Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Matthews, T. S. (Thomas Stanley), 1901-1991.
T. S. Matthews Papers
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1910-1991 (mostly 1940-1991)
57 boxes, 8 items, and 22.9 linear feet
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Boxes 1-56; OS


Consists of writings, notebooks, correspondence, files from Time magazine, subject files, legal and financial correspondence, photographs, and printed material of T. S. Matthews, an author and editor of Time magazine.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The collection contains writings, notebooks, correspondence, files from Time magazine, subject files, legal and financial correspondence, photographs, printed material of T. S. Matthews, dating from 1910 to 1991; there also are some writings of others about him. Included is a series of datebooks for every year from 1950 to his 1991 death, recording his appointments and notes, as well as journals and dream diaries. The files from Time date from the 1940s to the 1950s, and consist of internal correspondence and memoranda, as well as his notes on the possible Time-in-Britain project. Included in the subject files are Matthews' research notes on T. S. Eliot, his literary hero and the subject of his book Great Tom: Notes Towards the Definition of T. S. Eliot. Notable correspondents include John Aldridge, Whittaker Chambers, T. S. Eliot, Valerie Eliot, Robert Graves, Eleanor Green, Laura (Riding) Jackson, Schuyler Jackson, Len Lye, Laurie Lee, William Piel, Jr., V. S. Pritchett, Lyman Spitzer, and Adlai Stevenson.

Collection Creator Biography:

Matthews, T. S. (Thomas Stanley), 1901-1991.

T. S. (Thomas Stanley) Matthews (1901-1991), Princeton Class of 1922, was an author and editor of Time magazine. The son of a New Jersey bishop and Proctor & Gamble heiress, Matthews earned a bachelor's degree from Princeton in 1922 and New College at Oxford in 1924. He joined the staff of the New Republic in 1925 and Time's staff in 1929 as book editor. He moved up to assistant managing editor, managing editor, and finally editor in 1949. Especially in his capacity as managing editor, Matthews raised the journalistic and writing standards of the magazine, and was known for his harsh criticism.

Following disagreements with senior management over the 1952 presidential election, Matthews left Time and moved to England to study the possibility of starting a British version of the magazine. Following this project's cancellation, he remained in Britain to write. Among his numerous books and poetry are an autobiography and a book on T. S. Eliot, his literary hero. He was married three times -- to Juliana Stevens Cuyler, Martha Gellhorn, and Pamela Peniakoff.

Collection History


Papers: gift of Rev. Timothy Anderson (Matthews's literary executor), in 2008 .

Additional papers: gift of John P. C. Matthews, Class of 1951, in 2008 .


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Ayse Gursoy in 2009. Finding aid written by Ayse Gursoy and updated by Lisa Yankowitz in 2010.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing 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.

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:

T. S. Matthews 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): Boxes 1-56; OS

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Current Biography (H. W. Wilson Company, 1950) and American National Biography (Oxford University Press, 2004) were consulted during preparation of the biographical note.

Subject Terms:
Editors -- New York (State) -- New York -- 20th century -- Correspondence.
Manuscripts -- 20th century.
Genre Terms:
Correspondence -- 20th century
Daybooks -- 20th century.
Time, inc.
Eliot, T.S. (Thomas Stearns), 1888-1965
Jackson, Laura Riding, 1901-1991.