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Series I: Correspondence
At a Glance
This collection is arranged in ten series. Series I: Correspondence, 1926-2005; Subseries I.1: Individual Correspondents, 1926-2005; Subseries I.2: Institutions, 1936-2005; Series II: Research Notes and Clippings, 1815-2002; Series III: Drafts and Outlines, 1930s-2001; Series IV: Reviews and Criticism of Viereck's Work, 1940s-2003; Series V: Photographs, 1937-2000; Series VI: George S. Viereck, 1903-1989; Series VII: Margaret Hein Viereck and Other Family Members, 1911-1979; Series VIII: Subject Files, 1935-2004; Series IX: Personal Documents and Artifacts, 1933-1993; Series X: Audiovisual Material, 1985-1997.
The collection includes letters, manuscripts, documents, photographs, tapes, printed material, and memorabilia of Peter Viereck (1916-2006) and those of his father, George Sylvester Viereck (1884-1962), and mother, Margaret Hein Viereck. Some of the notable correspondents are Daniel Boorstin, Joseph Brodsky, Sigmund Freud, W.V.O. Quine, Arthur Schlesinger Jr., George Bernard Shaw, Kaiser Wilhelm II, and William Carlos Williams. There are extensive files of manuscripts of Viereck's work, as well as those of his father. In addition, there are numerous files which contain photographs of the Viereck family and their friends and associates.
Using the Collection
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Restrictions on Access
This collection has no restrictions.
This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least two business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.
Terms Governing Use and Reproduction
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); Peter Viereck Papers; Box and Folder; Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Columbia University Library.
No additions are expected
About the Finding Aid / Processing Information
Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Papers semi-processed Elena Locascio, SUNY Geneseo, 2011, Darragh Martin, GSAS 2011 2007-2009.
2010-11-23 File created.
0210-11-30 xml document instance created by Lea Osborne
2019-05-20 EAD was imported spring 2019 as part of the ArchivesSpace Phase II migration.
History / Biographical Note
Peter Viereck (1916-2006) was a seminal figure in American conservative thought as well as an award-winning poet and historian who won Guggenheim Fellowships in both poetry and history. Viereck wrote prolifically on politics and intellectual history, and published over a dozen collections of poetry, most recently Door: Poems (2005). In 1949 Viereck won the Pulitzer Prize for his first book of poems, Terror and Decorum. Often credited with launching and naming the modern conservative intellectual movement in the late 1940s, Viereck later criticized its direction and deplored Senator Joseph McCarthy for betraying authentic conservative values. He was professor of Russian and European history at Mount Holyoke College for nearly fifty years
Peter Viereck's father, George Sylvester Viereck (1884-1962), played a prominent role in the literary and cultural scene of early twentieth-century America, inspiring and serving as the first secretary of the Poetry Society of America. As a free-lance writer for publications including The Saturday Evening Post, George Sylvester Viereck interviewed many leading figures, including Albert Einstein and Adolph Hitler, and was a friend of Sigmund Freud. During World War II, the elder Viereck's standing was destroyed by his support for Nazi Germany as a paid propagandist. He was arrested and jailed for five years as an unregistered agent of Germany, although espionage charges against him were ultimately dropped. During his imprisonment, his younger son died in U.S. military service at Anzio, Italy, deepening George Sylvester Viereck's rift with his elder son Peter, who served as a U.S. Army intelligence analyst during the war. Peter Viereck had already diagnosed the evils of Nazi Germany in his book Metapolitics: From the Romantics to Hitler, begun at Harvard in 1936 and first published three months before the attack on Pearl Harbor.