Finding aid of the James Barr Papers, 1951-1991 Coll2008-043

Loni Shibuyama
ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, USC Libraries, University of Southern California
909 West Adams Boulevard
Los Angeles, California 90007
(213) 821-2771

Language of Material: English
Contributing Institution: ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, USC Libraries, University of Southern California
Title: James Barr papers
creator: Barr, James
Identifier/Call Number: Coll2008-043
Physical Description: 0.6 Linear Feet 1 archive carton
Date (inclusive): 1951-1991
Abstract: Manuscripts, correspondence, clippings and photographs relating to gay author James W. Fugaté (1922-1995), who under the pseudonym James Barr, wrote the groundbreaking novel, Quatrefoil (1950), as well as other gay-themed works, including a volume of short stories, Derricks (1951), and a play, Game of Fools (1955). The collection also includes manuscripts of short stories and of articles he contributed to homophile periodicals such as ONE Magazine, Der Kreis and the Mattachine Review; correspondence with his publishers and homophile organizations such as ONE, Inc.; and photographs of Fugaté dating back to 1952.


The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

Publication Rights

Researchers wishing to publish materials must obtain permission in writing from ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives as the physical owner. Researchers must also obtain clearance from the holder(s) of any copyrights in the materials. Note that ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives can grant copyright clearance only for those materials for which we hold the copyright. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain copyright clearance for all other materials directly from the copyright holder(s).

Preferred Citation

James Barr papers, Coll2008-043, ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives, Los Angeles, California.

Acquisition Information

Donor and date of acquisition unknown.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Loni Shibuyama, June 24, 2008.
Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.
Additional materials added by Kyle Morgan, 2015.


James W. Fugaté was born in Missouri on February 13, 1922. Fugaté was still a child when his mother died and, having never met his father, was relocated several times before a foster couple decided to raise him. After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, Fugaté studied professional writing at a university, but soon dropped out and moved to New York City where he earned a living writing advertising copy for television.
His experience in the Navy was the inspiration for his book, the groundbreaking novel, Quatrefoil, first published in 1950. Written under the pseudonym, James Barr, Quatrefoil is hailed as one of the first novels to present a frank and positive depiction of same-sex love. Following the success of Quatrefoil, he published a volume of short stories, Derricks (1951), and the play, Game of Fools (1955).
During the Korean War, Fugaté reenlisted in the U.S. Navy, but he was discharged when a background check by Naval Intelligence revealed him to be the author of Quatrefoil. Following the incident, he moved to Los Angeles where he became aware of ONE, Inc., the Mattachine Society and the early gay rights movement. As an early activist, he contributed a number of articles to homophile periodicals--such as ONE Magazine, Der Kreis ( The Circle) and Mattachine Review--throughout the 1950s. By the mid-1960s, however, he lost touch with the gay rights movement and returned to the Midwest, where he earned a living in a variety of jobs, including laborer in oil fields and reporter for the Kansas City Star. He eventually settled in Tulsa, Oklahoma, where he died on March 28, 1995.
Source: James Barr Papers, Coll2008-043, ONE National Gay & Lesbian Archives, Los Angeles, California

Scope and Content of Collection

This collection comprises manuscripts, correspondence, clippings and photographs. The manuscripts include short stories and articles Fugaté wrote for early homophile periodicals, such as ONE Magazine and Der Kreis ( The Circle.) The correspondence documents his participation in the 1950s homophile movement as well as his work with publishers of his books. The photographs include photos of him in the 1950s and publicity photos taken for the re-issue of his novel, Quatrefoil, in 1991. The materials prior to 1980 appear to have been pulled from the files of ONE, Inc.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Homosexuality and literature
Gays' writings, American
Gay authors -- United States -- 20th century
Barr, James
Barr, James


Manuscripts and Publications circa 1951-1990

Box 1, Folder 1

Autobiographical Manuscript "James Barr - Warts and All" 1990

Box 1, Folder 2

"Camping in the Bush" 1954


Game of Fools circa 1954

Box 1, Folder 3-4

Manuscript Pages 1954-1955

Box 1, Folder 5

"First Reactions to Game of Fools" circa 1954

Box 1, Folder 6

"Hold That Curtain! Juliet's Still Shaving, or Maunderings with Jaybarr" Undated

Box 1, Folder 7

"A Homosexual Looks at the Child Molester" circa 1951-1954

Box 1, Folder 8

"Homosexuality and Liberal Mind" Undated

Box 1, Folder 9

The Mamma Doll 1955

Box 1, Folder 10

"A Mosaic of Ideas and Ideals" 1955

Box 1, Folder 11

"Nickels and Dimes" Undated

Box 1, Folder 12

"Noblesse Oblige" Undated

Box 1, Folder 13

Quatrefoil Publicity Material 1982

Box 1, Folder 14

Clippings 1951-1966

Box 1, Folder 15-21

Correspondence 1953-1959

Box 1, Folder 22

Correspondence 1989-1991

Box 1, Folder 23

Miscellaneous circa 1989-1991


Photographs 1952-1990

Box 1, Folder 24

James Barr Fugaté and Others 1952-1956

Physical Description: [16 black-and-white photographic prints]
Box 1, Folder 25

James Barr Fugaté Publicity Photos and Contact Sheets 1990

Physical Description: [4 black-and-white photographic prints, 4 black-and-white contact sheets]
Box 1, Folder 26

Landscapes Undated

Physical Description: [12 color photographic prints]