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Series II: Writings
Series III: Notes, 1872-1924
At a Glance
Selected items cataloged; remainder arranged.
Scope and Content
Correspondence, manuscripts, documents, photographs, memorabilia, scrapbooks, and printed material. Among his correspondents represented in the collection by at least 75 items are: William Archer, Hobart C. Chatfield-Taylor, Augustin Daly, Austin Dobson, Hamlin Garland, Bronson Howard, William Dean Howells, Henry Arthur Jones, Henry Cabot Lodge and Thomas Raynesford Lounsbury. There are bound volumes of letters from Henry C. Bunner, Andrew Lang, Rudyard Kipling, Theodore Roosevelt, miscellaneous letters to Matthews, and Matthews' editorial correspondence with the North American Review. There are three boxes of manuscripts, including poems by 21 authors; essays on drama; and plays by Henry Arthur Jones, Don Marquis, and Matthews; bound volumes of manuscripts of Matthews' plays and his book, "Development for the Drama." Also included are 17 boxes of his manuscript notes for his many lectures, articles, and books; and memorabilia, primarily from the theatre and from his life at Columbia. Material on the Dunlap Society, which was devoted to printing works relating to the theater, of which Matthews was co-founder with Laurence Hutton, includes documents and correspondence, much of which is between then secretary Evert J. Wendell and members on meetings and other Society business around 1914. In addition, there are notes and correspondence of Herbert Kleinfield relating to his research on Matthews.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.
Bound volumes of correspondence and diaries classified in "X" collection. See related materials note below for more information.
This collection is located on-site.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
Readers must use microfilm of materials specified above.
Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.
Identification of specific item; Date (if known); Brander Matthews papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
Some materials related to the Brander Matthews papers were removed from this collection and cataloged separately. They can be requested via links below in the CLIO catalog. The items include fifty eight volumes of Matthews's diaries, 1871-1924. Volumes for the period 1871-1881 have the diary portions cut out. (X812M43 P53). When requesting the diaries, please specify which year(s) is/are needed. Other materials include: Letters of acknowledgment written to the libraries of Columbia University upon receipt of copies of "The bookshelf of Brander Matthews." (X812M43 AM2); Collection of letters, menus, etc., largely in connection with the dinner given to Brander Matthews at Sherry's, December 20, 1893 (X812M43 BC); Scrapbook containing menus, invitations, place cards, etc., for dinners, etc., attended by Brander Matthews, 1884-1907 (X812M43 BS); Four volumes of bound manuscript and typescript plays by Brander Matthews (X812M43 M); Manuscript of "A confident tomorrow" by Brander Matthews (X812M43 P); Manuscript of "The Development of Drama" by Brander Matthews (X812M43 P5); Miscellaneous letters to Brander Matthew (X812M43 S6); Editorial correspondence : Brander Matthews to David A. Munro et al, 1882-1920. (X812M43 S62).
See also the Brander Matthews letters, 1888-1921. The group of letters written by Theodore Roosevelt (1858-1919) and members of his family to Brander Matthews are mounted on the blank leaves of two volumes. The majority of the material (240 letters and cards) were written by Theodore Roosevelt. These are personal letters which reflect his many interests and activities dealing with such subjects as his own writings and publications, opinions of contemporary literature, Matthews' system of reformed English spelling and Roosevelt's attempt to introduce this into the publications of the Government Printing Office, travels, friends, meetings, and social events. Also, ten letters and cards from Edith Kermit Roosevelt to the Matthews family and a few items from other members of the Roosevelt family. The letters are in typescript and script and are dated from various places in this country and abroad.
The RBML also holds large archives that were collected by Matthews over time, as part of his Dramatic Museum project. These can be found in CLIO by searching Brander Matthews Dramatic Museum
Alternate Form Available
The Hamlin Garland letters (box 11) are on microfilm.
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Papers: Source of acquisition--Matthews, Brander. Method of acquisition--gift; Date of acquisition--1912.
Biographical materials: Source of acquisition--Henderson, Harold G. Method of acquisition--gift; Date of acquisition--1951.
Biographical material: Source of acquisition--Kleinfield, Jeanne Welcher. Method of acquisition--gift; Date of acquisition--1978.
Irving/Stoker a.l.s. to Rolt: Source of acquisition--6003B (B. Matthews). Method of acquisition--Purchase; Date of acquisition--04/09/1993. Accession number--M-93-04-09.
BM essay: On the length of Cleopatra's nose: Source of acquisition--6003B (Matthews)-Auerbach. Method of acquisition--Purchase; Date of acquisition--03/09/1994. Accession number--M-94-03-09.
16 a.l.s. from Matthews to Clifford Smyth: Method of acquisition--Purchase; Date of acquisition--01/13/2000. Accession number--M-00-01-13.
Gift of Brander Matthews, l9l2-1928; Harold G. Henderson, l951; and Jeanne Welcher Kleinfield, l978.
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Papers entered 05/--/1986.
Biographical materials entered 05/--/1986.
Biographical material entered 05/--/1986.
Irving/Stoker a.l.s. to Rolt Cataloged HR 08/04/1993.
BM essay: On the length of Cleopatra's nose Cataloged HR 03/17/1994.
16 a.l.s. from Matthews to Clifford Smyth Cataloged HR 01/13/2000.
2010-02-16 Legacy finding aid created from Pro Cite.
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Author, critic, and member of the Columbia English Department Faculty from 1891-1924. Matthews was an influential figure in the literary and dramatic worlds of New York and London from the 1880s throughtout his life. He was a member of numerous social and literary organizations, serving as president of the Dunlap Society, the Modern Language Association, and the National Institute of Arts and Letters, among others.