Jane C. Grant papers , 1911-1972

Overview of the Collection

Jane C. Grant papers
1911-1972 (inclusive)
15 linear feet, (48 containers)
Collection Number
Coll 041
Collection comprises the papers of Jane Grant, an American journalist and co-founder of the New Yorker magazine. The papers consist of personal correspondence, Lucy Stone League materials, manuscripts, war journalism and personal materials. Major correspondents include Harold Ross, William B. Harris, Raoul Fleischmann, Pearl Buck, and Florence Kitchelt. The Lucy Stone League materials includes women's rights material on the topics of the Equal Rights Ammendment, National Women's Party and the American Civil Liberties Union, among others.
University of Oregon Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives
UO Libraries--SCUA
1299 University of Oregon
Eugene OR
Telephone: 5413463068
Access Restrictions

Collection is open to the public. Collection must be used in Special Collections and University Archives Reading Room. Collection or parts of collection may be stored offsite. Please contact Special Collections and University Archives in advance of your visit to allow for transportation time.

Additional Reference Guides

See the Current Collection Guide for detailed description and requesting options.

Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Historical NoteReturn to Top

Jane C. (Jeanette Cole) Grant was born on May 29, 1892 in Joplin, Missouri and grew up in Girard, Kansas. She supplemented her education with voice lessons and went to New York to develop her talent for singing as soon as she graduated from high school.

In 1912, with the help of her landlady, who was a secretary to Carr Van Anda, managing editor of the New York Times, she got a job at the newspaper working in the society department. While working at the Times, she became friends with many of the reporters, including Alexander Woollcott, the drama critic. She eventually worked her way into the city room, where she became the first general assignment woman reporter at the Times.

During World War I, Miss Grant went to France with the Entertainment Department of the Y.M.C.A. In France, through her friendship with Woollcott, she met Harold Ross, then the editor of Stars and Stripes. They were married in 1920. After the war, she returned to her job at the Times.

In 1925, she and Ross with the financial backing of Raoul Fleischmann, founded The New Yorker magazine. Ross became the driving force of the magazine from his position as editor, and was chiefly responsible for making it the success it became. Miss Grant was a consultant to the magazine and during World War II was responsible for producing an overseas edition for the armed forces.

In 1921, Miss Grant, along with Ruth Hale, founded the Lucy Stone League which was dedicated to helping women keep their maiden names after marriage. The organization eventually broadened in scope to include other women's rights causes such as the Equal Rights Amendment. Miss Grant's association and devotion to the women's liberation movement and the Lucy Stone League remained strong the rest of her life.

Miss Grant, having been divorced from Harold Ross in 1929, married William B. Harris, an editor with Fortune magazine in 1939. Together they later established White Flower Farm, a plant nursery that gained a nationwide reputation. Miss Grant died on March 8, 1972 at the age of 79.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Jane C. Grant Papers consist of the series: personal correspondence, Lucy Stone League material, manuscripts, war journalism, and personal. matter.

The personal correspondence is arranged in chronological order. Major correspondents include Harold Ross, William B. Harris, Alexander Woollcott, Raoul Fleischmann, Janet Flanner, Hawley Truax, Enrico Caruso, James Thurber, Stanton Griffis, William Lindsay White and E. B. White. A selected name index is included at the end of this inventory.

The Lucy Stone League series includes other women's rights material as well, and consists of correspondence and subject files. The correspondence is arranged chronologically. That relating directly to the subject areas has been left with those files. Major correspondents include Pearl Buck, Frances Perkins, Sophie Drinker, Alma Lutz, Emma Guffey Miller, Doris Stevens, Anna M. Kross, Ashley Montagu, Betty Lou Raskin, Florence Kitchfelt, Eleanor Nichols, Clare Boothe Luce, and Margaret Harriman Case. The subject files contain information on topics such as the ERA, the National Women's Party, the ACLU and also include the internal matters, records, and functions of the Lucy Stone League. These files are arranged alphabetically.

The manuscripts, all typed, are listed in alphabetical order. Of special interest is Miss Grant's account of her early years with Harold Ross entitled Ross, The New Yorker, and Me (New York: Reynal and Company, Inc., 1968). Included with the manuscript is correspondence regarding its publication and some business records of The New Yorker. Also of note is the manuscript, I Saw What I Could, that Miss Grant wrote as an account of her travels in the Soviet Union. Although unpublished, William Harris had it bound for her and it appears in the collection both with the manuscripts and free-standing volumes.

The war journalism section concerns work Miss Grant did for several magazines during World War II. These include American Mercury, Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine (overseas edition) and The New Yorker (overseas edition). A folder on the Writer's War Board is also included.

The personal material includes genealogical data, memorabilia, and legal documents such as mortgages, deeds, a marriage certificate, a divorce decree, and various contracts. Finally in the collection is printed material including newsclippings of articles and letters written by Miss Grant, a run of the armed forces overseas edition of The New Yorker, and one box of collected printed material relating to women's rights.

One box and one package contain oversize material, including scrapbooks, phonograph records, and artwork.

Photographs include photos from Miss Grant's childhood years in Missouri and Kansas (1892-1910), the World War I period (1918-1920), the time of her marriage to Harold Ross (1920-1929), and her later years when married to William Harris (1939-1972). The collection also contains photo albums of trips to Europe in 1949, and to Egypt, plus a photo album showing the building in 1939 of Miss Grant's and Mr. Harris's home in Litchfield, Connecticut, later called White Flower Farm. Photographs of specific people in addition to Miss Grant include Harold Ross, William Harris, Alexander Woollcott, Enrico Caruso, Carr Van Anda, Neysa McMein, and Marc Connelly.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • Women journalists--United States
  • Women's rights
  • Women--Societies and clubs
  • World War, 1939-1945--Journalists

Personal Names

  • Buck, Pearl S. (Pearl Sydenstricker), 1892-1973
  • Fleischmann, Raoul
  • Grant, Jane C., 1892-1972
  • Kitchelt, Florence
  • Pettingill, Amos, 1900-1981

Corporate Names

  • New Yorker (New York, N.Y. : 1925)

Form or Genre Terms

  • Photograph albums
  • Photographic prints
  • Silver gelatin prints