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Earl E. Fisk papers

Call Number: GEN MSS 342

Scope and Contents

The Earl E. Fisk Papers contain letters, writings, printed material and other papers by and related to book collector, anthologist, writer, and insurance agent Earl E. Fisk. The papers have been arranged into three series. Series I, Correspondence , consists primarily of letters from individuals, publishing companies and others to Fisk, as well as some of Fisk's replies. Many letters contain illustrated cards and bookplates. Series II, Writings , contains proofs and typescripts of articles and other writings by Fisk and others. Series III, Other Papers , contains Fisk's research files, consisting of lists, notes and newspaper clippings about book collecting and his own publications; printed materials, containing specimen pages, printed illustrations, and articles by various individuals; and other materials, consisting of a typescript list of Fisk's book collection, and lists of people to whom he sent Christmas cards. Restricted Fragile Papers contains materials from Series III.


  • 1911-1953


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Restricted Fragile Papers in the portfolio may only be consulted with permission of the appropriate curator. Preservation photocopies for reference use have been substituted in the main files.

Conditions Governing Use

The Earl E. Fisk Papers are 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 on the Matthiessen Fund, 1956.


1.25 Linear Feet ((3 boxes) + 1 portfolio)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

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

Persistent URL


Collection includes correspondence, writings, and other materials by and relating to book collector, anthologist, writer, and insurance agent Earl E. Fisk. Correspondence contains letters to and from writers, publishers and others, including Alfred A. Knopf, Inc., Warren Beck, John Chipman Farrar, Farrar, Straus and Company, Harry Hansen, Robert Cortes Holliday, H. L. Mencken, A. Edward Newton, Carl Van Vechten, and Eudora Welty. Many of the letters concern Haldane Macfall. Writings include typescripts of articles by Fisk and others, and page proofs for Fisk's "Lovely Laughter: An Anthology of Seventeenth Century Love Lyrics". Other materials include specimen pages,illustrations, greeting cards and bookplates by Fisk, Claud Lovat Fraser, and others, and a detailed typescript list of Fisk's book collection.


Earl E. Fisk, born in Green Bay, Wisconsin in 1892, was an insurance agent, book collector, and casual literary agent to writers who were also his friends. Fisk entered the insurance business after graduating from the University of Wisconsin in 1913, and became chairman of the National Association of Insurance Agents. At the same time, he continued collecting first editions of books by contemporary authors, including Max Beerbohm, A. E. Coppard, Claud Lovat Fraser, Holbrook Jackson, and A. Edward Newton. Although Fisk lived in Wisconsin for all of his adult life, he maintained a connection to the British literary scene. He actively promoted the work of authors whom he enjoyed, and he helped to place books by Haldane Macfall and Holbrook Jackson with American publishers. He also wrote many articles for The Bookman, and edited several books, including two collections of Elizabethan poetry and an edition of William Cobbett's Advice to Young Men and to Young Women. Fisk died in Green Bay, Wisconsin, in 1954.

Processing Information

This finding aid was produced from a previously existing card set in the Manuscripts Catalog. All pertinent bibliographical information has been retained. Portions of the correspondence were formerly cataloged in the Yale Collection of American Literature.
Guide to the Earl E. Fisk Papers
Under Revision
by Beinecke Staff
July 1996
Description rules
Beinecke Manuscript Unit Archival Processing Manual
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

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Access Information

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