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Bell (Thomas Hastie) Correspondence
mssHM 37562-37616, 41995-42118, 42277-42350  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Preferred Citation
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Custodial History
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Scope and Contents
  • Processing Information
  • Arrangement

  • Contributing Institution: The Huntington Library
    Title: Thomas Hastie Bell correspondence
    Creator: Bell, T. H. (Thomas H.), 1867-1942
    Identifier/Call Number: mssHM 37562-37616, 41995-42118, 42277-42350
    Physical Description: 4.68 Linear Feet (4 boxes) 255 items
    Date (inclusive): 1901-1942
    Abstract: A collection of correspondence related to the life and work of American author Thomas Hastie Bell; also includes a small amount of manuscripts, documents, and ephemera.
    Language of Material: Materials are in English.

    Conditions Governing Access

    Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

    Conditions Governing Use

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item]. Thomas Hastie Bell correspondence, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Six separate acquisitions all purchased from Miss Marion Bell (1972-1976): Frank Harris material, October 1972; Upton Sinclair material, December 1972; Elmer Gertz material, April 1973; Thomas Hastie Bell material, June 1975; Leonard Abbott material, August 1975; Thomas Hastie Bell material, February 1976.

    Custodial History

    Materials in this collection were separated into three collections (Thomas Hastie Bell papers, Upton Sinclair correspondence, and Frank Harris correspondence) by Huntington staff during 1973-1976. Sometime after 1976, all six acquisitions were interfiled chronologically into three boxes (255 items total); however, the catalog records for this material were never combined to reflect thier arrangement in a single collection.

    Biographical / Historical

    Thomas Hastie Bell (1867-1942) was an American author who was associated with a number of important literary and political figures during his lifetime. He was an anarchist by political conviction, having come to that position through socialist thought which for Bell did not adequately provide for the maintenance of personal liberties. Bell denounced the Bolsheviks from the beginning of the Russian Revolution for their suppression of personal freedom and their doctrinaire approach to politics. Bell served as secretary to the publisher and editor Frank Harris for about seven years early in the 20th century and, during that time, he came to know many of the important literary figures of the day. Bell's books include: Edward Carpenter, the English Tolstoi (1932), and Oscar Wilde Without Whitewash. His book on Oscar Wilde was never published in English but was published in Buenos Aires with the title Oscar Wilde: Sus Amigos, Sus Adversaries, Sus Ideas (1946).

    Scope and Contents

    The collection contains correspondence written by Bell and his friends and colleagues; it is predominantly concerned with both political issues (especially anarchism) and Bell's literary work. The letters are arranged alphabetically by correspondent name with incoming and outgoing correspondence kept together. There are a small number of original autograph letters by Bell but the majority are carbon copies, author's retained copies, photocopies, and contemporary copies. Correspondents include, among others, Leonard Dalton Abbott, Roger Baldwin, Ekaterina Konstantinovna Breschko-Breshkovskai͡a, Lord Alfred Douglas, Elmer Gertz, Frank Harris, Pryns Hopkins, Joan London, Nellie O'Hara, Upton Sinclair, and George Sylvester Viereck. The collection also contains a small number of manuscripts, documents, and ephemera; the manuscripts, mostly by Bell, concern both political and literary matters and focus on Oscar Wilde and Frank Harris.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Huntington Library Staff, 1973-1976; in 2020, Gayle Richardson created the finding aid.


    Arranged alphabetically by correspondent's name.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Anarchists -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Authors, American -- 20th century
    Communism -- Soviet Union -- History -- 20th century
    Communism -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Labor movement -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Labor unions -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Parapsychology -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Socialism -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Socialists -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Spain -- History -- Civil War, 1936-1939
    United States -- Politics and Government -- 20th century
    Ephemera -- United States -- 20th century
    Documents -- United States -- 20th century
    Letters (correspondence) -- United States -- 20th century
    Manuscripts -- United States -- 20th century
    Berkman, Alexander, 1870-1936
    Harris, Frank, 1856-1931
    Rocker, Rudolf, 1873-1958
    Sexauer, Hermann Frederick, 1883-1971
    Trotsky, Leon, 1879-1940
    Wilde, Oscar, 1854-1900
    Abbott, Leonard Dalton, 1878-1953
    Abelson, Sidney J.
    Baldwin, Roger N. (Roger Nash), 1884-1981
    Blackwell, Alice Stone, 1857-1950
    Breshko-Breshkovskai︠a︡, Ekaterina Konstantinovna, 1844-1934
    Bronson, Oliver Hart, 1870-1950
    Davray, Henry-D., 1873-
    Douglas, Alfred Bruce, 1870-1945
    Gertz, Bernice R.
    Gertz, Elmer, 1906-2000
    Hopkins, Pryns, 1885-
    Kimmelman, Bessie
    Lloyd, J. Wm. (John William), 1857-1940
    London, Joan
    McDougall, William, 1871-1938
    Mencken, H. L. (Henry Lewis), 1880-1956
    O'Hara, Nellie
    Parry, Albert, 1901-1992
    Sinclair, Upton, 1878-1968
    Tobin, A. I.