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Anna Hempstead Branch papers

 Collection
Identifier: MRBC-MS-00018

Scope and Contents

The Anna Hempstead Branch Papers consist of aproximately 13 linear ft. and are primarily related to her professional and public life. The papers consiste of Branch's correspondence, Branch's writings, reviews of Branch's writings, organizational papers of Christodors House and Poetry Guild, family business papers, genalogoical records related to the Hempstead/Branch/Bolles families, photographs, and recent publications as well as older publicity materials related to the Hempstead House.

Dates of Materials

  • 1780-1939

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for use without restriction beyond the standard terms and conditions of Smith College Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials in this collection may be governed by copyright. For reproductions of materials that are governed by fair use as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission to cite or publish is required. Researchers are responsible for determining who may hold materials' copyrights and obtaining approval from them. Researchers do not need anything further from Smith College Special Collections to move forward with their use.

Biographical / Historical

Anna Hempstead Branch (1875-1937) was an American poet who editor William Thomas Stead called “the Browning of American poetry." She was a member of the 1897 Smith College graduating class. The year after her graduation her poem “The Road ‘Twixt Heaven and Hell” was selected as the year’s best verse by a college graduate by Century Magazine. Sonnets from a Lock Box (1929), a collection of thirty-eight first person sonnets is noted for its directness and mystical symbolism and is regarded as her best work.

Branch was known for her philanthropy, particularly in support of Chrstodora House, a New York City settlement house. She created the Poet’s Guild whose members, including Robert Frost and Sara Teasdale, taught classes there. Branch died of cancer in 1937 at the age of 62.

Extent

12.188 linear feet (19 containers)

Language of Materials

English

Overview

Anna Hempstead Branch (1875-1937) was an American poet who editor William Thomas Stead called “the Browning of American poetry. She was a member of the 1897 Smith College graduating class. The Anna Hempstead Branch Papers consist of aproximately 13 linear ft. and are primarily related to her professional and public life.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Anna Hempstead Branch papers were donated to the Mortimer Rare Book Room of Smith College by Branch’s cousin, Ethel Lyman, before she died in 1946. Judge Oliver W. Branch, a cousin of Anna Hempstead Branch and of Ethel Lyman, sent additional papers to the Mortimer Rare Book Room in 1947.

Additional papers to the Branch collection were donated by Caroline M. Fuller (Smith College Class of 1895) in 1945; by Mrs. Richard Mansfield in 1945; by the Smith College Class of 1897 in 1944, and by Caroline R. Wing (possibly Smith College Class of 1896) in 1948.

Other additions were contributed by Ruth Newcomb, 1952-1959, and Winifred G. Whiton (Smith College Class of 1921), 1958.

Related Materials

Anna Hempstead Branch Collection, Connecticut College, New London, Connecticut.

Papers of the Christodora House, New York, New York. Branch had a long association with this New York settlement house. At Columbia University, New York.

Correspondence from Anna Hempstead Branch to Edwin Markham and Anna Catherine Markham in the Markham Manuscript Collection, Wagner College, Staten Island, New York.

Anna Hempstead Branch poems, circa 1910-1927. The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

Anna Hempstead Branch, Manuscripts, 1924-1933, and n.d. Special Collections Department, University of Virginia Library, Charlottesville, Virginia. Part of the Clifton Waller Barrett Library.

Processing Information

This collection has been partially processed, but remains incompletely sorted and described.
Title
Finding Aid to Anna Hempstead Branch papers
Date
2016
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Revision Statements

  • 2020-02-03: Imported legacy inventory.

Repository Details

Part of the Mortimer Rare Book Collection Repository

Contact:
Neilson Library
7 Neilson Drive
Northampton MA 01063