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Chanticleer records

Identifier: MSS 0154

Scope and Content Note

The records of the small literary magazine Chanticleer consist of manuscripts, periodicals, and letters spanning the dates 1951 to 1962, the majority of material concentrated in the early 1950s. Many of the letters respond to requests by Chanticleer editors for financial support or submission of work for publication. Typed poetry manuscripts as well as holographs accompanied the replies of Jack Beeching, Jon Silkin, Gael Turnbull, and John Gawsworth. In other letters, authors debate philosophical issues with Chanticleer editors and offer suggestions to ensure the longevity of the periodical. Some letters simply relay items and authors of interest, or decline requests for magazine subscriptions.

As Galvin was himself an active poet, many of the letters pertain exclusively to his personal career. Some regard responses to his work, offers to publish his plays, or requests for his contribution and input to a literary endeavor.

The collection also contains the only four issues of Chanticleer ever published, invitations to poetry readings and public lectures, poetry broadsheets, a proof sheet for an advertisement, a Christmas card decorated with a wood engraving, and newspaper clippings related to the periodical or political issues. Series I. of the collection consists of letters and manuscripts arranged in alphabetical order by author or correspondent. Series II. contains a range of material and ephemera, from invitations to proof sheets, and Series III. includes the four issues of Chanticleer, all of which are signed by Patrick Galvin.


  • Creation: 1951-1962
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1952-1955


Language of Materials

Materials entirely in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S.Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce isrequired from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Historical Note

Chanticleer was a short-lived literary periodical published in England and edited by the poets Patrick Galvin and Gordon Wharton (later solely by Galvin). It produced only four issues between the years 1952 and 1954, each consisting of poems, short stories, book reviews, and essays of a literary or humanist concern. As Galvin wrote in a letter soliciting financial support from a fellow poet, " Chanticleer will serve as a platform or forum for the new or little-known writer, whose chances of publication are deplorably low." Galvin and Wharton apparently tried to avoid endorsing a particular ideology or entangling the publication itself in explicitly political affairs. They did, however, encourage humor, polemics, and lively argument in the works submitted to their periodical. Contributors included C. Day-Lewis, James Kirkup, Gael Turnbull, John Silkin, Rhys Davies, and Jules Supervielle.

Patrick Galvin (born circa 1927), co-editor of Chanticleer, was one of seven children born in Cork City, Ireland, to a poor family. His formal education consisted only of brief schooling with the Christian Brothers, and at age eleven he could still barely read or write. He later evolved into a prolific playwright, poet, and ballad singer. Some of his works include Irish Songs of Resistance (1955), By Nature Diffident: a Poem (1971), and Madwoman of Cork: Poems (1991).


Some historical information was derived from material in the collection.

Hogan, Robert, ed. Dictionary of Irish Literature. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1979.


3.3 linear foot (74 items)

Metadata Rights Declarations


Manuscripts, periodicals, and letters related to the small literary magazine Chanticleer (1952-1954) and its Irish-born co-editor Patrick Galvin.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, 1971

Shelving Summary

Box 1: Shelved in SPEC MSS manuscript boxes

Processing and Encoding

Processed by Kelly Baum, January 1994.

Encoded by Debra Johnson, 2007.


Finding aid for Chanticleer records
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
2007 April 16
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Delaware Library Special Collections Repository

181 South College Avenue
Newark DE 19717-5267 USA