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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 1091

John Reed papers

The papers of John Reed, the American journalist and revolutionary, including papers relating to his wife, writer Louise Bryant.

Dates

  • 1903-1967

Language of Materials

Collection materials in English, French, Russian, Spanish, German, and Italian.

Conditions Governing Access

Correspondence between John Reed and Louise Bryant, items 24-123 and 237-305 are fragile; use positive microfilm shelved with the originals.

Conditions Governing Use

Images linked to this finding aid are intended for public access and educational use. This material is owned and/or held by the Houghton Library, and is provided solely for the purpose of teaching or individual research. Any other use, including commercial reuse, mounting on other systems, or other forms of redistribution requires the permission of the curator.

Extent

10.5 linear feet (32 boxes, 2 volumes)

The papers of John Silas Reed, poet, journalist, and revolutionary, include his correspondence, personal miscellany, letters to and from his wife (Louise Bryant), notes, and drafts and final manuscripts for his writings. His writings include: poetry, songs, prose, books, pamphlets, plays, newspaper reports, speeches, and revolutionary writings. There are letters and compositions relating to his family and his diverse group of friends and colleagues such as: William Jennings Bryan, Louise Bryant, Charles Townsend Copeland, Max and Crystal Eastman, Emma Goldman, Robert Canby Hallowell, Morris Hillquit, Carl Hovey, Edward Eyre Hunt, Vladimir Il'ich Lenin, Walter Lippman, Eugene O'Neill, Boardman Robinson, Alan Seeger, Upton Sinclair, Lincoln Steffens, Julian Street, and many others. One section of particular note is the photographs that record Reed's journalistic days covering Francisco Villa in Mexico, the 1912 Industrial Workers of the World strike in Paterson, New Jersey, the 1914 United Mine Workers' strike in Ludlow, Colorado, and the voluminous section of photographs of the Russian Revolution. There are materials throughout documenting radical left-wing movements in the United States for the period ca.1912-1920, particularly the extensive pamphlet, magazine, and newspaper sections. Reed's years in Russia are extensively chronicled in his notes for "Ten Days that Shook the World", his many Russian notebooks and scrapbooks, and the series titled, Documents of the Russian revolution.

Biographical / Historical

John Silas Reed was an American poet, journalist, revolutionary writer, and political activist. He graduated from Harvard College in 1910 and soon joined the staff of "The Masses", a Socialist newspaper. He was a war correspondent in Mexico and Europe for "Metropolitan Magazine" and a publicist for the Russian Revolution. During his years in New York City, he became part of the literary and radical circle of intellectuals surrounding Max Eastman, Emma Goldman, and others, and during this period he married Louise Bryant, a fellow journalist and writer. He was frequently arrested for organizing and defending labor strikes, and he became known as a radical leader who went on to help form the American Communist Party. He is most famous for his book, "Ten Days that Shook the World" (1919), where he recorded his eyewitness account of the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution in Russia. He became head of the U.S. Communist Labor Party in 1919, was indicted for treason, and escaped to the Soviet Union where he continued working with Lenin and others in the Soviet government. He died of typhus in 1920 and was buried beside the Kremlin wall.

Arrangement

Arranged into the following series:
  1. I. Letters from John S. Reed
  2. II. Letters to John S. Reed
  3. III. Letters to Louise Bryant
  4. IV. Other letters
  5. V. Compositions by John S. Reed
  6. A. Prose
  7. B. Books and pamphlets
  8. C. Plays
  9. D. Poetry and songs
  10. E. Notes
  11. VI. Biographical material
  12. VII. Photographs
  13. VIII. Compositions by others
  14. IX. Documents of the Russian revolution
  15. X. Printed material
  16. A. Pamphlets
  17. B. Magazines and newspapers
  18. XI. Materials concerning the John Reed papers
  19. Index of former shelf-numbers of the John Reed papers
Please note that item numbers 433, 551, 960, and 1149 were inadvertently omitted from this finding aid.

Physical Location

b, f

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The John Silas Reed Papers were originally assembled by John Reed's widow, Louise Bryant, who turned them over to the Harvard Alumni John Reed Committee. In 1936 the committee voted to present this collection to the Harvard College Library.

No accession number. Gift of the Harvard Alumni John Reed Committee, Corliss Lamont, Secretary-Treasurer; received: 1936 Oct. 8.

bMS Am 1091 (1260). Purchased with Bemis Fund received: 1940 Mar. 6.

41-7720; bMS Am 1091 (1234). Gift of Granville Hicks, Grafton, New York; received: 1942 Feb. 26.

42M-198; bMS Am 1091 (145-166). Gift of Corliss Lamont, 450 Riverside Drive, New York, New York; received: 1942 Sept. 22.

bMS Am 1091 (1395). Gift of Abel Startsev; received: 1967. MS Am 1091 (1390a); 2018M-36. Purchased from Charles Agvent with funds from the Harmand Teplow Class of 1920 Book Fund; received: 2017 July 21.

MS Am 1091 (1410a); 2018M-35. Purchased from Charles Agvent with funds from the Harmand Teplow Class of 1920 Book Fund; received: 2017 July 21.

Related Materials

The Houghton Library has other John Reed accessions. The reader should check HOLLIS for additional material.

Separated Materials

Much of the printed material in Russian in this collection was given to the New York Public Library.

INDEX OF FORMER CLASSIFICATION NUMBERS OF THE JOHN REED PAPERS

Old numbers (MS Am 9045); New numbers (bMS Am1091)
  1. I-?; 1400, 1412
  2. I-A-(1-6); 1381
  3. I-A-(7-8); 1396
  4. I-A-(9-10); 1380
  5. I-A-11; 1382
  6. I-A-12; 1404
  7. I-A-13; 1410
  8. I-A-14; 1399
  9. I-A-(15-17); 1397
  10. I-A-(18-20); 1390
  11. I-A-(21-30); 1392
  12. I-A-(31-34); 1391
  13. I-B-?; 1402
  14. I-B-(1-3); 1386
  15. I-B-4; 1398
  16. I-B-(5-13); 1389
  17. I-B-(14-29); 1384
  18. I-B-31; 1401
  19. I-B-(32 & 34); 1402
  20. I-B-35; 1394
  21. I-B-36; 1381
  22. I-B-37; 1403
  23. I-B-38; 1397
  24. I-B-(40-51); 1383
  25. I-B-49; 1385
  26. I-B-(53-57); 1387
  27. I-B-58; 1388
  28. I-B-59; 1411
  29. I-B-60; 1383
  30. I-B-(71 & 72); 1385
  31. I-C-(1-4); 1385
  32. I-C-(6-29); 1385
  33. I-C-(31-48); 1385
  34. I-D; 1405, 1406, 1407, 1408, 1409
  35. II-A-1; 1094
  36. II-A-2; 1291
  37. II-A-3; 1300
  38. II-A-4; 1289
  39. II-A-5; 1106
  40. II-A-6; 1278
  41. II-A-7; 1268
  42. II-A-8; 1101
  43. II-A-9; 1102
  44. II-A-10; 1097
  45. II-A-11; 1265
  46. II-A-12; 1303
  47. II-A-13; 1299
  48. II-A-14; 1103
  49. II-A-15; 1290
  50. II-A-16; 1098
  51. II-A-17; 1098
  52. II-A-18; 1280
  53. II-A-19; 1271
  54. II-A-20; 1271
  55. II-A-21; 1105
  56. II-A-22; 1104
  57. II-A-(23-25); 1259
  58. II-A-26; 1263
  59. II-A-27; 1272
  60. II-A-28; 1279
  61. II-A-29; 1108
  62. II-A-(30-31); 1295
  63. II-A-32; 1116
  64. II-A-33; 1110
  65. II-A-34; 1111
  66. II-A-35; 1281
  67. II-A-(36-37); 1283
  68. II-A-(38-39); 1133
  69. II-A-40; 1269
  70. II-A-41; 1130
  71. II-A-42; 1126
  72. II-A-43; 1124
  73. II-A-44; 1121
  74. II-A-45; 1131
  75. II-A-46; 1122
  76. II-A-47; 1123
  77. II-A-48; 1134
  78. II-A-(49-50); 1129
  79. II-A-(51-52); 1305
  80. II-A-53; 1119
  81. II-A-54; 1285
  82. II-A-55; 1120
  83. II-A-56; 1132
  84. II-A-57; 1136
  85. II-A-58; 1138
  86. II-A-59; 1137
  87. II-A-60; 1142
  88. II-A-61; 1141
  89. II-A-(62-63); 1307
  90. II-A-(64-65); 1282
  91. II-A-66; 1267
  92. II-A-67; 1145
  93. II-A-68; 1302
  94. II-A-69; 1148
  95. II-A-70; 1147
  96. II-A-71; 1150
  97. II-A-73; 1153
  98. II-A-(74-75); 1152
  99. II-A-(76-78); 1151
  100. II-A-79; 1156
  101. II-A-80; 1158
  102. II-A-81; 1155
  103. II-A-82; 1261
  104. II-A-83; 1176
  105. II-A-84; 1175
  106. II-A-85; 1177
  107. II-A-86; 1178
  108. II-A-87; 1304
  109. II-A-88; 1173
  110. II-A-89; 1171
  111. II-A-90; 1172
  112. II-A-(91-95); 1166
  113. II-A-96; 1168
  114. II-A-97; 1189
  115. II-A-98; 1159
  116. II-A-99; 1308
  117. II-A-100; 1180
  118. II-A-101; 1179
  119. II-A-(103-104); 1190
  120. II-A-105; 1182
  121. II-A-(106-107); 1186
  122. II-A-(108-110); 1187
  123. II-A-111; 1188
  124. II-A-112; 1194
  125. II-A-113; 1192
  126. II-A-114; 1204
  127. II-A-115; 1297
  128. II-A-116; 1201
  129. II-A-117; 1200
  130. II-A-118; 1210
  131. II-A-119; 1212
  132. II-A-120; 1219
  133. II-A-121; 1472
  134. II-A-122; 1474
  135. II-A-123; 1473
  136. II-A-124; 1221
  137. II-A-125; 1220
  138. II-A-126; 1475
  139. II-A-127; 1476
  140. II-A-128; 1477
  141. II-A-129; 1478
  142. II-A-130; 1222
  143. II-A-131; 1479
  144. II-A-132; 1223
  145. II-A-133; 1224
  146. II-A-134; 1225
  147. II-A-135; 1292
  148. II-A-136; 1216
  149. II-A-137; 1217
  150. II-A-138; 1226
  151. II-A-139; 1230
  152. II-A-(140-141); 1227
  153. II-A-142; 1228
  154. II-A-143; 1229
  155. II-A-144; 1146
  156. II-B-1; 1095, 1235
  157. II-B-(2-3); 1301
  158. II-B-(4-5); 1096
  159. II-B-6; 1099
  160. II-B-7; 1100
  161. II-B-(8-12); 1287
  162. II-B-(13-15); 1114
  163. II-B-(16-18); 1270
  164. II-B-19; 1113
  165. II-B-(20-21); 1127
  166. II-B-22; 1128
  167. II-B-23; 1306
  168. II-B-24; 1293
  169. II-B-25; 1125
  170. II-B-26; 1288
  171. II-B-(27-28); 1144
  172. II-B-29; 1154
  173. II-B-30; 1157
  174. II-B-31; 1161
  175. II-B-32; 1262
  176. II-B-33; 1167
  177. II-B-34; 1170
  178. II-B-35; 1169
  179. II-B-36; 1191
  180. II-B-(37-39); 1185
  181. II-B-40; 1183
  182. II-B-(41-43); 1184
  183. II-B-(44-46); 1181
  184. II-B-(47-48); 1451
  185. II-B-(49-50); 1202
  186. II-B-(51-52); 1196
  187. II-B-53; 1199
  188. II-B-54; 1215
  189. II-B-(55-56); 1239
  190. II-B-(57-58); 1205
  191. II-B-(59-60); 1213
  192. II-B-61; 1218
  193. II-B-62; 1242
  194. II-B-(62-65); 1258
  195. II-B-63; 1243
  196. II-B-64(1); 1244
  197. II-B-64(2); 1245
  198. II-B-64(3); 1246
  199. II-B-64(4); 1247
  200. II-B-64(5); 1248
  201. II-B-64(6); 1249
  202. II-B-65(1); 1250
  203. II-B-65(2); 1251
  204. II-B-65(3); 1252
  205. II-B-65(4); 1253
  206. II-B-65(5); 1255
  207. II-B-65(6); 1256
  208. II-B-65(7); 1254
  209. II-B-66; 1286
  210. II-B-67; 1231
  211. III; Most remain the same.
  212. IV; Most remain the same.
  213. V-E-1; 1143
  214. V-E-2; 1164
  215. V-E-3; 1160
  216. V-E-4; 1208
  217. V-E-5; 1240
  218. V-E-6; 1203
  219. V-E-7; 1198
  220. V-E-8; 1257
  221. V-E-9; 1214
  222. VI-?; 1379
  223. VI-1; 1372
  224. VI-2; 1371
  225. VI-3; 1374
  226. VI-4; 1348
  227. VI-5; 1420
  228. VI-7; 1343
  229. VI-8; 1359
  230. VI-9; 1349
  231. VI-10; 1481
  232. VI-11; 1491
  233. VI-13; 1370
  234. VI-14; 1378
  235. VI-17; 1370
  236. VI-18; 1488
  237. VI-19; 1433
  238. VI-20; 1482
  239. VI-21; 1349
  240. VI-22; 1355
  241. VI-23; 1375
  242. VI-24; 1376
  243. VI-25; 1355
  244. VI-26; 1319
  245. VI-(27-28); 1342
  246. VI-29; 1313
  247. VI-30; 1311
  248. VI-31; 1370
  249. VI-32; 1369a
  250. VI-33; 1363
  251. VI-34; 1348
  252. VI-(35-36); 1370
  253. VI-37; 1491
  254. VII-A-1; 1507
  255. VII-A-2; 1514
  256. VII-B-?; 1502
  257. VII-B-1; 1512
  258. VII-B-3; 1523
  259. VII-B-4; 1521
  260. VII-B-5; 1524
  261. VII-B-7; 1532
  262. VII-B-8; 1522
  263. VII-B-9; 1503
  264. VII-B-10; 1497
  265. VII-B-11; 1523
  266. VII-B-12; 1520
  267. VII-B-14; 1499
  268. VII-B-15; 1530
  269. VII-B-16; 1517
  270. VII-C-(1-34); 1552
  271. VII-D-?; 1538, 1558, 1559
  272. VII-D-1; 1496
  273. VII-D-2; 1498
  274. VII-D-3; 1090
  275. VII-D-4; 1084
  276. VII-D-5; 1444
  277. VII-D-6; 1519
  278. VII-D-7; 1525
  279. VII-D-8; 1485
  280. VII-D-9; 1510
  281. VII-D-10; 1545
  282. VII-D-10; 1527
  283. VII-D-11; 1547
  284. VII-D-11; 1556
  285. VII-D-(12-13); 1462
  286. VII-D-14; 1549
  287. VII-D-15; 1465
  288. VII-D-16; 1461
  289. VII-D-17; 1516
  290. VII-D-18; 1515
  291. VII-D-(18-19); 1539
  292. VII-D-20; 1463
  293. VII-D-21; 1509
  294. VII-D-22; 1506
  295. VII-D-23; 1508
  296. VII-D-24; 1504
  297. VII-D-25; 1550
  298. VII-D-26; 1548
  299. VII-D-27; 1501
  300. VII-D-28; 1551
  301. VII-D-(29-30); 1528
  302. VII-D-31; 1541
  303. VII-D-32; 1553
  304. VII-D-33; 1546
  305. VII-D-34; 1511
  306. VII-D-(35-36); 1505
  307. VII-D-37; 1495
  308. VII-D-38; 1540
  309. VII-D-39; 1542
  310. VII-D-40; 1557
  311. VII-D-41; 1464
  312. VII-D-42; 1554
  313. VII-D-43; 1452
  314. VII-D-44; 1513
  315. VII-D-45; 1518
  316. VII-D-(46-51); 1526
  317. VII-D-52; 1531
  318. VII-D-53; 1529
  319. VII-D-54; 1534
  320. VII-D-55; 1536
  321. VII-D-56; 1537
  322. VII-D-57; 1533
  323. VII-D-58; 1535
  324. VII-D-59; 1555
  325. VII-D-60; 1543
  326. VII-D-61; 1544
  327. VII-D-62; 1500
  328. VII-E-1; 1413
  329. VII-E-2; 1471
  330. VII-E-3; 1434
  331. VII-E-4; 1446
  332. VII-E-5; 1494
  333. VII-E-6; 1486
  334. VII-E-7; 1416
  335. VII-E-9; 944a
  336. VII-E-10; 916a
  337. VII-E-11; 1346
  338. VII-E-12; 1450
  339. VII-E-13; 1449
  340. VII-E-14; 1490
  341. VII-E-15; 1428
  342. VII-E-16; 1487
  343. VII-E-17; 1087
  344. VII-F-1; 1417
  345. VII-F-2; 1418
  346. VII-F-3; 1419
  347. VII-F-4; 1424
  348. VII-F-5; 1425
  349. VII-F-6; 1426
  350. VII-F-(7-8); 1427
  351. VII-F-9; 1430
  352. VII-F-10; 1435
  353. VII-F-11; 1436
  354. VII-F-12; 1437
  355. VII-F-13; 1438
  356. VII-F-14; 1439
  357. VII-F-15; 1440
  358. VII-F-16; 1441
  359. VII-F-17; 1442
  360. VII-F-18; 1443
  361. VII-F-19; 1445
  362. VII-F-20; 1448
  363. VII-F-21; 1454
  364. VII-F-22; 1456
  365. VII-F-23; 1467
  366. VII-F-24; 1468
  367. VII-F-25; 1470
  368. VII-F-26; 1466
  369. VII-F-27; 1469
  370. VII-F-28; 1483
  371. VII-F-29; 1431
  372. VII-F-30; 1337
  373. VII-F-31; 1092
  374. VII-F-(32-39); 1489
  375. VII-F-40; 1492
  376. VII-F-41; 1232
  377. VII-F-42; 1294
  378. VII-F-43; 1493
  379. VII-F-44; 1298
  380. VII-F-45; 1273
  381. VII-G-1; 1415
  382. VII-G-2; 1447
  383. VII-G-3; 1453
  384. VII-G-4; 1457
  385. VII-G-5; 1357
  386. VII-H-?; 1352
  387. VII-H-(1-11); 1458
  388. VII-H-12; 1459
  389. VII-H-13; 1455
  390. VII-H-14; 1432
  391. VII-H-15; 1460
  392. VII-I-1; 1362
  393. VII-I-2; 1354
  394. VII-I-3; 1361
  395. VII-I-4; 1351
  396. VII-I-5; 1353
  397. VII-I-6; 1377
  398. VII-I-7; 1367
  399. VII-I-8; 1414
  400. VII-I-9; 1368
  401. VII-I-10; 1356
  402. VII-I-11; 1350
  403. VII-I-12; 1373
  404. VII-I-13; 1365
  405. VII-I-14; 1347
  406. VII-I-15; 1358
  407. VII-I-16; 1314
  408. VII-I-17; 1366
  409. VII-I-18; 1345
  410. VII-I-19; 1360
  411. VII-I-20; 1364
  412. VII-I-22; 1344
  413. VII-I-24; 476a
  414. VII-I-25; 1480
  415. VII-J-?; 1352
  416. VII-J-?; 1429
  417. VII-J-?; 1423
  418. VII-J-?; 1422
  419. VII-J-(1-4); 1091
  420. VIII-(1-108); 1560, 1241, 1484
  421. IX-(1-82); 1561
  422. X-?; 1277, 1233
  423. X-A-1; 1275
  424. X-A-2; 1274
  425. X-A-3; 1310, 1290, 1284
  426. X-A-4; 1272
  427. X-A-5; 1107
  428. X-A-6; 1238
  429. X-B-2; 1264
  430. X-B-3; 1236
  431. X-B-4; 1112
  432. X-B-5; 1115
  433. X-B-6; 1266
  434. X-B-8; 1296
  435. X-B-(9-10); 1237
  436. X-B-11; 1118
  437. X-B-12; 1117
  438. X-B-13; 1109
  439. X-B-14; 1135
  440. X-C; 1139, 1140
  441. X-D; 1316
  442. X-E; 1162, 1163
  443. X-F; 1338
  444. X-G-?; 1206, 1276, 1209, 1309, 1233
  445. X-G-1; 1315
  446. X-G-2; 1312
  447. X-G-3; 1339
  448. X-G-4; 1318
  449. X-G-5; 1207
  450. X-G-6; 1165
  451. X-G-7; 1174
  452. X-G-8; 1193
  453. X-G-8; 1317
  454. X-G-9?; 1341
  455. X-G-9; 1211
  456. X-H-?; 1333, 1331, 1332, 1330, 1325, 1326, 1327, 1328
  457. X-H-1; 1320
  458. X-H-2; 1321
  459. X-H-3?; 1322
  460. X-H-5?; 1329
  461. X-H-6?; 1323
  462. X-H-7; 1324
  463. X-I?; 1197
  464. X-J?; 1421, 1352, 1195
  465. X-K ; 1258
  466. X-L-1; 1334
  467. X-L-2; 1335
  468. X-L-3; 1336
  469. XII; Most remain the same
New numbers that have been changed:
  1. 1091 (551); Under separate names
  2. 1091(959); Under separate names
  3. 1091(960); Under separate names
  4. 1091(1072); 1340
  5. 1091(1073); 1257
  6. 1091(1074); 1143
  7. 1091(1075); 1164
  8. 1091(1076); 1160
  9. 1091(1077); 1208
  10. 1091(1078); 1240
  11. 1091(1079); 1203
  12. 1091(1080); 1214
  13. 1091(1081); 1198
  14. 1091(1082); 1234

Processing Information

Processed by: Original inventory by Granville Hicks; recataloged in 1988 by Bonnie B. Salt

A first catalog of the collection was prepared and shipped with the papers by Granville Hicks, Reed's biographer. The Hicks listing was the major bibliographic source for the collection until this recataloging was undertaken in 1988. At some time between the original accessioning of the papers and this recataloging, the correspondence sections had been cataloged into the new bMS Am 1091 classification system. Consequently, these numbers have been retained with only small changes in sequence; they now form the first series of this finding aid. The original classification number of MS Am 9045 has been changed to bMS Am 1091 and a concordance of the old and new numbers appears at the end of this index. The old classification number also appears following each item entry. It should be noted, however, that many items were not clearly marked with old classification numbers and a ? appears in such an instance.
Link to catalog
Title
Reed, John, 1887-1920. John Reed papers, 1903-1967 (MS Am 1091): Guide.
Author
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
EAD ID
hou00070

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

Contact:
Harvard Yard
Harvard University
Cambridge MA 02138 USA
(617) 495-2440