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Paul Scott Mowrer papers

Identifier: Midwest-MS-Mowrer P

Scope and Content of the Collection

Correspondence, works, and personal materials related to Paul Scott Mowrer's life and career. Much of the correspondence deals with Mowrer's poetry, though there are a few letters from his time as a reporter. Works encompass the many directions he took as a writer, including newspaper clippings of his dispatches from Europe, excerpts from his published books, short stories, opinion columns for the New York Post, and poetry. In addition to writing verse, Mowrer also wrote numerous critical essays concerning poetic methods and traditions. Mowrer was a staunch defender of a traditional approach to poetry, and his dislike of modernist conventions is reflected in his writings about poetry, and his correspondence with other poets and editors.

There is a series of photographs taken by Mowrer while he was traveling in the Balkans and Morocco, photos from the French front during World War I, and photos of Mowrer and his family. Also included are audio recordings of Mowrer reading his poetry.

Narrative descriptions of the subject matter, types of material, and arrangement of each series are available through the Organization section of the finding aid.


  • Creation: 1894-2007
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1912 - 1971



Materials are in English.


The Paul Scott Mowrer papers are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).

Conditions Governing Audiovisual Access

Most audiovisual recordings in this collection have been digitized. Researchers may access materials in the Special Collections Reading Room.

Ownership and Literary Rights

The Paul Scott Mowrer 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.

Biography of Paul Scott Mowrer

Pulitzer Prize-winning foreign correspondent, newspaper editor, and poet.

Paul Scott Mowrer was born in Bloomington, Illinois, on July 14, 1887, to Rufus and Nell Scott Mowrer. The family later moved to Chicago, where Mowrer attended Hyde Park High School. He began writing poetry at age 14, and also contributed to the school newspaper, The Spectator. After graduating in 1905, Mowrer worked briefly as a picture chaser for the Chicago Daily News before attending the University of Michigan. After a few years of college he returned to the Chicago Daily News in 1908 to work as a reporter.

In 1910, Mowrer was sent to Paris at the age of 22 as part of the Chicago Daily News' nascent foreign news service. He remained for twenty-four years, covering the first Balkan War in 1912-1913, then directing the Daily News war service in France during World War I, and the Paris Peace Conference of 1919. In 1924, Mowrer traveled to the Rif area of Morocco to report on the region's war with Spain. Mowrer published his first books during this time: the poetry volumes Hours Of France (1918) and The Good Comrade (1923), as well as the political analyses Balkanized Europe: A Study In Political Analysis And Reconstruction (1921) and Our Foreign Affairs: A Study In National Interest And The New Diplomacy (1924).

While overseas, Mowrer was awarded the French Légion d'honneur in 1918, and was promoted to Officer in 1933. In 1929, he also received the first Pulitzer Prize awarded for foreign reporting.

Mowrer was married to Winifred Adams from 1909-1932, and the couple had two children: Richard Scott, born in 1911 and David Adams, born in 1912. In 1933 Mowrer married Hadley Richardson Hemingway, previously the first wife of Ernest Hemingway.

The couple left Europe in 1934 for Chicago, where Mowrer became chief editorial writer of the Chicago Daily News, then editor from 1935-1944. In 1944, Mowrer accepted a position as the foreign editor of the New York Post in Paris, and also briefly established a Paris edition of the paper called the Paris Post. Mowrer also published a volume of poetry, Poems Between Wars, in 1942 as well as his autobiography, The House of Europe, in 1945.

In order to focus on his poetry, Mowrer retired from newspaper work in 1947 and the couple returned to the United States, relocating to Chocorua, New Hampshire in 1949. During this time Mowrer wrote numerous articles and published nine books of poetry: On Going To Live In New Hampshire, 1953; And Let The Glory Go, 1955; Twenty-one And Sixty-five, 1958; The Mothering Land, 1959, High Mountain Pond, 1962; School For Diplomats, 1964; This Teeming Earth, 1965; The Island Ireland, 1966; and The Poems of Paul Scott Mowrer 1918-1966, 1968. He also published two volumes for theater: Fifi; Or, Something Entirely New; A Comedy In One Act in 1956 and Six Plays in 1967.

In 1967, Mowrer was named the first poet laureate of New Hampshire, and in 1969 wrote the poem "New Hampshire Hills," which was set to music and later designated an honorary state song. Paul Scott Mowrer died in 1971, en route to New Hampshire from a vacation in South Carolina.


8 Linear Feet (13 boxes, 1 oversize box, and 1 artifact)


Correspondence, works, photographs and personal materials related to Paul Scott Mowrer, Pulitzer Prize-winning foreign correspondent, author, newspaper editor, and poet. Mowrer was Paris correspondent for the Chicago Daily News beginning in 1910, headed the foreign news service until 1934, and editor of the paper from 1935-1944. He was foreign editor of the New York Post from 1944-1947. An accomplished poet, Mowrer published nine books of poetry and was named first poet laureate of New Hampshire in 1967.


Papers are organized in the following series

Series 1: Correspondence, 1894-1971, Bulk 1949-1969
Boxes 1-2
Series 2: Works, 1901-1988
Boxes 3-8
Series 3: Personal, 1912-2007, Bulk 1912-1969
Boxes 9-10
Series 4: Scrapbooks, 1913-1949
Box 11
Series 5: Photographs, 1910-1924
Box 12
Series 6: Recordings, 1952-1965
Box 13
Series 7: Artifact, approximately 1910
1 item

Collection Stack Location

1 26 4


Gift of Paul Scott Mowrer, 1957. Additional gifts from Richard Scott Mowrer, 1989, 1991, 1992, 2005, 2012.

Processed by

Kelly Kress, 2007, 2015.


This inventory was created with the generous support of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this inventory do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Inventory of the Paul Scott Mowrer papers, 1894-2007, Bulk 1912-1971
Kelly Kress
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The Newberry Library - Modern Manuscripts and Archives Repository

60 West Walton Street
Chicago Illinois 60610 United States