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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 1577-1577.6

William Dean Howells literary manuscripts


Manuscripts by American novelist and editor William Dean Howells.


  • 1880-1919

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material. Collection is open for research.


3 linear feet (8 volumes, 2 boxes)
Manuscripts of novels, autobiographical works, short stories, and essays by Howells. Includes complete manuscripts of The Undiscovered Country, Doctor Breen's Practice, and The Quality of Mercy; chapters 1-15 of A Modern Instance; a nearly complete manuscript of A Boy's Town; and an incomplete manuscript, together with galley and page proofs, of Years of My Youth. Also includes several pieces written for the Editor's Easy Chair section of Harper's Magazine.

Biographical / Historical

William Dean Howells: novelist and man of letters; United States consul in Venice (1861-1865); editor of The Atlantic Monthly (1871-1881) and of Cosmopolitan (1881-1892); a champion of realism in literature.


  1. I. MS Am 1577-1577.5: Literary manuscripts
  2. II. MS Am 1577.6: Additional literary manuscripts

Immediate Source of Acquisition

59M-33. Purchased with the Amy Lowell fund from Mildred Howells; received: 1959.
Howells, William Dean, 1837-1920. William Dean Howells literary manuscripts, 1880-1919: 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.

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