Poetry at Beinecke Library

Chicago Poetry Club

Posted in Beinecke Collections by beineckepoetry on March 11, 2008

The papers of poets Gladys Campbell, Kathleen Foster Campbell, Llewellyn Jones have been processed recently and are available for use. All three poets were members of the University of Chicago Poetry Club, a group formed in 1917 by students who wished to address the absence of modern poetry in the University curriculum. Members included Gladys Campbell, Kathleen Foster Campbell, Llewellyn Jones, Glenway Wescott, George Dillon, Elizabeth Madox Roberts, Arthur Yvor Winters, Maurice Lesemann, and Janet Lewis. Harriet Monroe, the founder and editor of Poetry Magazine, visited the group often. Gladys Campbell and Dillon were among the editors of the Poetry Club’s publication, The Forge: A Journal of Verse, published from 1924 to 1929.

Gladys Campbell (1892-1992) attended the University of Chicago and was one of the early members of the University of Chicago Poetry Club. Campbell and George Dillon were close friends for their entire lives and Dillon sent his poems to her for criticism. Other close friends of Gladys Campbell’s were writer Glenway Wescott and poet Charles Bell. Campbell wrote poetry throughout her life and her poems appeared frequently in various publications.

The Gladys Campbell Papers contain correspondence, writings, and other papers that document the work of the poet Gladys Campbell and friends from the University of Chicago Poetry Club, as well as her relationship with other poets. The papers also contain writings of George Dillon, Charles Bell, Janet Lewis, and Maurice Lesemann. The papers span the years 1914 to 1995. A full description of the papers may be found online: Gladys Campbell Papers YCAL MSS 251.

Kathleen Foster Campbell, born Kathleen Foster, attended the University of Chicago to study poetry. After graduating from the University, Campbell maintained a relationship with the members of the club and the University. Through the Poetry Club, Campbell became a close friend of Janet Lewis and Elizabeth Madox Roberts and eventually married Donald Campbell, the brother of fellow writer and Poetry Club member Gladys Campbell.

The Kathleen Foster Campbell Papers consist of correspondence, writings and printed materials that document the relationship between Kathleen Foster Campbell and friends from the University of Chicago Poetry Club, as well as her writings and writings of others. Included among the papers are several writings by Janet Lewis. The papers span the years 1924 to 1992. A full description of the papers may be found online: Kathleen Foster Campbell Papers YCAL MSS 252.

Llewellyn Jones (1884-1961) was born in Castletown in the Isle of Man, Great Britain. From 1914 to 1932, he was the literary editor of the Chicago Evening Post. During his time as editor, Jones also taught writing as a visiting summer instructor at the University of Chicago, where he was a member of the University of Chicago Poetry Club. Jones moved to Boston in 1937 to take the position of editor of the Christian Register, but resigned in 1941. He lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts until his death in 1961.

The Llewellyn Jones Papers document his personal and professional life as a writer and editor and span the dates 1902 to 1962. The Papers contain correspondence, writings, and other papers. The bulk of the correspondence regards the Christian Register and the American Unitarian Association, and his involvement in the Chicago literary community; a small portion of the correspondence is personal in nature. The collection also contains documentation of Jones’s involvement with the Cliff Dwellers, a Chicago club that supports the fine and performing arts. A full description of the papers can be found online: Llewellyn Jones Papers YCAL MSS 257.

Related materials in the Beinecke Collections can be found by searching the Finding Aid Database; poets’ published work can be located by searching Orbis, the library catalog. (MW)

Images: George Dillon, circa 1918 (YCAL MSS 251 photographer unknown, Box 4 Folder 82) ; Gladys Campbell, circa 1957 (YCAL MSS 251 photographer unknown, Box 4 Folder 80)

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