Guide to the James Howard Whitty papers, 1792-1943 and undated
Journalist, businessman, Poe scholar and editor, and an avid collector of Poe memorabilia; resided in Richmond, Virginia.
The James Howard Whitty papers include letters, drafts of books and articles, research notes, newspaper clippings, and other papers, all relating to Whitty's writings on Edgar Allan Poe's life and career, his editorship of Poe's poetry, and his relationship with other literary scholars. The numerous clippings are found both loose and mounted in three scrapbooks. There is also a manuscript volume containing a Richmond, Virginia book seller's accounts. Other research materials on Poe consist of transcripts of Poe's letters and over 600 images related to Poe's life. There is voluminous correspondence from Poe scholars and other literary critics, including George Woodberry, Mary E. Phillips, and Thomas O. Mabbott. Whitty's research papers also contain copies of letters from John C. Frémont to Joel Poinsett in 1838, research material and correspondence relating to Virginia planter and early Congressman John Randolph of Roanoke, and the history of Richmond, Virginia.
- David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University
- Whitty, J. H. (James Howard), 1859-1937
- James Howard Whitty papers 1792-1943 and undated
- Language of Material
- 19 Linear Feet, Approx. 12,275 Items
- For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
Papers of James Howard Whitty, author and authority on the life and work of Edgar Allan Poe, are chiefly comprised of correspondence, research writings and notes, printed material such as clippings and engravings, and copies of 19th century correspondence, all relating to Whitty's writings on literary figures and Virginia history.
Whitty's research materials on Edgar Allen Poe include copies of a large number of letters by Edgar Allan Poe and members of his family; documents concerning the events surrounding Poe's death; a large amount of correspondence with other Poe scholars, particularly George E. Woodberry, Mary E. Phillips, and Thomas Ollive Mabbott; and research notes made by Whitty, including material for a complete Poe bibliography, and rough drafts of Whitty's writings on Poe. There are also over 600 images, chiefly engravings, including portraits of Poe and his family, images of the places where Poe lived, and the museums and shrines dedicated to him. In addition, there are letters relating to Whitty's work as organizer and first president of the Edgar Allan Poe shrine in Richmond, Virginia, and to Whitty's quarrel with the directors of the shrine in 1924.
The hundreds of clippings included in this collection consist of what seems to be almost every article or mention of Poe from 1900-1935. Many of the articles are in duplicate and many of them contain notations by Whitty. There are also three scrapbooks of clippings.
Other materials center on Whitty's interest in the history of Richmond, Virginia; business correspondence pertaining to Whitty's work on the staff of the Richmond Times; notes on and copies of correspondence of John Randolph of Roanoke, 1814-1816 (Virginia planter and Congressman) to Ann Morris, in which he accuses her of being a common prostitute and the murderess of her child and of his brother. Copies of her answers to his accusations are also included. Whitty was interested in writing on John Randolph of Roanoke, but apparently never did so. Additional research materials include notes on and copies of letters from John Charles Frémont to Joel R. Poinsett, 1838; and other printed material, including reviews, copies of sections of books, publication notices, and advertisements. There is also a manuscript volume containing the accounts of a Richmond bookseller, 1929-1936.
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. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.
Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.
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.
Contains letters from Poe and others as well as notes. Most of the correspondence in the collection relates to business matters regarding Poe's publications, as well as Poe's personal affairs.
One letter from Evan Chesterman asks for help in resolving a conflict between Poe and the Richmond Examiner editor - Chesterman feels he is responsible for Poe challenging the editor to a duel.
Most of the undated papers and notes in this collection are by or about Poe and his publications.
Campbell knew Whitty through Campbell's work on the Bland family, related to John Randolph of Roanoke.
Includes notes, articles, and copies of letters.
Publications in this collection primarily comprise magazines, literary and academic journals, leaflets, and books, by and about Poe.
Include book reviews of Poe's own publications, articles regarding The Poe Museum and monuments, and Whitty's life and career.
Printed etchings and photos of The Poe Museum and memorial, other parts of Virginia (of general interest and related to Poe's history), people close to Poe (and unidentified individuals), illustrations (most of which were mostly likely used to accompany his writings in publications), portraits of Poe, postcards, and other images.
James Howard Whitty was a journalist, businessman, and scholar residing in Richmond, Virginia. Whitty was an avid collector of Poe memorabilia. In 1916 he became an organizer and later the first president of the Poe Foundation of the Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia, leaving the foundation in 1924.
- Frémont, John Charles, 1813-1890
- Mabbott, Thomas Ollive, 1898-1968
- Phillips, Mary Elizabeth, 1857-1945
- Poe, Edgar Allan, 1809-1849
- Poinsett, Joel Roberts, 1779-1851
- Randolph, John, 1773-1833
- Whitty, J. H. (James Howard), 1859-1937
- Woodberry, George Edward, 1855-1930
- American literature -- 19th century
- Authors, American
- Authors -- Biography
- Poets, American
- Richmond (Va.) -- History
- Virginia -- History
- David Kelly Jackson papers, 1850, 1925-1991 and undated (contain materials related to Poe history, and Whitty correspondence) (Rubenstein Library, Duke University)
- Joseph Francis Ambrose Jackson papers, 1829-1944 (contain letters from Whitty on Poe) (Rubenstein Library, Duke University)
[Identification of item], James Howard Whitty Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.
The James Howard Whitty papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 1941 and 1964.
Processed by Rubenstein Library staff
Encoded by Paula Jeannet Mangiafico and Jen Snow, May 2014
Accession(s) described in this finding aid: 7-1-41 and one accession from 1964
Descriptive sources and standards used to create this inventory: DACS, EAD, NCEAD guidelines, and local Style Guide
This finding aid is NCEAD compliant
This collection has been given basic processing; contents are chiefly in original order as received