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|Size||About 525 items (9.5 linear feet)|
|Abstract||Shelby Foote, novelist and historian, who was born in Greenville, Miss., in 1916; attended the University of North Carolina, 1935-1937; served in the Mississippi National Guard and then as field artillery captain in Northern Ireland, 1940-1944; and worked for the Associated Press, 1944-1945. In 1949, Tournament, his first novel, was published. Foote moved to Memphis in 1954. Chiefly correspondence and writings of Foote. Writings include drafts of the three-volume The Civil War: A Narrative (1958-1974) and of his published novels ( Tournament, Follow Me Down, Love in a Dry Season, Shiloh!, Jordan County, and September September), and drafts and published versions of short stories and other writings. Correspondence consists primarily of letters from Foote to his friend, novelist Walker Percy (1916- ), and a few letters from others.|
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|1916||Born to Shelby Dade and Lillian Rosenstock Foote of Greenville, Miss., 17 November.|
|1935-1937||Attended University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill.|
|1940-1944||Served first in Mississippi National Guard and then as field artillery captain in Northern Ireland.|
|1944-1945||Employed for several months by Associated Press in New York.|
|1945||Served in United States Marine Corps.|
|1945-1947||Employed by radio station WJPR, Greenville.|
|1949||First novel, Tournament, published.|
|1950||Follow Me Down published.|
|1951||Love in a Dry Season published.|
|1954||Jordan County: A Landscape in Narrative published.|
|1955-1960||Awarded three Guggenheim Fellowships.|
|1958||The Civil War: A Narrative: Fort Sumter to Perryville (Volume I) published.|
|1963||The Civil War: A Narrative: Fredericksburg to Meridian (Volume II) published.|
|1963||Guest lecturer, University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Va.|
|1963-1964||Ford Foundation fellow and playwright-in-residence, Arena Stage, Washington, D.C.|
|1968||Writer-in-residence, Hollins College, Roanoke, Va.|
|1974||The Civil War: A Narrative: Red River to Appomattox (Volume III) published.|
|1978||September September published.|
|1989||Conversations with Shelby Foote published.|
For further biographical information, see Shelby Foote by Helen White and Redding S. Sugg, Jr., (1982).Back to Top
Correspondence consists largely of letters that Shelby Foote wrote to his friend Walker Percy. There are also a few letters to Foote from other writers, most notably Calder Willingham. Foote has not routinely saved letters he has received or made copies of outgoing letters.
Writings include at least one version of each of Foote's published works and of several unpublished shorter works, spanning the period from his years as a student at the University of North Carolina through 1978, when he published his latest novel, September September. Many works appear in several versions, including some with bound, handwritten versions.
There are a few miscellaneous items, including a college notebook and two photographs of Foote.Back to Top
Arrangement: alphabetical by correspondent, then chronological.
Chiefly letters from Shelby Foote to Walker Percy, a close friend who was a fellow student in high school in Greenville and at the University of North Carolina. In early 1983, Percy returned many of these letters to Foote, who then presented them to the Southern Historical Collection. Foote stated that only a half to two-thirds of his letters to Percy were saved. There are no letters in these papers from Percy. Letters from Percy to Foote are in the Walker Percy Papers (#4294).
There are 315 letters from Foote to Percy, over half of which were written in the 1950s. They contain discussions of various novelists and their work; of the writing process, both in general and as applied to Foote's own work; of a common interest in classical music; and, occasionally, of the racial situation in the South. From 1960 on, Foote's letters often include his reactions to Percy's work, particularly Percy's first two novels.
Though Foote has saved little of his correspondence, a few letters from other writers are included in these papers. They are Bruce Catton: 2 letters, 1960, 1974; Bennett Cerf: 1 letter, 1966; James Jones: 4 letters, 1952, 1959; Calder Willingham - 18 letters, 1952-1978.
There are also photocopies of five letters relating to Foote's receiving an honorary doctorate from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1992 and of later letters from Foote to George F. Sheldon, M.D.
Drafts, proofs, and published versions of Foote's writings
Arrangement: chronological by publication date.
For each of the three volumes of Foote's The Civil War: A Narrative, there are two drafts. The first drafts are ribbon typescripts with autograph corrections by Foote. These are bound in groups of two or three chapters. The last half of the final bound segment of Volume III contains a scrapbook of articles, reviews, advertisements, and other clippings related to the publication of the work as a whole. The second draft of each volume is a setting copy, with notations by editors as well as by Foote. These are unbound with chapters foldered individually. Galley proofs of each of the three volumes are filed separately as two oversized volumes. There is also a cassette tape of Foote reading selections from Volume III.
Shelby Foote reading from The Civil War vol. 3, Memphis, Tenn., 30 July 1982 #04038, Subseries: "2.1 The Civil War: A Narrative, 1957-1974. " C-4038/1
Arrangement: chronological by publication date.
Manuscript and typescript drafts of Foote's six published novels. Jordan County is included, even though it is comprised of several separately written short stories, versions of which also appear in Subseries 2.3. Descriptions of individual items follow.
Note: See Subseries 2.3 for drafts of "The Merchant of Bristol," a shortstory extracted from Tournament.
Draft 1: autograph manuscript, 651 pages plus a three-page typed synopsis and two hand-drawn maps of Jordan County and Bristol, Miss. Dated "begun February 1939, completed March 11, 1940." #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 52-58
Draft 2: typescript of scattered pages of Draft 1, 89 pages. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 52-58
Draft 3: bound ribbon typescript, 374 pages. First full typed draft, with numerous autograph corrections and autograph diagram of the novel's format on last page. Dated April 1940. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 52-58
Draft 4: bound ribbon typescript, 420 pages. Later draft with autograph corrections. Dated 1948. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 52-58
Draft 1: autograph manuscript, 343 pages. Dated February-July 1949. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 59-60
Draft 1: autograph manuscript, 175 pages. Dated Spring-Summer 1947. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 62-64
Draft 2: bound ribbon typescript of Draft 1, 205 pages. Dated 4 July 1947. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 62-64
JORDAN COUNTY: A LANDSCAPE IN NARRATIVE (published 1954). #04038, Subseries: "2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. " Folder 65-66a
Note: see Subseries 2.3 for other drafts of these stories.
Draft: ribbon and carbon typescripts of versions of five of the of the seven stories that comprise the novel--three versions of "The Sacred Mound; "two versions each of "Child by Fever," "Pillar of Fire," and "Ride Out; "and one version of "A Marriage Portion." Originally boxed together, pages, totalling 416, are numbered separately for each version.Bound, typed copy with handwritten annotations (Acc.92064).
Note: A second draft of September September, the setting copy, is housed in the Mississippi Valley Historical Collection at Memphis State University.
Two 152-page ledger volumes of autograph background material for the novel. Included are biographies of major characters, plot outlines, chapter summaries, chronologies of non-fictional events of September 1957, and maps of Memphis settings. A timetable showing when each chapter was written appears on the final page of Volume II. Volume I is dated February 1976; Volume II is dated April 1976. Filed with the journal is a letter from Foote to his agent Robert Rosen, dated 1 October 1975, in which he described his early ideas for the novel.
Bound ribbon typescript of early version with autograph corrections, 221 pages, followed by two pages of typed notes, outlines, and an autograph calendar of September 1957 pasted in; a 21-page "working synopses," typed, with autograph notations and dates; and a five-sheet wall calendar showing daily progress attached to back cover. Dated 1 April 1976-11 May 1977.
Galley proofs: 106 sheets with minor corrections by Foote, undated. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.2. Novels, 1939-1978. , Folder 67-71
Arrangement: alphabetical by title.
Drafts and published versions of Foote's short stories (two of which are of novella length), articles, book reviews, a poem, and a play. Included are his earliest published works, written when he was a student at the University of North Carolina, as well as versions of stories that later appeared in the novel Jordan County.
"All Right About That" (short story) and "A Tale Untitled" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 72
Published versions appearing in Carolina Magazine, December 1936.
"Bristol's Gargoyle" (short story) and Shakespeare's Sonnets (book review). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 73
Published versions appearing in Carolina Magazine, February 1937.
Draft 1: bound ribbon typescript, 200 pages. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 74-75
Draft: ribbon typescript, 26 pages, with sections cut for publication indicated, dated April 1946. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 76-77
"The Good Pilgrim: A Fury is Calmed" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 78
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, November 1935.
Initial Seven (short story collection). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 79
Bound carbon typescript of six stories ("Flood Burial," "The Enormous Eye," "Dust," "Ride Out," "The Merchant of Bristol," and "The Almond Tree"), 274 pages. Identified by Foote as "intermediate drafts." See under titles for individual drafts of several of these stories.
"Jordan County: A Three-part Landscape in the Round" (play). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 80
Photocopy of typescript. 22 pages. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 80
"The Literature of Fury" (book review of Faulkner's Absalom, Absalom). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 81
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, November 1936.
"A Marriage Portion" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 82
Published version appearing in Nugget, November 1955.
"The Merchant of Bristol" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 83-85
Draft 1: ribbon typescript, 21 pages. Originally titled "Dust." #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 83-85
Draft 2: ribbon typescript, 17 pages. Identified as" final draft." #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 83-85
Review of None Shall Look Back by Caroline Gordon (book review). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 86
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, May 1937.
"The Novelist's View of History" (article). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 87-88
Ribbon typescript with autograph corrections, 15 pages. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 87-88
"The Old Man That Sold Peanuts in New Orleans" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 89
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, January 1936.
Bound "corrected carbon" typescript of first draft, 54 pages.
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, March 1937.
Draft 1: bound ribbon typescript with autograph corrections, 53 pages. Originally titled "If I Forget Thee, Jerusalem. " Dated 5 August 1946. #04038, Subseries 2. Writings, 1935-1987. 2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. , Folder 92-93
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, December 1935.
Published version appearing in Arena Stage program for The Taming of the Shrew, March-April 1964.
"This Primrose Hill" (short story). #04038, Subseries: "2.3 Shorter Writings, 1935-1964. " Folder 96
Published version appearing in Carolina Magazine, April 1936.
Miscellaneous items, including photographs of Shelby Foote, two sets of notes made by him, a newspaper article about him, and newspaper clippings.
|Oversize Image Folder OP-PF-4038/1||
Picture (halftone) of Shelby Foote, ca. 1978. #04038, Series: "3. Other Material, 1937-1992." OP-PF-4038/1
Printed caption with name and list of published works.
|Image Folder PF-4038/1||
Picture of Shelby Foote, January 1951, with inscription by Foote on verso: "Portrait of the Artist as a Bookend"; and photograph of Shelby Foote and Dr. Don Wetherbee (roommate of Shelby Foote and Walker Percy), 1992.
Notes made by Foote in looseleaf notebook during his final term at theUniversity of North Carolina for English and history courses.
Notes made by Sergeant Foote in small looseleaf notebook during service in the Mississippi National Guard.
Mid-South, the Sunday magazine of the Memphis Commercial Appeal, 13 October 1968. #04038, Series: "3. Other Material, 1937-1992." Folder 99
Contains "A Literary Letter from Southern Ken" by Dale E. Richardson with Foote pictured on cover.
Pictures (P-4038 and OP-P-4038)Back to Top