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Rauner Special Collections Library6065 Webster Hall, Hanover, NH 03755-3519 USATelephone: 603-646-0538, Fax: 603-646-0447Rauner.Reference@dartmouth.edu

The Papers of Eleanor H. Porter in the Dartmouth College Library

WMAN MS-796

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Porter, Eleanor H.
Title Remainder: Papers. 1885-1930
Dates: 1885-1930
Identification: MS-796





Biographical Information

1868 Born, December 19, Littleton, New Hampshire; educated in local schools, by private tutor, and subsequently at the New England Conservatory of Music
1892 Married John Lyman Porter
1901 Began writing short stories for sale to magazines
1907 Published first novel, Cross Currents
1908 Turn of the Tide, a sequel to Cross Currents, was published
1911 Published two novels, The Story of Marco and Miss Billy
1912 Miss Billy's Decision was published
1913 Pollyanna became a best seller immediately after publication; The Sunbridge Girls at Six-Star Ranch also published
1914 Miss Billy Married and Pollyanna Grows Up published
1916 Published Just David, another best seller; Houghton Mifflin offered a prize for the best letter explaining how Just David was an inspiration to readers
1917 Wrote The Road to Understanding
1918 Published Oh, Money! Money
1919 Dawn published; also two books of collected short stories, The Tie That Binds: Tales of Love and Marriage, and The Tangled Threads: Just Tales
1920 Brought out Mary-Marie; Porter died May 21, Cambridge, Massachusetts
1921-(1928) Several books of collected works published
1922 Eleanor H. Porter Room dedicated, Springfield, VT Hospital

Introduction

The Papers of Eleanor H. Porter were purchased by the Dartmouth College Library from Charles Apfelbaum Rare Books and Collections, Valley Stream, New York, in August 1995. The acquisition of this small group of materials is in keeping with the collections policy of the Library's Special Collections, which focusses on New England's women writers.

Eleanor Hodgman was born December 19, 1868, in Littleton, New Hampshire. She was educated in local schools, and by private tutors, subsequently attending the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston. She established a career singing in private homes, at public functions, and in church choirs. Eleanor Hodgman married John Lyman Porter, a Vermont businessman, in 1892; after several years spent in Chattanooga, Tennessee, New York City and Springfield, Vermont, they established a permanent residence in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

By 1901, Porter had given up her musical career in favor of writing short stories for magazines. Her first novel, Cross Currents, was published in 1907, and its sequel, Turn of the Tide, in 1908. Other novels followed, until in 1913, she published Pollyanna, which became an immediate best seller, and the book for which she is chiefly remembered. Her other best seller, Just David, was published in 1916. The publisher, Houghton Mifflin Co. of Boston, offered a prize for the best letter explaining how the book inspired its readers; there was a tremendous response. Porter continued to write, and publish, at least one book a year until her death in 1920.

The Eleanor H. Porter collection occupies 3 boxes, or approximately 3.0 linear feet of shelf space. The materials are almost exclusively letters, with a few photographs and ephemera included. The bulk of the letters were written to Eleanor by John Lyman Porter, most of them before their marriage, and by Eleanor to John, after their marriage. There is also a large group of letters between Eleanor and various book and magazine editors, discussing her work, rejecting and accepting stories, sometimes for as little as a complimentary subscription to the magazine in question. The Just David prize competition drew over 400 responses from all over the country; only one of the readers who responded disliked the book!

No restrictions have been placed on any of the materials in the collection; where original letters are too fragile to handle they have been supplemented with photocopies. Further information concerning Eleanor H. Porter may be found in Special Collections in Webster Hall.






BOX 1.

FOLDER : 1.

Accessions file; 1995



Accessions file - Letters
FOLDER : 2.

Clippings; originals, photocopies, 1916, 1920, undated



Eleanor H. Porter Room, Springfield, VT Hospital



FOLDER : 3.

Floor plans; undated



FOLDER : 4.

Misc.; 1922, undated



Just David Prize Competition



Letters



FOLDER : 5.

1916 A-H



FOLDER : 6.

1916 J-Q



FOLDER : 7.

1916 R-Z



FOLDER : 8.

1917 A-B



FOLDER : 9.

1917 C-E



FOLDER : 10.

1917 F-G



FOLDER : 11.

1917 H-J



FOLDER : 12.

1917 K-L



FOLDER : 13.

1917 M-O



FOLDER : 14.

1917 P-R



FOLDER : 15.

1917 S-U



FOLDER : 16.

1917 V-W, Y-Z



FOLDER : 17.

Undated, unidentified



FOLDER : 18.

Pamphlet: Eleanor H. Porter, Author of “Just David;” undated



Letters, from:



Eleanor H. Porter, to book and magazine editors



FOLDER : 19.

1899-1905



FOLDER : 20.

1906-1908



FOLDER : 21.

1909-1914, 1920



FOLDER : 22.

Undated, unidentified



Eleanor H. Porter, to John Lyman Porter



FOLDER : 23.

1889-1892



FOLDER : 24.

1895-1896, 1898-1899



FOLDER : 25.

1901-1903



FOLDER : 26.

1904-1906



FOLDER : 27.

1907



FOLDER : 28.

1908-1909



FOLDER : 29.

1911-1912



FOLDER : 30.

1913, 1915



FOLDER : 31.

1916-1919



FOLDER : 32.

Undated



FOLDER : 33.

1909-1911, 1915-1916, 1919, undated



Friends/acquaintances, to Eleanor H. Porter



FOLDER : 34.

1891-1892, 1897, 1902, 1904-1905, 1907-1911, 1920



FOLDER : 35.

Undated, unidentified, fragments



BOX 2.

Letters, from John Lyman Porter to Eleanor Hodgman (Porter)



Letters con't
FOLDER : 1.

1885-1887, January-April 1888



FOLDER : 2.

May-October, December 1888



FOLDER : 3.

January-February 1889



FOLDER : 4.

March 1889



FOLDER : 5.

April 1889



FOLDER : 6.

May 1889



FOLDER : 7.

June 1889



FOLDER : 8.

July-August, October-December 1889



FOLDER : 9.

January, June 1890



FOLDER : 10.

July-August 1890



FOLDER : 11.

September 1890



FOLDER : 12.

October 1890



FOLDER : 13.

November 1890



FOLDER : 14.

December 1890



FOLDER : 15.

January 1891



FOLDER : 16.

February 1891



FOLDER : 17.

March 1891



FOLDER : 18.

April 1891



FOLDER : 19.

May 1891



FOLDER : 20.

June 1891



FOLDER : 21.

July-August 1891



FOLDER : 22.

September-October 1891



FOLDER : 23.

November 1891



FOLDER : 24.

December 1891



FOLDER : 25.

January 1892



FOLDER : 26.

February 1892



FOLDER : 27.

March 1892



FOLDER : 28.

April 1892



FOLDER : 29.

June-August, November-December 1892



FOLDER : 30.

1893



BOX 3.

FOLDER : 1.

1896



Letters con't - Wedding invitations
FOLDER : 2.

1898



FOLDER : 3.

1899; originals



FOLDER : 4.

1899; photocopies



FOLDER : 5.

Undated



John Lyman Porter to Llewella F.W. Hodgman



FOLDER : 6.

1889-1891



John Lyman Porter to Lyman Porter



FOLDER : 7.

1920



Llewella F. W. Hodgman to Eleanor Hodgman



FOLDER : 8.

1890



Llewella F. W. Hodgman to John Lyman Porter



FOLDER : 9.

1888-1889, 1891, 1906, undated



Misc. correspondents to John Lyman Porter



FOLDER : 10.

1891, 1898, 1902, 1927-1928, undated



Misc. relatives to Eleanor H. Porter



FOLDER : 11.

1892, 1902, 1907-1911



FOLDER : 12.

Undated, unidentified, fragments



Letters, to:



Eleanor H. Porter, posthumous fan mail



FOLDER : 13.

1928-1930



John Lyman Porter, re: memorials to Eleanor



FOLDER : 14.

1920-1923



FOLDER : 15.

Misc.; 1890-1891, 1906, 1922, undated



FOLDER : 16.

Pamphlet: A Bibliography of the Boston Authors Club, compiled by O.F.A. (probably Oscar Fay Adams); May 1907



Photographs



FOLDER : 17.

Buildings and scenery, unidentified; undated



FOLDER : 18.

Party of sightseers, possibly at The Flume in the White Mountains; undated



FOLDER : 19.

Wedding presents; undated



FOLDER : 20.

Young woman, probably Eleanor H. Porter; undated



FOLDER : 21.

Receipts; 1894, 1897-1900, 1902, 1904, 1907-1908, 1916, undated



FOLDER : 22.

Wedding invitations, and list of wedding gifts; 1892