The Charles Lutwidge Dodgson Collection embraces manuscripts, sketches and
watercolors, correspondence, and scrapbooks representing the career of Dodgson
well as reflections upon and interest in that unique career both during and after
his lifetime. The material, largely derived from the collection of Warren Weaver,
arranged in two series: Series I. Dodgson, Charles Lutwidge, 1850-1897, and Series
II. Dodgson-Related Materials, 1864-1971.
The namesake first series, running to slightly more than one box, consists of two
subseries, the first comprising Dodgson's professional and literary works, the
second his outgoing letters. Subseries A. Works, 1850-1897, includes puzzles,
and sketches created for the amusement of Dodgson's friends, young (mostly) and
otherwise, along with problems in logic and mathematics, and proofs for books
The most important--and the earliest--work present is the author's Rectory magazine
of 1850, "a compendium of the best tales, poems, essays, pictures &c that
the talents of the Rectory inhabitants can produce." This manuscript was created
the main by Dodgson in his eighteenth year for the amusement of his younger siblings
in the Croft rectory where the family had moved from Daresbury in 1843. It is
four such efforts known to exist today.
Subseries B. Outgoing Letters, 1860-1897, contains a fair representation of Dodgson's
extensive correspondence, including letters to family, Oxford colleagues, editors,
child friends and their parents, and his Eastbourne landlady, Mrs. Benjamin Dyer.
Most of the correspondents are represented by only a letter or two from Dodgson, but
for a few of his child friends and their families, several letters are found in
collection. Concerning the Henderson children Annie and Frances there are ten
letters to their mother. Among the six letters to Agnes "Dolly" Argles is one
microscopic hand signed by "Sylvie." Nine letters addressed to Edith Headland
Stevens are present, along with four to her daughter Enid, one of which is
typewritten and signed "Lewis Carroll." Individual letters to Janet Merriman and
father Dr. Henry Gordon Merriman are accompanied by six of Dodgson's photographic
prints of Dr. Merriman, Janet, and her brother Harry.
The second series, Dodgson-Related Materials, 1864-1971, runs to nearly three boxes
and contains Alice in translation, Alice-based artwork, correspondence, scrapbooks, and
other materials. These materials largely originated in the extensive collection
Carrolliana assembled by Warren Weaver, a mathematician, computer pioneer,
translation theorist, and long-time officer of the Rockefeller Foundation. Nothing
contained in this series is directly attributable to Dodgson but virtually all
was inspired by his life and work in some way.
The group of Alice extracts in various languages along
with Anna Grusova's academic thesis on translating English-language children's
literature into Czech touch not only upon the career of Dodgson but also upon
of Weaver. Weaver's career as a collector is further documented by a folder of
correspondence with various scholars and collectors spanning nearly forty years,
two scrapbooks of clippings and ephemera, and a few more pieces of correspondence.
A number of pieces of original art are present in the series, those by
Besché and Hargrave being Alice-themed
designs created between 1886 and 1908; the architectural studies by Henry George
Liddell date from a generation earlier. Among the third-party correspondence are
found six letters from John Tenniel to A. W. Mackenzie written between 1868 and
1899, the last two of which touch upon Dodgson and his (and Tenniel's) most
The parenthetical notations in the following container list--e.g. HRC 618--are
citations to full bibliographical descriptions found in the Ransom Center's 1985
catalog Lewis Carroll at Texas.