Owen Wister papers, circa 1866-1982

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Wister, Owen, 1860-1938
Title
Owen Wister papers
Dates
circa 1866-1982 (inclusive)
Quantity
5.8 cubic ft. (10 Document Boxes, 1 Slim Document Box, and 1 F24 Flat Box, 1 SHO Box, and 10 Expandable Envelopes)
Collection Number
00290
Summary
The collection includes journals, manuscripts, photographs, articles, publications, and correspondence. These materials document the life and literary career of Owen Wister. This collection covers the span of Wister’s life and deals primarily with his interest in the American West and the literary works that he developed from these travels. The journals focus on his trips to the West. Manuscripts consist mostly of original drafts of his Western literary works including a handwritten draft of the first two pages of "The Virginian." Most of the photographs relate to his travels in the West. Correspondence is personal in nature and is mostly between friends and acquaintances.
Repository
University of Wyoming, American Heritage Center
American Heritage Center
University of Wyoming
1000 E. University Ave.
Dept. 3924
Laramie, WY
82071
Telephone: 3077663756
ahcref@uwyo.edu
Access Restrictions
Access Restrictions

There are no access restrictions on the materials for research purposes, and the collection is open to the public.

Languages
English
Sponsor
The creation of the EAD-version of this finding aid was made possible through a grant from the National Historic Publications and Records Commission.

Historical NoteReturn to Top

Owen Wister (1860-1938) was a prominent American writer during the late 1800s and early 1900s. He is best known as the author of the famed Western novel The Virginian. In addition, Wister was the author of numerous other works concerning the American West and other subjects as well.

Wister was born to Dr. Owen Jones Wister and Sarah Butler Wister in Germantown (now part of Philadelphia), Pennsylvania on July 14, 1860. His father was a physician and a member of a wealthy Philadelphia family. Wister’s mother was the daughter of Fanny Kemble, a famed Shakespearean actress.

Owen Wister grew up in a household that was considered to be a very cultured one. The family frequently traveled in Europe and both Wister and his mother spoke several languages. In addition, his mother was a respected pianist and essayist. Wister himself acquired a keen interest in music and learned to play the piano at an early age.

Wister attended St. Paul’s School, a boarding school in Concord, New Hampshire. Here, he discovered and started developing his talents as a writer. His first published story, Down in a Diving Bell, appeared in his school literary magazine in 1874. He continued to write for the magazine until his graduation in 1878.

Pursuing his interest in music, Owen Wister entered Harvard University. A music major and aspiring composer, he graduated summa cum laude in 1882. While at Harvard, he became a lifelong friend of fellow student and future president Theodore Roosevelt. After graduation he studied music in France for a year. Upon returning to the United States, Wister took a job at Union Safe Deposit Vaults in Boston.

Wister’s health broke down in 1885. On his doctor’s orders, he traveled to Wyoming to spend a summer at a friend’s ranch. This trip spurred his interest in the American West. Between 1885-1891, Wister made five trips to the West. On these trips, he kept diaries which provided material for his Western works. During these years, he kept himself busy in other ways as well. Wister graduated from Harvard Law School in 1888. He was admitted to the Philadelphia Bar and briefly practiced law at Francis Rawle’s law firm.

In 1891, Owen Wister wrote his first two Western short stories: Hank’s Woman and How Lin McLean Went East. Both of these stories appeared in Harper’s Weekly. Encouraged by the success of these stories, he gave up law and became a full-time writer in 1893. Between 1893-1900, Wister made several additional trips to the West. From material collected on these trips, he wrote the Western novel Lin McLean (1897) and Jimmy John Boss (1900), a collection of Western short stories. During this period, he also wrote the biographies U.S. Grant (1900) and The Seven Ages of Washington (1900).

In 1902, Wister published his most famous work, The Virginian. This book, which first appeared as a serial in Harper’s Weekly, is considered by many to be the prototypical Western novel. The Virginian is based upon material gathered on his Western trips. According to Wister, the novel’s main character was a composite of several people he met and knew in his travels. The book was a wildly popular bestseller, being reprinted numerous times and translated into many languages. In 1904, Wister and Kirk La Shell co-produced the original stage version of The Virginian, which had a successful ten-year run. The first motion picture version of The Virginian premiered in 1914.

After the success of The Virginian, Owen Wister continued to be a prolific writer. In 1904, he wrote Philosophy 4, a satirical short story about Harvard students studying for an exam. His second bestseller, Lady Baltimore, was published in 1906. This novel concerned society in Charleston, South Carolina. In 1911, he published Members of the Family, another collection of Western short stories.

When World War I broke out in 1914, Wister turned his attention to European affairs. A firm supporter of Great Britain and France, he pleaded for American support of the Allied war effort. In 1915, at the Duke University commencement, Wister delivered the speech The Pentecost of Calamity, in which he urged the United States to join the war against Germany. This speech was published and became a non-fiction bestseller. After the war, Wister frequently traveled to Europe and became friendly with noted European authors such as Joseph Conrad and Rudyard Kipling.

Between 1919-1930, Wister continued to be a productive author. Showing his continued concern for American relations with Europe, his works The Ancient Grudge or a Straight Deal (1920) and Neighbors Henceforth (1922) urged friendlier relations with Great Britain and France respectively. A staunch opponent of Prohibition, Wister wrote the satirical light opera Watch Your Thirst (1923) for Boston’s Tavern Club. When the West was West, another collection of Western short stories, was published in 1928. In 1930, he wrote his last book, Roosevelt, the Story of a Friendship, which documented his lifelong friendship with Theodore Roosevelt.

Owen Wister had many other interests besides literature. In 1908, he unsuccessfully ran for a seat on the Philadelphia City Council. He was a member of Harvard University’s Board of Overseers and president of both the Library Company of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Club. Wister received honorary degrees from the University of Pennsylvania (1907), Williams College (1912), and Duke University (1915).

In 1898, Owen Wister married Mary Channing Wister. A second cousin once removed, she was a descendent of abolitionist and Unitarian preacher William Ellery Channing. Mrs. Wister was a respected member of the Philadelphia School Board. Before her death in 1913, the couple had six children, including daughter Frances K. Stokes.

Owen Wister passed away on July 23, 1938.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Owen Wister papers include journals, manuscripts, photographs, articles, publications, and correspondence. These materials document the life and literary career of Owen Wister, a prominent American writer of the late 1800s and early 1900s. He was best known as the author of the famed Western novel The Virginian. This collection covers the span of Wister’s life and deals primarily with his interest in the American West and the literary works that he developed from it.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Copyright Information

Collection may not be used for commercial purposes. The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Alternative Forms Available

Existence and Location of Copies

Digital reproductions of this entire collection (except for published material and third-party manuscripts) are available at http://digitalcollections.uwyo.edu:8180/luna/servlet/uwydbuwy~55~55.

Preferred Citation

Preferred Citation

Item Description, Box Number, Folder Number, Owen Wister papers, circa 1866-1982, Collection Number 00290, American Heritage Center, University of Wyoming.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Related Materials

Related Materials Papers of Owen Wister, 1829-1966, Collection Number ms997008, Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Acquisition Information

Acquisition Information

The Owen Wister papers were donated by Wister’s daughter Francis K. Stokes, and by Mary Benjamin, Professor Wilson O. Clough, and W. Neal Lanigan. The papers arrived in a number of small shipments between 1951-1981. The papers were received in good condition, but most of the materials were not in any order.

Processing Note

Processing Information

The collection was processed by Kenton G. Jaehnig in November 2001. Revised by Kenton G. Jaehnig in January 2006. Where the original folder titles existed, they have been maintained, where none existed, a descriptive title was created.

The entire collection (except for published material and third-party manuscripts) was digitized in 2011. Links to digitized items added in March 2011 by Ben Goldman.

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series I.:  Journals and Manuscripts, 1885-1952Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Sub-series 1.: Journals
Arranged chronologically. Contains Owen Wister’s original journals from his numerous Western travels. The originals are stored in the safe and the photocopies are in the stacks.
1885-1900
Box Folder
1 1
First Trip to Wyoming
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 1.
July-August 1885
1 2
British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, California, Wyoming
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 2.
July-September 1887
1 3
British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, California, Wyoming
Folder includes transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 2.
July-September 1887
Folders
1 4
Wyoming
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 3.
July, August, September 1888
1 5
Wyoming
Folder includes transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 3.
July, August, September 1888
Folder
1 6
Wyoming
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 4.
October-November 1889
Folders
1 7
Wyoming and Yellowstone Park
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 5.
June-September 1891
1 8
Wyoming and Yellowstone Park
Folder includes transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 5.
June-September 1891
Folder
1 9
Cinnabar and Return
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 6.
July 6-14, 1892
2 1
Diary of Western Trip No. 7: Washington
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 7.
October-November 1892
2 2
Texas (photocopy and 2 transcripts)
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 8.
February-March 1893
Folders
2 3
Journal of Journeys: World’s Fair, Wyoming, Yellowstone, Arizona, San Francisco, Portland
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 9.
June 14-December 31, 1893
2 4
Journal of Journeys: World’s Fair, Wyoming, Yellowstone, Arizona, San Francisco, Portland (transcripts)
Folder includes transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 9.
June 14-December 31, 1893
Folder
2 5
Frontier Notes
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 10.
October-November, December 1893
2 6
Bowie, Bayard, Grant, Bisbie, Tombstone, Tucson, San Francisco, Cheyenne
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 11.
May-August 1894
2 7
Frontier Notes
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 12.
May-August 1894
2 8
Journal and Notes: New Mexico, Arizona, California, Colorado, Cheyenne, Fort Meade, Vol. I
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 13.
May-August 1895
3 1
Journal and Notes: New Mexico, Arizona, California, Colorado, Cheyenne, Fort Meade, Vol. I
Folder includes transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 13.
May-August 1895
3 2
A Few Notes, Wyoming
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 14.
1896
3 3
Western Notes: California, Oregon, Idaho
Folder includes photocopies and transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 15
1900
Sub-series 2.: Manuscripts
Arranged alphabetically. Contains a number of Owen Wister’s original manuscripts and a musical score from The Virginian. The original manuscripts are stored in the safe and the photocopies are in the stacks. Two original Frances K. Stokes manuscripts and two more by unknown authors are in this sub-series as well.
circa 1886-1952
Box Folder
3 4
Fifty Years of Owen Wister’s The Virginian
circa 1952
Stokes, Francis K.:
Box Folder
3 5
My Father, Owen Wister
draft
1952
3 6
The Power of a Book
undated
Box Folder
3 7
Untitled manuscript
possibly draft of Fifty Years of Owen Wister’s The Virginian
undated
Wister, Owen:
Box Folder
3 8
Captain Quid
Folder includes photocopy of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 16.
undated
3 9
Christmas at Castle Rock
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript and transcript. Originals in Safe Envelope 16.
undated
3 10
Dead Broke!, as sung in The Virginian
Musical score, photostat.
1903
3 11
Kamerad!
Folder includes photocopy of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 16.
circa 1918
3 12
A Kinsman of Red Cloud
Folder includes photocopy of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 16.
undated
3 13
Little Old Scaffold
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 16.
undated
3 14
Love’s Marriage Eve
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 17.
undated
3 15
The Marshal’s Pardon
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 17.
undated
3 16
Miscellaneous notes
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 17.
circa 1886-1903
3 17
Skip to My Loo
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 17.
undated
3 18
The Story of Chalkeye, A Wind River Romance
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript and 2 typed transcripts. Originals in Safe Envelope 18.
circa 1891
3 19
The Virginian, chapter listings and first 2 pages of Chapter I “Enter the Man,”
Folder includes photocopies of handwritten manuscript. Originals in Safe Envelope 19.
circa 1902
3 20
The Virginian, galley proofs with Wister annotations, Chapters XXX-XXXIII
Folder includes photocopies of galley proofs. Originals in Safe Envelope 19.
circa 1902

Series II.:  Photographic Material, circa 1866-1937Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Sub-series 1.: Photographs
Folders arranged alphabetically by subject and their contents are arranged alphabetically. This sub-series contains mostly photographs from Owen Wister’s Western travels. Photographs of Wister himself, the original stage production of The Virginian, and a few other miscellaneous subjects are also in this sub-series. Some of the photographs were developed from nitrate negatives, which have since been duplicated to film and disposed of. All of the photographs in this series have been digitized and are available through hyperlinks found on the folder-level descriptions below. Scans of images were made from negatives where appropriate (to capture better quality).
circa 1866-1937
1894, 1900:
Box Folder
3 21
Shasta, 1900 September," meadow with mountain in background
1900
3 21
Yosemite, “Left front into line," 4 men and woman on horseback
1894
3 21
Yosemite, man and woman on horseback in front of cliffs
1894
Box Folder
3 22 1917
3 23 undated
1891:
Box Folder
3 24
“The ford of the Snake River," river with mountains in background
1891
3 24
“Looking Down Snake," river with trees in foreground
1891
3 24
“On the road home: Snake River Station from the North," grassland with mountains in background
1891
3 24
“Snake River Crossing," river with mountains in background
1891
3 24
“Upper Ford of Snake, Sheridan Trail," Owen Wister Party crossing Snake River
1891
3 24
“Wister Party Fording Snake River,"
1891
1893:
Box Folder
3 25
Bluff
1893
3 25
Church
1893
3 25
“Finding the vein to cut," Sy Colton’s, 3 men with horse
1893
3 25
Homestead
1893
3 25
Horses
1893
“Learning to Play Polo:"
Box Folder
3 25
5 men on horseback
1893
3 25
Man on horseback
1893
3 25
7 men on horseback
1893
3 25
3 men on horseback
1893
3 25
2 men on horseback
1893
Box Folder
3 25
Man holding horse?
1893
3 25
“Man with camera," 2 men on horseback
1893
3 25
Man with horse
1893
3 25
Men and horses
1893
3 25
Men and horses near stream
1893
3 25
Old mission
1893
3 25
Old mission, outside San Antonio
1893
3 25
Plant with flowers
1893
3 25
Prairie
1893
3 25
Saddled horse
1893
Sy Colton’s:
Box Folder
3 25
“Homer," man with pipe
1893
3 25
Homer with horse
1893
3 25
5 men with horse
1893
3 25
7 men, dog, and horse
1893
3 25
“Texas Nightmare," homestead with double exposure image
1893
3 25
3 men with horse
1893
3 25
2 men with horse
1893
Box Folder
3 25
Unidentified building
1893
3 25
Unidentified man
1893
Box Folder
4 1 1891, undated
Folders
4 2 undated
4 3 undated
4 4 undated
Folder
4 5 undated
4 6 undated
4 7 undated
4 8 undated
Folders
5 1 undated
5 2 undated
5 3 undated
5 4 undated
Folder
5 5 undated
Folders
5 6 undated
5 7 undated
Folder
6 1 undated
Folders
6 2 undated
6 3 undated
6 4 undated, 1891, 1893
6 5 undated, 1891, 1893
6 6 undated, 1891, 1893
6 7 undated, 1891, 1893
Folder
7 1 undated
1893:
Box Folder
7 2
“Ferry at Vicksburg," car ferry Delta
1893
7 2
“Mississippi River, Vicksburg," river with floating debris
1893
7 2
“Mississippi River, Vicksburg," river with paddle-wheel boat
1893
7 2
“Vicksburg," town from Mississippi River
1893
circa 1902-1904:
Box Folder
7 3
Champeau, Frank, as “Trampas” in the original cast of The Virginian
circa 1904
7 3
Chapter headings for The Virginian in Owen Wister’s handwriting
circa 1902
7 3
Jackson, Thomas P., as “Shorty” in the original cast of The Virginian
circa 1904
7 3
Maylon, John A., as “John Taylor” in the original cast of The Virginian
1904
7 3
Original cast of The Virginian
circa 1904
7 3
Vail, Frank, as “Dollar Bill” in the original cast of The Virginian
circa 1904
circa 1866-1937, undated:
Box Folder
7 4
“Author collecting material," Owen Wister seated at campfire
1891
7 4
“Owen Wister about 30 years of age,"
circa 1890
7 4
“Owen Wister about 35 years old,"
circa 1895
7 4
“Owen Wister as boy in school,"
undated
7 4
“Owen Wister as child of 6 years,"
circa 1866
7 4
“Owen Wister at right," 3 men eating
1891
7 4
“Owen Wister Hunting Party in Camp at Jackson Hole, Wyoming,"
clipping attached
1887
7 4
“Owen Wister in college theatricals as Freshman in Harvard,"
circa 1878
7 4
Owen Wister in pajamas
undated
7 4
“Owen Wister, last picture, on board ship returning from Europe in Autumn of 1937,"
1937
7 4
Owen Wister on horseback, by F. Jay Haynes & Brothers, St. Paul, Minnesota
original
undated
7 4
Owen Wister on horseback, with citation from The Virginian, by F. Jay Haynes & Brothers, St. Paul, Minnesota
undated
7 4
“Owen Wister on return from the West about 1890,"
circa 1890
7 4
Owen Wister, seated
undated
7 4
“Owen Wister taken in Yellowstone," by Haynes, St. Paul, Minnesota
undated
undated:
Box Folder
7 5
“The Grand Teton," by F. Jay Haynes, Fargo, Dakota Territory
undated
7 5
Green River, by F. Jay Haynes, Fargo, Dakota Territory
undated
1896:
Box Folder
7 6
“Brooks Lake," Stream with mountain in background
1896
7 6
Brooks Lake, with brush in foreground
1896
7 6
Brooks Lake, with forest and mountain in background
1896
7 6
“Brooks Lake," with forest and mountains in background
1896
7 6
“Brooks Lake," with forest in foreground
1896
7 6
“Head of Wind River, Brooks Lake," man fishing in lake
1896
7 6
“Near Brooks Lake," stream with forest and mountains in background
1896
7 6
“Wall Above Brooks Lake," mountain with trees in foreground
1896
1893:
Box Folder
7 7
“Buffalo Fork," canyon
1893
7 7
Buffalo Fork, prairie with hills and trees in background
1893
7 7
Buffalo Fork, river with prairie in foreground
1893
7 7
“Buffalo River – Burro Hill on the right," river with hills in background
1893
7 7
“Deserted cabin up Buffalo Fork," cabin with trees in background
1893
7 7
“Down Buffalo Fork with John Richardson in 1893," river with mountains in background
1893
7 7
“North Fork of Buffalo River," camp with mountains in background
1893
7 7
“North Fork of Buffalo River," river in valley
1893
7 7
“Scene on Upper Buffalo River in 1893," river with mountains in background
1893
7 7
“State of Things on Upper Buffalo Fork," man with packhorse train on hillside
1893
circa 1891, 1893:
Box Folder
7 8
“At Fort Washakie," Indian male on horseback
1893
7 8
“Chief Washakie,"
1893
7 8
“George West in front of Post Trader’s Store at Fort Washakie," man and horses in front of building
1893
7 8
Horses at hitching post
1893
7 8
“In front of Post Trader’s Store, all hands shopping," horses at hitching post
1893
7 8
“Indian Police at Fort Washakie,"
circa 1891, 1893
7 8
“Indian woman at teepee,"
1893
7 8
“Indian women at Fort Washakie,"
1893
7 8
“A Ladies Lunch, Fort Washakie," Shoshone women
1891
7 8
“The Plains at Fort Washakie," men on horseback and dog on prairie
circa 1891, 1893
1891-circa 1893:
Box Folder
8 1
“Shoshone Children,"
circa 1891, 1893
8 1
“Shoshone ladies carrying guts," 4 Shoshone women carrying parcel
1891
8 1
“Shoshone ladies lunching (eating guts on Issue Day)," Shoshone women, dog, and horse near fence
1891
1896, undated:
Box Folder
8 2
“Climbing to the highest point, Moran just visible," snow covered mountains
undated
8 2
“Climbing to the highest point, the Snow Comb," snow covered mountains
undated
8 2
“From near the foot of the Snow Comb," man and horses with trees and mountains in background
undated
8 2
“From the highest point, Moran and the Grand Teton," snow covered mountains
undated
8 2
“From the South of Basin," mountains with trees and rocks in the foreground
undated
8 2
“From the Southwest Divide toward the Red Mountain," mountains, damaged image
undated
8 2
“The Head of the Happy Hunting Ground," snow covered mountains with gun in foreground
undated
8 2
“The highest point we reached," snow covered mountains
undated
8 2
“Jack Mitchell and Beaver Dick above our Teton Camp," 2 men on horseback with rock formations in background
1896
8 2
“Moran," Mount Moran with trees in foreground
undated
8 2
“Mount Moran (Teton Range),"
undated
8 2
“Mount Moran from the Northwest, the Great Divide on extreme right, in the clouds,"
undated
8 2
“Mount Moran, Leigh’s Lake on the Great Divide," Mount Moran with Leigh’s Lake in background
undated
1891, undated:
Box Folder
8 3
“One of the ridges of Moran," snow covered ridge on Mount Moran
undated
8 3
“Outlet of Jackson Lake," Jackson Lake with mountains in background
1891
8 3
“Peaks of Tetons, Jackson Hole (site of Wister camp)," meadow with horses grazing and mountains in background
1891
8 3
“Ridge just next to Snow Comb," snow covered ridge
undated
8 3
“The slopes of Moran and Jackson Lake," Mount Moran with Jackson Lake in background
undated
8 3
“The Southwest Divide," ridge with trees in foreground
undated
8 3
“Teton Camp, the Tetons between Leigh’s Lake and Jenny’s Lake," meadow with horses grazing and mountains in background
undated
8 3
“Teton Range, Mount Moran from Southeast near Snake Lake,"
1891
8 3
“The top of Moran," Mount Moran with lake in foreground
undated
8 3
“View across Basin to the highest point reached," mountain with forest in foreground
undated
Box Folder
8 4 July 1886
1891:
Box Folder
8 5
“At Smith’s Ranch, Horse Creek and Wind River,"
1891
8 5
“West’s Cabin, Horse Creek,"
1891
undated:
Box Folder
8 6
“No. 38, Roping a Steer to Inspect Brand," men on horseback roping steer
undated
8 6
“No. 41, Dragging Calf to Brand," men roping calf
undated
undated:
Box Folder
8 7
Owen Wister Monument, Medicine Bow, Wyoming
undated
8 7
Sign by railroad station across from Virginian Hotel, Medicine Bow, Wyoming
undated
1883:
Box Folder
8 8
“1565 – Washed Bluffs, Wind River Valley,"
1883
8 8
“1582 – Camp Hampton, Tetons in Distance,"
1883
1891:
Box Folder
8 9
“No man’s land, on road from Tisdale’s to Casper," man, horse, and wagon
1891
8 9
“Nooning between Glenn Rock and Tisdale’s," horses and wagons
1891
1891:
Box Folder
8 10
“From inside of Natural Bridge, Warm Spring Creek, Wind River,"
1891
8 10
“Looking into Natural Bridge,"
1891
8 10
Natural Bridge with rocks and stream in foreground
1891
8 10
“Warm Spring Canyon, Upper Natural Bridge,"
1891
8 10
“Warm Spring Canyon, Wind River," cliffs and trees
1891
1891, 1893:
Box Folder
8 11
“Below Blue Hobs, Wind River, John Stewardson," man and 2 horses with trees and rock formations in background
1893
8 11
“Down Wind River," river with rocks and trees in background
1891
8 11
“Fishing in Wind River, below EA outfit," man fishing in river
1891
8 11
“On Wind River by Red Creek," 2 men pitching tent
1891
8 11
“Starting up Wind River at Red Creek," man on horseback near rock formation
1891
8 11
“Wind River below EA Outfit," river with tree in foreground
1891
1891:
Box Folder
9 1
“The Adopted," Yancey’s adopted son with colts
1891
9 1
Colt in front of log building
1891
9 1
“Drummer trying to sell Yancey butter,"
1891
9 1
“Stage coming in to Yancey’s,"
1891
9 1
2 dogs
1891
9 1
“Uncle John," Yancey with dog
1891
9 1
“Yancey and the Adopted," Yancey and adopted son with horse
1891
9 1
Yancey with 2 dogs
1891
9 1
“Yancey’s adopted with dogs,"
1891
9 1
“Yancey’s," horses in front of log buildings
1891
9 1
“Yancey’s house and office,"
1891
9 1
“Yancey’s wine cellar with Woody and the adopted," Woody and Yancey’s adopted son in front of log building, with horses
1891
9 1
“Yancey’s wine cellar with Woody and the adopted," Woody and Yancey’s adopted son in front of log building, with horses
1891
1891:
Box Folder
9 2
“At their ease," horses grazing in meadow
1891
9 2
“Crossing last fork of Yellowstone (Cook City Road near Soda Butte), man and horses crossing bridge
1891
9 2
“Dick Washakie," with fish catch
1891
9 2
“The Hoodoos, Yellowstone Park," rock formations
1891
9 2
“In camp at Geyser Basin, Yellowstone Park," unidentified man, seated
1891
9 2
“In camp on Upper Yellowstone (Trapper’s Creek)," 2 men in camp with deer carcass
1891
9 2
“Looking across Trapper’s Creek, up Yellowstone," stream with forest and mountains in background
1891
9 2
“Packed up in fly season, Upper Yellowstone (above Bridger Lake)," packhorses wearing fly covers
1891
9 2
“Pedro (my pony)," saddled horse
1891
9 2
2 men loading packhorses wearing fly covers
1891
9 2
“West’s pet Shanghai," saddled horse wearing fly cover
1891
Sub-series 2.: Photo Albums
Folders arranged in alphabetical order with their contents left in their original order. The photo albums contain more images from Wister’s trips to the West. Photographs from his trips to Florida and New York’s Catskill Mountains are in this sub-series as well.
1891-1896
1891-1896, undated:
Box Folder
9 3
No. 1 – Brooks Lake, “Head, Wind River," stream with forest and mountain in background
1896
9 3
No. 2 – Poem, re: Owen Wister and American West
undated
9 3
No. 3 - “Owen Wister taken in Yellowstone," by Haynes, St. Paul, Minnesota
undated
9 3
No. 4 - “Owen Wister taken in Yellowstone," by Haynes, St. Paul, Minnesota
undated
9 3
No. 5 – Owen Wister, seated
undated
9 3
No. 6 - “Head of Wind River, Brooks Lake," man fishing in lake
1896
9 3
No. 7 – “Wind River and Red Creek," camp in front of rock formation
1893
9 3
No. 8 – “Away up Buffalo Fork," camp in meadow
1893
9 3
No. 9 – “The Tetons between Leigh’s Lake and Jenny’s Lake," meadow with horses grazing and mountains in background
undated
9 3
No. 10 – “Army Tetons, Dick’s Line," 2 men on horseback with rock formations in background
1896
9 3
No. 11 – “Wind River, below EA Outfit – for How Lin McLean Went East," river with rocks and trees in background
1891
1891, undated:
Box Folder
9 4
No. 12 – “West’s new cabin, Horse Creek," log cabin next to stream and bridge
1891
9 4
No. 13 – “Under the Tetons, Mount Moran – Use for Hank’s Woman,"
undated
9 4
No. 14 – “For Emily," meadow with horses grazing
undated
9 4
No. 15 – “For Balaam and Pedro," Warm Spring Canyon, cliffs and trees
1891
9 4
No. 16 – “Lewis’ Fork of Snake River, Yellowstone Park," Owen Wister Party crossing Snake River
1891
9 4
No. 17 – “For Balaam and Pedro," forest and cliffs
undated
9 4
No. 18 – “For Emily," river with mountains in background
undated
9 4
No. 19 – “Balaam and Pedro," mountain with tree in foreground
undated
9 4
No. 20 – “Use at beginning of How Lin McLean West East," 2 men loading packhorses
undated
9 4
No. 21 – “For How Lin McLean Went East – Wolf Dance at Fort Washakie," group of Indians on horseback and seated
undated
1891-1896, undated:
Box Folder
9 5
No. 1 - “Apache Tejo – Brook, Spanish, et al.," 4 men on horseback in front of building
undated
9 5
No. 2 – “Smith’s cabin (Dubois P.O.), Horse Creek and Wind River," log building with wagon and trees in foreground
1891
9 5
No. 3 – “Crossing last fork of Yellowstone (Cook City Road, near Soda Butte)," man and horses crossing bridge
1891
9 5
No. 4 – “Two gentlemen in the morning with hill where the Bull Elk escaped," two men in camp
undated
9 5
No. 5 – “Jackson’s Lake from the highest point," Grand Teton, snow covered mountain with lake in background
1891
9 5
No. 6 – “The Rising Place of Wind River, Wyoming (with poem)," Brooks Lake, with forest and mountains in background
1896
9 5
No. 7 – “Use in Destiny at Dogbone," West’s cabin, Horse Creek, log cabin next to stream and bridge
1891
9 5
No. 8 – “West, spring up full-around from the lead of Mitchell," man leading horse over rocks
undated
9 5
No. 9 – “For Hank’s Woman – Lower Ford of Snake, Sheridan Trail," Owen Wister Party fording Snake River
1891
9 5
No. 10 – “Site of our Teton Camp, August 1888, September 1891," Grand Teton, Jackson’s Hole, meadow with horses grazing and mountains in background
1891
9 5
No. 11 – “Buffalo Fork," man and horse in camp
1893
9 5
No. 12 – “The Head of Moose Creek and the Pitchstone Plateau," mountain valley
undated
1891-1896, undated:
Box Folder
9 6
No. 13 - “Balaam and Pedro," prairie with hills in background
undated
9 6
No. 14 – Men on horseback in front of natural bridge
undated
9 6
No. 15 – “Balaam and Pedro," saddled horse
undated
9 6
No. 16 – “The camping outfit on Buffalo Fork," packhorse train fording river
undated
9 6
No. 17 – “On Buffalo Fork," Owen Wister Party fording Snake River
1891
9 6
No. 18 – “The camp at Buffalo Fork," man and horse in camp
1893
9 6
No. 19 – “Use in Schar’s Vigilante, near beginning," railroad tracks on prairie
undated
9 6
No. 20 – “Down Buffalo Fork, with John Stewardson," river with mountains in background
1893
9 6
No. 21 – Boudoir Series, packhorse train, by F. Jay Haynes and Brothers, St. Paul, Minnesota
undated
9 6
No. 22 – Balaam and Pedro, Brooks Lake, mountain with trees in foreground
1896
9 6
No. 23 – “This is the horse’s……., below Shoshone Lake on Sheridan Trail," 2 men loading packhorse
1891
1891-1896, undated:
Box Folder
10 1
No. 1 - “Outlet of Jackson Lake," Grand Teton, Jackson Lake with mountains in background
1891
10 1
No. 2 – “Use in the middle of Schar’s Vigilante," Brooks Lake, stream with mountain in background
1896
10 1
No. 3 – “Teton Camp," Grand Teton, meadow with horses grazing and mountains in background
1891
10 1
No. 4 – “Use for How Lin McLean Went East, (near end)," rock formations with mountains in background
undated
10 1
No. 5 – “Coming from Buffalo Fork," river with mountains in background
1893
10 1
No. 6 – “Use opposite last page of The Winning of the Biscuit Shooter," camp in meadow
undated
10 1
No. 7 – “Smith’s stable and corral, Horse Creek and Wind River," log stable next to fence and trees
1891
10 1
No. 8 – “Use near end of A Journey in Search of Christmas," mountains and forest in winter
undated
10 1
No. 9 – “Use near beginning in Lin McLean’s Honeymoon," Wyoming, horses and wagons between Glen Rock and Tisdale’s
1891
1891-1896, undated:
Box Folder
10 2
No. 10 - “Use near beginning of A Journey in Search of Christmas," 2 men on horseback on prairie
undated
10 2
No. 11 – “Packing in fly season, Upper Yellowstone (above Bridger Lake)," 2 men loading packhorses with fly covers
1891
10 2
No. 12 – “Use in The Winning of the Biscuit Shooter," stream with forest and mountains in background
undated
10 2
No. 13 – “Use in Schar’s Vigilante (toward the end)," stage coach in front of building
undated
10 2
No. 14 – “Rise of Wind River," Brooks Lake, stream with forest and mountains in background
1896
10 2
No. 15 – “Crow Indian lodge near Agency and on Little Bighorn River," Indian encampment
undated
10 2
No. 16 – “Use 2nd How Lin McLean Went East (near beginning)," group of Indians dancing
undated
10 2
No. 17 – “Group of Indians around a gambling party – Crow Agency,"
undated
10 2
No. 18 – “For The Winning of the Biscuit Shooter, stream with brush and mountains in background
undated
undated:
Box Folder
10 3
No. 1 – “Lake (fishing), Peekamoose, Catskills,"
undated
10 3
No. 2 – “Fishing camp, Peekamoose, Catskills," log cabin
undated
10 3
No. 3 – “Camp (fishing and hunting), caught or breakfast from our bed (trout), Vallecito River, Colorado," 2 men in camp
undated
10 3
No. 4 – “Camp (hunting and fishing), Everglades, Florida," man in camp
undated
10 3
No. 5 – “O mon pays, sois mes amours! – Camp (hunting and fishing), Wind River, Wyoming Territory,”
undated
10 3
No. 6 – “Camp, Gros Ventre River, Wyoming Territory," 3 men and guns in camp
undated
10 3
No. 7 – “Badlands, Wind River, Wyoming Territory," bluffs
undated
10 3
No. 8 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," bluffs
undated
10 3
No. 9 – “Buffalo Forks, Wyoming Territory," 4 men in camp
undated
10 3
No. 10 – “About 12 miles from Fort Washakie, Wyoming Territory," rock formations
undated
10 3
No. 11 – “Crow Heart Butte, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 3
No. 12 – “J.K. Moore’s Ranch, Wyoming Territory," log buildings
undated
10 3
No. 13 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," butte
undated
10 3
No. 14 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," river with hills in background
undated
10 3
No. 15 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," butte with hills in background
undated
10 3
No. 16 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," bluffs
undated
undated:
Box Folder
10 4
Nos. 17, 18, 19, and 20 – “Wind River, Wyoming Territory," bluffs
undated
10 4
No. 21 – “Camp and Mason’s Ranch, Wind River, Wyoming Territory," camp next to stream, with hills in background
undated
10 4
No. 22 – “June, DeNoir and Wind Rivers, Wyoming Territory," rivers with mountains in background
undated
10 4
No. 23 – “Continental Divide East, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 24 – “The Tetons, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 25 – “Camp, Snake River, Wyoming Territory," camp next to river
undated
10 4
No. 26 – “Falls near Upper Geyser Basin, Yellowstone National Park,"
undated
10 4
No. 27 – “Beavers and Beaver Dam, Gros Ventre River, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 28 – “Elk (grazing), Wyoming Territory
undated
10 4
No. 29 – “Elk (grazed), Wyoming Territory," dead elk
undated
10 4
No. 30 – “Black Bear, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 31 – “Grizzly Bear, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 32 – “Antelope, Wyoming Territory,"
undated
10 4
No. 33 – “Crown Prince of the Shoshone," Indian male on horseback
undated
10 4
No. 34 – “Alligators, one on the left in his death struggle, Everglades, Florida,"
undated
undated:
Box Folder
10 5
No. 35 – “Tarpon, Charlotte Harbor, Florida,"
undated
10 5
No. 36 – “Harpooning Tarpon, Charlotte Harbor, Florida," 2 men spear fishing from boat
undated
10 5
No. 37 – “Tarpon Jumping, Charlotte Harbor, Florida,"
undated
10 5
No. 38 – “Playing Tarpon," 3 men in boat catching tarpon
undated
10 5
No. 39 – “Sting Ray, Oyster Creek, Florida,"
undated
10 5
No. 40 – “Green Turtle, Oyster Creek, Florida,"
undated
10 5
No. 41 – “Whip Ray, Boca Grande, Florida,"
undated
10 5
No. 42 – “Harpooning Devil Fish, Gulf of Mexico," harpooning manta ray
undated
10 5
No. 43 – “Devil Fish, Gulf of Mexico," 3 men on boat with manta ray
undated
10 5
No. 44 – “Casting Net, Mundrugo? Island, Florida," 3 men fishing from boat
undated
10 5
No. 45 – “Oysters growing on trees (mangrove), Cape Romano, Florida
undated
“Rocky Mountains, Colorado:”
Box Folder
10 5
No. 46 – “Pass between Ouray and Red Mountain
undated
10 5
No. 47 – “Animas River,"
undated
10 5
No. 48 – “Vallecito River,"
undated
10 5
No. 49 – “Between Silverton and Ouray," mountain trail
undated
10 5
No. 50 – “Devil’s Creek," canyon
undated
10 5
No. 51 – “Grizzly Ravine,"
undated
10 5
No. 52 – “Trout pond," pool in mountain stream
undated
10 5
No. 53 – “Cabin," cabin on mountain side
undated
10 5
No. 54 – “Continental Divide," man on horseback on mountain side
undated
10 5
No. 55 – “Vallecito," 3 men in camp
undated
10 5
No. 56 – “Doone? Gates," mountains with tree in foreground
undated
10 5
No. 57 – “Animas River," rock formations with mountains in background
undated
10 5
No. 58 – “Fording Vallecito," 2 men on horseback fording river
undated
10 5
No. 59 – “Neglected," saddled horse in snow
undated
10 5
No. 60 – “Moostone? Lake," lake surrounded by mountains
undated
10 5
No. 61 – “Vallecito River," river with forest in background
undated
10 5
No. 62 – “Columbine Lake," man seated next to lake
undated
10 5
No. 63 – “Vallecito," mountain with forest in foreground
undated
10 5
No. 64 – “Uncompahgre Mountains,"
undated
“Florida:”
Box Folder
10 5
No. 65 – “Little aground," 2 men with boat aground
undated
10 5
No. 66 – “Leopard Shark,"
undated
10 5
No. 67 – “Cocoa Palms,"
undated
10 5
No. 68 – “Porpoise,"
undated
10 5
No. 69 – “Royal Palms,"
undated
10 5
No. 70 – “Palmetto,"
undated
10 5
No. 71 – “Sanibel Light," lighthouse
undated
10 5
No. 72 – “Saw Fish,"
undated
10 5
No. 73 – “Camp in Everglades,"
undated
10 5
No. 74 – “Home," 2 men on boat
undated
“Cabin and Surroundings, Peekamoose:”
Box Folder
10 5
No. 75 – 3 men in front of log building
undated
10 5
No. 76 – forest
undated
10 5
No. 77 – top of waterfall
undated
10 5
No. 78 – waterfall with dead trees in foreground
undated
10 5
No. 79 – 2 waterfalls
undated
10 5
No. 80 – waterfall surrounded by rocks
undated
10 5
No. 81 – waterfall
undated
10 5
No. 82 – 2 women near lake
undated
10 5
No. 83 – man near cabin
undated
Box Folder
10 5
No. 84 – “That’s all," Owen Wister carrying camera
undated
Sub-series 3.: Oversized Photographs
1.0 cubic ft. (1 F24 flat box)
Arranged alphabetically. Consists entirely of oversized photographs. The majority of them are those taken during Wister’s trips to the West. The rest are of Owen Wister himself.
1887-circa 1895
Box Folder
12 1 undated
12 2
Photograph, Snake River, “Owen Wister’s pack train fording Snake River"
This is a copy of the smaller print found in Box 3, Folder 24.
1891
Photographs, Unidentified :
Box Folder
12 3 undated
12 4 undated
12 5 undated
12 6 undated
Box Folder
12 7 undated
12 8
Photograph, Wister, Owen, about 35 years old
This is a copy of the smaller print found in Box 7, Folder 4.
circa 1895
12 9
Photograph, Wister, Owen, on horseback
This is a copy of the smaller print found in Box 7, Folder 4.
undated
12 10
Photograph, Wister, Owen, “Owen Wister and companions"
This is a copy of the smaller print found in Box 7, Folder 4.
1887
Sub-series 4.: Photographic Negatives
0.30 cubic ft. (1 SHO box)
Some of the negatives are cross-referenced with images in Series II, Sub-series I, and are mostly arranged according to the order in that Series. Original nitrate negatives were duplicated to film and destroyed. This series contains the film duplicates.
1891-1896
Box
13 1891-1896

Series III.:  Articles and Publications, 1900-1982Return to Top

Arranged alphabetically. Consists of photocopies of articles and original publication. This series contains photocopies of magazine articles and an original publication by Owen Wister. An article by Frances K. Stokes and a 1982 reprint of Owen Wister’s The Story of Chalkeye are also in this series.

Container(s) Description Dates
Stokes, Francis K.:
Box Folder
10 6
“Letters of Owen Wister, Author of The Virginian," article in The Pennsylvania Magazine
January 1959
10 7
My Father Owen Wister, publication
1952
Wister, Owen:
Box Folder
10 8
“Down in a Diving Bell," article in Horae Scholastica
November 1873
11 1
Miscellaneous articles
1900-1926
11 2
Preface to Romney, article in Life in Philadelphia
May 1940
11 3
“The Right Honorable Strawberries," article in Hearst’s International Cosmopolitan
November 1926
11 4
The Story of Chalkeye: A Wind River Romance, publication
1982
11 5
Two Appreciations of John Jay Chapman (signed by Owen Wister), publication
1934

Series IV.:  Correspondence, 1891-1937Return to Top

Arranged chronologically. Consists of Owen Wister’s personal correspondence. The correspondence from 1891- 1899 was written during his Western travels. The remaining correspondence provides insights on his literary career and concerns during the latter part of his life. The original items are stored in the safe and the photocopies are in the stacks.

Container(s) Description Dates
Box Folders
11 6
General correspondence
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 20.
1891-1899
11 7
General correspondence
Folder includes photocopies. Originals in Safe Envelope 20.
1904-1937

Additional Container ListsReturn to Top

The American Heritage Center is in the process of converting its older container lists to a more accessible format. This link is to an older version of a container list.

Container(s) Description

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Western stories.

Geographical Names

  • Wyoming--History--1890-1918.
  • West (U.S.)--History.

Form or Genre Terms

  • Diaries.
  • Manuscripts.
  • Photographs.

Occupations

  • Authors, American.

Other Creators

  • Personal Names
    • Wister, Owen, 1860-1938. Virginian.
    • Wister, Owen, 1860-1938. Christmas at Castle Rock.
    • Wister, Owen, 1860-1938. Kinsman of Red Cloud.
    • Wister, Owen, 1860-1938. Story of Chalkeye.