Contents and Arrangement

Orbison family, dates not examined

1 folder

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information


This collection primarily consists of papers of Noël Riley Fitch relating to her two books Sylvia Beach and the Lost Generation: A History of Literary Paris in the Twenties and Thirties(1983) and Walks in Hemingway's Paris: A Guide for the Literary Traveler(1990), as well as her thesis, dissertation, and other writings about Sylvia Beach (1887-1962), the American proprietress of the bookshop Shakespeare and Company in Paris, France. Included are research files, notes, typescripts, and galleys for Fitch's biography of Beach; correspondence and transcripts of interviews with former friends and associates of Beach, such as Berenice Abbott, Morrill Cody, Malcolm Cowley, Janet Flanner, Marcelle Fournier, Maurice Saillet, and others; correspondence with Richard McDougall, the poet and writer on the life of Adrienne Monnier, and typed copies of McDougall's A Selection of Poems(1957); as well as audiotapes (1969-1982) of Fitch's interviews with Elizabeth Bishop, Frederic Dennis, Helen Eddy, Marthiel Mathews, François Valéry, Priscilla Veitch, and others reminiscing about Beach and Paris in the 1920s and 1930s. There are also notes, manuscript drafts, and galleys of Fitch's Walks in Hemingway's Paris: A Guide for the Literary Traveler, and a cassette tape of an interview with Dutch journalists about the book and Ernest Hemingway (1990). Furthermore, the collection includes articles and book reviews concerning Djuna Barnes; assorted articles and lectures by Fitch; a copy of Lisa MacFarlane's Princeton University thesis on Sylvia Beach entitled "For Who is Silvier" (1979); four unpublished writings by Fitch (1988); additional correspondence between Fitch and her literary agents, friends, and fans primarily relating to Fitch's books concerning Lost Generation authors; and a photograph of photographs hanging in Shakespeare and Company.

The original papers of Sylvia Beach include letters by Beach to her parents and sisters (1898-1952); letters by other family members and friends (1858-1954); a photograph album showing Sylvia and Holly Beach in Italy and Serbia (1917-1920); scrapbook pages of photographs and memorabilia (ca.1932-1949); a typescript draft, with autograph corrections (removed from Fitch's research files), and revised galleys for Beach's book Shakespeare and Company(1959); reviews of the book; cassette tapes of Beach's interview with Jackson Mathews for the Kenyon Review (1960); a scrapbook of obituaries(1962); letters sent to Holly Beach (Mrs. Frederic Dennis) (1962-1964); and correspondence regarding Sylvia Beach's estate (1962-1962).

An additional accession consists of several typescript versions of "Voyage to Ithaca: William Carlos Williams in Paris," with holograph corrections, annotations, and additions by Fitch; and correspondence with Else Albrecht-Carrie, Donald Gallup, James Laughlin, Marilyn V. Schuler, Emily Wallace, and Mrs. William Carlos Williams, regarding the above manuscript, which was published in the Princeton University Library Chronicle (spring 1979).

Collection History

Archival Appraisal Information:

No appraisal information is available.

Access & Use

Access Restrictions:

The audiotapes (cassettes and reel-to-reel) of interviews conducted by Noël Riley Fitch about Sylvia Beach are restricted due to their age and fragile condition. In order to listen to these tapes, researchers must request copies through the Department's duplication process.

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:

Orbison family; Noël Riley Fitch Papers, C0841, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

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