Harry Ransom CenterThe University of Texas at Austin

Search Collections

Wallace Literary Agency:

A Preliminary Inventory of Its Records at the Harry Ransom Center

Creator: Wallace Literary Agency
Title: Wallace Literary Agency Records
Dates: 1974-2005 (bulk 1974-2002)
Extent: 227 boxes (95.34 linear feet)
Abstract: The Wallace Literary Agency Records comprise the working papers of the agency, mainly 1974-2002. The bulk of the papers is correspondence files, although there are boxes of clippings and reviews. There are few contracts or manuscripts in the files; most of these were filed separately by the agency.
Language: English
Access:

Open for research. Some materials have mold damage; see the Condition Note concerning access to these materials.

Condition Note:

Portions of the Wallace Literary Agency Records contained mold upon their arrival at the Ransom Center and were quarantined. Some of the damaged materials have been cleaned by the Ransom Center’s Conservation Department so that they can be safely handled and viewed with proper precautions.

Researchers wishing to access the cleaned, mold-damaged originals located in boxes 212-218 are cautioned that while the Conservation Department has treated these manuscripts for mold infestation by aspiration and/or dry cleaning, mold may still be present. Users sensitive to mold should wear gloves and a dust/mist respirator while handling this material.

Preservation photocopies have been made of mold-damaged originals in the Don DeLillo files for 1977-1984 foreign correspondence, and for the 1990 files. These surrogates are now interfiled in the undamaged papers (boxes 155, 157-158) to facilitate use of the collection. All photocopies are marked “Preservation photocopy of mold-damaged original in the Lois Wallace Papers.” The originals remain quarantined and housed in boxes 219-220, pending cleaning.

Additional files that remain in quarantine pending cleaning appear in the following folder list in their logical location, and have box numbers from 221 to 227. These materials include 1980 and 1990 correspondence files for authors from S to Z and some foreign files, the bulk of which are for William F. Buckley, Jr., Joan Didion, and Erich Segal. Researchers wishing to use these files should contact the Ransom Center in advance to discuss access options.




Acquisition:

Gift and purchase, 2005 (G 12424, R 15369)

Processed by:

Hope Rider, 2005-2007

Repository:

The University of Texas at Austin, Harry Ransom Center


Wallace, Aitken, & Sheil was founded in 1974 as a partnership between literary agents Gillon Aitken, Anthony Sheil, and Lois Wallace, with Wallace being the primary United States agent for the clients of the British agency, Anthony Sheil Associates, Ltd. The agency was changed in 1978 to the Wallace & Sheil Agency, Inc. when Aitken departed the partnership. The firm remained the Wallace & Sheil Agency, Inc. until 1988, when the partnership between Lois Wallace and Anthony Sheil was dissolved. At that time, the agency took its current name, the Wallace Literary Agency. From 1987 to 1998, Lois Wallace's husband, Tom Wallace, was an agent with the firm.

The Wallace Literary Agency Records comprise the working papers of the agency, mainly 1974-2002. The bulk of the papers are correspondence files, although there are boxes of clippings and reviews. There are few contracts or manuscripts in the files; most of these were filed separately by the agency. The Papers are divided into two series: I. Correspondence, 1974-2005, and II. Printed Materials and Agency Miscellaneous, 1960s-2005.

Series I. is divided into four subseries: A. Chronological Files, 1974-2002; B. Don DeLillo Files, 1974-2005; C. Tom Wallace Files, 1989-1990, 1992; and D. Foreign Files, 1974-1985. Subseries A. (155 boxes) consists primarily of Lois Wallace's correspondence with authors and publishers. The files are arranged chronologically by year and alphabetically by author within each year. Within each file the papers are generally arranged in reverse chronological order. Some of the prominent clients represented in the correspondence files are William F. Buckley, Jr., Joan Didion, R. K. Narayan, Marge Piercy, William Trogdon (pseudonym William Least Heat-Moon), and Simon Winchester. A number of files in both 1980 and 1990 have been affected by mold; see the Condition Note for access information. The following groups of files are lacking from the correspondence: 1982 L-W, 1986 G-Z, and 1987 H-O.

Subseries B. (19 boxes) contains all of the agency's files that relate to author Don DeLillo, which were acquired separately. He has been Lois Wallace's client since at least 1974, when she started the agency. Materials present include correspondence between Wallace and DeLillo, correspondence with U.S. and foreign publishers, manuscripts of articles by DeLillo, foreign reviews and clippings regarding DeLillo's works, and stage and screenplay adaptations of DeLillo's works by other authors. Preservation photocopies have been made of mold damaged originals in the files for 1977-1984 foreign correspondence, and for the 1990 files. The originals are quarantined and housed in boxes 219-220, pending cleaning.

Subseries C. (9 boxes) is the papers of Tom Wallace, a member of the agency from 1987 until 1998. The files in this subseries span 1989-1990, and 1992. His 1987, 1988, and 1991 files were interfiled with the general agency correspondence in Subseries A. These have been marked with an asterisk in the folder list.

Subseries D. (5 boxes) comprises correspondence files relating to the foreign publishing of agency clients' works. These were filed separately until approximately 1985; after that date, such correspondence is a part of the larger chronological file in Subseries A. for each author. The foreign files are arranged alphabetically by author's last name. Some files remain quarantined due to mold; see the Condition Note for access information.

The bulk of the material in Series II. Printed Materials and Agency Miscellaneous (25 boxes) is comprised of reviews of authors' works and tearsheets of individual author's works from magazines and newspapers. There are several boxes of author biographies taken from tearsheets and various publications. Also included are Ms. Wallace's appointment books from 1974 to 2003, and a few agency brochures for Wallace and Sheil.


Due to size, this inventory has been divided into two separate units which can be accessed by clicking on the highlighted text below:

Wallace Literary Agency Records--Series I., Subseries A. Chronological Files, 1974-1992 [Part I] [This page]

Wallace Literary Agency Records--Series I., Subseries A. Chronological Files, 1993-2002 through Series II. [Part II]