TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Administrative Information

Biography of Nelson Algren

Scope and Content of the Collection

Selected Search Terms

Container List

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Inventory of the Nelson Algren Papers, 1960-1975


The Newberry Library
Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
60 West Walton Street
Chicago, Illinois 60610-7324
USA
Phone: 312-255-3506
Fax: 312-255-3646
E-Mail: specialcolls@newberry.org
URL: http://www.newberry.org

Machine-readable finding aid encoded by Polly Smith, 2009.

©2009.


Descriptive Summary of the Collection

Creator Algren, Nelson, 1909-1981
Title Nelson Algren Papers
Dates 1960-1975
Extent 0.1 linear feet (4 folders)
Abstract Includes three typescripts of Algren works (2 signed), and two articles about Algren when he permanently left Chicago in 1975.
Language Materials are in English.
Repository Newberry Library, Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections
Collection Call Number Midwest MS 152
Collection Stack Location 3a 35 3

Administrative Information

Cite As

Nelson Algren Papers, The Newberry Library, Chicago.

Provenance

Gift, Kit Pelletreau, 1991.

Processed by

Virginia Hay Smith, 2008.

Access

The Nelson Algren Papers are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room (Priority III).

Ownership and Literary Rights

The Nelson Algren Papers are the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.

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Biography of Nelson Algren

Chicago writer.

Born Nelson Algren Abraham in Detroit in 1909, Algren grew up in Chicago, where he lived in the blue-collar neighborhoods of the city. After graduating from the University of Illinois in 1931, he began drifting around the country working at whatever jobs he could find until he made the decision to become a writer.

During World War II Algren served in the military as a private, and after demobilization in 1945, settled in various poor neighborhoods of Chicago, spending his time reading and writing short stories. His novel of 1949, The Man With the Golden Arm, was his biggest success, winning the National Book Award and becoming a movie. Nine years later, his second novel to be filmed was A Walk on the Wild Side. Algren’s body of work, based as it is on much of the seamy side of life, is in the tradition of American social realism, so that he has been described as the poet of the underworld.

Algren moved from Chicago to Paterson, New Jersey, in 1975. He died of a heart attack in 1981.

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Scope and Content of the Collection

Includes typescripts of three works by Algren: “The Woman One Roof Away”, “The Chevalier of Vain Regrets” (signed), and “God Bless the Lonesome Gas Man” (signed). Also, two articles about Algren when he left Chicago in 1975.

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Selected Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Newberry Library's public catalog. Researchers desiring additional materials on a particular topic should search the catalog using these headings.

Names

  • Algren, Nelson, 1909-1981
  • Algren, Nelson, 1909-1981. Chevalier of vain regrets
  • Algren, Nelson, 1909-1981. God bless the lonesome gas man
  • Algren, Nelson, 1909-1981. Woman one roof away

Subjects

  • American literature -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Authors, American -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Manuscripts, American -- Illinois -- Chicago
  • Short stories, American -- 20th century

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Container List

Box Folder Contents
1 1 “The Woman One Roof Away”, typescript, 1960
1 2 “God Bless the Lonesome Gas Man”, signed typescript, 1962
1 3 “The Chevalier of Vain Regrets”, signed typescript, n.d.
1 4 Two articles about Algren, 1975