MsC 705

Iowa Author

  Manuscript Register


Collection Dates: [1945 -- 1961]
1.5 linear ft.

This document describes a collection of materials held by the
Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1420
Phone: 319-335-5921
Fax: 319-335-5900

Posted to Internet: May 2000
Addendum: March 2003

Acquisition Note: Phil Stong gave his manuscripts to the University of Iowa Libraries in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Access and Restrictions: This collection is open for research.

Digital Surrogates: Except where indicated, this document describes but does not reproduce the actual text, images and objects which make up this collection. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department.

Copyright:  Please read The University of Iowa Libraries' statement on "Property Rights, Copyright Law, and Permissions to Use Unpublished Materials"

Use of Collections: The University of Iowa Libraries supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted by their fragile condition or by contractual agreement with donors, and it may not be possible at all times to provide appropriate machinery for reading, viewing or accessing non-paper-based materials. Please read our Use of Manuscripts Statement.

Abbreviations: For an explanation of the abbreviation and dating conventions used in the finding aid, please see Abbreviations.

Scope and Contents

Manuscripts of some of Stong's books are collected here, as well as letters from Stong to various correspondents. The major collection of Stong's papers is at Cowles Library at Drake University in Des Moines. The 2003 addendum contains letters from Mrs. Stong to a college friend, and provides some details her life with Phil Stong.

Item Inventory


To Cyril Clemens

Washington, Conn. 16 February 1936. Concerning his opinion of Mark Twain as a man and as a personage. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 9 January 1938. Concerning his opinion of Santayana and an argument about him in which he was involved; some remarks about E. A. Robinson and Aristophanes. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 20 June 1938. Listing his favorite books, etc., and recalling some childhood memories. T.L.S. 2pp. I.

Washington, Conn. 29 March 1939. Relating the time he "acted" with Lionel Barrymore.

Washington, Conn. 12 November 1939. Recalling some personal experiences; remarks about Mark Train, and a train named after some of his characters. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 9 January 1940. Concerning some books he has read that have influenced him; some remarks about his present concerns. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 27 March 1941. Concerning his opinions on some writers (such as: Jacobs, Machen, Briffault, Dickens, Galsworthy, Stein, Joyce, Proust, etc.) and how they influenced him. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 18 February 1944. Concerning why he can not write the article about Will Rogers for a while. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 12 October 1944. Relating some of his "Coolidge stories" (also contains an undated part of another letter which concerns Mark Twain’s and Stong’s attitude towards God). T.L.S. 2pp.

Washington, Conn. 1) 14 May 1945. A Postcard. Concerning his opinion of Truman. 2) 19 July 1946. A Letter. Concerning more of his opinion of Truman. T.L.S. 1p.

MsLS881c12 To Cyril Clemens. Washington, Conn. 16 September 1946. Agreeing to preserve the manuscript of the novel he's presently working on for Clemen's library. T.L.S. 1p. I. Clemen, Cyril, 1902-.

Washington, Conn. 24 January 1948. Concerning Samuel Clemens and the potency of his remarks when he was annoyed. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 28 January 1948. Concerning his opinion of Truman and his qualities and chances for election. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 2 March 1948. Concerning his trip down the Mississippi by stern?wheeler. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 18 June 1948. Sending him the Ms copy of the article he wrote about his Mark Twain trip; some remarks about Truman. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 6 February 1949. Concerning Truman; some remarks about the new house he bought. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 19 February 1950. Mentioning the love letters of Mark Twain. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 8 April 1951. Concerning some questions he has about Mark Twain. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 7 April 1951. Concerning Mark Twain; some remarks about an article he is writing. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 27 August 1951. Concerning his trip, and article on U.S. #1. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 4 December 1951. Concerning his opinions of the possible candidates (Truman, Taft, Stassen, Eisenhower) for the presidency. T.L.S. 1p.

Three Letters. Washington, Conn. 21 May 1952 to 12 August 1952. Sending his thanks for some magazines Clemens sent; and accepting an invitation to visit in October. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 1 December 1952. Explaining why he didn’t visit in October; and stating he voted for Eisenhower. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 14 July 1953. Concerning what he has been doing, and when he will get out West again. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 14 October 1954. Relating an anecdote about G. B. Shaw. T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 23 October 1954. Concerning what he has been doing and promising to send Clemens a copy of "Mississippi Pilot." T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 17 October 1955. Concerning a parallel he has noticed between "Roughing It" and "The Canterbury Tales." T.L.S. 1p.

Washington, Conn. 23 February 1956. Concerning his early career in writing and how he wrote "State Fair." T.L.S. 1p.

To Harvey Davis. Photocopies

1922 -- 1956. 93 letters. 116 pp.

To miscellaneous correspondents, E -- Z

Ralph Ellsworth. Washington, Connecticut. 3 letters: 21 and 30 November 1945 and 10 January 1946. Concerning his manuscripts and his work. 3 T.L.S.

John T. Frederick. Washington, Connecticut. 18 November 1955. Expressing his appreciation for a review and earlier consideration for Mr. Stong concerning his recent publications with Gold Rush settings. T.L.S. 1p.

John T. Frederick Washington, Conn. 25 November 1956. Concerning a picture of Mr. Stong; concerning the "education" requirements for teaching at Kansas and Drake. T.L.S. 1p.

John T. Frederick. Neodesha, Kansas. Two letters. (1) 21 January 1922. Congratulating Mr. Frederick on the publication of his book. (2) 1 May 1923. Commenting on Mr. Frederick's novel Druida. A.L.S. 1p. each.

Laurence Fairall. 2 letters. (1) New York City. 30 April 1934. Concerning Stong's desire to write something more sound than "State Fair." T.L.S. 1p. (2) Washington, Conn. 16 October 1946. Concerning the fate of Stong's Fair piece with Life magazine. T.L.S. 1p.

Don Farran. Washington, Conn. 13 November 1953. Regarding Stong's Use of Farran as a character in one of his books; concerning movie prospects. T.L.S. 1p.

Dr. Percy Fridenberg. Washington, Conn. 7 February 1935. Concerning Stong's book Week-end and illusions and language used in it. T.L.S. 1p. envelope included.

Mrs. Le Compte. Washington, Connecticut. 2 May 1955. Concerning Doubleday's delay in sending his book State Fair to Mrs. Le Compte. A.L.S. 1p. With a letter from Molly Ryan to Mrs. Le Compte and a carbon letter from Mamie Doud Eisenhower to Mr. Stong thanking him for the gift copy of his book State Fair.

Frank Luther Mott. Washington Green, Connecticut. 20 September 1934. Concerning an invitation to speak at the Times Club in Iowa City; Mentions his recent purchase of a farm in Connecticut. T.L.S. 1p. Together with a carbon copy of Mr. Mott's reply.

Lester Roberts. Washington, Conn. 20 March 1945. Concerning the publication of State Fair and an earlier work. T.L.S. 1p.

Grace Van Wormer. Washington, Connecticut. 4 letters: 1947?1951. Concerning his manuscripts and copies of his books. 4 T.L.S.

V. H. Woods. Washington, Conn. 17 May 1935. Sending a childhood photograph; giving some biographical background material. T.L.S. 1p.

Harry Zollars. Three letters.

(1) Bermuda. 10 February 1936. Concerning some books to be sent to Connecticut. T.L.S., 1p. with envelope.

(2) New York. 14 March 1936. Concerning some books. T.L.S., 1p. with envelope. With three photographs of Stong, one inscribed to Zollars.

(3) New York. 10 August 1933. Thanking Zollar for his kind remarks concerning "Stranger's Return"; concerning Stong's new


The Adventure of "Horse" Barnsby

First Draft (with corrections)

Galley Proofs

Captain Kidd's Cow. Printer's copy (with revisions)

Censored: The Goat. Draft (with revisions) and an original drawing by Kurt Wiese

Hiram the Hillbilly:

Draft (with revisions)

Printer's copy (with revisions) and front matter

Page proofs and frontispiece layout

Galley proof

Jessamy John (titled the Golden Bubble). Draft (with revisions)

"Mark Twain's River." Essay. 31 leaves. 28cm. Typescript. This rough draft has many revisions.

Missouri Canary. Draft

No-sitch the Hound. Draft (with revisions)

The Ozarks. Draft (with revisions)

Prince and the Porker. Printer's copy (with revisions)

Sacco and Vanzetti. Draft (with revisions)

State Fair

Continuity and dialogue taken from the screen, August 17, 1945

Shooting Final, September 14, 1961

State Fair 

Continuity and dialogue taken from the screen, March 21, 1962

2003 Addendum

9 letters from Virginia Stong to Bertha Craver; 1 letter from Phil [Stong] to Charles [Craver?]. Gift of Charles Craver.


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