Contents and Arrangement Expanded View

Collection Overview

Ennis, John, 1944-
John Ennis Papers
Manuscripts Division
Permanent URL:
1935-2016 (mostly 1967-2016)
79 boxes and 31.5 linear feet
Storage Note:
  • Firestone Library (scamss): Boxes B-000912 to B-000990


Consists of writings, editorial files, correspondence, teaching materials, and other professional working files of Irish poet John Ennis (1944- ), including drafts of his published poetry and unpublished work from the late 1960s through 2016, editorial files related to anthologies of Irish and Canadian poetry he edited between 2002 and 2009, and materials documenting the activities of the Irish arts organization Poetry Ireland and its journal Poetry Ireland Review from its inception in 1978 through the 1990s.

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

The papers consist of Irish poet John Ennis's writings, working files related to his role as an editor of four anthologies of Irish and Canadian poetry and the Poetry Ireland Review, correspondence pertaining to poetry and other professional activities, files of the Irish arts organization Poetry Ireland, teaching materials, drafts of writings by others, subject files, and audiovisual and digital media. Materials span the length of Ennis's career of over five decades as a poet and literary editor and also document to a lesser extent his work as a creative writing teacher and university administrator.

Ennis's writings include manuscript and typescript drafts, proofs, publicity, source materials, and other papers related to his published poetry and unpublished work from the late 1960s through 2016. While most of this material pertains to Ennis's poetry, there are also drafts of lyrics he wrote for musical collaborations with composer Eric Sweeney and unpublished short stories, as well as a bound copy of Ennis's PhD thesis on the use of myth and archetype in his own work. Additional editorial files document the conception, assembly, and publication of the four anthologies of Irish and Canadian poetry Ennis edited between 2002 and 2009; these files consist of correspondence, submissions, permissions, drafts, proofs, editorial notes, publicity, and financial documents.

Ennis's papers also include materials documenting the activities of Poetry Ireland from its inception in 1978 through the 1990s, as well as its journal Poetry Ireland Review, which Ennis edited from 1988 to 1989; correspondence with fellow poets, editors, publishers, and colleagues; readings, handouts, and lecture drafts from Ennis's tenure as a creative writing lecturer and workshop facilitator; drafts of writings by others that Ennis collected throughout his career; professional subject files containing correspondence, documents, and printed materials related to Irish poetry and various local and international organizations with which Ennis was involved; and a small number of recorded poetry readings, interviews, and other events.

Collection Creator Biography:

Ennis, John, 1944-

John Ennis was born in Westmeath, Ireland, in 1944. He is a graduate of University College Cork and University College Dublin, where he completed his MA in English and American Studies. Ennis's first book of poetry was published by Peter Fallon of the Gallery Press in 1976 and won the Patrick Kavanagh Award. He has also won the Listowel Open Poetry Competition eleven times and the Irish American Cultural Institute Award in 1996. In addition to publishing nineteen books of poetry between 1976 and 2016, Ennis has been editor of Poetry Ireland Review, and served on the board of Poetry Ireland for eleven years. Ennis also worked for forty years at the Waterford Institute of Technology as Lecturer and Head of the School of Humanities. At Waterford, Ennis received his PhD in 1997, and also served as Chair of the Centre for Newfoundland and Labrador Studies. From 2002 to 2007, he co-edited three anthologies of Irish and Canadian poetry, and edited a further all-Canadian anthology in 2009. In 2008, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Laws by Memorial University of Newfoundland, for fostering links between Ireland and Newfoundland, and for his poetry. Ennis retired from education in 2009 and now focuses on poetry and activism. He divides his time between Waterford and Westmeath.

Collection History


Purchase, 2017 (AM 2017-131).


No materials were separated during 2017 processing.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Kelly Bolding in Spring-Summer 2017, with assistance from Kathryn Antonelli, Julia English '19, Fiona Bell '18, Sophia Alvarez '18, and Rachel Dubin '17. Finding aid written by Kelly Bolding in Spring-Summer 2017, with assistance from Julia English '19.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

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:

John Ennis 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 B-000912 to B-000990