Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

O'Neill, Eugene, 1888-1953.
Princeton University. Library. Special Collections
Eugene O'Neill Collection
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1913-1993 (mostly 1913-1944)
1 box and 0.45 linear feet
Storage Note:
Firestone Library (mss): Box 1


Eugene O'Neill, the celebrated American playwright, was a director of the Provincetown Players and a founder of the Theatre Guild. He won the Pulitzer Prize for Strange Interlude (1928) and, posthumously, for Long Day's Journey Into Night (1956). The collection consists of fifteen manuscripts of O'Neill, most of which are first drafts of plays and include preliminary notes.

Collection Description & Creator Information


The collection contains fifteen manuscripts of O'Neill, most of which are first drafts of plays and include preliminary notes. Included is The Web (originally entitled The Cough), the first play written by O'Neill. He notes on the title page of the manuscript that, although he wrote skits for the stage prior to 1913, it was not until that year that he wrote The Web, "the first play I ever wrote." Also included is the original manuscript for "Tomorrow," the only short story by O'Neill ever to be published during his lifetime.

A small addition to the collection includes correspondence, photographs, and printed material of O'Neill. There is correspondence with William M. Agar; Francesco Bianco; Princeton University Librarian (1940-1952) and professor of history, Julian P. Boyd; there is correspondence with Mark Van Doren of the War Bond Committee related to some of O'Neill's original scripts, and to the War Bond Campaign; and there is one letter to Earle V. Rodgers.

Collection Creator Biography:

O'Neill, Eugene, 1888-1953.

Eugene O'Neill was an American playwright and Nobel Prize winner. Suspended from Princeton University, he spent a number of years at sea. O'Neill's first published play, Beyond the Horizon, opened on Broadway in 1920 to great acclaim, and was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. His best-known plays include Anna Christie (Pulitzer Prize 1922), Desire Under the Elms (1924), Strange Interlude (Pulitzer Prize 1928), Mourning Becomes Electra (1931), and Long Day's Journey into Night (Pulitzer Prize, 1957).

Collection History


Multiple purchases, 1941-1969.

Archival Appraisal Information:

No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information:

This collection was processed in 2002. Finding aid written in 2002.

Biography written by Alyxandra Cullen, '09.

Access & Use

Access Restrictions:

Collection is open for research use.

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:

Eugene O'Neill Collection; Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Permanent URL:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184