Finding-Aid for the John Hersey Letter (VMF152)


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Table of Contents

Collection Outline

Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Restrictions

Administrative Information


Collection Outline

Letter from John Hersey to Jane Neylan McBaine Childs (Mrs. Marquis W. Childs) 1944: February 16

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Descriptive Summary

Creator: Hersey, John, 1914-1993.
Title: John Hersey Letter
Quantity: 1 item
Identification: VMF152

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Biographical Note

John Richard Hersey (June 17, 1914 – March 24, 1993) was a Pulitzer Prize-winning American writer and journalist considered one of the earliest practitioners of the so-called New Journalism, in which storytelling devices of the novel are fused with non-fiction reportage.

Born in China, to missionaries, Roscoe and Grace Baird Hersey, Hersey returned to the United States with his family when he was ten years old. Later, Hersey attended Yale University, where he was a member of Skull and Bones Society. He subsequently was a graduate student at Cambridge as a Mellon Fellow. Following his time at Cambridge, Hersey got a summer job as private secretary and driver for author Sinclair Lewis in 1937, but he chafed at his duties, and that fall he began work at Time, where he was hire after writing an essay on the magazine's dismal quality.

During World War II, Hersey covered fighting in Europe as well as Asia, writing articles for Time as well as Life magazine. He accompanied Allied troops on their invasion of Sicily, survived four airplane crashes, and was commended by the Secretary of the Navy for his role in helping evacuate wounded soldiers from Guadalcanal.

At the close of the conflict, during the winter of 1945–46, Hersey was in Japan, reporting for The New Yorker on the reconstruction of the devastated country. He proposed a story that would convey the cataclysmic narrative through six individuals who survived. The result was his most notable work, the 31,000-word article "Hiroshima," which appeared in the August 31, 1946 issue of The New Yorker.

Hersey died at his winter home in Key West, Florida, on March 24, 1993.

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Restrictions

Access Restrictions

Open.

Use Restriction

None

Users of the collections must read and abide by the Rules for the use of manuscript collection materials.

Users of the collections who wish to use items from this collection, in whole or in part, in any form of publication (as defined in the form) must sign and submit to the Washington University Department of Special Collections a hard copy of the Notification of intent publish manuscript collection materials form.

All publication not covered by fair use restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder.

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Administrative Information

Source

Accession 22987

Process by Washington University Special Collections Staff

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Box/folder
1/1

Letter from John Hersey to Jane Neylan McBaine Childs (Mrs. Marquis W. Childs), 1944: February 16 (ALS, 1p with env)

Possibly laid in A Bell for Adano, PS3515 E7723 B4 1944.

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