- Collection Overview
- Collection Description & Creator Information
- Access & Use
- Collection History
- Find Related Materials
- Parrish, Morris Longstreth, 1867-1944
- Princeton University. Library. Special Collections
- M. L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists
- Manuscripts Division
- Permanent URL:
- 1806-1958, bulk 1830/1939
- 108 boxes, 161 items, 12 Volumes, and 72.9 linear feet
- Storage Note:
This collection is stored at Firestone Library and Firestone Library.
This collection is stored onsite at Firestone Library. Series 1-3 are stored in special vault facilities; see the section on Access below for details.
The Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists, consisting of the library of books, manuscripts, photographs, artwork, and ephemera as collected by Morris Longstreth Parrish, Class of 1888, came to Princeton University in 1944 as a bequest. This finding aid focuses on Parrish's original collection of manuscripts, both bound and unbound, and includes his correspondence (related to his collecting activities) and letters both to and from many of the Victorian authors, as well as the manuscript and related (non-book) items given to and/or acquired for the collection by the Princeton University Library in subsequent years.
Collection Description & Creator Information
Consists of letters, documents, manuscripts, and, occasionally, artwork of 27 Victorian novelists and some of their family members, particularly when these were also writers, such as the Trollopes, or devoted literary executors, Fanny Kingsley, Lady Ritchie, and Florence Emily Hardy, for example. Letters to and about the major authors are included, as well as a variety of related material such as illustrations by "Phiz," George Cattermole, and Henry Holiday, and adaptations, scrapbooks, and photographs.
Authors most extensively represented include Charles Reade, with approximately 449 letters, many documents (often drafted by Reade himself) concerning publication and production agreements (and disagreements), real estate, law suits, etc., nine notebooks and 130 poster-size notecards, and signed stories, plays, and novels, including Griffith Gaunt , and a set of extensively corrected page proofs for The Cloister and the Hearth ; Wilkie Collins, with approximately 670 letters, and signed holograph manuscripts of two stories and four novels in weekly parts; Charles Kingsley, with approximately 702 letters, including over 100 to his wife, and signed holograph manuscripts of 40 sermons; Anthony Trollope, with 689 letters, signed holograph manuscripts (carbons) of his travel letters from Australia, and manuscripts, partly holograph, of two books.
Other large holdings include over 590 letters of Edward Bulwer Lytton, holograph manuscripts (fair copies) of six novels by William Black, holograph manuscripts of five manuscripts by Charlotte Yonge, and a collection of C. L. Dodgson's mathematical manuscripts, approximately 1770 items. In addition, the collection has four albums of Dodgson's photographs, compiled by himself with autograph indexes, and the Household Words Office Book, listing title and author of all contributions to Dickens' periodical during its ten-year run.
Other writers and artists significantly represented in the collection are William Harrison Ainsworth, J. M. Barrie, M. E. Braddon, Dinah Maria Mulock Craik, George Eliot, Elizabeth Cleghorn Stevenson Gaskell, Thomas Hardy, Thomas Hughes, Charles Lever, George Meredith, Ouida, Robert Louis Stevenson, and William Makepeace Thackeray.
In addition, the collection contains M. L. Parrish's correspondence (39 boxes) relating to his activities in creating the collection, including correspondence with booksellers, bibliophiles, and friends. Among those well-represented in this series are Michael Sadleir, Carroll A. Wilson, I. R. Brussel, Walter M. Hill, Elkin Matthews, Maggs Bros., Quaritch, and E. P. Dutton & Co.
Finally, it should be noted that approximately fifty manuscript items (letters, notes, drawings, etc.) contained within specific books in the Parrish Room have been indexed as manuscripts.
Detailed Author Holdings:
There are approximately 27 authors represented in the Parrish Collection. A brief biographical note for each author follows, with references taken from The Oxford Companion to English Literature and/or The Concise Dictionary of National Biography series. The individual entries in this series also incorporate excerpts from the descriptive catalogue of the Parrish Collection, a twenty-year-plus project of Alexander D. Wainwright, which is currently scheduled to be published in two large volumes in the year 2001. The catalogue entries by author can be viewed online at the following URL (in PDF file format): <a href="http://libweb2.princeton.edu/rbsc2/parrish/">http://libweb2.princeton.edu/rbsc2/parrish/</a>
All direct quotations from Wainwright's catalogue that reference the manuscripts in the Parrish Collection are indicated between the ≪ ≫ marks.
William Harrison Ainsworth (1805-1882) - Ainsworth wrote 39 novels, mostly utilizing historical settings, and edited periodicals including Bentley's Miscellany and Ainsworth's Magazine . The original Parrish collection contained only one Ainsworth letter. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The collection now contains nearly 300 Ainsworth letters, including correspondence with Richard Bentley and Charles Kent, as well as  letters addressed to Ainsworth by John Forster and others. Also acquired were major parts of the autograph manuscripts of Chetwynd Calverley (1876) and Beatrice Tyldesley (1878), and leaves of several other manuscripts. ≫
The Princeton University Library has also acquired an oil portrait of Ainsworth that now hangs over the mantlepiece in the Parrish Room of the Library's Rare Books Department (replacing the "Alice" fresco that once hung in that spot in Parrish's library at Dormy House).
Sir James Matthew Barrie, Bart. (1860-1937) - Barrie was a Scottish playwright and novelist who moved to London in 1885 and had many stage successes there, including The Admirable Crichton in 1902. He may be best known, however, for authoring the internationally popular children's play, Peter Pan , which was eventually published in book form in 1911. He was conferred the title of baronet in 1913. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish had acquired 130 Barrie letters, most of which are addressed to the second Mrs. Thomas Hardy... An addition to the author's portrait file is a caricature of Barrie by Harry Furniss, in pen-and-ink, for the artists' series of "Celebrities in Their Old Age." ≫
William Black (1841-1898) - Black was a Scottish-born novelist who studied art in Glasgow before moving to London in 1864 where he worked as a journalist and editor. His novels include The Strange Adventures of a Phaeton (1872) and A Princess of Thule (1874). The original Parrish collection contained no manuscript material of Black. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue concerning the Library's manuscript additions:
≪ ... They include the autograph manuscripts of six novels: The Handsome Humes (1893), Madcap Violet (1876), Stand Fast, Craig Royston! (1890), Three Feathers (1875), White Heather (1885), and White Wings (1880); the autograph manuscripts of four short pieces: "The Ballad of Pilgrim James," "The Heaven of Sad Lovers," "Ladies' Clubs," and "Romeo and Juliet: A Tale of Two Young Fools"; and 238 letters written by Black, as well as a number of letters addressed to him by various correspondents. ≫
Brontë Family - The Brontë family is represented in the Parrish collection by: Charlotte (1816-1855), who published Jane Eyre in 1847 under the pseudonym of "Currer Bell"; Emily Jane (1818-1848), who published Wuthering Heights in 1847 (her literary pseudonym was "Ellis Bell"); Anne (1820-1849), who published The Tenant of Wildfell Hall in 1848 (she was "Acton Bell"); Patrick (1777-1861), the sisters' father who was an author as well as curate of Haworth, Yorkshire, in England, and who outlived all his children; and Patrick Branwell (1817-1848) , the brother who invented the imaginary kingdom of Angria with his sister Charlotte. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The collection is not strong in manuscript material, with the Library deferring to Mr. [Robert H.] Taylor who actively collected the Brontës. It only includes nine Charlotte Brontë letters and the manuscripts of two of her French exercises. ≫
Wilkie Collins (1824-1889) - Collins lived in London throughout his life and wrote novels, such as The Moonstone (1868), as well as plays and serial stories. He also collaborated with Charles Dickens on No Thoroughfare in 1867. He is credited for writing the first, full-length detective stories in English. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The manuscripts [additions] make a far more impressive showing. When it came to Princeton the collection included fifty-one Collins letters, an unusually large number, revealing Mr. Parrish's interest in the author. It now contains nearly seven hundred of his letters, including correspondence with Francis Carr Beard, Chatto and Windus, Hunter, Rose & Co., Alberic Iserbyt, Charles Kent, and Frederick Lehmann, as well as a number of letters addressed to Collins. Other additions include the autograph manuscripts of four novels, Blind Love (1890), The Fallen Leaves (1879), Man and Wife (1870), and Poor Miss Finch (1872), and of two short stories, "The Captain's Last Love" (1876) and "The Ghost's Touch" (1885); part of a corrected page proof of the New Edition of The Woman in White (1861); corrected page proof of Little Novel (1887); a little packet of notes for The Moonstone (1868); two sepia wash and pencil drawings by Henry C. Brandling, illustrations for Rambles Beyond Railways (1851); sixty-four pen and pencil drawings by George H. Thomas, with eighteen proofs, for Armadale (1866); and a small pencil and crayon portrait of Wilkie Collins as a boy, attributed to his father. ≫
Mrs. Dinah Maria Mulock Craik (1826-1887) - Miss Mulock, later Mrs. Craik, was best known for her 1856 novel, John Halifax, Gentleman (1856). She also wrote poems, children's books, short stories, and essays. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish only had twenty-one Craik letters. There are now more than two hundred, including thirty-one letters and cards addressed to the publisher William Isbister. The twenty autograph manuscript additions to the collection include Chapters VIII-X of A Hero , which Mr. Parrish had given to Mrs. B. George Ulizio in 1928; "Meadowside House," an article on the Edinburgh Hospital for Sick Children written in 1864; "Work for Idle Hands," an essay on providing work for the unemployed in Ireland, published posthumously in Concerning Men and Other Papers (1888); Mrs. Craik's translation of Henriette de Witt's Une famille a la Campagne (1867); and her translation of Francois Guizot's M. de Barante (1867), with page proofs of the translation corrected by herself and Guizot and two letters from Guizot to her. An unusual acquisition is the manuscript catalogue of the library of George L. Craik, who was a partner in the publishing firm of Macmillan and Co., and his wife, the novelist, compiled in the early 1880s. Mrs. Craik's own publications occupy ten leaves of the catalogue and include fourteen bound manuscripts. ≫
Charles Dickens (1812-1870) - Dickens was an extremely prolific and popular novelist in his day who wrote such classics as Oliver Twist (1837-39), A Christmas Carol (1843), David Copperfield (1849-50), A Tale of Two Cities (1859), and Great Expectations (1860-61). He also had a deep and abiding interest in amateur theatricals, collaborating with Wilkie Collins to write No Thoroughfare in 1867. In 1850 he founded the weekly periodical Household Words and, in 1859, All The Year Round , which he edited until his death. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The Dickens collection formed by Mr. Parrish contained only ten Dickens letters and one of his checks.... The additions made by the Library to the collection include thirty-three Dickens letters (fourteen of which are addressed to Peter Cunningham), as well as nineteen letters of Charles Dickens, Jr., and a small number of letters from Catherine Dickens, W. H. Wills, and others, concerning Dickens and his publications. The most important additions are the Office Book of Household Words (1850-59), and three ledgers of the Guild of Literature and Art: Chairmans agenda for 1854-96, containing notations in Dickens' hand; Minute book for 1854-98, with twenty-six of the minutes signed by Dickens; and Minutes of general and council meetings for 1854-67. A fair number of drawings and illustrations have been acquired: six by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz"), five by George Cattermole, twenty-five by Joseph Clayton Clarke ("Kyd"), and one each by Harry Furniss, J. Mahoney, Thomas Percy, and John L. Roget. Three portraits of Dickens have also been added to the collection: a charcoal by Samuel Lawrence, circa1860; a pastel by E. Goodwyn Lewis, 1869; and a caricature by "Kyd." ≫
Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of Beaconsfield (1804-1881) - Disraeli was a politician and prime minister who also wrote novels, spanning from Vivian Grey (1826) to Endymion (1880). He was created Earl of Beaconsfield in 1876. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ No concerted effort [by the Library] has been made to acquire manuscript items. The collection contains sixteen Disraeli letters and a few letters by Lady Beaconsfield, Isaac Disraeli, and others associated with Disraeli. Also acquired were texts of two speeches delivered by Disraeli in Edinburgh in 1867, clipped from a newspaper and heavily revised for publication in book form; page proof of Endymion (1880); and eight pages of the manuscript of Alroy (1833) in the hand of Disraeli's sister. ≫
Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (Lewis Carroll) (1832-1898) - Dodgson, a mathematician and resident of Oxford's Christ Church College, wrote the beloved children's classic Alice in Wonderland (1865) under the pen name of Lewis Carroll. It was, in fact, the Alice and Through the Looking-Glass (1871) books that inspired M. L. Parrish to begin collecting Carroll's works and eventually be dubbed the "dean of Carroll Collectors." Excerpts from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The collection included a remarkably large number of Carroll's elusive pamphlets and leaflets, as well as many binding variants and association copies of the principal books. Other notable, and unusual, items in the collection were four albums of photographs by Carroll; a copy of the celebrated biscuit tin, given to Mr. Parrish by one of Carroll's sisters; and a leather wallet carefully indexed on the flap in Carroll's hand. Since Mr. Parrish cared "almost nothing for manuscripts," [quote by John Carter on his 1939 article about Parrish's book collection, "The Library at Dormy House"] it is not surprising that, despite his great interest in Carroll, there were only forty-odd letters in the collection, which included, on the other hand, the large accumulation [nearly eighteen hundred in number] of mathematical manuscripts that Carroll left when he died and Carroll's diary of his trip to Russia, privately printed by Mr. Parrish in 1928 under the title Tour in 1867 . ... The Library has added to the collection some sixty letters written by Carroll, as well as fourteen letters to him from William Holman Hunt, John Ruskin, and others; the manuscript of an acrostic addressed to Alice Compton; and "Story of the three sisters," eight pen-and-ink sketches on one side of a sheet, drawn by Carroll for May Mileham while on a train trip. Included among other additions are six pencil sketches by Henry Holiday and five proofs for illustration for The Hunting of the Snark (1876); six pen-and-ink drawings by Harry Furniss for Sylvie and Bruno Concluded (1893); a pen-and-ink drawing by F. Carruthers Gould for Hector H. Munro's The Westminster Alice (1902); a pen-and-ink caricature of Dodgson by Burr Shafer for The Saturday Review of Literature (1948); and a preparatory sketch in pencil by Carlo Pellegrini ("Ape") for a caricature of Dean Liddell published in Vanity Fair (1875). Also acquired were the manuscript libretto of "Alice in Wonderland," performed by the Shepard Memorial Church, Cambridge, Massachusetts, on December 15, 1898, signed by cast and management, mainly students or graduates of Harvard, M.I.T., Radcliffe, and Wellesley; the autograph manuscript of Derek Hudson's biography of Lewis Carroll (1954); and the first draft of Hudson's British Council pamphlet on Carroll (1958). ≫
George Louis Palmella Busson Du Maurier (1834-1896) - Du Maurier was an artist and novelist who was born in Paris and joined the staff at Punch in London. His novel Trilby (1894) was later dramatized and produced on the London stage in 1895. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The Library has added to the collection seventeen Du Maurier letters and four drawings by him, including a pencil drawing of Taffy" in "The Cut Direct" for Trilby (1895). ≫
George Eliot (Mary Ann or Marian Evans, later Cross) (1819-1880) - George Eliot was the pen name used by Mary Ann (or Marian) Evans for her novels, which included Adam Bede (1859) and Middlemarch (1871-2). George Henry Lewes was her lifelong (though not legal) companion from 1854 until his death in in 1878. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish had thirty-nine letters written by George Eliot; two notebooks ("quarries"), one for Romola , the other for an unfinished novel; an account book for the years 1855-1879; the autograph manuscript (bound) of George H. Lewes's Problems of Life and Mind , Problem II, with additions and corrections in George Eliot's hand; as well as nine letters from Lewes to George Smith and other correspondents. The Library has acquired for the collection sixty-four Eliot letters, forty-four of which are addressed to Elizabeth R. P. Belloc; a notebook containing three short philosophical essays; an unbound manuscript of Problems III and IV of Lewes's Problems of Life and Mind , with "notes in George Eliot's handwriting as arranged for her for publication"; a black-and-white chalk drawing by Lord Leighton, "The Peasant's Fair," for the 1880 edition of Romola ; a charcoal study of the author by Sir Frederic W. Burton for the portrait in the National Portrait Gallery; eight letters written by George H. Lewes to various correspondents; and 16 pages of autograph manuscript notes on the persecution of the Jews in Spain. ≫
Mrs. Elizabeth Cleghorne Stevenson Gaskell (1810-1865) - Married to William Gaskell in 1832, she wrote her first novel, Mary Barton , in 1848, following the death of her son. She contributed to Dickens' Household Words and All The Year Round periodicals. She befriended and later wrote the first biography of Charlotte Brontë, the first edition of which had to be withdrawn on account of certain libelous statements. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ To the eleven Gaskell letters collected by Mr. Parrish the Library has added seventy-four, as well as thirteen letters addressed to her by Jane Carlyle, Harriet Martineau, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Ruskin, and others. Other additions include the memorandum of agreement between Mrs. Gaskell and the publisher Edward Chapman, dated 23 August 1852, concerning the purchase of the latter of the copyright of Ruth , signed by both the author and publisher. ≫
Thomas Hardy (1840-1928) - Hardy, the poet and novelist from Dorset, was the author of such novels as The Return of the Native (1878), Tess of the D'Urbervilles (1891), and Jude the Obscure (1895). He initially made a living from architectural work before devoting himself full-time to writing, and he married Emma Gifford in 1874. They eventually settled into the house he had designed himself, called Max Gate, near Dorchester, in 1887. Two years after her death, he married Florence Dugdale, in 1914. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr Parrish made no attempt... to acquire manuscript material for the collection, and as a result it included only eleven Thomas Hardy letters. There has been no sustained effort to acquire manuscript and other non-printed material for the collection... As it is, they include forty-nine letters written by Hardy and three pencil sketches drawn by him; an autograph receipt signed for payment for the final installment of The Return of the Native in the December 1878 issue of Belgravia ; two photographs of Hardy's study in Max Gate, one with an inscription by Hardy, the other inscribed by the first Mrs. Hardy; and eighty-six letters from Florence Emily Hardy [the second Mrs. Hardy] to Howard Bliss. Three drawings by Leo Bates to illustrate "The Turnip-Hoer" in Cassell's Magazine , August 1925, came from the Bliss collection. Finally, the Library acquired three portraits of Hardy: two by Reginald G. Eves, one in oil, the other in charcoal; and the third by Samuel J. Woolf, in charcoal. ≫
Thomas Hughes (1822-1896) - Best known for his novel Tom Brown's School Days , Hughes was educated at Oxford and later became a Liberal MP and county-court judge. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ When the collection came to Princeton it included eighteen Hughes letters. It now contains more than 325 letters from Hughes to various correspondents and a number of letters addressed to him, from Benjamin Jowett, James Russell Lowell, George McDonald, and others. Among other additions to the collection are correspondence and watercolor portraits of Hughes' father, John Hughes, and other members of the Hughes family, as well as a large photograph album containing four-two portraits of Hughes and members of his family. ≫
Charles Kingsley (1819-1875) - Kingsley, author and clergyman, was educated at King's College, London, and Cambridge University. In 1844 he became rector of Eversley, in Hampshire, and married Frances Grenfell. He was honored with a professorship of modern history at Cambridge (1860-69) and the canonries of Chester (1869) and Westminster (1873), yet remained a controversial figure in his day. He wrote reforming ( Alton Locke ) and historical ( Westward Ho! ) novels, lectures, sermons, and stories for young readers such as The Water-Babies (1863). Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ There were only fifteen letters in the collection formed by Mr. Parrish. The collection now contains more than seven hundred letters written by Kingsley to various correspondents, including 105 to Mrs. Kingsley, fourteen to Lady Bunbury, 159 to Mr. William H. Cope, eleven to members of the Erskine family, ten to John Pike Hullah, twenty-one to Alexander Macmillan, twenty-three to John W. Parker, and eighty-five to members of the Stapleton family, as well more than ninety letters addressed to him by Anna Jameson, Harriet Martineau, Friedrich Max Müller, Arthur Penrhyn Stanley, and others. Also acquired by the Library were the autograph manuscripts of fifty-four of Kingsley's sermons; the autograph manuscript of the essay on "Heroism"; the autograph manuscript of a lecture on the study of natural history, delivered in 1870; the autograph manuscripts of a number of poems and other short pieces; five pen-and-ink drawings of hunting in Ireland, "drawn by Charles Kingsley when a boy"; two pencil drawings by Edward Linley Sambourne for The Water-Babies (1885). Mrs. Kingsley and her family are also represented in the additions: Mrs. Kingsley by fifty-six letters to various correspondents, her letterbook containing transcripts in her hand of seventy-four letters to her from family and friends, and correspondence, agreements, etc. concerning Charles Kingsley: His Letters and Memories of His Life , and by 115 letters addressed to her (excluding those from her husband); "Lucas Malet," Grenville Arthur, Henry, Mary Henrietta, Maurice, and Rose Georgina Kingsley by miscellaneous correspondents. ≫
Charles James Lever (1806-1872) - Lever was educated at Trinity College, Dublin, where he studied medicine and later practiced in both Brussels and Ireland. In 1842 he gave up medicine to become editor of the Dublin University Magazine and published his own work in it. He lived out the last part of his life in Italy, where he wrote Roland Cashel (1850) and Lord Kilgobbin (1872), among other novels. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish acquired only three Lever letters, and so the manuscript additions may be considered fairly substantial: some 90 letters from Lever to various correspondents; 39 letters from him to the publishers Chapman and Hall; more than 45 letters addressed to Lever by various correspondents; the autograph manuscript of his last novel, Lord Kilgobbin (1872); and a small "betting book" containing notes by Lever. Also acquired were seven drawings by Hablot K. Browne ("Phiz") to illustrate Barrington (4), Davenport Dunn , Luttrell of Arran , and The Martins of Cro' Martin . ≫
Edward George Earle Lytton Bulwer-Lytton, 1st Baron Lytton (1803-1873) - Bulwer-Lytton was educated at Cambridge and wrote novels such as Pelham (1828) and The Last Days of Pompeii (1834), as well as poetry and plays (the comedy Money was produced at the Haymarket in 1840). He also served as an MP both early (1831) and late (1852-66) in his life. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Despite his great interest in Lytton's publications, Mr. Parrish, as was pretty much his general policy, made no attempt to collect the author in autograph form. His collection included only twenty-five Lytton letters; a draft of the "Preface" for The Caxtons , dated August 1849, with two variant manuscripts of the text for the title page of the book; and the manuscript of a poem, "The Hollow Oak," dated August 22, 1862. The collection now contains more than 550 letters written by Lytton to various correspondents, forty letters to General and Mrs. Gascoyne, twenty-seven letters to Charles Kent, and sixteen letters to Edward Matthew Ward, as well as a few letters addressed to Lytton. The major autograph item acquired for the collection is the manuscript of Eugene Aram (1832). Other noteworthy acquisitions are: "Poetical attempts by E: G: Bulwer," an eighty-page notebook containing poems written by Lytton before the age of seventeen; "Epistolary Preface to the American Edition of 'Eugene Aram'," dated December 22, 1831; another draft of a "Preface" for The Caxtons , dated October 1849, with a manuscript of the test of the title page (from the collection of Harry B. Smith); the autograph manuscripts of the "Preface" and the prefatory poem in the 1850 edition of The Pilgrims of the Rhine , with the autograph manuscript of the "Preface" of the 1850 edition of Godolphin , the leaves mounted and elaborately bound with a portrait of the author and tear sheets of the texts as printed (from the library of George W. Childs); three pencil drawings by James Sant of Macready as Richelieu; and a caricature (pencil heightened with white) of Lytton by Carlo Pellegrini ("Ape") for Vanity Fair (October 29, 1870). ≫
Mary Elizabeth Braddon Maxwell (1837-1915) - Miss Braddon, who married publisher John Maxwell in 1874, authored approximately eighty books but is best known for the novel Lady Audley's Secret (1862). She also wrote plays and edited magazines, including the illustrated monthly Belgravia, to which Collins, Hardy, and Ouida contributed. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish had only two Braddon autograph items: the ending of an 1891 letter and the "Form of Requiring Entry of Proprietorship" for the copyright of Lady Audley's Secret , signed by Mary Elizabeth Braddon and dated 21 November 1862. The collection now contains sixty-four letters written by the author to her actress friend, Lady Monckton, sixty-eight letters addressed to various correspondents, and a few minor manuscript pieces. ≫
George Meredith (1828-1909) - Meredith's respected literary career as a novelist and poet spanned fifty years. Educated in England and Germany, he wrote volumes of verse, such as Poems and Lyrics of the Joy of Earth (1883), and novels, such as The Ordeal of Richard Feverel (1859) and The Egoist (1879). Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ His collection included also twenty-two Meredith letters; a statement of accounts with Macmillan and Company, 1893-1894; and a receipt for payment for an article on contemporary literature in the April 1857 issue of the Westminster Review . The manuscript additions made by the Library to the collection are few in number. consisting of only fifteen letters written by and four about Meredith; the draft of an agreement between Meredith and William Waldorf Astor for the publication of Lord Ormont and His Aminta in The Pall Mall Magazine , signed by Meredith, 29 May 1893; a pen-and-ink drawing by Charles S. Keene for Evan Harrington ( Once a Week , September 15, 1860). ≫
Ouida (Louise de la Ramée) (1839-1908) - "Ouida" was the pen-name for the novelist whose writing career got started when William H. Ainsworth published her stories in Bentley's Miscellany in 1859-60. She wrote 45 novels, including Folle-Farine (1871), as well as animal stories and magazine articles. She spent most of her time in Italy from 1860 onwards, and lived lavishly in Florence before falling into debt and destitution in the last years of her life. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ A considerable number of her letters have also been acquired: more than 177 addressed to various correspondents and some 170 written to members of the Danyell family. The autograph manuscript additions include much of the manuscript of the novel Princess Napraxine (1884) on 210 folio half sheets, the manuscripts of two letters to an editor concerning dogs, and the manuscripts of two poems. ≫
Charles Reade (1814-1884) - Reade was a novelist and theater manager who spent much of his life in London and enjoyed great success in his day. Educated at Oxford, he dabbled in law, medicine, and even violin dealing, before embarking on a literary career in 1851. He turned his drama Masks and Faces (1852) into a popular novel titled Peg Woffington (1853). His other novels included It is Never Too Late to Mend (1856, later dramatized), The Cloister and the Hearth (1861), and Griffith Gaunt (1866). Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish's Reade collection included forty-six Reade letters; four of Reade's notebooks; the manuscript of the part of General Rolleston in Foul Play , in the hand of Reade's secretary, J. G. Saunders; a draft in Reade's hand, based (without permission) on Anthony Trollope's novel Ralph the Heir . The manuscript additions made to the collection by the Library are many and varied. The collection now contains more than four hundred Reade letters; nine of his notebooks, including those for The Cloister and the Hearth (1861) and Hard Cash (1863); and 131 of his extraordinary large notecards. The additions-it should be noted that Reade's manuscripts, whether in his hand or in the hand of an amanuensis, whether bound or unbound, appear to survive mostly in incomplete or fragmentary condition-include: part of the manuscript of The Course of True Love Never Did Run Smooth (1857); the manuscripts of "Jack of All Trades" and "Autobiography of a Thief," which were published together under the title Cream (1858); the manuscripts (both incomplete) of The Eighth Commandment (1860) and Griffith Gaunt (1866); a portion of the manuscript of The Jilt (1877); the manuscript (incomplete) of Reade's last novel, A Perilous Secret (1884); as well as fragments of the manuscripts of a number of other publications. A more recent addition is a set of heavily corrected page proofs, dated 1860, for The Cloister and the Hearth . Also among the additions are manuscripts of nine of Reade's plays: the manuscript (incomplete) of Gold (1853); the manuscript of Masks and Faces (1854), in the hand of J. G. Saunders, the manuscript in Reade's hand of a new scene for Act I in "French's edition" of the play, and a transcription of the latter by an amanuensis, corrected by Reade; the manuscript in French of Act I of Le Faubourg Saint-Germain (1859); the manuscript of most of the text of the second and fourth acts of It's Never Too Late to Mend (1865), with the manuscript of a "Scene added to the last act of 'It's never too late to mend' for Miss Ellen Terry by her friend The Author"; the manuscript of all but the first two pages of Act I of Dora (1867); the manuscript of Kate Peyton (1872), an adaptation of the novel Griffith Gaunt , a rough draft in Reade's hand of Shilly Shally ; the manuscript of parts of The Countess and the Dancer (1883); and the manuscript of the fourth and fifth acts of Foul Play (1883). Other additions include: agreements, letters, etc. relating to several of Reade's plays; correspondence, legal documents, and other material concerning lawsuits initiated by Reade; real estate papers; a bank pass book for the years 1871-1875; and papers written after Reade's death about real estate, mortgages, insurance, etc., many in the hand of Reade's son, Charles Liston Reade. An unsigned portrait in oil of Charles Reade, bequeathed by him to Harper & Brothers, came to the Library in 1959 as the gift of the publishers. ≫
Sir Walter Scott, Bart. (1771-1832) - Scott was a Scottish novelist and poet who is credited with establishing the form of the historical novel. He published his novels anonymously through John Ballantyne and Co. (in which he secretly became a partner in 1805) before finally revealing his authorship in 1827. His verse romances included Marmion (1808) and The Lady of the Lake (1810), and his approximately 30 novels included The Heart of Midlothian (1818) and Ivanhoe (1819) . He was conferred the title of baronet in 1820. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ When the collection came to Princeton it included, perhaps simply as examples of their handwriting, four Scott letters and a letter written by his son-in-law, John G. Lockhart, and a head of Scott drawn in pencil by the American artist Francis Alexander when Scott called on him in Rome on 30 April 1832. The Library was able to acquire for the collection, by great good luck, the autograph manuscript of The Pirate , as well as a small portrait of Scott attributed to Samuel Mackenzie. ≫
Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) - Stevenson was a Scottish-born and educated author who traveled widely in his lifetime and wrote novels, poems, plays, short stories, essays, and travel pieces. Among his popular novels were Treasure Island (1883), The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde (1886) and Kidnapped (1886). He eventually settled at Vailima on Samoa (in the South Seas) in 1889 where, in 1894, he died suddenly and was buried, leaving his masterpiece, Weir of Hermiston , unfinished. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Very little manuscript material of Stevenson interest has been acquired for the collection since the publication of the catalogue [ Robert Louis Stevenson: A Catalogue of the Henry E. Gerstley Stevenson Collection, the Stevenson Section of the Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists ...(1971)], but two acquisitions deserve mention: the autograph manuscript of "Hester Noble's Mistake; or a word from Cromwell," a drama in four acts, on three leaves, the gift of Robert H. Taylor '30; and a self-portrait of Stevenson in academic garb offering carrots to a donkey, entitled "Dominie-and I,' in pen-and-ink, signed, the gift of Thomas V. Lange. ≫
William Makepeace Thackeray (1811-1863) - Thackeray was born in Calcutta, India, and educated in England. He contributed drawings and articles to Punch from 1842 to 1854, and his novel Vanity Fair (1847-48) established his literary reputation. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ When the collection came to Princeton it included only sixteen letters written by Thackeray, a letter from George Cruikshank to Thackeray, a drawing by Thackeray for Punch (1851), and a few other manuscript items of Thackerayan interest. Although no determined effort has been made by the Library to increase the manuscript holdings of the collection, some items of interest have been added. Among the additions are twenty-three letters written by Thackeray, a three-page manuscript headed "At seven o'clock in the morning the Poet was lying on his bed...," memoranda on two leaves for The English Humourists of the Eighteenth Century (1853), and a leaf of the manuscript of The Virginians (1859), in the hand of a amanuensis with a few changes in Thackeray's hand, written on the verso of a letter from Octavian Blewitt to Thackeray (11 August 1859). Also acquired for the collection were twenty-five letters from Lady Ritchie to various correspondents, as well as eighty-five letters from Lady Ritchie and her daughter to W. J. Williams of Smith, Elder & Co., mainly concerning the Centenerary Biographical Edition of Thackeray's Works , 1906-15. Finally, the additions include the originals of two illustrations (by Frederick W. Pailthorpe and Frederick Walker) and five portraits: a plaster statuette of Thackeray by Sir Joseph E. Boehm, a caricature of Thackeray by Joseph Clayton Clarke ("Kyd"), a watercolor portrait of the author by Richard Dighton (reproduced as the frontispiece in Van Duzer's A Thackeray Library (1919), a marble bust of Thackeray as a boy by Edward Onslow Ford after the bust by J.S. Deville, and a portrait of Thackeray's mother, in pencil and watercolor, attributed to Samuel Lover. ≫
Anthony Trollope (1815-1882) - Trollope was born in London and served a lengthy career (1834-67) with the Post Office and traveled widely abroad on missions (Egypt, West Indies, United States). He wrote 47 novels, which included Barchester Towers (1857) in his highly popular "Bartsetshire" series. Trollope also authored several travel books, short stories, biographies, and an autobiography (1875-76) that was published posthumously in 1883. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish's Trollope collection included a memorandum of agreement between the author and Chapman & Hall concerning the publication of Ayala's Angel , 21 November 1879, in Trollope's hand and signed by him; duplicates in Trollope's hand of travel letters Nos. 5-17 (1875), with galley proofs of letters Nos. 11, 12, and 17; and nearly three hundred letters written by Trollope, which Mr. Parrish contemplated publishing. The Library was fortunate in being able to increase substantially the manuscript and non-book resources of the collection. The additions include: the manuscripts of An Eye for an Eye (1879) and The Life of Cicero (1880); six manuscript travel books (1841-71); the autograph manuscript of a lecture on the Zulus (1879); a notebook kept by Trollope on a trip to South Africa in 1877; the duplicate in Trollope's hand of travel letter No. 18, with a galley proof of the letter; and some 370 letters (some fragmentary) written by Trollope, as well as a number of letters written to him by Sir John E. Millais and various correspondents. Among other additions are three portraits of the author: a portrait by Samuel Lawrence, in charcoal, pencil and chalk, signed by the artist and dated 1864; a caricature by "Sem" (Georges Marie Goursat), in pencil and wash; and a statuette by Gertrude Fass. ≫
Trollope Family - In addition to Anthony, the Parrish collection is represented by the following members of the Trollope family: Thomas Adolphus Trollope (1810-1892), the older brother of Anthony, who settled in Florence and published many works; his wife and author, Theodosia Garrow (1825-1865), whom he married in 1848; and Frances Eleanor Ternan Trollope (1780-1863), Anthony's mother, who became a novelist to support her family as a result of her husband Thomas Anthony Trollope's failure as a lawyer and a farmer (he died in 1835). Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ The Library has been more successful with manuscript material. It acquired from the estate of Robert A. Cecil, correspondence of, and other material relating to, Mr. Cecil's great-grandparents, Thomas Adolphus and Theodosia Garrow Trollope, and to Frances Eleanor Ternan Trollope, as well as to Mr. Cecil's grandmother, Beatrice ("Bice") Stuart-Wortley; various literary papers, letters, and other items that had been in possession of the Robinson family; and Michael Sadleir's file of correspondence with Mr. and Mrs. Henry M. Trollope and their daughter, Muriel. Also acquired, separately and from various sources: thirteen letters from Frances Eleanor Ternan Trollope to various correspondents; more than ninety letters of Frances Milton Trollope, and a set of fifteen proofs of Auguste Hervieu's illustrations for her The Life and Adventures of Jonathan Jefferson Whitlaw (1836); the appointment of Morgan Neville as attorney authorized to sell the bazaar in Cincinnati, dated March 13, 1830, and signed and sealed by Thomas Anthony Trollope and Thos Aspinwall, U.S. consul in London; a few letters of Theodosia Garrow Trollope; nearly one hundred letters of Thomas Adolphus Trollope; and letters and documents relating to other members of the Trollope family. ≫
Ellen Price Wood (1814-1887) - She was a novelist (née Price, known as Mrs. Henry Wood) who lived abroad in France for many years before returning to London in 1856. She achieved great success with her first novel, East Lynne (1861), and published nearly 40 books in all. She also wrote short stories, and owned and edited the periodical The Argosy , which published work by Reade, Kingsley, and Anthony Trollope. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ [Parrish collected]... just one [Wood] letter. [The Library has] acquired forty-seven [letters] (addressed to various publishers and other correspondents). Also acquired were the manuscript of a nineteenth-century dramatization of East Lynne , perhaps by a Miss M. Smith, and a pencil drawing by Charles Keene to illustrate the novel Verner's Pride for its appearance in Once a Week (1862). ≫
Charlotte Mary Yonge (1823-1901) - Yonge was a novelist best known for The Heir of Redclyffe who also edited a girls' magazine, Monthly Packet , for over 40 years. She was educated at home and lived all her life in the Hampshire village of Otterbourne. Excerpt from Parrish catalogue:
≪ Mr. Parrish only had three Yonge letters. The collection now contains 178 letters in her hand, as well as a small number of letters addressed to her. The collection includes also the manuscripts of five of her stories, The Carbonels (1895), The Constable's Tower (1891), The Cock and the Captive (1894), The Cross Roads (1892), and The Wardship of Steepcoombe (1896), and parts of the manuscripts of six other books. ≫
The collection is housed in folders in 80 archival boxes, with 17 additional shelves for bound, cased, boxed, and oversize items. Some artwork has been moved to the Graphic Arts Collection. This remains an open collection, and additions continue to be made from time to time. The collection has been arranged in the following series:
- Collection Creator Biography:
Morris Longstreth Parrish (1867-1944) was a respected Philadelphia businessman who painstakingly built up in the course of his lifetime an impressive library of Victorian novelists at his residence, called Dormy House, in Pine Valley, New Jersey. The phrase "Parrish condition" became a trade word among bibliophiles for the highest quality standard of first editions, as exemplified by Parrish's purchases. However, it was just as important to Parrish that his books be read and enjoyed, and not be preserved on his shelves as museum pieces. Parrish authored three, privately printed bibliographies based on his library collection: Victorian Lady Novelists (1933) on the Brontës, George Eliot, and Mrs. Gaskell, Charles Kingsley and Thomas Hughes (1936), and Wilkie Collins and Charles Reade (1940).
Parrish attended Princeton University briefly, as a member of the Class of 1888, but did not graduate. He received an honorary Masters of Arts degree from Princeton in June 1939. He bequeathed his entire library, including furniture and furnishings, to the Princeton University Library upon his death. The majority of printed books in the Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists is housed in the <a href="http://libweb.princeton.edu/libraries/firestone/rbsc/aids/parrish/parrishroom.html">Parrish Room</a> , a recreation of Parrish's library at Dormy House, which is located in the Special Collections Department of the Harvey S. Firestone Memorial Library. The manuscripts and artwork in the Parrish Collection, however, are housed in separate locations within the Department.
A detailed summary of the growth of the Parrish Collection in the decade following its arrival at the Library was written by Alexander D. Wainwright, first curator of the Parrish Collection, who held the job until his death in January 2000. The following excerpts are from Wainwright's article entitled "A Summary Report and an Introduction," as published in The Princeton University Library Chronicle (Volume XVII, Number 2, Winter 1956, pp. 59-67):
The Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists consists primarily of a series of more than twenty author collections. When it came to Princeton it contained over sixty-three hundred volumes and (exclusive of the nearly eighteen hundred Lewis Carroll mathematical manuscripts), approximately one thousand manuscript items, mostly letters-the latter a comparatively small figure since Mr. Parrish had no pronounced enthusiasm for manuscript material - as well as many theater programs, playbills, photographs, clippings, and other miscellanea (pp. 59-60).
...As a result of these purchases and gifts, the Library has added to the Parrish Collection during the past ten years over five hundred volumes and some nine hundred manuscript items, mainly letters (p. 60).
...The Library places, for obvious reasons, a greater emphasis on manuscript material than did Mr. Parrish; for every author it is interested in acquiring letters related to any aspect of the composition, publication, and reception of his work, for several authors it is interested in any significant letter, and one of the ultimate aims is the possession of the manuscript of at least one major work of each author (p. 61).
*From "The Library of Dormy House" by John Carter (article reprinted in The Princeton University Library Chronicle , Volume VIII, Number 1, November 1946, p. 7): "... he [Parrish] cares... almost nothing for manuscripts."
Morris Longstreth Parrish (1867-1944) was a respected Philadelphia businessman who painstakingly built up in the course of his lifetime an impressive library of Victorian novelists at his residence, called Dormy House, in Pine Valley, New Jersey. The phrase "Parrish condition" became a trade word among bibliophiles for the highest quality standard of first editions, as exemplified by Parrish's purchases. However, it was just as important to Parrish that his books be read and enjoyed, and not be preserved on his shelves as museum pieces. Parrish authored three, privately printed bibliographies based on his library collection: Victorian Lady Novelists (1933) on the Brontës, George Eliot, and Mrs. Gaskell, Charles Kingsley and Thomas Hughes (1936), and Wilkie Collins and Charles Reade (1940). Parrish attended Princeton University briefly, as a member of the Class of 1888, but did not graduate. He received an honorary Masters of Arts degree from Princeton in June 1939. He bequeathed his entire library, including furniture and furnishings, to the Princeton University Library upon his death. The majority of printed books in the Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists is housed in the Parrish Room , a recreation of Parrish's library at Dormy House, which is located in the Special Collections Department of the Harvey S. Firestone Memorial Library. The manuscripts and artwork in the Parrish Collection, however, are housed in separate locations within the Department. A detailed summary of the growth of the Parrish Collection in the decade following its arrival at the Library was written by Alexander D. Wainwright, first curator of the Parrish Collection, who held the job until his death in January 2000. The following excerpts are from Wainwright's article entitled "A Summary Report and an Introduction," as published in The Princeton University Library Chronicle (Volume XVII, Number 2, Winter 1956, pp. 59-67): The Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists consists primarily of a series of more than twenty author collections. When it came to Princeton it contained over sixty-three hundred volumes and (exclusive of the nearly eighteen hundred Lewis Carroll mathematical manuscripts), approximately one thousand manuscript items, mostly letters-the latter a comparatively small figure since Mr. Parrish had no pronounced enthusiasm for manuscript material - as well as many theater programs, playbills, photographs, clippings, and other miscellanea (pp. 59-60). ...As a result of these purchases and gifts, the Library has added to the Parrish Collection during the past ten years over five hundred volumes and some nine hundred manuscript items, mainly letters (p. 60). ...The Library places, for obvious reasons, a greater emphasis on manuscript material than did Mr. Parrish; for every author it is interested in acquiring letters related to any aspect of the composition, publication, and reception of his work, for several authors it is interested in any significant letter, and one of the ultimate aims is the possession of the manuscript of at least one major work of each author (p. 61).
M. L. Parrish bequeathed his library collection to the Princeton University Library prior to his death in 1944, and the Library has continued to accept gifts and make acquisitions of related material since that time.
- Archival Appraisal Information:
Some artwork has been moved to the Graphic Arts Collection.
- Processing Information:
This collection was processed by Sylvia Yu in 2000 . Finding aid written by Sylvia Yu in 2000 .
Access & Use
- Access Restrictions:
The collection is open for research with the exception of the Lewis Carroll photograph albums and loose photographs. See the component record for detail.
Researchers should also note that series 1-3 are stored in special vault facilities. In order to prevent possible delays, researchers should contact the Reference Librarian before visiting.
- Conditions for Reproduction and Use:
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication 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 RBSC 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:
M. L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library
- Permanent URL:
- Firestone LibraryOne Washington RoadPrinceton, NJ 08544, USA(609) 258-3184
- Publication Note:
"A Summary Report and an Introduction," Alexander D. Wainwright, The Princeton University Library Chronicle (Volume XVII, Number 2, Winter 1956, pp. 59-67).
- Subject Terms:
- Book collecting -- United States -- 20th century.
Booksellers and bookselling -- England -- 20th century -- Correspondence.
English literature -- 19th century.
Fiction -- 19th century.
Illustrators -- England -- 19th century -- Drawings.
Novelists, English -- 19th century -- Correspondence.
Novelists, English -- 19th century -- Manuscripts.
Women novelists, English -- 19th century -- Correspondence.
Women novelists, English -- 19th century -- Manuscripts.
- Genre Terms:
- Correspondence -- 19th century.
Drafts (preliminary versions) -- 19th century.
Drawings -- 19th century.
Manuscripts (for publication) -- 19th century.
Photoprints -- 19th century.
- Ainsworth, William Harrison, 1805-1882
Barrie, J.M. (James Matthew), 1860-1937
Black, William, 1841-1898
Braddon, M.E. (Mary Elizabeth), 1835-1915
Brontë, Anne, 1820-1849.
Brontë, Charlotte, 1816-1855.
Brontë, Emily, 1818-1848.
Brontë, Patrick Branwell, 1817-1848
Browne, Hablot Knight, 1815-1882.
Brussel, I. R. (Isidore Rosenbaum), 1895-
Carroll, Lewis, 1832-1898
Collins, Wilkie, 1824-1889.
Craik, Dinah Maria Mulock, 1826-1887
Dickens, Charles, 1812-1870.
Disraeli, Benjamin, 1804-1881
Du Maurier, George, 1834-1896
Eliot, George, 1819-1880
Gaskell, Elizabeth Cleghorn, 1810-1865
Hardy, Thomas, 1840-1928.
Hargreaves, Alice Pleasance Liddell, 1852-1934
Holiday, Henry, 1839-1927
Hughes, Thomas, 1822-1896
Kingsley, Charles, 1819-1875.
Lever, Charles, 1806-1872.
Lytton, Edward Bulwer Lytton, Baron, 1803-1873.
Meredith, George, 1828-1909.
Randall, David A. (David Anton), 1905-1975
Reade, Charles, 1814-1884
Sadleir, Michael, 1888-1957
Scott, Walter, 1771-1832.
Stevenson, Robert Louis, 1850-1894.
Thackeray, William Makepeace, 1811-1863.
Thirkell, Angela, 1890-1961.
Trollope, Frances Eleanor, 1835-1913
Trollope, Frances Milton, 1780-1863
Trollope, Theodosia Garrow, 1825-1865
Trollope, Thomas Adolphus, 1810-1892
Wilson, Carroll A. (Carroll Atwood), 1886-1947
Wood, Henry, Mrs., 1814-1887
Yonge, Charlotte M. (Charlotte Mary), 1823-1901