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Series 2: Correspondence, 1844-1987
Collection Description & Creator Information
The collection consists of material relating to the British-born, American author Frances Hodgson Burnett, collected by her younger son, Vivian Burnett. Included are: (1) Approximately 400 autograph letters and 20 autograph postcards from Frances Hodgson Burnett to Vivian Burnett and other family members. There are also several hundred letters received by Burnett from Vivian Burnett and other family members and friends. The correspondence dates primarily from the 1880s until her death. (2) Frances Hodgson Burnett, Chapter 1 of Little Lord Fauntleroy (1886), 14 pages (final page lacking). The remainder of the original manuscript is in RBSC's Wilkinson Collection of Mary Mapes Dodge (229 pages). (3) Frances Hodgson Burnett, 3-page typescript (no corrections) of an essay on children's literature, along with three autograph manuscripts of poems (believed to be unpublished) and other miscellaneous fragments. (4) Guest book (bound volume) for Maytham Hall, her home in Kent, England, including a sketch by Henry James and several drawings by Poultney Bigelow. (5) Two original drawings by Reginald Birch for the first edition of Little Lord Fauntleroy ; and James Montgomery Flagg's signed drawing of Frances Hodgson Burnett (1921). (6) Approx. 30 original photographs of Frances Hodgson Burnett, her son Vivian dressed as "Little Lord Fauntleroy," and her residences in England (including the actual "Secret Garden") and the United States. (7) Two "Little Lord Fauntleroy" costumes (velvet, lace, and silk), which Burnett had made for her son Vivian and in which he posed for photography; and one dress of Frances Hodgson Burnett; and a box of additional lace. (8) Typescripts of plays, a scrapbook, and other materials relating to Burnett and her literary career.
The extensive correspondence between FHB and VB is arranged chronologically by year with undated letters at the end of each subseries. All other correspondents are divided between separate subseries for family members and friends/non-relatives/other by sender name and/or recipient. Letters from unidentified senders or recipients are included at the end of each subseries. Envelopes without letters are filed by year within the relevant subseries if the postmark is legible. Dates for some of the undated letters were estimated either by the stationery/paper type used or by a location written at the top of the first page.
- Custodial History:
Acquired from Penelope Deupree and Robin Boone, co-heirs to these materials through their mother, Verity Burnett Chisholm (older daughter of Vivian Burnett).
- Archival Appraisal Information:
No appraisal information is available.
Access & Use
- Access Restrictions:
The collection is open for research. For reasons of preservation, access to the clothing and original Fauntleroy costumes is restricted.
- 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:
Series 2: Correspondence; Vivian Burnett Collection of Frances Hodgson Burnett, C1304, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library
- Firestone LibraryOne Washington RoadPrinceton, NJ 08544, USA(609) 258-3184
- Storage Note:
- Firestone Library (mss): Box 3-11
- Burnett, Vivian, 1876-1937