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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the MacKinlay Kantor Papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1950-1958
Creator: Kantor, MacKinlay (1904-1977)
Extent: 4.50 linear feet.
Collection Number: MSC0635
Repository: University of Iowa Special Collections
Summary: Author. Manuscript drafts, proofs, correspondence, etc. for his novel, Andersonville, with drafts for some other books.

Alternate Extent Statement: Photographs in Box 4.

Access: This collection is open for research.

Use: Copyright restrictions may apply; please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

Acquisition: This collection was given to the University of Iowa Libraries by Mr. Kantor over a period of years.

Preferred Citation: MacKinlay Kantor Papers, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City, Iowa.

Repository: University of Iowa Special Collections
Address: Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-335-5921
Curator: Greg Prickman
Email: lib-spec@uiowa.edu
Website: http://www.lib.uiowa.edu/sc

MacKinlay Kantor was born in Webster City, Iowa, on February 4, 1904. His mother, Effie McKinlay, was the editor of the Webster City Daily News. Kantor's writing career began on this newspaper when he was seventeen. His first novel, Diversey, was published in 1928 -- he was twenty four years old. The book was not a success and Kantor returned to writing for newspapers in Iowa. In 1934, he published Long Remember which became his first best seller. Hollywood bought the novel and Kantor moved to California to work as a screenwriter. World War II cut short his screenwriting career. As a war correspondent, he covered the air battles in Europe. In 1945, Kantor published Glory for Me, which became the film The Best Years of Our Lives. Ten years later, Andersonville was published. Kantor was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for this Civil War novel. During the course of his career, MacKinlay Kantor published thirty-two books and hundreds of short stories, essays, poems, and articles. He died on October 11, 1977, at the age of seventy-three.

The papers of MacKinlay Kantor consist of four boxes of manuscripts, dating from 1950 to 1958. The vast majority of these papers relate to his Civil War novel, Andersonville. There are correspondence files, drafts in a variety of stages, printer's and foundry proofs, and Kantor's notes, all of which concern the writing of Andersonville. There are also drafts from some of his other books, including Author's Choice, God and My Country, and Don't Touch Me. The final folder of the collection is made up of correspondence, publicity photographs and biographical information promoting a lecture tour for his novel Signal Thirty-Two.
The Library of Congress is the primary repository for MacKinlay Kantor's papers.

Separately acquired, the Libraries holds a TLS 1p (MsL K167ro) to Edward G. Robinson (1893 -- 1973), Sarasota, Florida, 7 Dec. 1940, apologizing for having no ideas for a radio program; hoping Robinson can make a picture on General Grant; admitting he does have a screen treatment about Mosby.

Browse by Series:
Series 1: MANUSCRPTS

  • Series 1: MANUSCRPTS
  • Sub-Series: Andersonville
  • Box 1:
  • "The Writing of Andersonville," n.d., ca. January - 1958
  • Correspondence - 1954-1958
  • First draft with revisions
  • First draft, carbon
  • First draft with revisions. Duplicate chapters.
  • First draft with revisions. Duplicate chapters.
  • Second draft with revisions
  • Second draft with revisions
  • Third draft
  • Box 2:
  • Third draft
  • Final draft
  • Final draft
  • Edited manuscript
  • Edited manuscript
  • Miscellaneous
  • Notebook in shorthand
  • Box 3:
  • Printer's proofs (page proofs)
  • Foundry proofs
  • Magazine publishers' catalogs - 1955-1957
  • Newspaper clippings - 1954-1957 and undated
  • Publicity
  • "Remarks on the Writing of Andersonville" by MacKinlay Kantor
  • Sub-Series: Author's Choice
  • Box 3:
  • 42 sketches of stories; preface, closing sketch and "An Autobiographical Story" were not published.
  • Draft with revisions
  • Sub-Series: God and My Country (World Publishing) - 1965
  • Box 3:
  • First draft with revisions
  • Printer's copy
  • "The Man Who Stayed at Home." Saturday Evening Post December 26 - 1953
    Condensed version of God and My Country
  • Sub-Series: Beauty Beast
  • Box 4:
  • Original typescript of the first draft, 3 pages combined typescript and holograph. Also includes the text of the blurb and author biography for the dust jacket in typescript and two envelopes with Kantor's return address at Shell Road in Sarasota.
  • Galley proofs
  • Sub-Series: The Bronze Box
  • Box 4:
  • Typescript of a short story
  • Sub-Series: The Children Sing
  • Box 4:
  • Galley proofs
  • Sub-Series: Don't Touch Me
  • Box 4:
  • Second draft with revisions
  • Sub-Series: "Duboko - An Essay"
  • Box 4:
  • Signed typescript
  • Sub-Series: "Galena"
  • Box 4:
  • Short essay and signed typescript
  • Sub-Series: "Papa Pierre's Pipe"
  • Box 4:
  • Short story and signed typescript
  • Sub-Series: "Remarks on the Writing of Andersonville"
  • Box 4:
  • Typescript - accompanied by a letter to Dale Bentz and a photograph of Kantor
  • Sub-Series: Signal Thirty-Two
  • Box 4:
  • Correspondence, biographical material, and photographs for a promotional lecture tour
  • Sub-Series: Miscellaneous
  • Box 4:
  • Magazine profiles and photograph (negative) - 1975-1976
  • Biographical information