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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 1925-1925.4

Houghton Mifflin Company correspondence and records


Records of Houghton Mifflin Compnay and its predecessors, containing papers relating to both the printing and publishing branches of the business.


  • 1832-1944

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.


64 linear feet (165 boxes)

Includes a voluminous file of incoming letters, chiefly post-1870, from authors published by the firm; some correspondence with other publishers; a few compositions; and a small file of editorial correspondence of The Atlantic Monthly. Also contains a few photographs.

Includes 2 drawing illustrations by Frances Lester Warner: At home with variations; and Sunlight sonata, Family life with variations. Also 3 pen and ink drawing illustrations by Warner: Geoffrey went politely to the edge of the roof, and gazed down, from Fire in the sky; and From Diet and the Daily Dozen Exercise, said Endicott, is not at its best without a by-product...

Many of the items listed below also conatin a variety of interdepartmental memoranda, related correspondence, and other material concerning the author or firm named in the heading.

Biographical / Historical

Houghton Mifflin Company, publishing house of Boston, Mass., traces its roots back to the firm of Ticknor and Fields, the premier "literary" publishing house in the United States during the middle years of the nineteenth century. Ticknor and Fields originated in the firm of Allen and Ticknor, established in 1832. The partners in Ticknor and Fields were William D. Ticknor (one of the partners in Allen and Ticknor) and James T. Fields, who entered the firm as a junior partner in 1843. After a series of changes, Ticknor and Fields evolved into Houghton, Mifflin and Company. The succession of corporate names was as follows: Allen and Ticknor (1832-1834); William D. Ticknor (1834-1843); William D. Ticknor and Co. (1843-1849); Ticknor, Reed and Fields (1849-1854); Ticknor and Fields (1854-1868); Fields, Osgood and Co. (1868-1871); James R. Osgood and Co. (1871-1878); Houghton, Osgood and Co. (1878-1880); Houghton, Mifflin and Co. (1880-1908); and Houghton Mifflin Co. (since 1908). Henry Oscar Houghton began as a printer in Cambridge, Mass. and established H. O. Houghton and Co. in 1852. Houghton's printing establishment on the Charles River in Cambridge was known as the Riverside Press. In 1864 he formed a publishing partnership in the firm of Hurd and Houghton. In 1878 the business merged with James R. Osgood and Co. as Houghton, Osgood and Co.


Arranged into the following series:

MS Am 1925
  1. I. Correspondence with Houghton Mifflin
  2. A. Letters to and from Houghton Mifflin
  3. B. Letters from Houghton Mifflin
  4. II. Business correspondence
  5. III. Legal and interdepartmental correspondence and documents
  6. MS Am 1925.1: Letters to The Atlantic Monthly
  7. MS Am 1925.2: Letters to and from Henry Oscar Houghton [personal correspondence]
  8. MS Am 1925.3: Other letters
  9. MS Am 1925.4: Compositions, photographs, contracts and miscellany

Immediate Source of Acquisition

99M-43. Manuscripts deposited by and later gift of Houghton Mifflin Company, 2 Beacon Street, Boston, Massachusetts: received after 1943; Gift 1991.

Related Materials

Letterbooks, cost books, and other Houghton Mifflin records not included in this collection are described in separate finding aids. See HOLLIS and OASIS for additional information.

Processing Information

Processed by: Patrick K. Miehe

Houghton Mifflin Company. Houghton Mifflin Company correspondence and records, 1832-1944: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, archives, and more. Houghton Library's collections represent the scope of human experience from ancient Egypt to twenty-first century Cambridge. With strengths primarily in North American and European history, literature, and culture, collections range in media from printed books and handwritten manuscripts to maps, drawings and paintings, prints, posters, photographs, film and audio recordings, and digital media, as well as costumes, theater props, and a wide range of other objects. Houghton Library has historically focused on collecting the written record of European and Eurocentric North American culture, yet it holds a large and diverse number of primary sources valuable for research on the languages, culture and history of indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

Houghton Library’s Reading Room is free and open to all who wish to use the library’s collections.

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