Skip to main content

Maurine Watkins papers

 Collection
Call Number: YCAL MSS 1079

Scope and Contents

The Maurine Watkins Papers, which span from 1890 to 2012, contain writings, including scripts and short stories, printed material, correspondence, photographs and other papers by or relating to Maurine Watkins. Watkins was a journalist and playwright whose most well-known work was the play "Chicago," which Bob Fosse adapted into an award-winning musical.

Dates

  • circa 1890-2012

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Maurine Watkins Papers is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Ken Lopez Bookseller, Ann Margaret Brown Buckland and Peter L. Brown on the Edwin J. Beinecke Book Fund, and the Adele Gutman Nathan Theaterical Collection Fund, 2016.

Arrangement

Organized into three series: I. Plays, 1926-2012. II. Other Writings, 1927-1949. III. Personal Papers, 1890-1939.

Extent

2.75 Linear Feet (7 boxes)

Language of Materials

English

Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL

https://hdl.handle.net/10079/fa/beinecke.watkins

Overview

The Maurine Watkins Papers, which span from 1890 to 2012, contain writings, including scripts and short stories, printed material, correspondence, photographs and other papers by or relating to Maurine Watkins. Watkins was a journalist and playwright whose most well-known work was the play "Chicago," which Bob Fosse adapted into an award-winning musical.

Maurine Watkins

Maurine Dallas Watkins (1896-1969) was a playwright and journalist most well-known for writing the play "Chicago." Watkins was born in Kentucky, attended several colleges including Radcliffe College, and got hired by the Chicago Tribune as a reporter in 1924. While working at the Tribune, Watkins reported on the trials of Beulah Annan and Belva Gaertner, who were both found not guilty of murder. Soon after, Watkins left her position at the Tribune and went to Yale University to continue her studies, eventually writing a fictionalized version of the Annan and Gaertner trials entitled "Chicago." Watkins went on to write over twenty plays. After Watkins's death of lung cancer, her estate sold the rights of 'Chicago" to Bob Fosse, who adapted the play into a successful musical.

Processing Information

Collections are processed to a variety of levels, depending on the work necessary to make them usable, their perceived research value, the availability of staff, competing priorities, and whether or not further accruals are expected. The library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections as they are acquired, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.

This collection received a basic level of processing, including rehousing and minimal organization.

Information included in the Description of the Papers note and Collection Contents section is drawn from information supplied with the collection and from an initial survey of the contents. Folder titles appearing in the contents list below are often based on those provided by the creator or previous custodian. Titles have not been verified against the contents of the folders in all cases. Otherwise, folder titles are supplied by staff during initial processing.

This finding aid may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.
Title
Guide to the Maurine Watkins Papers
Author
by Rosemary K. J. Davis
Date
August 2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

Contact:
P. O. Box 208330
New Haven CT 06520-8330 US
(203) 432-2977

Location

121 Wall Street
New Haven, CT 06511

Opening Hours

Access Information

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. Beinecke is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Paging is done by library staff during business hours. You can request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in Archives at Yale. For more information, please see Planning Your Research Visit and consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.