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Frederick Knott papers

 Collection
Call Number: GEN MSS 794

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of material created and accumulated by Frederick Knott in the course of his activities as a playwright and screenwriter. Material includes drafts of scripts, production photographs, printed ephemera and audiovisual recordings. Writings include drafts of stage and film versions of Dial M for Murder, and photographs, contracts and other documentation of the film version directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Other material documents the writing and production of Wait Until Dark and Write Me a Murder. A small amount of student papers in Series III (Personal Papers) and writings dating from Knott's childhood document his early life.

Dates

  • 1923 - 2003
  • Majority of material found within 1948 - 2003

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Boxes 44-45 and 48 (audiovisual material): Restricted fragile. Reference copies may be requested. Consult Access Services for further information.

Conditions Governing Use

The Frederick Knott 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 the Estate of Frederick Knott on the Edwin J. Beinecke Book Fund, 2005.

Arrangement

Organized into six series: I. Correspondence, 1951-1992. II. Writings, 1927-2002. III. Personal Papers, 1923-2003. IV. Printed Material, 1941-circa 1999. V. Photographs, circa 1920-1979. VI. Audiovisual Material, 1984-2002.

Extent

18.7 Linear Feet ((47 boxes) + 1 record album storage)

Language of Materials

English

Catalog Record

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

Persistent URL

http://hdl.handle.net/10079/fa/beinecke.knott

Overview

The collection consists of material created and accumulated by Frederick Knott in the course of his activities as a playwright and screenwriter. Material includes drafts of scripts, production photographs, printed ephemera and audiovisual recordings. Writings include drafts of stage and film versions of Dial M for Murder, and photographs, contracts and other documentation of the film version directed by Alfred Hitchcock. Other material documents the writing and production of Wait Until Dark and Write Me a Murder. A small amount of student papers in Series III (Personal Papers) and writings dating from Knott's childhood document his early life.

Frederick Knott, 1916-2002

Frederick Major Paull Knott, playwright and screenwriter, was born August 28, 1916 in Hankow, China to British missionary parents. He was sent to England at the age of ten for schooling, and he entered Cambridge University in 1934, where he excelled at tennis. During the Second World War, Knott served served as an artillery officer in the British army. After the war, Knott turned to writing and his first play was produced in 1952. He authored the plays Dial M for Murder and Wait Until Dark, which were enormously successful on Broadway and in London's West End in the 1950s and 1960s. He also wrote the screenplay for the film version of Dial M for Murder, which was directed by Alfred Hitchcock in 1954. Knott died in New York on December 17, 2002.

Processing Information

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

As a rule, descriptive information found in the Collection Contents section is drawn in large part 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.

Former call number: Uncat MSS 835.
Title
Guide to the Frederick Knott Papers
Author
by Beinecke staff
Date
2007-05-16
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.