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Michael Mott Collection

Identifier: MS59

  • Staff Only
  • No requestable containers

Scope and Contents

The Michael Mott Collection includes drafts and notes for Mott's published and unpublished materials, both poetry and prose, including items written during his youth. Journals, diaries, and working notebooks are held from 1944–1988. There is a significant amount of correspondence with fellow writers from 1965–1989, including Gari Corseri, Daniel Mark Epstein, Robert Lax, and Frank Manley. All correspondence held with publishers about various books or single publications has been inventoried. Some 70 periodical issues with Mr. Mott's poems or other writings have been retained and listed in alphabetical order.

A significant portion of the Collection consists of all the revisions for the chapters of The Seven Mountains of Thomas Merton, including word processing materials. Publishing correspondence and correspondence on the entire Merton project as well as public response to the book after publication is included. Mr. Mott's notes and information gathered from various sources, including Merton's family, friends, and colleagues, have also been deposited here. Photographs relating to Merton's life and environment, copies of biographical documents, and articles and books by Thomas Merton are available. Many of the latter have been annotated by Mott.


  • 1944-1989


Language of Materials


Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on use of the materials in the department for research; all patrons must comply with federal copyright regulations. Copyright for materials resides with the literary executors of individual letters.


59.00 Boxes


Michael Mott, novelist, biographer, editor, poet and essayist, was born and educated in England. He has received awards and critical acclaim for his poetry and novels. He was poetry editor for the Kenyon Review from 1966-1970, twice a writer-in-residence at the College of William and Mary (1978 and 1985), and taught on the faculties of Emory University and Bowling Green State University. His biography of Thomas Merton was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and received a 1985 Christopher Award. The Michael Mott Collection includes drafts and notes for Mott’s published and unpublished works, both poetry and prose; journals, diaries and notebooks from 1944-1988; and correspondence with his publishers and with fellow writers from 1965-1989.

Arrangement of Materials

Some of the original order established by Mr. Mott has been preserved. Additions and other materials have had an order imposed, mainly chronological.

Some 70 periodical issues with Mr. Mott's poems or other writings have been retained and listed in alphabetical order.

Acquisition Information

The Michael Mott Collection was acquired from two sources; some material was received from a bookseller in 1984, and the greater portion of the collection was acquired from Mr. Mott in 1989, with subsequent additions.

Processing Information

Processed by Sigrid Pohl Perry in 1984 and revised in 1989 and 1997, with additions arranged and added as acquired.

Guide to the Michael Mott Collection
Finding Aid Authors: Sigrid Pohl Perry.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
The collection description/finding aid is written in English

Library Details

Part of the Charles Deering McCormick Library of Special Collections Repository

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