Resources for Hunt at Iowa:

The Brewer-Leigh Hunt Collection is a comprehensive gathering of books and manuscripts by and about English writer James Henry Leigh Hunt (1784-1859). The collection is nearly complete in first and subsequent editions of books by Hunt. There are also presentation copies, association copies, periodicals edited by Hunt, as well as his contributions to journals, the published writing his friends, and other volumes, plus manuscripts and letters by, or associated with, Hunt. The core of the collection was purchased from the estate of Luther A. Brewer (1853-1933), a Cedar Rapids publisher (The Torch Press), in 1934, and since that time resources have been added as they have become available.  In recent years this has been made possible by a generous bequest from Desmond and Mary Bruce Leight-Hunt.

Overview of the Brewer-Leigh Hunt Collection:

• Frank Hanlin gives a succinct overview that serves as a nice introduction to the collection and its history.


• Search for books by Hunt in the library catalog, Infohawk. Search tip: use the “Advanced Search” screen and limit “Location” to “Special Collections” for results in Special Collections.  Note: There are no records for Leigh Hunt manuscripts, correspondence, and ephemera in the library catalog. Please see below for means of accessing them most effectively.


• The collection includes over 200 manuscripts. A catalogue of 169 manuscripts in the collection, including brief descriptions, as well as a 2010 addendum to the catalogue, are available online. Inquiries are welcome in person or via email for further information concerning the Hunt manuscript collection.


• Correspondence in the collection includes nearly 1,600 letters to, from, or pertaining to Leigh Hunt. In 2007, the department was awarded funding from the Delmas Foundation to digitize this correspondence.  Please see the project homepage, Leigh Hunt Letters.

• Until all of the letters have been digitized, a card catalog, available only in Special Collections, provides the most complete access to the Hunt correspondence; inquiries are welcome in person or via email.

Ephemera, illustrations, and photographs:

• A small collection of ephemera related to Hunt, including photographs of portraits and former houses, bookplates, and other sketches and silhouettes of the Hunt family and friends.

• Included here is also a listing of materials compiled by collection of ephemera, donated to the Libraries between 1988 and 1990. Present within the collection are handwritten notes, typewritten and handwritten transcripts, clippings, and holograph copies of letters and manuscript fragments.

Books at Iowa articles about Leigh Hunt and the collection:

• A list of articles published in Books at Iowa from 1964 -1996. The full text of each article is available online.

Articles about Luther Brewer:

• For a biographical essay on Luther Brewer, see Robert McCown, “Luther A. Brewer,” in American Book Collectors and Bibliographers (Second Series), edited by Joseph Rosenblum, volume 187 of Dictionary of Literary Biography (Gale Research, 1997), p12-16.

Related collections:

• Papers of publisher John Murray (1778-1843) to John Wilson Croker

Keats, Leigh Hunt & Shelley [microform]: manuscripts from the Additional, Ashley, Egerton and Zweig collections at the British Library (Marlborough: Adam Matthew, 2006). Main Media Services 29998. Guide to reel contents available online: