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MacLeish, Archibald, 1892-1982

 Person

Dates

  • Existence: 1892 - 1982

Archibald MacLeish, poet, playwright, and government official, was born on May 7, 1892, in Glencoe, Illinois. He graduated from Yale in 1915, entered Harvard Law School, and married Ada Hitchcock in 1916. After the United States entered World War I, he enlisted as a private in the army, served in the artillery in France, and was discharged with the rank of captain. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1919 and the next year joined the Boston law firm of Choate, Hall, and Stewart. In 1923 the MacLeish family moved to Paris, where they remained for five years. After returning to the United States, he travelled to Mexico to follow the route of Cortez's army in preparation for writing Conquistador.

During the 1930s MacLeish was an editor of Fortune magazine. He served as Librarian of Congress, 1939-44, Assistant Secretary of State for Public and Cultural Affairs, 1944-45, and Boylston Professor of Rhetoric and Poetry at Harvard University, 1949-62. MacLeish's poetry and dramatic writings earned him Pulitizer Prizes in 1932, 1952, and 1959, the Bollingen Prize and the National Book Award for poetry in 1953, the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1977, and the National Medal for Literature in 1978. Archibald MacLeish died in Boston on April 20, 1982.

His major works of poetry include Tower of Ivory (1917), The Pot of Earth (1925), The Hamlet of A. MacLeish (1928), New Found Land (1930), Conquistador (1932), America Was Promises (1939), Collected Poems, 1917-1952 (1952), and Songs for Eve (1954). MacLeish also wrote several plays, some of the most important being Panic (1935), The Fall of the City (1937), Air Raid (1938), J.B. (1958), Herakles (1967), and Scratch (1971). Counted among his works of prose are A Time to Speak (1941), The American Story (1944), Poetry and Experience, (1960), and A Continuing Journey (1968).

Found in 3 Collections and/or Records:

Decision Magazine papers

 Collection
Call Number: MS 176
Overview: Correspondence, drafts of articles and poems, legal documents, press releases, clippings and other papers of the magazine which was published in New York from January 1941 to February 1942 under the editorship of Klaus Mann. Correspondents and writers include W.H. Auden, André Gide, Sir Julian Huxley, Christopher Isherwood, Heinrich Mann, Thomas Mann, William Carlos Williams and Stefan Zweig. Also in the papers is the proof for an unpublished article by Vladimir Nabokov, "Soviet Literature...
Dates: 1940-1942

Victor Jeremy Jerome papers

 Collection
Call Number: MS 589
Overview: Correspondence, writings, research notes, biographical material, obituaries and eulogies, and other personal and family papers of Victor J. Jerome, American communist, writer, editor of Political Affairs, and political activist. The bulk of the papers relate primarily to Jerome's activities with the American Communist Party during the period from 1930 to 1965. Of special interest is correspondence relating to Jerome's trial and conviction for violation of the Smith Act (1952); correspondence...
Dates: 1923-1967

Anson Phelps Stokes family papers

 Collection
Call Number: MS 299
Overview: The papers consist of correspondence, writings, subject files, memorabilia, photographs, financial records, and other papers detailing the professional career and personal life of Anson Phelps Stokes and family members, including Olivia, Caroline and Helen Stokes. Papers relating to Anson Phelps Stokes document his work with prominent educators, reformers, religious leaders, businessmen, and politicians. Stokes's work on behalf of black education, social issues, and the Phelps-Stokes Fund are...
Dates: 1761-1960, bulk 1892-1958