Dorothy Speare (1898-1951) was born in Newton Center, Massachusetts, and educated at Smith College and Radcliffe College. Between 1926 and 1930 she worked toward an operatic career, but was forced to abandon opera due to illness. From 1931 to 1934 she was a scenario writer in Hollywood. After that, Speare became a full time author, writing such books as Dancers in the Dark and Spring on 52nd St.. From 1948 to 1951 Speare taught creative writing at Boston University.
The collection consists of Speare's manuscripts, correspondence, personal files, and school and college papers.
The manuscripts consist of 9 novels, 47 short stories, 4 plays, and a collection of printed pieces. Novels included are: Behind the Moon, Head of the Bay, Linda, Nowadays, Of Human Error, The Road to Needles, Spring on 52nd St., and Week of the Tournament. Among the plays is the manuscript of Prima Donna which became the motion picture, One Night of Love.
The correspondence is extensive with 538 general and professional letters and an additional 478 family letters. Major correspondents include: Russel Davenport, Joseph H. Goodspeed, Dorothy Heyward, Vincent Lawrence, Robert Nathan, Franklin Christmas (Speare's 1st husband), Charles J. Hubbard (her 2nd husband), and Edward Ray Speare (her father).
Personal files include publicity photos as well as a section of materials related to Speare's opera career.
The papers also include 48 volumes of manuscripts and published items written when the author was a student in high school, at Smith College, and a student in George Pierce Baker's 47 Workshop, Radcliffe, 1919. A few of Miss Speare's manuscripts are held by Boston University.
[Identification of item], Dorothy Speare papers, Ax 366, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon Libraries, Eugene, Oregon.
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