Skip to main content
COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 1449

Alexander Woollcott correspondence


Correspondence with the American drama critic Alexander Woollcott from authors and actors about the theater and the film industry.


  • 1856-1943
  • Majority of material found in 1920-1943

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.


22.5 linear feet (27 boxes and 11 volumes)
Primarily letters to Alexander Woollcott concerning life in the film industry and theater in the New York and London, from authors and actors, including Irving Berlin, Willa Cather, Charles Chaplin, Noel Coward, John Dos Passos, F. Scott Fitzgerald, George Gershwin, Moss Hart, Jerome Kern, Margaret Mitchell, Edward R. Murrow, Dorothy Parker, Rebecca West, and Thornton Wilder, among many others. Also includes letters from his radio broadcasts listeners, correspondence concerning his alumnus activities at Hamilton College, and correspondence with Helen Keller, Annie Sullivan, and his associations with the Seeing Eye and Talking Books for the Blind. Collection also contains clippings, photographs, expense accounts, and copies of court documents.

Biographical / Historical

Woollcott was an American author, theatrical actor, drama critic for The New York Times, and a radio commentator, known as "The Town Crier."


Organized into the following series:
  1. I. Letters to Woolcott from various correspondents
  2. II. Letters from Woollcott and other papers

Physical Location

b, MS

Immediate Source of Acquisition

43M-836. Estate of Alexander Woollcott; gift of Joseph P. Hennessey, Esq., 18 East 48th St., New York, NY; received: 1943 November 11.
Woollcott, Alexander, 1887-1943. Alexander Woollcott correspondence, ca. 1856-1943: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library

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.

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