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John Clellon Holmes letter to Shirley Allen

Identifier: MSS 0099-F0864

Scope and Content Note

American author John Clellon Holmes typed this four-page letter to his future wife, Shirley Allen.

Holmes's letter was written from St. Louis, Missouri, where he was visiting Jay and Fred Landesman. Holmes, who had previously contributed to Jay Landesman's periodical, Neurotica, and knew the brothers from New York City, offered his current observations on the Landesmans. Holmes also described at length the town of St. Louis, with which he was less than impressed. His letter continued with comments on the short stories of Fitzgerarld which he had recently read and ended with words of endearment for his future wife.


  • Creation: 1953 June 23


Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

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 is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections, University of Delaware Library,

John Clellon Holmes (1926-1988)

American writer and educator John Clellon Holmes, author of novels, short stories, essays, and poems, was best known as a chronicler of the ideology and lifestyle of the "Beat generation writers."

Holmes's semi-autobiographical novel Go, published by Scribner in 1952, and later in England as The Beat Boys, is considered to be the first published novel depicting the Beat generation.

Born March 12, 1926, in Holyoke, Massachusetts, Holmes died on March 30, 1988, in Old Saybrook, Connecticut.

Shirley Allen married Holmes on September 9, 1953. She was his second wife.

Contemporary Authors Online (reproduced in Biography Resource Center). (accessed April 2010).


1 item (4 pages)


American author John Clellon Holmes typed this four-page letter to his future wife, Shirley Allen.


Purchase, December 2009.

Related Materials in this Repository

This item forms part of MSS 0099 Miscellaneous Literary and Historical Manuscripts.

MSS 0099 F0902, John Clellon Holmes letters to Richard Douglass.

Shelving Summary

Box 60, F0864: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0099 manuscript boxes.


Processed and encoded by Anita Wellner, April 2010. Further encoded by George Apodaca, October 2015.

Finding aid for John Clellon Holmes letter to Shirley Allen
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
2010 April 8
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Delaware Library Special Collections Repository

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