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Collection Overview

Bishop, John Peale, 1892-1944
John Peale Bishop Papers
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
26 boxes and 11.6 linear feet
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1-26


John Peale Bishop (Princeton Class of 1917) was a noted author, poet, and editor. This collection consists of manuscripts, correspondence, documents, drawings, printed materials, and memorabilia of Bishop.

Collection Description & Creator Information


The collection consists of manuscripts, correspondence, documents, drawings, printed materials, and memorabilia of Bishop (Princeton Class of 1917). The collection includes manuscripts of 4 novels, including Act of Darkness and Many Thousands Gone; 26 short stories; about 950 poems; 6 plays; and various anthologies, articles, and book reviews. In addition, there are checklists--spanning many years--of birds Bishop noted seeing, as well as 15 folders of his colored pencil drawings of birds, mostly ducks. There are also architectural drawings for Bishop's house in South Chatham, Mass. Correspondents in the collection include E.E. Cummings, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway, Archibald MacLeish, Ezra Pound, and Edmund Wilson. Also included is a manuscript of The Hours, and a carbon copy typescript of Selected Poems (120 pp.).

Collection Creator Biography:

Bishop, John Peale, 1892-1944

John Peale Bishop was a noted author, poet, and editor. Born in 1892 in Charles Town, West Virginia, Bishop entered Princeton University in 1913, where he edited the Nassau Literary Magazine. Upon graduation in 1917, he published his first volume of poetry, but his literary career was put on hold when he was commissioned in the United States Infantry during World War I. He returned to the United States in 1920 and joined the staff of Vanity Fair, where he later became managing editor. He began publishing his own poetry but met very little success, so he moved to a small town in France with his new wife. However, the European literary scene was similarly unreceptive to Bishop's work, and he returned to the United States a few years later. Among his most known works are Many Thousands Gone, Now with His Love, Minute Particulars, Act of Darkness, and The Hours, an elegy for his dear friend, F. Scott Fitzgerald.

Collection History


Class of 1917 Collection: Gift of: Landon T. Raymond, Princeton Class of 1917, in 1973 .

Postcard to Cecil D. Eby, Sr.: Gift of: Cecil D. Eby, Jr., on March 12, 1998 .

Posthumous correspondence related to Bishop's Collected Poems on August 16, 2010 .


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Barbara McElroy '81 in 1980. Finding aid written by Barbara McElroy '81 in 1980.

Biography written by Jessica Marati, '08.

In 2022, restrictions on an Ernest Hemingway letter where researchers were required to use surrogates were lifted as part of a restrictions review project.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. No further duplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to Special Collections Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Credit this material:

John Peale Bishop Papers; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1-26