Tag Archives: Manuscripts

New! J.B. Priestley Archive Catalogue April 2013

We’ve just put the latest edition of the catalogue of the J.B. Priestley Archive online.

YMCA "On active service" letterhead from one of J.B. Priestley's letters home.

YMCA “On active service” letterhead from one of J.B. Priestley’s letters home.

Lots of new things and improvements in response to readers’ needs, including:

  • Enhanced section on Priestley’s unpublished scripts for books, plays, television and film.  These  include collaborations with Fred Hoyle and Iris Murdoch.  Lots of detail on the physical nature of the scripts e.g. amendments by Priestley.
  • More letters, notably Priestley’s incredible Great War letters from the trenches.
  • Detailed cataloguing of files on Priestley’s art collection, indexing the artists he collected.
  • Programmes, press cuttings and other responses to Priestley 2008-2012.   Definite revival of interest, encompassing several less well known plays, and from scholarly, political and literary angles.
  • Some sections renumbered for ease of use (don’t worry if you’re using the old numbers, we can cross-refer between them).

More on all the above in future blog posts!

A bit of GLAMour

I don’t think I have posted about GLAM before.  GLAM, the Group for Literary Archives and Manuscripts, aims to bring together archivists, librarians, curators, and anyone else interested in collecting, preservation, use and promotion of literary archives and manuscripts. The importance, international appeal, market value, and intellectual property issues make these archives distinctive and exciting but often difficult to manage.  The challenge is growing, as authors communicate more via diverse digital means.  The group offers a support network and has particular projects to help e.g. on cataloguing this kind of material.  We have a meeting at the John Rylands Library on Thursday.

Special Collections at Bradford holds several literary archives, which tend to be particularly popular and offer great scope for related activities.  These include the J.B. Priestley Archive, the Jacquetta Hawkes Archive, and, coming soon, the W. Riley (Windyridge author) Archive.

Darwin and Huxley – a Bradford link

An intriguing find in a very shabby set of  “The life and letters of Charles Darwin”, edited by his son, Francis Darwin: a short letter from Thomas Henry Huxley,  “Darwin’s bulldog”.

Letter from T H Huxley

Letter from T H Huxley

The volumes belonged to Lawson Tait, who seems to have asked Huxley for a copy of his obituary of Darwin, which is inserted in vol. 1 with the accompanying letter.  The set came to Bradford in 1964.  The Huxley connection makes them interesting artefacts so they are now part of Special Collections.

The volume containing the letter is now on show at International Darwin Conference at the University of Bradford 24-26 September 2009.  The Conference is part of a programme of events celebrating Darwin’s links with Bradford.  After finishing the writing of “On the Origin of Species”, the exhausted Darwin came to Ilkley to take the water cure.  He sent out complimentary copies of this work and planned corrections for the second edition, the first already being oversubscribed and a reprint required.