Finding-aid for the Florence Margaret (Stevie) Smith Papers (MSS103)


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Table of Contents

Collection Outline

Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Contents Note

Restrictions

Administrative Information


Collection Outline

Manuscripts

Letters to Kay Dick, 1943-1970.

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Descriptive Summary

TitleFlorence Margaret Smith Papers
Identification: MSS103

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Biographical Note

Stevie Smith, born in Hull, lived with an aunt in the same house in Palmers Green (a north London suburb) from the age of 4 until her death. Her aunt died in 1968. She was employed in the publishing offices of George Newnes Ltd. from the time she finished Secretarial Training College to mid-1953, when she retired due to ill health. From then on, she gave an increasingly large number of public readings and broadcasts. Throughout her career, she did a good many book reviews for various British periodicals. Her books of poems were all illustrated with her own drawings. Stevie Smith was awarded the Cholmondeley Poetry Award in 1966 and the Queen's Gold Medal for Poetry in 1969.

Works:

Novel on Yellow Paper [novel] (1936)

A Good Time was Had By All [collection of poems] (1937)

Over the Frontier [novel] (1938)

Tender Only to One [collection of poems] (1938)

Mother, What is Man [collection of poems] (1942)

The Holiday [novel] (1949)

Harold's Leap [collection of poems] (1950)

Not Waving But Drowning [collection of poems] (1957)

Some are More Human Than Others [drawings] (1958)

Selected Poems (1962)

The Frog Prince and Other Poems (1966)

The Best Beast [collection of poems] (1969 - USA)

Kay Dick and Stevie Smith met in 1943 when they were both employed in the George Newnes publishing offices in Tower House, where Kay Dick was assistant editor of John o' London's Weekley. She later edited, pseudonymously, The Windmill, a literary magazine, and three anthologies of fantastic tales under the pseudonym Jeremy Scott. She also gave several broadcasts about Stevie Smith for the BBC. The letters here, 1943-1970, are partially quoted from by Kay Dick in “Thinking about Stevie” in Ivy and Stevie, Conversations and Reflections (Duckworth, 1971) Kay Dick is also a novelist and critic.

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Scope and Contents Note

Folder 1. Manuscripts. Song of the River Trent [poem] Ts., 1 p.; Untitled poem, auto. druft, 2 pp. 2 items. Folders 2-7. Correspondence. Letters to Kay Dick, 1943-1970. ALsS, TLsS, postcards. 61 items.

Total: 63 items

1 Box.

Additional Works:

Scorpion and other poems (1972)

Editor: Poet's Garden (1970)

Batsford Book of Children's Verse (1970)

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Restrictions

Rights, use

No restrictions

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Administrative Information

SOURCE

Purchase, Rota, 1971

PROCESSED;

December, 1973 HH

ACCESSION: 1299

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Box/folder

Manuscripts,

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1/1.
Song of the River Trent [poem] Typescript, 1 p. Inscribed to Kay Dick and Kathleen Farrell: “To remind us literary chaps that others, too, have their troubles -- Love to Kay & Kathleen from Stevie.”,
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Untitled poem. Autograph draft, 2 pp. First line reads: He comes to my room.”,
2 items

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Correspondence. Letters to Kay Dick, , 1943-1970.

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1/2.
TLS, 1 p. [Tower House] Mentions several of her works, identifies autobiographical poems., [1943: March]
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TLS, 1 p. [Tower House] Comments on Kay Dick's poetry; luncheon invitation., 1943: May 28.
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autograph post card. [Southgate] Greetings, [1944: May 23]
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Arranges to collect a manuscript; news., 1945: Jan. 12.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Articles for The Windmill., 1945: Mar. 13.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Mentions Life Beyond the Gravy [short story]., 1945: Sept. 17.
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TLS, 2 pp. Tower House. Life Beyond the Gravy [short story], 1945: Oct. 2.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Submits Life Beyond the Gravy [short story]; luncheon invitation., 1945: Dec. 14.
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TLS, 2 pp. n.p. Comments on Life Beyond the Gravy [short story], 1946: Feb. 12.
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Typescript note. Tower House., 1946: Mar. 19.
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TLS, 2 pp. Tower House. Proofs of Life Beyond the Gravy., 1946: Oct. 18.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Comments on Olivia Manning's poems., 1947: July 31.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Comments on Kay Dick's anthology., 1947: Aug. 6.
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TLS, 2 pp. [Tower House] Announces projected publication of The Holiday [novel], 1947: Nov. 4.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Greetings., 1947: Nov. 26.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Possibility of reviewing Bustace and Hilda [novel] by L.P. Hartley., 1947: Dec. 8.
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ALS, 2 pp. Tower House. L.P. Hartley review; new year greetings., 1948: Jan. 1.
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TLS, 2 pp. Tower House. Discusses problems in length of Hartley review, fees; announces Penguin publication of Novel on Yellow Paper [novel], 1948: Feb. 17.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Submits review; lunches with Olivia Manning; inflation problems., 1948: Mar. 3.
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Typescript note, 1 p. Tower House., 1948: Mar. 15.
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ALS, 2 p. Tower House. Discusses proposed party., [1949]: Dec. 15.
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1/4.
TLS, 2 pp. Tower House. Laments Women's magazines; comments on Kay Dick's critical work; news., 1950: Oct. 24.
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TLS, 1 p. n.p. Review of Kathleen Farrell's book, and Olivia Manning's., 1951: Apr. 2.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Thanks Kay for her novel., 1951: July 11.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Arranges a meeting., 1951: July 19.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Comments on broadcast; luncheon meeting., 1952: July 23.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Arranges luncheon., 1952: July 31.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Cancels luncheon., 1952: Aug. 18.
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ALS, 2 pp. Tower House. Thanks for weekend visit., 1952: Dec. 15.
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1/5.
TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Arranges reviews for Kay Dick to undertake; comments on Olivia Manning's novel., 1953: Jan. 22.
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TLS, 1 p. Tower House. Sends poem for Kay Dick to translate; comments on photograph of herself in Country Life., 1953: Feb. 26.
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TLS, 2 pp. n.p. Supplies biographical information; comments on travel, poems sold to Punch, plans to go to Dublin Pen Conference., 1953: Apr. 15.
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ALS, 4 pp. Palmers Green. Arranges luncheon; comments on Not Waving But Drowning [poem], Punch, Kay Dick's novel, translations of Sappho; cancels Dublin trip., 1953: Apr. [28]
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TLS, 2 pp. [Tower House] Comments on Olivia Manning's novel; poems accepted by Punch; laments Women's magazines., 1953: May 21.
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Autograph post card [Norfolk] Observes hot weather., 1953: May 23.
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ALS, 4 pp. Palmers Green. Punch rejections; illness; Olivia Manning; reviews for Spectator., 1953: July 12.
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Autograph post card. [Haverford West, Wales] Holiday news; Kay Dick's broadcast., [1953: Aug. 21]
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Autograph post card [Winchmore Hill, Wales] Enjoying holiday., 1953: Aug. 26.
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ALS, 5 pp. Palmers Green. Thanks for broadcast scripts, comments on faults in it; says The Holiday [novel] is her favorite; arranges a meeting., 1953: Sept. 23.
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Autograph post card. Palmers Green. Asks her to disregard comments on The Holiday [novel]., 1953: Sept. 24.
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Autograph post card. [Palmers Green] Cancels meeting., 1953: Sept. 28.
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1/6.
ALS, 4 pp. Palmers Green. Arranges luncheon; comments on Kay Dick's book; news of her reading., 1953: Oct. 26.
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Consoles her with her problems., 1953: Oct. 30.
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ALS, 3 pp. Palmers Green. Arranges a meeting; Listener has rejected poems., 1953: Nov. 12.
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ALS, 5 pp. Palmers Green. Thanks for script; agitates to get BBC fee; comments on reviews she has done., 1953: Nov. 24.
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on Kay Dick's book., 1958: Nov. 22.
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Autograph post card. [Winchmore Hill, Wales] Greetings., 1959: May 4.
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Autograph post card. [Palmers Green] Raves about book by Maria Browne., [1959: May 5]
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Thanks for unidentified transcript., 1959: Nov. 18.
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ALS, 1 p. Holt, Norfolk. Death of Aunt., 1968: Mar. 26.
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on Queen's Medal; agrees to an interview with Kay Dick., 1969: Nov. 8.
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1/7.
TLS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on poetry readings, illnesses, Olivia Manning's grant., 1970: Apr. 29.
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Autograph post card. n.p. Greetings., [1970: July 17]
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ALS, 4 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on sister's health, interviews, illnesses, Scorpion [poem], 1970: Oct. 13.
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Arranges meeting in Brighton., 1970: Oct. 20.
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Autograph post card [Palmers Green] Greetings., 1970: Nov. 5.
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TLS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on scheduled interview (See Ivy and Stevie, by Kay Dick), readings., 1970: Nov. 10.
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ALS, 2 pp. Palmers Green. Comments on illnesses, reviews; news of friends., n.d. Sunday.
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ALS, 4 pp. Bideford, Devon. Holiday news, reviewing., n.d. Thursday.
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TLS, 1 p. [Tower House] Arranges a meeting with [Ivy Compton-Burnett]; her recent writing., n.d. Fr.
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ALS, 4 pp. [Tower House] Arranges for Luncheon; cheque from John o' London., n.d. n.d.
61 items

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