Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Simpson, Eileen B.
Eileen B. Simpson Papers
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1941-1991 (mostly 1979-1991)
3 boxes and 1.2 linear feet
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Box 1-3


Consists of papers primarily related to Eileen Simpson's book, Poets in their Youth: A Memoir, about her married years with poet John Berryman.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of papers primarily related to Simpson's book . Included is correspondence (approx. 300 letters) with her publishers, Random House (U.S.) and Faber and Faber (England), before and after publication, and many letters in response to the book from Simpson's friends, former associates of the poets, and people mentioned in the book, such as James Atlas, Saul Bellow, Jack Barbera, Carl Brandt, Robert Giroux, Allan Gurganus, Lili Kahler, Nancy Milford, Joyce Carol Oates, and Daniel Stern, as well as from the general public. Some letters also discuss another of Simpson's autobiographical books, Reversals: A Personal Account of Victory Over Dislexia (1979). Also present are photographs of John Berryman, Delmore Schwartz, Mark Van Doren, and others, used in the book, clippings from newspapers, magazines, and journals of reviews of the book, and four sets of proof, one with author's corrections.

Collection Creator Biography:

Simpson, Eileen B.

Eileen Simpson was married to the poet John Berryman (1914-1972) from 1942 until their divorce in 1953, and published a book, Poets in their Youth: A Memoir (1982), recalling those years with Berryman and his circle of friends in the literary world.

Collection History


Gift of the author.


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

Folder list prepared by Lisa Yankowitz '13 in 2012.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

Eileen B. Simpson 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 (scamss): Box 1-3