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William S. Burroughs papers

Collection Data

The archive was organized during two periods of activity: by Burroughs in 1965, and then in 1972 by Burroughs, Brion Gysin, and Barry Miles, who divided the manuscripts and typescripts of Burroughs's works and notes into 169 collections of papers which they placed in consecutively numbered folders and portfolios of various sizes, which they called "Folios". Burroughs inscribed headings on the folders and sometimes also affixed collages to their front covers. In addition to manuscripts and typescripts, these folios include correspondence, clippings from magazines, photographs, exercise books, and cut-ups. The material relates to apomorphine, scientology, dreams, biofeedback and to the composition of Burroughs' Dream Diary, Soft Machine, Naked Lunch, The Wild Boys, Dead Fingers Talk, Nova Express, The Revised Boy Scout Manual and the Job
Burroughs, William S., 1914-1997 (Creator)
Dates / Origin
Date Created: 1951 - 1972
Library locations
Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature
Shelf locator: Berg Coll MSS Burroughs Archive
Burroughs, William S., 1914-1997
Ownership: Owned by William S. Burroughs and sold by him to a financier in Liechtenstein, ca. 1973. Purchased by the Jacksons in the late 1980s.
Acquisition: Purchased from Robert and Carol Jackson (Cleveland, Ohio), in 2005.
Content: In addition to the 169 folios containing manuscript material, proofs and occasional incoming and outgoing correspondence related thematically to the folio material it accompanies, the archive contains eleven files compiled by Burroughs and related to Scientology; 4 boxes of photographic files with approximately 1000 photographs, most of which were taken by Burroughs himself; and three boxes of audio material dating from 1960-1973. In addition to the correspondence described above, the archive also includes extensive correspondence to and from the author, written between 1955-1972, organized into 45 files. Correspondents include Paul Bowles, Mary Beach & Claude Pelieu, David Budd, Truman Capote, Gregory Corso, Brion Gysin, Allen Ginsberg, Rolf Gunter-Dienst, Lawrence Ferlinghetti, Charles Henri Ford, Timothy Leary, Jack Kerouac, David Prentice and Terry Southern; as well as noted publishers Dick Seaver and Barney Rossett of Grove Press and Maurice Girodias of Olympia Press.
Physical Description
Extent: 17 linear feet (94 manuscript boxes)
Type of Resource
RLIN/OCLC: 430941447
NYPL catalog ID (B-number): b18134674
MSS Unit ID: 19345
Universal Unique Identifier (UUID): 6f378f30-c6cd-012f-c54a-58d385a7bc34
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