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A Guide to the Morris Robert Werner Correspondence

Finding aid prepared by Dept. Staff

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections
November 2004

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Werner, M. R. (Morris Robert), 1897-1981
Title: Morris Robert Werner Correspondence
Dates: 1921-1944
Abstract: Letters from agents and book and magazine publishers and editors regarding books and articles by Werner.
Extent: 0.25 Linear feet. 1 Box.
Identification: MS Group 135
Language(s): English

Biographical/Historical Note

Morris Robert Werner was the author of approximately fifteen books, primarily biographies and historical works of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries published between 1923 and 1939. He also contributed to numerous periodicals, including the New Yorker, Fortune, and the New Republic and was a staff member of the New York Herald Tribune and Sports Illustrated.

Scope and Content

The correspondence consists of approximately 142 letters from book and magazine publisher and editors, and literary agents regarding books and articles by Morris. There is one copy of a letter by him to an editor protesting the reason for declining to publish one of his books. Principal correspondents include Cass Canfield (Harper and Brothers), Edward Aswell (Atlantic Monthly), M.A. DeWolfe Howe (Atlantic Monthly Press), and other individuals associated with Curtis Brown, ltd., Harcourt, Brace, Forum magazine, the New Republic, Liberty magazine, Doubleday Page Company, Doubleday, Doran and Company, Alfred A. Knopf, Jonathan Cape, and W.W. Norton.

Topics include all his books published during the date of the bulk of the letters, including Barnum (1925), Brigham Young (1925), Tammany Hall (1928), Bryan (1929), Orderly! (Morris's own memoirs of WWI), To Whom It May Concern: the Story of Victor Ilyitch Seroff (1931), Little Napoleons and Dummy Directors: Being the Narrative of the Bank of the United States (1933), and an apparently unpublished book on Japan (written about 1932), and numerous periodical articles.

Correspondence is arranged by name of company (publisher, magazine, or agent), or of individual correspondent.

Access or Use Restrictions


The collection is open for research.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Morris Robert Werner Correspondence, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Contents List

1 Alfred A. Knopf (New York). 2 TLLS "Harry C. B." [Block?]. Asking him to edit Barnum's autobiography and expressing regret because he declined. April 1-April 7, 1926
1 Alfred A. Knopf (New York). TLS "Blanche Knopf". Declining to publish To Whom It May Concern. May 21, 1931
1 All Nations Magazine (New York). TLS "Hyman Settel," editor. Accepting his article, "The Fashion for Dictators." May 5, 1933
1 Atlantic Monthly (Boston). TLS "Ellery Sedgwick". Expressing approval of his article of Radio City, but suggesting revisions. Jan. 17, 1933
1 Atlantic Monthly (Boston). 4 TLLS "Edward C. Aswell". Regarding revisions to Radio City article and declining to publish an article on the Russian legal system. A remittance advice for "From Real Estate to Art," Feb. 16, 1933, is included. Feb. 1-April 28, 1933
1 Atlantic Monthly (Boston). TLS [illegible signature] to "Morrie". Giving an opinion as to why the Atlantic is not likely to publish a certain story. Not dated
1 Atlantic Monthly Press (Boston). 3 TLLS "M.A. DeWolfe Howe". Regarding his writing about Barnum and declining an article on Joseph Boruwlaski. August 11, 1922-April 12, 1923
1 Bookman (New York). TLS "John Farrar". Asking him to come by and discuss ideas. Jan. 11, 1921
1 Collier's (New York). TLS "Frank D. Morris". Declining article on Jews in Germany. March 21, 1922
1 Covici, Friede inc. (New York). TLS "Pascal Covici". Declining to publish "Tragic Japan." April 5, 1922
1 Coward McCann (New York). TLS "Thomas R. Coward". Giving reason for decision not to publish To Whom It May Concern. Jan. 23, 1931
1 Cowart(?) T. W. TLS. Thanking him for services in connection with the Chinese Famine Fund. Dec. 13, 1930
1 Curtis Brown, ltd. (New York). TLS "Raymond Crossett". Enclosing Hollywood representative's report on Barnum and Brigham Young. October 1, 1934
1 Curtis Brown, ltd. (New York). TLS "Helen Everitt". Returning "Let 'em Eat the Constitution," which Harper's has declined. May 19, 1936
1 Curtis Brown, ltd. (New York). TLS "Alan Collins". Reacquiring the plates of his out of print books. October 26, 1938
1 Dodd, Mead and Company (New York). 2 TLLS "H. C. Lewis," to M. R. Werner. Declining to publish "Tragic Japan." April 26-May 8, 1933
1 Doubleday, Doran and Company (Garden City, NY). 22 TLLS "R.C. Remington," "Carlson Doubleday," "H. R. Maule," "Daniel Longwell," et al. Primarily regarding Tammany Hall (published by Doubleday, Doran, 1928). Also about other books, To Whom It May Concern (1941), Little Napoleons and Dummy Directors (1933), and "Tragic Japan." April 10, 1926 - October 28, 1933
1 Doubleday, Doran and Company (Garden City, NY). [Werner, M. R.] TL (carbon) to H. E. Maule. Protesting the reasons given for not publishing To Whom It May Concern, given in letter of April 1. April 3, 1931
1 Doubleday, Doran and Company (Garden City, NY). Statement of sales of Tammany Hall. January 2, 1934
1 Doubleday, Page and Co. (Garden City, NY). 14 autograph and typed letters and notes, signed "Ralph H. Graves," "Russell Doubleday," "Beecher Stowe," et al. Asking him to consider writing a book on Tammany Hall (Sept. 18, 1925) and follow up letters on its progress, through its acceptance, and scheduling for printing the proofs. September 18, 1925 - September 21, 1927
1 Fortune (New York). TLS "Ralph McA. Ingersoll". Asks him to send Japanese manuscript as soon as possible. Feb. 13, 1933
1 Forum (New York). 2 TLLS "Eunice Chapman," and "Henry G. Leach". Asking him to submit an American biography for publication in 1926. Declining his article on Joseph Boruwalski. September 14th letter is torn. August 21 - September 14, 1925
1 Freeman (New York). TLS Albert Jay Nock. Life of Brigham Young. Jan. 23, 1924
1 Harcourt, Brace and Company (New York). TLS (illegible). Proofs for Matthew Josephson's The Robber Barons. Feb. 3, 1934
1 Harcourt, Brace and Company (New York). TLS "Donald Brace". His check has been deposited. April 5, 1944
1 Harper and Brothers (New York). TLS "Cass Canfield". Following receipt of Werner's recent letter, Canfield wonders if there is sufficient trust between the two to follow through on a scheme they had discussed regarding the publication of Werner's books. March 9, 1931
1 Harper and Brothers (New York). 12 TLLS "Cass Canfield". Declining to publish book of Japan; publications arrangements for Little Napoleons and Dummy Directors and attempt to work out repayment of an advance, apparently for a "New York book" that Werner did not deliver. April 26, 1932-September 13, 1938
1 Harper's Magazine (New York). TLS "C. Hartman". Declines to publish article on Tammany Hall; financial arrangement between Werner and Harper's. August 29, 1933
1 Hill Peters (New York). TLS "Carol Hil"l. His outlines for films on Brigham Young and Jim Bowie. Suggest that he work on Jim Bowie, or an article on lotteries. September 13, 1932
1 Houghton Mifflin Company (Boston). 2 TLLS "Ferris Greenslet". Ask him to send manuscript of Bank of the U.S. book; declines to publish "Tragic Japan." Sept. 28-Sept. 30 1932
1 International Magazine Company (New York). 2 TLLS "Julian Johnson". Like his story, "A Military Middle Man," but is not publishing any war stories. Declines "It's in the Note." April 28-July 28 1921
1 Jonathan Cape and Harrison Smith (London and New York). 9 TLLS "Jonathan Cape, "G. Wren Howard," "Hal" [Harrison Smith?], et al. Concern his books Barnum, Orderly!, and To Whom It May Concern. Relationship between Werner, Cape and other publishers and the matter of publishers' advances. Oct. 15, 1923 - January 28, 1932
1 Ladies' Home Journal (Philadelphia). TLS (illegible). Letter received, apparently from a reader in Utah. May 8, 1925
1 Liberty (New York). 11 TLLS "J.M. Patterson," "Loren Palmer," et al. Concern articles on Bryan, Hobson, Russia, etc. May 7, 1926 - December 11, 1930
1 Literary Digest (New York). TLS "Arthur S. Draper". Declines article on Tammany Hall. September 28, 1933
1 Longmans, Green and Co. (New York). TLS "Maxwell Aley". Declines to publish "Tragic Japan." Nov. 20, 1933
1 Macmillan Company (New York). 2 TLLS "J. R. de la Torre Bueno, Jr.". Appreciates his book on Japan, but declines to publish it because of lack of sales appeal. Interested in publishing his "Dummy Directors" and asks to see sample of work. June 9-June 20, 1932
1 Miljan Publishing Company (New York). ALS "Harry Levy". Asks that he write 1500 word article of sex-life in Japan. Dec. 14, 1934
1 Nation (New York). TLS "Joe Krutch". Says there are no staff jobs at The Nation, but invites him to do reviewing, or to submit an article. Nov. 1, 1938
1 New Republic (New York). 6 TLLS "Robert Littell," "Bruce Bliven," and "H. Croly". Books for Werner to review and possible articles that he might write. Appreciation of his Barnum book, his New York City book, and the possibility of a libel suit against the New Republic because of a review Werner wrote. June 8, 1923-Sept. 4, 1931
1 Pitkin, Walter B. (Dover, NJ). TLS "W B Pitkin". Appreciation of Barnum. May 10, 1923
1 Saturday Review of Literature (New York). 2 TLLS "Henry S. Canby" and "Amy Loveman". Invites him to prepare an article on "modern biography." June 13-16, 1924
1 W. W. Norton (New York). 3 TLLS "George Stevens" and "W. W. Norton". Asking him to review a book, to come by the office to talk about an idea for a book, and declining to publish book on Japan. October 20, 1932 - October 30, 1932
1 World's Work (Garden City). 2 TLLS "V.H. Nulty" and "Russell Doubleday". Payment for book review; declining article on corruption in New York. July 8, 1927 - April 14, 1931

Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Ashwell, Edward -- Correspondence.
Authors, American -- Correspondence.
Canfield, Cass -- Correspondence.
Howe, M. A. De Wolfe (Mark Antony De Wolfe), 1864-1960 -- Correspondence.
Werner, M. R. (Morris Robert), 1897- -- Correspondence.

For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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