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Biographical Materials

Identifier: Sub-Series 1

Scope and Contents

From the Series: This addition to the William Alexander Earle Papers fills sixteen boxes and spans the period between 1930 and 1988. Included are general biographical materials, appointment books, journals, business materials, correspondence, and copies of writings. The biographical materials include items such as Earle's faculty identification card from France, his army records, and flyers from his public lectures such as “Subjective Truth” and experimental films such as “The Memories of Miss Zed” from the late 1960s. The appointment books record Earle's daily activities between 1948 and 1986. The journals describe his travels around the world, including Spain, the Far East, Germany, Mexico, Guatemala, and Africa from 1947 to 1982.

The business materials consist of one folder relating to royalties from several of Earle's books.

The bulk of the addition, however, consists of both incoming correspondence and some outgoing letters that were kept by his mother, Elsie Earle. Earle was a prolific correspondent who regularly wrote to his family, friends, lovers and publishers. The correspondence falls into two categories, general and subject. The general correspondence is arranged chronologically by date and ranges from 1930, when Earle was eleven years old, up until his death in 1988. Included in the general correspondence are letters received and written by Earle while serving in the United States Army from 1942-1945. The subject correspondence is arranged alphabetically by surname of correspondent, and chronologically within each folder. The majority of Earles' correspondence is with his mother, concerning mundane subjects such as the weather, his health and family gossip.

Earle's writings consists of poetry, sketches for plays, short stories, essays, and drafts of several theses. Many of these works were never published.

A percentage of the collection was damaged before being received by the university archives.


  • 1941-1988

Conditions governing access



From the Collection: 17.00 Boxes

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English


Repository Details

Part of the Northwestern University Archives Repository

Deering Library, Level 3
1970 Campus Dr.
Evanston IL 60208-2300 US