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William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven
MS 244  
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Collection Details
 
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Publication Rights
  • Preferred Citation
  • Acquisition Information
  • Processing History
  • Biographical Note
  • Collection Scope and Contents
  • Collection Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven
    Date (inclusive): 1946-1987, undated
    Date (bulk): 1966-1985
    Collection Number: MS 244
    Creator: Johnson, William Weber, 1909-1992
    Extent: 1.25 linear feet (3 boxes)
    Repository: Rivera Library. Special Collections Department.
    Riverside, CA 92517-5900
    Abstract: The William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven contains publications, correspondence, and other material related to Johnson's research on the author B. Traven, which spanned more than forty years. This collection includes various articles on B. Traven, newspapers from Chiapas, Mexico covering the three-day homage to B. Traven, and Johnson's B. Traven related research notes. Also includes correspondence with Rosa Elena Lujan (B. Traven's wife), Lawrence Hill (B. Traven's United States publisher), and Paul Kohner (B. Traven's agent) as well as a rare certified copy of Traven Torsvan Croves' will dated March 4, 1969 (in English).
    Languages: The collection is primarily in English. Also contains items in German and Spanish.

    Access

    This collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to the University of California, Riverside Libraries, Special Collections & University Archives. Distribution or reproduction of materials protected by copyright beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. To the extent other restrictions apply, permission for distribution or reproduction from the applicable rights holder is also required. Responsibility for obtaining permissions, and for any use rests exclusively with the user.

    Preferred Citation

    [identification of item], [date if possible]. William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven (MS 244). Special Collections & University Archives, University of California, Riverside.

    Acquisition Information

    The William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven was acquired in 1986.

    Processing History

    Processed by Heidi Hutchinson, Processing Archivist, 2011.

    Biographical Note

    William Weber Johnson (1909-1992) was a journalist, a professor of journalism at UCLA, and an author of countless articles and a dozen books, the best known of which is Heroic Mexico: the narrative history of a twentieth century revolution (New York: Doubleday, 1968). He served with Time, Inc. from 1941-61 as a writer (New York), war correspondent (European Theater and WWII) and chief of various domestic and foreign bureaus (Mexico and Central America, Argentina and South America, Dallas, Boston and Beverly Hills). Johnson's interest in B. Traven began while Johnson was Time, Inc. bureau chief in Mexico City and continued well after Traven's death. Johnson was personally acquainted with the elderly Hal Croves (as Traven was calling himself in Mexico City) and his wife Rosa Elena Lujan. Johnson had many conversations and a lengthy cordial correspondence with Rosa Elena Lujan, and at one time intended to write the definitive B. Traven biography. This was never fully realized, but his thirty years of collected research and correspondence on B. Traven came to University of California, Riverside in 1986.
    B. Traven was the pseudonym for an internationally famous writer who guarded his identity with jealousy and determination throughout his life, creating one of the greatest literary puzzles of the 20th century. Other names he went by in his lifetime are Traven Torsvan, Hal Croves, and Ret Marut. His twelve novels, the best known of which are The Death Ship and the Treasure of the Sierra Madre, and many short stories have been translated into numerous languages. Films have been made of his the Treasure of the Sierra Madre, White Rose, Macario, The Death Ship, and Rebellion of the Hanged. He died in March 1969 in Mexico City, Mexico.

    Collection Scope and Contents

    The William W. Johnson collection on B. Traven contains publications, correspondence, and other material related to Johnson's research on the author B. Traven, which spanned more than forty years. This collection includes various articles on B. Traven, newspapers from Chiapas, Mexico covering the three-day homage to B. Traven, and Johnson's B. Traven related research notes. Also includes correspondence with Rosa Elena Lujan (B. Traven's wife), Lawrence Hill (B. Traven's United States publisher), and Paul Kohner (B. Traven's agent) as well as a rare certified copy of Traven Torsvan Croves' will dated March 4, 1969 (in English).

    Collection Arrangement

    This collection is arranged into three series. The contents of each series are arranged sequentially according to box and folder number. The series arrangement of this collection is as follows:
    • Series 1. Publications, 1948-1987, undated
    • Series 2. Correspondence, 1946-1986
    • Series 3. Research material, 1966-1986, undated

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.

    Subjects

    Lujan, Rosa Elena
    Traven, B.

    Genres and Forms of Materials

    Clippings (information artifacts)
    Correspondence
    Manuscripts
    Notes