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Guide to the John Seelye Papers, 1862-2015 and undated

Summary

The papers of John Seelye span the years 1862-2015, with the bulk of the papers dated between 1955 and 2007, covering Seelye's professional career as both an scholar and as an editor of the Penguin Classics series for literature. Although there are files related to his teaching and career as an academic, the emphasis of the collection is on Seelye's work as author and editor. The collection consists of correspondence (sent and received) and contracts; subject files Seelye maintained at each of his institutions and for his research; writings by Seelye, including book reviews, poetry, articles and prose, as well as books, including a copy of the Life of Asa G. Sheldon: Wilmington Farmer (1862); and personal items, which include incoming correspondence intended for Suzanne Everett Throop, who received a large number of love letters from "Marguerite" between 1897 and 1898 and some additional letters from "Harriet" and "Chandler" in the 1920s. Subjects in the papers include Mark Twain, the literary criticism and interpretation of Herman Melville's works and American literature generally, the West in fiction, rivers in the United States, cowboys in popular culture, the history of Plymouth Rock, and the publishing of poetry in the United States.

Collection Details

Collection Number
RL.11381
Title
John Seelye Papers
Date
1862-2015 and undated
Creator
Seelye, John, 1931-2015
Extent
42 Linear Feet
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Language
Materials in English

Collection Overview

The papers of John Seelye span the years 1862-2015, with the bulk of the papers dated between 1955 and 2007, covering Seelye's professional career as both an scholar and as an editor of the Penguin Classics series for literature. Although there are files related to his teaching and career as an academic, the emphasis of the collection is on Seelye's work as author and editor. The Correspondence and Contracts Series includes primarily professional correspondence sent (1956-2011) and received (1958-2012 and undated) by Seelye, as well as contracts and supporting documents focusing on Seelye’s contact with his publishers. The Academia Series contains subject files Seelye maintained during his professional career while at the University of California at Berkeley (1959-1965), the University of Connecticut (1966-1974), the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1974-1984), the University of Florida (1984-2008), and Dartmouth (1982-1992). The Research/Subject Files Series includes materials related to research Seelye carried out to support his writings as well as subject files on people and topics of interest to him or related to other work he carried out. The Writings Series contains drafts, notes, edits, and published versions of Seelye’s book reviews, film reviews, poetry, and prose, including his numerous scholarly and fiction essays and articles, books, and edited works. The Personal series contains assorted materials relevant to Seelye's life, including several versions of his curriculum vitae as well as early report cards, photographs and headshots, and school newspapers from his various schools. Also includes a Bible owned by Dwight L. Moody and incoming correspondence intended for Suzanne Everett Throop, including a large number of love letters from "Marguerite" between 1897 and 1898 and some additional letters from "Harriet" and "Chandler" in the 1920s. Subjects in the papers include Mark Twain, the literary criticism and interpretation of Herman Melville's works and American literature generally, the West in fiction, rivers in the United States, cowboys in popular culture, the history of Plymouth Rock, and the publishing of poetry in the United States.

More Biographical / Historical Info

Arrangement

Organized into the following series: Correspondence, Academia, Research/Subject files, Writings, and Personal.

Using These Materials

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Collection is open for research.

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Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library to use this collection.

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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.

More copyright and citation information

How to Cite

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

Contents of the Collection

1. Correspondence and Contracts, 1955-2012 and undated

The Correspondence and Contracts Series includes primarily professional correspondence sent (1956-2011) and received (1958-2012 and undated) by Seelye. There are letters from fellow academics and publishers as well as notices from institutions. Occasionally features items of a personal nature, especially following Seelye’s retirement around 2008. The sent and received correspondence is arranged chronologically, and includes a few subject files Seelye maintained for individuals. The series also features contracts and supporting documents focusing on Seelye’s contact with his publishers. Includes contracts; general publishing correspondence sent and received, some concentrating on publishing rights and permissions; a few illustrations; along with reviews and reader’s reports, when available, for his works. The contracts and supporting documents are arranged alphabetically.

Sent, 1956-2011

The Sent Correspondence Subseries includes professional correspondence sent (1956-2011) by Seelye. The material is arranged chronologically.

Literary and scholarly received and sent, 1956-1962
Box 1
Scholarly literature, 1962-1963
Box 1
Sent correspondence, 1963-1964
(4 folders)
Box 1
Berkeley, 1964-1965
Box 1
Sent correspondence, 1965-1981
(23 folders)
Box 1
Sent correspondence, 1982-2011
(14 folders)
Box 2

Received, 1958-2012 and undated

The Received Correspondence Subseries includes primarily professional correspondence received (1958-2012 and undated) by Seelye. There are letters from fellow academics and publishers as well as notices from institutions. Occasionally features items of a personal nature, especially following Seelye’s retirement around 2008. The correspondence is arranged chronologically, and includes a few subject files Seelye maintained for individuals.

Received correspondence, 1958-1965
(4 folders)
Box 2
Belknap, John Harvard, 1964
Box 2
Received correspondence, 1962-1965
Box 2
Received correspondence, 1966-1971
(9 folders)
Box 2
Hughes, Robert, 1971
Box 2
Received correspondence, 1972-1974
(7 folders)
Box 2
Received correspondence, 1975-1977
(9 folders)
Box 3
CPTV (Connecticut Public Television) Correspondence, 1977
Box 3
Received correspondence, 1978
(3 folders)
Box 3
Misc. projects and proposals, 1978
Box 3
Received correspondence, 1979-1987
(14 folders)
Box 3
Received correspondence, 1988-2012 and undated
(9 folders)
Box 4

Contracts and supporting documents, 1955-2009 and undated

The Contracts and Supporting Documents Subseries focuses on Seelye’s contact with his publishers. Includes contracts; general publishing correspondence sent and received, some concentrating on publishing rights and permissions; a few illustrations; along with reviews and reader’s reports, when available, for his works. The contracts and supporting documents are arranged alphabetically.

American Art, 2005
Box 4
ANS (American Antiquarian Society) corres. (Artworks, etc.), 1990-1991
Box 4
Associated Univ. Presses, 2005-2007
Box 4
Bancroft corres., 1976-1977
Box 4
Bear illustrations, 1964
Box 4
Beautiful Machine, 1986-1990
Box 4
Beautiful Machine contract, 1990
Box 4
Beautiful Machine corres., 1990-1992 and undated
(2 folders)
Box 4
Beautiful Machine reviews, 1993
Box 4
Beautiful Machine lecture, National Humanities Center "Soundings", 1985
(2 cassettes)

2 cassette tapes from a National Humanities Center program featuring Seelye discussing Beautiful Machine.

Original audiovisual materials are closed to use. Contact Research Services in advance to request the production of listening copies.

Box 26
Audio-cassette RL-11381-CS-001, RL-11381-CS-002
Burn, Barbara, 1972-1973
Box 4
Cambridge U Press Contract, corres., 1988-1990 and undated
Box 4
Columbia contracts, 1997-1998
Box 4
Columbia Companion to the 20th c. American Short Story, 1998
Box 4
Columbia Literary History of the United States, 1989 and undated
Box 4
Contracts (Books), 1962-1968
Box 4
Crockett at 200, 1987-1988
Box 4
Crockett pictures, undated
Box 4
Davis and Theodore Roosevelt photographs (Culver), undated
Box 4
Dirty Tricks rights revision, 1988
Box 4
Elmo, 1994-2000
Box 4
Etchings reviews etc., 1968-1969
Box 4
Finding Colonial Americas, 2000-2001
Box 4
First Encounter Anthology Prospectus, undated
Box 4
First Encounter Reader's reports/ corres., 1974 and undated
Box 4
Frederick Remington photographs, 1987
Box 4
Frederick Remington photographs for Rodriguez, undated
Box 4
Garland Publishing, 1991
Box 4
Harper's, 1972, 1997
Box 4
Huck corres., 1985-1987, 2006
Box 4
Huckleberry Finn reviews, 1970-1971
(2 folders)
Box 4
Jane Eyre's American Daughters, 2005
Box 4
John Steinbeck essay, 2003
Box 4
The Kid: Nebraska contract, 1981-1982
Box 4
The Kid copyright, 1972
Box 4
The Kid corres., 1981-1982
Box 4
The Kid reviews advance, 1971-1972
Box 4
The Kid reviews, 1972 and undated
Box 4
The Kid reviews (duplicates), 1972 and undated
Box 4
The Kid movie rights, 1972
Box 4
The Kid film rights, 1972-1977
Box 4
The Kid royalties, 1983
Box 4
The Kid: Ann Elmo, 1986
Box 4
The Kid: Elmo, 1980-1993
(2 folders)
Box 4
The Kid: Gene Jackson, 1984-1986
Box 4
The Kid: Margolin cont., 1980
Box 4
The Kid: Monte Diamond, 1987
Box 4
The Kid: Ramey Ward, 1989-1991
Box 4
The Kid movie: Zilber, 1978-1980
Box 4
Lew Carlson, 1992-1993 and undated
Box 4
Literary contracts, 1986-1987
Box 4
Liveright Publicity file, 1973 and undated
Box 4
Lois Poems, 1983 and undated
Box 4
Lyons Journals corres., 1984-1986
(2 folders)
Box 4
Lyons Journals--Bancroft, 1982-1985
Box 4
Lyons Journals--Gribben et al., 1982-1987
Box 4
Lyons Journals--McClury, 1982
Box 4
Lyons Journals--Moore, 1982-1985
Box 4
Lyons Journals--Strong, 1982-1985 and undated
Box 4
Lyons Journals--Vassar, 1981-1985
Box 4
Mark Twain in the Movies contract, 1976
Box 4
MTiTM (Mark Twain in the Movies) copyright, 1977
Box 4
MTiTM (Mark Twain in the Movies) correspondence, 1976-1977 and undated
Box 4
MTiTM (Mark Twain in the Movies) reviews, 1977-1978
Box 4
Mark Twain (Oxford), 1989-1992
Box 4
Mark Twain pictures, etc., correspondence Nat'l Portrait gallery, MT Memorial, 1989-1992
Box 4
Memory's Nation reader's reports, 1996-1997 and undated
Box 5
Memory's Nation reviews, 1998-2000
(2 folders)
Box 5
Millsman paper illustrations, undated
Box 5
MLA corres., 1992
Box 5
New Republic/Peretz, 1971-1984
Box 5
New York Magazine, 1971
Box 5
Nick Noxin contract, 1973
Box 5
Nick Noxin: pre-pub correspondence, reader's reports, 1973-1974 and undated
Box 5
Noah Dietrich contract (void), 1976
Box 5
U of Oklahoma Press (Old West, etc.), 1999-2000 and undated
Box 5
Oxford: Sisler, 1986-1988
Box 5
Padre Press--L. MacDonald, 1983
Box 5
Penguin, 2006
Box 5
Penguin Classics editorship, 2000
Box 5
Penguin: Tarzan contract, 1989
Box 5
Penguin: Thoreau contract, 1993
Box 5
Permissions, General, 1992-1993
Box 5
Pierre, Kavanaugh contract, 1996
Box 5
Plains of Kansas contract, 1972
Box 5
Poe--Everyman, 1991-1992 and undated
Box 5
Ponicsan/ Elmo, 2003-2009
Box 5
Prophetic Waters: Publicity, 1975-1977 and undated
Box 5
Prophetic Waters: Reversion of rights, 1994
Box 5
Prophectic Waters: Reviews, 1977-1980
(2 folders)
Box 5
Reprint Permissions, 1999
Box 5
Richard Harding Davis and the Origins of the Spanish-American War photograph, 2001
Box 5
RHD (Richard Harding Davis) book--corres., 1999-2004
Box 5
RHD (Richard Harding Davis) book-- reader's reports, 1999 and undated
Box 5
RHD (Richard Harding Davis) book-- reviews, 2004-2006
Box 5
River Book-- Corres. Gen'l, 1976 and undated
Box 5
River Book--Oxford Corres., 1975-1977
Box 5
River Book: Oxford and miscell. corres., 1973-1975
Box 5
River Books: Prophetic Waters and Beautiful Machine, 1974
Box 5
River Series Twin Cities TV, undated
Box 5
Robert Bolling woos Anne Miller, 1992
Box 5
Russell and Volkening --Agents (Seldes and Muccovy), 1982-1984
Box 5
Sewanee Review, 1982
Box 5
Shapiro Remington, 1986
Box 5
Signet contracts, 1999
Box 5
Signet--C[Hrum?], 1999-2000
Box 5
Slotta (Mark Twain) corres., 1989-1993
Box 5
Smithsonian, 2005
Box 5
Stories of the Old West, 2001 and undated
Box 5
Stories of the Old West: corres. and contents, 1993
Box 5
Tom Sawyer 1st, 1955-1981 and undated
Box 5
Univ. of Fla.--contract, 1984-1985
Box 5
U Mass corres., 2000-2001 and undated
Box 5
UNC Press, 1995-1998
Box 5
U Press of NE: Contract, 1987-1988
Box 5
U Press of NE: Yankee Drover, 1988, 1990
Box 5
Valley News, 1992
Box 5
Virginian: Penguin, 1984-1985
Box 5
Vicking/Penguin Water Anthology contract, 1990
Box 5
Wing correspondence, 1961-1968
Box 5

2. Academia, 1958-2009 and undated

The Academia Series contains subject files Seelye maintained during his professional career while at the University of California at Berkeley (1959-1965), the University of Connecticut (1966-1974), the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (1974-1984), the University of Florida (1984-2008), and Dartmouth (1982-1992). A few files date from the period following Seelye’s retirement in 2008. Beyond files for each institution, the series includes Seelye’s first published paper (1958); teaching files, especially multiple files for a seminar on the 1930s he taught at the University of Connecticut in 1969; files for organizations with which Seelye was involved, such as Mystic Seaport, Popular Culture Association, and Phi Beta Kappa; and files for Hubble Award decisions. There are also files related to his teaching periods at Dartmouth College, his personal job searches, the American Literature Section of the Modern Language Association; and his work associated with grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

General files, 1958-1969
(24 folders)
Box 5
General files, 1969-2003
(105 folders)
Box 6
General files, 2004-2009 and undated
(14 folders)
Box 7
Conferences, etc., 1966-2004
(25 folders)
Box 7
Dartmouth, 1982-1992 and undated
(13 folders)
Box 7
Job searches, 1964-1989
(20 folders)
Box 7
MLA American Lit. Section, 1979-1988
(8 folders)
Box 7
NEH, 1979-1995
(14 folders)
Box 8

3. Research/Subject files, 1945-2014 and undated

Series includes files related to research Seelye carried out to support his writings as well as subject files on people and topics of interest to him or related to other work he carried out. Topics vary widely and many files are undated. There are essays, bibliographies, articles, notes, a few illustrations, and some correspondence.

A Murder, A Mystery and a Marriage (Mark Twain), 1945
Box 8
American Endings: Frags, 1986 and undated
Box 8
Arkansas, 1945
Box 8
Avery, G., 1998-2002
Box 8
"Awsome is asome does" Am. Maritime Lit.--British Connection Oregon State, May-76
Box 8
Black, Robert F., 1965-1974
Box 8
Book of Mormon as Literature, undated
Box 8
Brodine, Don VA, 1970-1972
Box 8
Brother Jonathan: Punch Catoon, 1957
Box 8
Burgess, Thornton W., 1941
Box 8
Cannon Fodder MLA, 1990
Box 8
Captains and captivity narratives, undated
Box 8
Cassius Clay, undated
Box 8
Castaway, 1964, 1975
Box 8
Cavett file, 1972
Box 8
Charters, Anne, 1973
Box 8
Chicago (magazine), 1980-1992
Box 8
Chicago gothic, undated
Box 8
Collector's prints, 1974
Box 8
Conroy, Jack, 1969-1972
Box 8
CPTV (Conn. Public Television) Humor, 1976-1977 and undated
Box 8
Crockett studies, 1986
Box 8
Cross-stitch (Thinking wild), 1996
Box 8
Crucifictions, undated
Box 8
Davidson--Friend, 1986-1990 and undated
Box 8
Dead man's hand, 2013
Box 8
Elsie the cow, 2011
Box 8
Emile and the Detective: Salinger, undated
Box 8
Ermme, John--Film proposal, 1986
Box 8
Fenians invade Canada, 2009
Box 8
Fool in Hamlet, undated
Box 8
French, Warren, 1969
Box 8
Friday parody, 1984 and undated
Box 8
Gaines, Ernest J., undated
Box 8
Gilgamesh, undated
Box 8
Goldwater, W., 1971
Box 8
Gray, Herold, 1965 and undated
Box 8
Griswold, 1984
Box 8
The Gulf War, 2005
Box 8
Hart--Calif. Book Club, 1966-1970
Box 8
Here we all work on the Mississippi (Coullian), 1956?
Box 8
Here we all work on the Mississippi--M[ark] Twain Reader, undated
Box 8
Homer, Winslow, 1995
Box 8
Hopkins: Spring Rythm, undated
Box 8
Huck Finn (essay), undated
Box 8
Huck Finn : Intro, undated
Box 8
Huck MLA Shenandoah, 1977
Box 8
Huck Finn Mss, 1991 and undated
Box 8
Huck Finn and the Craft of Laughter, undated
Box 8
Huck and Peck's Bad Boy, undated
Box 8
Huckleberry Finn articles, 1970-1985 and undated
Box 8
Huckleberry Finn bibliographies, undated
Box 8
Huckleberry Finn, undated
Box 8
Imlay novel: notes, undated
Box 8
Irving, undated
Box 8
Irving and the Passing scenes Vassar, undated
Box 8
Jefferson: father of bastards?, undated
Box 8
John Brown Song, undated
Box 8
Jordan, Peter, 1977
Box 8
Liebling on Stallman's Letters of Crane, 1961
Box 8
Lippard, George, 1955-1966
Box 8
Lubberland revisited, undated
Box 8
M's Moses: Correspondence, etc., 1961 and undated
Box 8
M Moses, undated
Box 8
McWilliams, Carey, 1969
Box 8
Mattias, undated
Box 9
Melville Society, 1968-1969
Box 9
Melville Society, 1969-1970
Box 9
Melville Society--General, 1969
Box 9
Melville Society--Organizational, 1969
Box 9
Melville Society--Vincent, 1967-1969
Box 9
Meriwether Lewis, undated
Box 9
Miscellaneous notes, undated
Box 9
Miser before Xmas, 2000
Box 9
MLA--Children's Lit.--West is East corres., 1987
Box 9
MLA--Human, 1992
Box 9
M-O American Madness, 1986
Box 9
Moran, Edward Percy, 2014
Box 9
The Mouse Book, undated
Box 9
Mr. Dooley Dunne, undated
Box 9
Natchez 92 Lecture, 1992
Box 9
Neal: Niagara, 2014 and undated
Box 9
Notes on Jame's Short Stories, undated
Box 9
On Gaddis, 1962
Box 9
The Opening (Loch's Play), 1959
Box 9
Oriand, Michael, 1983
Box 9
Pagan Perplex, undated
Box 9
Peck, George Wilbur, 1968
Box 9
Penrod's Barn Defoe Scott, undated
Box 9
Penrod's Barn Kipling, undated
Box 9
Perverse conversions, undated
Box 9
Phelan, AJ, 1969-1972
Box 9
Phil. Assoc. of Carolinas: Melville and Religion, 1992
Box 9
Photography (Materials), 1973-1974 and undated
Box 9
Pierre and the City, 1991-1992
Box 9
Pound's Cantos, undated
Box 9
Prologue/ Detocque./ Drafts, undated
Box 9
Puzzle Connection, 1984-2014
Box 9
Recent work, 2006-2007
Box 9
Report...on Libraries of the Durham City-Co. Charter Commission by Catherine Maybury, 1960 May
Box 9
Publick Occurences, 1975
Box 9
Richard Harding Davis (RHD) Materials, undated
Box 9
RHD Notes, undated
Box 9
RHD Search, 1997
Box 9
Relman corres, 1962-1963
Box 9
Remington- Wister corres, 1972
Box 9
Seelye ancestor, undated
Box 9
Swiss Family Robinson (SFR): Explanatory notes (Final), 1990
Box 9
Shrews, undated
Box 9
Stallman's Poetry Seminar, 1960
Box 9
Steinbeck: Language, 1970
Box 9
Terre Haute, 1994
Box 9
Throwaway prospectus and intro, undated
Box 9
Tighe, Mike, 1974
Box 9
Tramp: Chicago Daily News, 1964
Box 9
TV file clippings, 1977
Box 9
Twain biblio: T Sawyer, undated
Box 9
Vermont Academy, undated
Box 9
for Webster book, undated
Box 9
Wild Man corres, 1989-1990
Box 9
Wild Man in Walden MLA, 1993
Box 9
Wild Man notes, undated
Box 9
Wild Man notes, undated
Box 9
Wild Man outline, undated
Box 9
Wister, 1972
Box 9
Wonderful O, 1988 and undated
Box 9
Wyman, Seth, 1962 and undated
Box 9

4. Writings, 1862, 1950s-2000s and undated

Seelye's writings have been sorted into subseries based on format: Reviews, Poetry, Articles and Prose, Books, and Edited Works. The Writings series contains drafts, proofs, edits, published works, and related correspondence and research collected by Seelye.

Reviews, 1950s-2000s

The Reviews subseries includes Seelye's regular columns reviewing popular literature, as well as assorted scholarly reviews in journals. This subseries includes specific articles arranged alphabetically by the author of the work being reviewed, as well as batches of publications containing regular contributions by Seelye. Authors reviewed by Seelye include Ray Bradbury, Stephen King, James Baldwin, Studs Terkel, Sacvan Bercovitch, and Dow Mossman; frequent subjects of works include American literature, American environment, the American West, and specific authors such as Walt Whitman, Herman Melville, and Mark Twain. Includes Seelye's 1972 review of Dow Mossman's The Stones of Summer and subsequent press and copies of the documentary, The Stone Reader, produced in 2002-2003.

A-T, 1950s-2000s
(130 folders)
Box 10
V-Z, 1970s-1980s
(14 folders)

Individually foldered reviews by Seelye, arranged by author of the work.

Box 11
The Stones of Summer, 1972, 2003
(2 volumes)

Original and republished books by Dow Mossman.

Box 26
Stone Reader, 2003
(3 dvds)

Limited Edition film by Mark Moskowitz

Box 26
Dvd RL-11381-DVD-001, 002, 003
Stone Reader, 2001
(2 VHS)

Rough cuts of Stone Reader, parts 1-5

Box 26
Video-cassette RL-11381-VHS-001, 002
Book World (Washington Post), 1970s
Box 12
Chicago Magazine, 1982-1991
Box 12
Film Quarterly, 1964-1966
Box 12
The New Republic, 1970s
(5 folders)
Box 12
New York Times Book Reviews, 1972-1973
Oversize-folder 1
Nineteenth-Century Literature, 1980s-1990s
Box 12
Philadelphia Inquirer, 1983-1984
Box 12
The Virginia Quarterly, 1960s-1980s
(3 folders)
Box 12

Poetry, 1970s-2005 and undated

Manuscript drafts and published poems by Seelye, largely unsorted and untitled.

Assorted poetry drafts, 1970s-1990s and undated
(11 folders)

Excerpts, drafts, and sketches of poems, many untitled

Box 11
Something Happened, undated
Box 11
John Junior, undated
Box 11
Barnes poem, 2005
Box 11
Humor, undated
Box 11
Six Poems, 2006
Box 11
Inquest, 1972
Box 11
Garbage, 1972
Box 11

Articles and Prose, 1950s-2000s

Drafts, edits, and published versions of Seelye's short stories, fiction essays, academic articles, and scholarly works; includes both complete (unpublished and published) works as well as many unfinished pieces. This series has been arranged by title of the work.

A-E, 1950s-2000s
(80 folders)

Drafts, notes, typed copies, and published versions of Seelye's prose and scholarly articles. Arranged alphabetically by title. Includes prospectus for Alpheus; his Berkeley Gazette Daily columns; Black on White; preparatory materials for Border; columns for the Wesleyan Cardinal; and numerous unpublished articles and story drafts.

Box 13
E-L, 1950s-2000s
(60 folders)

Drafts, notes, typed copies, and published versions of Seelye's prose and scholarly articles. Arranged alphabetically by title. Includes drafts of Huckleberry Finn, Herman Melville, and Horatio Alger scholarship; several versions of "Holden in the Museum" essay; an article about Fahrenheit 451; and a "Juvenalia" file with collected drafts and poems from Seelye's youth and college years.

Box 14
L-S, 1950s-2000s
(80 folders)

Drafts, notes, typed copies, and published versions of Seelye's prose and scholarly articles. Arranged alphabetically by title. Includes several versions of "Moby King," "Retro Fiction," and "The Return;" also notes about Robert MacNish.

Box 15
S-Z, 1950s-2000s
(49 folders)

Drafts, notes, typed copies, and published versions of Seelye's prose and scholarly articles. Arranged alphabetically by title. Includes several folders of Seelye's short prose, short essays, and unsorted drafts, some fiction and some academic; several versions of The Tramp; and the prospectus and publisher notes for Throwaway.

Box 16
"The Writer," in Frederic Remington: The Masterworks, 1988

Published catalog from Saint Louis Art Museum

Box 26
"Some green thoughts on a green theme," in Literature in Revolution, 1972

Northwestern University Press, 1972.

Box 26
Times Literary Supplement, no. 11, 1972
Box 26

Books written by Seelye, 1950s-2004 and undated

The books subseries contains material documenting monographs written by Seelye, both fiction and scholarly works. Files contain drafts, edits, proofs, images and illustrations, and publisher correspondence; some titles have numerous draft versions while others contain only the published volume. Published volumes are held in Box 25 and 26.

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn: A Revised and Corrected Edition, undated
(2 folders)

Edited typescript draft

Box 17
A Bad Start, undated
(2 folders)

Typescript draft

Box 17
Beautiful Machine: Rivers and the Republican Plan 1755-1825, 1991

New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.

Box 25
Booger Potts, undated

Typescript draft

Box 17
Bret Harte / Joaquin Miller Border Drama book (untitled), 1970s and undated
(7 folders)

Typescript draft, source materials, research materials, and reference/notes by Seelye

Box 17
Careless Love: My Days and Nights with Sylvia Plath (A Memoir Mostly), undated

Typescript draft

Box 17
Come to the Wildwood, undated
(7 folders)

Typescript drafts, edited typescript drafts, research articles and notes. Includes drafts of alternate titles: Balaam and Come, Come to the Wildwood.

Box 17
Dark Wonders, undated
(8 folders)

Typescript drafts, edited typescript drafts

Box 18
Dirty Tricks, or Nick Noxin's Natural Nobility, 1973

Uncorrected advance proofs

Box 18
Dirty Tricks, or Nick Noxin's Natural Nobility, 1973

New York: Liveright, 1973.

Box 25
For Fear of Little Men, undated

Typescript fragments, incomplete

Box 18
Granite Dan, 1997 and undated
(3 folders)

Typescript drafts, with edits; graphics; other research and notes

Box 18
Jane Eyre's American Daughters, 2002-2004

Publisher's correspondence, revisions

Box 18
Jane Eyre's American Daughters: From The Wide, Wide World to Anne of Green Gables, A Study of Marginalized Maidens and What They Mean, 2005

Newark: University of Delaware Press, 2005.

Box 25
The Kid, 1972 and undated
(9 folders)

Typescript drafts, unrevised proof, chapter drafts, notes and questions

Box 18
The Kid, 1971-1974
(6 volumes)

New York: Viking Press, 1972. London: Chatto and Windus, 1972. London: Coronet Books, 1974. Unrevised proof (Viking Press), 1971. New York: Dell Printing, 1973. London: Odhams, 1974.

Box 25
Lines of Thought: Triangulations in American Art, undated
(23 folders)

Typescript drafts, revised drafts, graphics, images, notes from presentations, etc. Includes alternate titles: Delta Destinies, Early Comers.

Box 19
Luck, undated
(4 folders)

Typescript drafts, including correspondence and edits

Box 19
Mark Twain in the Movies, undated
(4 folders)

Typescript drafts and edits

Box 19
Mark Twain in the Movies, 1977

New York: The Viking Press, 1977.

Box 25
Melville: The Ironic Diagram, 1970

Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1970. 2 versions.

Box 25
Melville's Ironic Mode: Dissertation, undated
(5 folders)

Typescript draft, notes, and edits

Box 20
Melville's Ironical Way: Master's thesis, undated
(3 folders)

Typescript

Box 20
Memory's Nation: The Place of Plymouth Rock, undated
(26 folders)

Typescript drafts, including early and "final" versions; edited page proofs; illustrations, graphics

Box 20-21
Memory's Nation: The Place of Plymouth Rock, 1998

Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press, 1998.

Box 25
The Pilgrim, 1953

Published by The Art Laboratory, Wesleyan University

Box 22
The Plains of Kansas, 1972-1973 and undated
(17 folders)

Typescript drafts, some unsorted pages, and publisher correspondence

Box 22
Prophetic Waters: The River in Early American Life and Literature, 1977

New York: Oxford University Press, 1991.

Box 25
A Puzzle Piece, undated
(2 folders)

Typescript drafts

Box 22
Seidi's Excellent Wildwood Adventure, undated
(8 folders)

Typescript drafts, some incomplete and some with edits

Box 22
Seidi II: What Happened Next..., undated
(2 folders)

Typescript draft, incomplete with edits

Box 23
Sparrow: A Romance, undated
(4 folders)

Typescript drafts, including edits

Box 23
Stolen Sweets, undated
(12 folders)

Typescript drafts, including comments by Doris Betts; edits; chronology and charater notes; incomplete chapter drafts

Box 23
The Structure and Meaning of Herman Melville's Later Fiction Related to his Ontological Viewpoint, 1956

Master's thesis

Box 23
The True Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, 1970
(2 volumes)

Evanston: Northwestern University Press, 1970. 2 versions.

Box 25
Un Saque d'Histoires Petites Marveleuse..., 2000

Typescript draft

Box 23
War Games, 2001-2007
(5 folders)

Publisher correspondence, essay "War and the Novel", and artwork

Box 24
War Games, 2003
(2 volumes)

University of Massachusetts Press, 2003. 2 versions.

Box 25
What was that sound? A terrifying mystery story!, 2002 and undated
(5 folders)

Typescript drafts and edits

Box 24

Books edited by Seelye, 1862-2007

This subseries documents Seelye's work as an editor and scholar, and includes works that he edited for Penguin and other publishers, as well as works where he contributed introductions, forewords, afterwords, or footnotes. Published volumes are held in Box 25 and 26.

Of note is the original 1862 edition of Life of Asa Sheldon, Wilmington Farmer, which Seelye edited and republished as Yankee Drover in 1988.

Alger, Horatio: Digging for Gold, undated

Introduction, proof. Edited by Seelye.

Box 11
Alger, Horatio: The Young Miner; Or, Tom Nelson in California, 1965

Book Club of California. Introduction and Bibliographical Note by Seelye.

Box 25
Arthur Gordon Pym, Benito Cereno, and Related Writings: Works by Edgar Allan Poe and Herman Melville, 1967

J. B. Lippencourt. Edited by Seelye.

Box 26
Browne, J. Ross: Etchings of a Whaling Cruise, 1968

Cambridge: Belknap Press. Edited by Seelye.

Box 26
Burroughs, Edgar Rice: A Princess of Mars, undated

Edited draft of introduction.

Box 11
Burroughs, Edgar Rice: A Princess of Mars, 1990

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Burroughs, Edgar Rice: A Princess of Mars, 2007

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Dana, Richard Henry: Two Years Before the Mast, 2000

Signet Classic. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 26
Kaler, James Otis: Toby Tyler, 1976

Draft of introduction by Seelye.

Box 11
Kipling, Rudyard: Captains Courageous, 2005

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
London, Jack: White Fang and The Call of the Wild, 1991

Signet Classic. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth: Evangeline, undated

Drafts by Seelye for introduction or essay.

Box 11
Marryat, Frederick: Masterman Ready, 1975

Publisher correspondence, draft, and proofs of preface by Seelye.

Box 11
Smith, Richard Penn: On to the Alamo: Colonel Crockett's Exploits and Adventures in Texas, 2003

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Steinbeck, John: The Red Pony, 1994

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 26
Stevenson, Robert Louis: Kidnapped, 2000

Signet Classic. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Stevenson, Robert Louis: Treasure Island, 1999
(2 volumes)

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye. 2 versions.

Box 26
Stories of the Old West: Tales of the Mining Camp, Calvary Troop, and Cattle Ranch, 1994
(2 volumes)

Norman: University of Oklahoma Press; Penguin Classics (2 versions). Edited by Seelye.

Box 26
Tocqueville, Alexis de, undated
(2 folders)

Introductory essays about Tocqueville, presumably for Democracy in America.

Box 11
Twain, Mark: The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, 1985

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 26
Twain, Mark: The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, 1986, 2006
(3 volumes)

Penguin Classics. 1986 and 2006 editions. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Twain, Mark: Life on the Mississippi, 1990, 2009
(3 volumes)

World's Classics (2 versions): introduction by Seelye. Signet Classic: afterword by Seelye.

Box 26
Twain, Mark: Personal Recollections of Joan of Arc, 1980

Stowe-Day Foundation. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 26
Wister, Owen: The Virginian, 1988

Penguin Classics. Introduction by Seelye.

Box 25
Wyss, Johann: The Swiss Family Robinson, 1989-1990
(3 folders)

Drafts, publisher's correspondence. Introduction and edited by Seelye.

Box 11
Wyss, Johann: The Swiss Family Robinson, 1991, 2007
(2 volumes)

World's Classics: Introduction by Seelye. Penguin Classics: Introduction and notes by Seelye.

Box 26
Life of Asa G. Sheldon: Wilmington Farmer, 1862

Original publication that served as the basis for Yankee Drover. Moody, printer: Woburn, Mass.

Box 28
Yankee Drover, 1988

Introductory essay and publisher correspondence

Box 24
Yankee Drover: Being the Unpretending Life of Asa Sheldon, Farmer, Trader, and Working Man 1788-1870, 1988

Hanover: University Press of New England, 1988. Foreword by Seelye.

Box 25

5. Personal, 1897-2015 and undated

The Personal series contains assorted materials relevant to Seelye's life, including several versions of his curriculum vitae as well as early report cards, photographs and headshots, and school newspapers from his various schools.

Some materials acquired with the Seelye Papers have an unknown origin. This includes the Moody Bible, which has extensive annotations but no clear connection to Seelye's work or family. There are also several folders of letters addressed to Suzanne Everett Throop, a New York book dealer in the early 1910s. Throop's correspondence arrived with the Seelye Papers labeled as "love letters," and do appear to consist largely of romantic letters from Marguarite (she also used a number of nicknames and pet names) addressed to Suzanne from 1897 and 1898. The connection to Seelye is unclear.

Report cards (elementary and secondary schools, Glastonbury, Connecticut), 1937-1944
Box 24
Assorted photographs, 1960s-1980s

Headshots, clippings, snapshots

Box 24
Vermont Academy/Brodine photographs, 1940s, undated

Headshots and other photographs taken during Seelye's tenure at Vermont Academy

Box 24
Vermont Academy Life issues, 1948-1949
Box 24
U.S. Navy officer service records, 1950s-1966
(2 folders)

Includes discharge file

Box 24
Wesleyan Argus miscellaneous issues, 1951-1952
Box 24
Claremont College Student Life miscellaneous issues, 1956-1958
Box 24
Miscellaneous clippings about Seelye, 1969-2003

Includes some awards

Box 24
Curriculum vitae files, 1958-1970 and undated
(4 folders)

Various versions of Seelye's resumes

Box 24
Penguin tributes following Seelye's death, 2015
Box 24
Facebook tributes following Seelye's death, 2015
Box 24
Seelye's billfold and wallet's contents, undated
Box 24
Bible belonging to Dwight L. Moody, undated

Includes pencil annotations

Box 24
Suzanne Everett Throop letters, 1897-1935 and undated
(10 folders)

Mostly incoming correspondence intended for Suzanne Everett Throop, including a large number of love letters from "Marguerite" between 1897 and 1898 and some additional letters from "Harriet" and "Chandler" in the 1920s. It is unclear what connection these letters have to Seelye, although a notation on one of the envelopes suggests that he first opened the letters in 1977. It is possible he was using them for a writing project. These letters include family news as well as expressions of romantic love and devotion.

Box 24
 

Historical Note

John Seelye was a professor of English and American Literature at the University of California at Berkeley, University of Connecticut, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Dartmouth College, and the University of Florida.


Click to find related materials at Duke University Libraries.

Provenance

The John Seelye Papers were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library as a gift in 2017.

Processing Information

Processed by Meghan Lyon and Alice Poffinberger, August 2017

Accessions described in this collection guide: 2017-0013 and 2017-0078