Collection Number: 04165

Collection Title: Amon Liner Papers, 1965-1976.

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the Duplication Policy section for more information.


Processed under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, 1990-1992.

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Size 7.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 4200 items)
Abstract Amon George Liner, Jr. (1940-1976), North Carolina poet. Chiefly writings and notes of North Carolina poet Amon George Liner, Jr. Materials include drafts of published works as well as an extensive set of notebooks containing unpublished poetry, prose, and dramatic works, and notes made in drama and writing courses at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1960s, and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 1970s. Also included is a small amount of correspondence, chiefly with poet and journalist, Virginia Long Rudder (1941- ).
Creator Liner, Amon.
Curatorial Unit University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Historical Collection.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
No restrictions. Open for research.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Amon Liner Papers #4165, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Ruby S. Liner of Charlotte, North Carolina, in March 1979 (Acc. 79027), June 1979 (Acc. 82064), and October 1989 (Acc. 89119).
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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Processed by: L. Eileen Parris, December 1992; Roslyn Holdzkom, November 1989

Encoded by: ByteManagers Inc., 2008

Processed under a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, 1990-1992.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subject Headings

The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

Amon George Liner, Jr., was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1940. Although a congenital heart defect severely limited his physical activities, Liner was active in the intellectual sphere, enjoying moderate popularity among young North Carolina poets in the 1970s.

Except for his undergraduate years at Kenyon College in Ohio (B.A. English, 1963), Liner lived his whole life in central North Carolina. He attended Catawba College, Salisbury, N.C., from 1958 through the fall of 1960, finishing his undergraduate education at Kenyon College, 1961-1963, with a Bachelor's degree in English. His graduate education included an M.A. in Dramatic Arts from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1965 and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 1976. While Liner supported himself by working as a cataloger at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill library from 1968 to 1974, he kept active in the North Carolina literary scene by serving as poetry editor for the Red Clay Reader and writing book reviews for the Charlotte Observer.

Liner was a prolific writer of verse, and his poetry appeared in many literary journals. His first major work was Marstower (Red Clay Press, 1972). His second book, Chrome Glass (Carolina Wren Press, 1976), was in publication at the time of his sudden death in July 1976. Rose, A Color of Darkness (Carolina Wren Press, 1980) and the two-volume The Far Journey and Final End of Dr. Faustwitz, Spaceman (Carolina Wren Press, 1983, 1988) appeared posthumously. Chrome Glass and Dr. Faustwitz are written in "four-ply form," a verse form of Liner's own creation wherein "each ply carries part or an aspect of the total theme [of the poem]. Facing pages (each four plies), or columns are meant to be seen as whole single pages." (Judy Hogan in her introductory remarks to Dr. Faustwitz).

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The collection is divided into three series: writings, college and graduate school materials, and correspondence and other papers. The writings series includes collected and loose poetry and poetry notebooks; plays; and short stories and fiction notebooks. The college materials include class notes, exams, and term papers and projects from Liner's studies at Catawba College, Kenyon College, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and The University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Correspondence and other papers consists primarily of letters to Liner from friend and fellow poet Virginia Long Rudder; issues of underground literary magazines; and clippings of interest to Liner or about his work.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Writings, 1958-1976.

About 300 items.

Arrangement: By type, then chronological or alphabetical by title, where appropriate.

Liner was a prolific writer of poetry, plays, and short stories. Three themes are common to all genres: the Nazi death camps of World War II, especially Auschwitz; the post-Nuclear Holocaust; and the future systematic destruction of the human race.

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.1. Poetry, 1958-1976.

About 240 items.

Arrangement: By format.

Liner's first love was poetry. He kept extensive chronological notebooks containing drafts, revisions, and notes showing the evolution of many of his poems. Subseries 1.1.1 contains "Named collections," most likely meant for publication as a unit ( Marstower, Chrome Grass, Rose, A Color of Darkness, and Dr. Faustwitz were published in this way). Subseries 1.1.2 contains his roughly chronological poetry notebooks. The last volume ends in July 1976, with his death. Subseries 1.1.3 contains loose poems arranged alphabetically by title. Many of these poems are included in the named collections and are reflected in the poetry notebooks. Subseries 1.1.4 consists of fragments and notes, especially "catalog card poems" typed on the back of discarded library catalog cards.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.1.1. Named Collections, circa 1970-1976.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.1.2. Poetry Notebooks, 1958-1976.

14 disbound volumes

Arrangement: Chronological.

Folder 21

Series 1, 1957-1958

Folder 22

Series 2, October 1958-March 1962

Folder 23

Series 3, Haiku

Folder 24

Series 4, 13 April-15 September 1962

Folder 25

Series 5, 27 July-29 December 1962

Folder 26

Series 6, 6 September 1962-11 September 1963

Folder 27

Series 7, 11 September 1963-27 August 1964

Folder 28

Series 8, 28 August 1964-1 September 1965

Folder 29-32

Folder 29

Folder 30

Folder 31

Folder 32

Series 11, 8 September 1965-24 January 1968

Folder 33-34

Folder 33

Folder 34

Series 12, 9 February 1968-10 July 1969

Folder 35-37

Folder 35

Folder 36

Folder 37

"Current series," 31 July 1969-1 August 1970

Folder 38-39

Folder 38

Folder 39

"Current series," 5 August 1970-21 September 1971

Folder 40-41

Folder 40

Folder 41

"Current series," 22 September 1971-16 August 1974

Folder 42-43

Folder 42

Folder 43

"Current series," 12 August 1974-[July 1976]

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.1.3. Loose Poems, circa 1965-1976.

About 200 items.

Arrangement: Alphabetical by title.

Folder 44

"A"

Folder 45

"B"

Folder 46

"C"

Folder 47

"D"

Folder 48

"E"

Folder 49

"F"

Folder 50

"G"

Folder 51

"H"

Folder 52

"I-J"

Folder 53

"L"

Folder 54

"M"

Folder 55

"N"

Folder 56

"O"

Folder 57

"P"

Folder 58

"Q-R"

Folder 59

"S"

Folder 60

"T"

Folder 61

"U-V"

Folder 62

"W"

Folder 63

"X-Y-Z"

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.1.4. Fragments, etc., Undated.

About 10 items.
Folder 64

Fragments, notes, etc.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.2. Plays., Date span.

23 items.

Arrangement: Alphabetical by title.

Many of Liner's plays began as class projects during his time at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. [See also "Molly," his final project for his M.A. in Dramatic Arts, Series 2.3.] As with his poetry, the themes of genocide and post-Nuclear holocaust predominate.

Folder 65

Back from the War

Folder 66

The Blind One

Folder 67

The Blind One (10th revision)

Folder 68

A Bomb has Fallen

Folder 69

The Coming of the Messiah

Folder 70

Farce by Threes

Folder 71

[Farce by Threes], or Buffoon Baby

Folder 72

[Farce by Threes], or Blood Sister

Folder 73-74

Folder 73

Folder 74

The Genocide of Peter Pan

Folder 75

The Hero, or Zero Times Two is Zero, Too

Folder 76

The Joke's on Job, or Destruction of the Universe

Folder 77

Malcontent's Revenge

Folder 78-79

Folder 78

Folder 79

Mirror, Mirror

Folder 80

Moloch

Folder 81

Morphous, Amorphous I

Folder 82

Noah (Draft 1)

Folder 83

Noah (Draft 2)

Folder 84

The Old Folks at Home

Folder 85

Pattern in Yellow

Folder 86

Play for No Audience

Folder 87

Weight of the Body

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.3. Short Stories and Fiction, 1960s-1970s.

9 items.

Arrangement: Alphabetical by title. General notebooks appear at the end.

Some of Liner's short stories are written almost as epic poems. The themes of genocide, the Nazi Holocaust, and the future destruction of the human race are evident.

Folder 88

Best of All Possible Worlds

Folder 89

Course of Development

Folder 90

Course That Satisfied

Folder 91

The Medal

Folder 92

One Unity for All

Folder 93

Operation "True-Human"

Folder 94

The Way, the Truth, the Life

Folder 95

Fiction and essay notebook #1

Folder 96

Prose notebook #2

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.4. Writing-related Materials., circa 1960s-1970s.

About 20 items.

Arrangement: By type.

A miscellaneous assortment of book reviews by Amon Liner; meticulous publishing records showing works sent out, to whom they were sent, and the final outcome; and his reading lists.

Folder 97

Book reviews

Folder 98

Publishing records

Folder 99

Reading lists

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. School Papers, circa 1960-1975.

About 140 items.

Arrangement: Grouped by institution, then by course identification number, where known.

Class notes, exams, term papers and projects documenting Liner's literary development during his years at Catawba College, Salisbury, N.C., 1958-1960; Kenyon College in Ohio, 1961-1963; the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, 1963-1965; and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 1974-1976. The development of several of his key recurring themes, especially a continuing interest in the Nazi death camps of World War II, can be traced through his study and outside reading. However, contrasting to this are the more routine classes he took in Chaucer, Shakespeare, Modern Drama, etc. While this body of work is impressive, it cannot be all that was produced during his attendance at four colleges. It is likely that these notes were saved to be reference sources for future writing projects.

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.1. Catawba College Materials, circa 1958-1960.

About 10 items.

Amon Liner attended Catawba College from the fall of 1958 until approximately December 1960. While no reference is made in this collection to the reason for his departure, correspondence from him in the Virginia Long Rudder Papers (#4164) indicates that he was dismissed from the College for some infraction of the rules.

Folder 100

Living Theatre Notebook #1

Folder 101a

Living Theatre Notebook #1, cont.

Folder 101b

Living Theatre Notebook #2

Folder 102

Miscellaneous terms papers and syllabi

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.2. Kenyon College Materials, 1961-1963.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.3. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Materials, 1963-1965.

About 45 items.

Liner attended Chapel Hill from the fall of 1963 through the spring of 1965, graduating with a M.A. in Dramatic Arts. His final project was a play entitled "Molly," set in a futuristic society where a father and son independently plot to the kill the main character.

Folder 113

Comparative Literature 137: German Literature (Fall 1963)

Folder 114

Dramatic Arts 162: Modern Continental Drama (Fall 1963-Spring 1964)

Folder 115

Dramatic Arts 295: (Fall 1963-Spring 1964)

Folder 116

Dramatic Arts 395: Seminar in Modern Drama (Fall 1963-Spring 1964)

Folder 117

Dramatic Arts [?]: Directing (Summer 1964)

Folder 118

English 140 (Summer 1964)

Folder 119

English 203: Playwriting

Folder 120

English 261: Jacobean and Caroline Drama

Folder 121

"Molly" (Final draft)

Folder 122

"Molly" (Sixth draft)

Folder 123

"Molly" (Fifth draft)

Folder 124

"Molly" (Third draft)

Folder 125

"Molly" (Notes)

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.4. University of North Carolina at Greensboro, 197[4]-1976.

About 30 items.

Liner attended the University of North Carolina at Greensboro from 1974 to 1975, receiving his Master's of Fine Arts in Creative Writing in May 1976.

Folder 126

English 525: Fiction Workshop (Fall 1974)

Folder 127

English 552: Southern Literature (Summer 1975)

Folder 128

English 554: Elizabethan Drama/English 586: English Novel (Summer 1975)

Folder 129

English [?]: Fiction and the Unconscious

Folder 130

Comprehensive Exam, M.F.A., December 1975

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.5. Miscellaneous School-Related Materials, Various dates.

About 5 items.

Included are term papers that could not be assigned to particular courses of study.

Folder 131

Miscellaneous school-related materials

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 3. Correspondence and Other Papers, circa 1958-1976.

About 225 items.

Included in this series are letter to Liner from fellow poet Virginia Long Rudder of Hurdle Mills, N.C.; form letter responses from U.S. congressmen to Liner's inquiries about the ABM program, 1969; miscellaneous underground publications with which Liner was connected; and a few clippings about him and his work.

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 3.1. Virginia Long Rudder Correspondence, 1966-1976.

About 200 items.

Arrangement: Chronological.

Virginia Long Rudder attended Catawba College with Amon Liner until his departure in the fall of 1960. She went on to a career as a journalist and poet. Her extensive correspondence documents her tumultuous personal life, including stays in mental health facilities, legal difficulties relating to her marriages, and her writing. Many of the letters are extremely revealing and make frequent references to Liner's recurring bouts of depression. To be truly useful, they should be read in conjunction with Amon Liner's letters to in the Virginia Rudder Long Papers (#4164).

Folder 132

1966-1973

Folder 133

1974

Folder 134

1975

Folder 135

1976

Folder 136

Undated, and loose poems

Folder 137

Clippings, undated enclosures, etc.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 3.2. Other Papers, circa 1958-1976.

About 25 items.

Arrangement: Grouped roughly by type.

Included is correspondence concerning the ABM program, 1969; issues of underground literary magazines; and miscellaneous clippings on Liner and his work. The magazines include "Chaos," apparently a Catawba College publication; "My Word," which originated at Myers Park High School, Charlotte, N.C.; and "Hemlock," a production of the Department of Philosophy, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Folder 138

Correspondence re: Anti-Ballistic Missile Program, 1969

Folder 139

"Chaos," Nos. 1-5

Folder 140

"My Word"

Folder 141

"Hemlock"

Folder 142

Clippings, etc.

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