Materials and Reviews re: The Poe Log, 1986-1988
Box 8

Historical Note

Chronology List

Date Event(s)
1908 Born in Gastonia, N.C.
1929 B.A., English, Duke University
1931 M.A., English, Duke University
1934 Published Poe and the Southern Literary Messenger
1936 Published The Contributors and Contributions to the Southern Literary Messenger
circa 1936-1944 Employed by Duke University Press, working mainly on the serial American Literature
1945 Employed by Home Security Life Insurance Company, Durham, N.C.
1973 Retired from Home Security Life as Assistant Vice President and renewed Poe research
1987 Published The Poe Log: A Documentary Life of Edgar Allan Poe, 1809-1847, co-authored with Dwight Thomas
2000 Died in July

Subject Headings

Related Material

The following collections in the Duke University David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library may contain related material:

  • George William Bagby Letters, 1861-1863 Benjamin Franklin Fisher Papers, 1963-2001 (bulk 1967-2001) Clarence Louis Frank Gohdes Papers, 1845-1992 (bulk 1930-[circa 1985]) Jay Broadus Hubbell Papers, 1905-1986 Thomas Willis White Papers, 1835-1842 James Howard Whitty Papers, 1792-1943.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], David Kelly Jackson Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The David Kelly Jackson Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1966-1991.

Processing Information

Processed by David G. Mayer, Aug. 2002

Encoded by Michael Shumate, David G. Mayer, Cat Saleeby

Completed Feb. 2006

Accessions 66-194, 9/11/86, 12/29/86, 87-95, and 91-164 were merged into one collection, described in this finding aid.