Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Woolmer, J. Howard
Selected Papers of J. Howard Woolmer
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
7 boxes
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Boxes 1-5; B-000774; B-000801


Consists of files of American antiquarian book dealer J. Howard Woolmer's correspondence with various poets and writers and author photographs.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of files of Woolmer's correspondence with various poets and writers, such as Conrad Aiken, Edward Albee, Hortense Calisher, Alfred Corn, Guy Davenport, Athol Fugard, Seamus Heaney, Charles Simic, Reed Whittemore, and Richard Wilbur, and includes related author photographs, clippings, and several publications. Much of the material deals with Woolmer's solicitation and sale of the authors' personal papers. The collection includes a copy of the first catalogue (1931) of publications from the Ulysses Bookshop (London) and a lot of material dealing with the Warwick Press (Easthampton, Massachusetts).


Files are intellectually arranged by author or press name, followed by a group of author photographs.

Collection Creator Biography:


J. Howard Woolmer was born in Montreal in 1929. He began his professional antiquarian bookselling career in New York, developing a special interest in small presses and American writers of the post-World War II era and, later, in Irish poets and novelists. In the course of putting together a number of significant author collections, he has published several important bibliographies and catalogues, including Malcolm Lowry: A Bibliography (Revere, Pa.: Woolmer/Brotherson, 1983), A Checklist of the Hogarth Press, 1917-1946 ( Revere, Pa.: Woolmer/Brotherson, 1986), and The Poetry Bookshop, 1912-1935, A Bibliography (Revere, Pa.: Woolmer/Brotherson, 1988). He has been the guiding force in creating a number of modern literature collections at the Princeton University Library with Princeton alumnus Leonard L. Milberg, Class of 1953. For much of his life, Woolmer's home and place of business was in Revere, Pennsylvania.

Collection History


Gifts of J. Howard Woolmer in 2009 (AM 2009-110, AM 2009-132) and 2016 (AM 2017-7, AM 2017-51).


No materials were separated from the collection during 2016 processing.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by John Delaney in April 2009. Finding aid written by John Delaney in April 2009. Folder Inventory added by Hilde Creager '2015 in 2012 and updated by Fiona Bell '2018 in 2016.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

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:

Selected Papers of J. Howard Woolmer; 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 1-5; B-000774; B-000801