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University of Texas at Austin

Matthew J. Bruccoli:

An Inventory of His Papers at the Harry Ransom Center

Creator: Bruccoli, Matthew J., 1931-2008
Title: Matthew J. Bruccoli Papers
Dates: 1916-2008 (bulk 1960-2008)
Extent: 19 document boxes, 1 oversize box (osb), 1 oversize folder (osf) (9.26 linear feet)
Abstract: The Matthew J. Bruccoli Papers consist of correspondence, essay drafts, research materials, and professional materials related to Bruccoli’s teaching, research, and publishing.
Call Number: Manuscript Collection MS-05128
Language: English
Access: Open for research

Administrative Information

Acquisition: Transfer and gifts, 2008, 2009, 2011 (R16581, 09-06-013-G, 11-06-009-G)
Processed by: Elizabeth E. Preston, 2016

Harry Ransom Center, The University of Texas at Austin

Biographical Sketch

Born in the Bronx, New York on 21 August 1931, Matthew J. Bruccoli earned a bachelor’s degree from Yale University, and went on to the University of Virginia for graduate work. He earned a doctorate there in 1960. Bruccoli taught at the University of Virginia and Ohio State University before joining the English department at the University of South Carolina, where he remained for the rest of his career. A Fitzgerald scholar, Bruccoli published Some Sort of Epic Grandeur: The Life of F. Scott Fitzgerald in 1981 and edited many of Fitzgerald’s works. In addition to his research on Fitzgerald, Bruccoli studied and published works on Ernest Hemingway, John O’Hara, James Gould Cozzens, and Ross Macdonald. Bruccoli also founded and served as president of Bruccoli Clark Layman, a company that produces reference works, including the Dictionary of Literary Biography. Bruccoli died on 4 June 2008.

Scope and Contents

The Matthew J. Bruccoli Papers contain correspondence, interviews, and research on authors who appear in the Dictionary of Literary Biography or separate biographies produced by Bruccoli Clark Layman. The collection also includes drafts of novels, essays, and articles, as well as publicity materials for new publications and exhibitions. The collection is divided into four series: Series I. Bruccoli Clark Layman, 1916-2008; Series II. Bound Proofs, 1974-2000; Series III. "The Great War" Exhibitions, 1993-1997; Series IV. Materials Removed From Bound Volumes. Most of the collection is arranged alphabetically, but Series IV is arranged by call number.
Series I. Bruccoli Clark Layman is the largest series and contains some of Bruccoli’s files from Bruccoli Clark Layman (BCL). The majority of the files are authors’ files, and contain correspondence, biographical essay drafts, bibliographies, interviews, and research material for authors who appear in the Dictionary of Literary Biography. Some of the correspondence is with writers who were composing biographical essays on fellow authors, but much of the correspondence is with writers who were being profiled. Many essay drafts have corrections and comments from the subjects. Some authors also published separate monographs with BCL, or were the subjects of standalone biographies. Bruccoli maintained extensive files on Nicholson Baker, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Alan Furst, and John le Carré.
Series II. Bound Proofs contains bound proofs and boxed page proofs for several novels. Two, The Devil’s Hand, by Edith Summers Kelley and The Flesh is Heir, by Lincoln Kirstein, are part of Lost American Fiction, a series Bruccoli edited. The others are proofs sent to Bruccoli for review, or are copies he purchased as part of his collection.
Series III. "The Great War" Exhibitions includes materials from two exhibitions of the Joseph M. Bruccoli Great War Collection. Bruccoli collected published materials, posters, music, manuscripts, ephemera, photographs, and movies to form a research collection for the study of World War I. He donated the collection to the University of Virginia in memory of his father, Joseph Bruccoli (1892?-1965). The University of Virginia exhibited some of the material in 1993, and loaned part of the collection to the University of South Carolina for another exhibition in 1997.
Series IV. Materials Removed from Bound Volumes primarily consists of receipts, sales slips, and shipping receipts found inside published and bound volumes that were transferred to the Ransom Center Library and catalogued separately. Occasionally Bruccoli left correspondence or notes inside volumes, and in a few cases copies of that correspondence were placed in the Authors’ Files during processing and clearly marked as having come from a bound volume. Bruccoli purchased many of the books for his collection; others were gifts from the authors or subjects of the volumes. This material is arranged by the call numbers of the volumes as assigned by Ransom Center catalogers and published in the library catalog.

Separated Material

1057 bound volumes were transferred to the Ransom Center library. Items included copies of books written or edited by Bruccoli, published by Bruccoli Clark Layman, as well as items collected by Bruccoli in the course of his research.
Sound Recordings were transferred to the Ransom Center's Sound Recording collection and are described individually in a list at the end of this finding aid and in a searchable database
Two VHS cassettes, both containing Nicholson Baker interviews, were transferred to the Ransom Center’s Moving Image Collection.

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