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Poets Garden records
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Historical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Preferred Citation
  • Related Archival Materials

  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: USC Libraries Special Collections
    Title: Poets Garden records
    creator: Le Prade, Ruth
    Identifier/Call Number: 0110
    Physical Description: 103 Linear Feet 102 boxes, 1 map-case folder
    Date (inclusive): 1876-1971
    Abstract: The Poets Garden records contains publications, letters, diaries, and memorabilia of the literary group created by Los Angeles poet Ruth Le Prade. The collection also contains materials relating to the poet Edwin Markham (1852-1940) and the labor and socialist activist Eugene Debs.
    Language of Material: English

    Historical Note

    Edwin Markham dedicated the Poets Garden, located in Ruth Le Prade's backyard at 1622 S. Spaulding Street, in April 1927 with the planting of a sycamore tree called the Song Tree in honor of Ruth Le Prade and a wisteria tree for Peace. Between 1927 and Le Prade's death in 1969, other trees were planted in honor of poets and literary figures, including a Gingko tree to honor the Chinese poet Moon Kwan, an oak tree for Chaucer and trees honoring William Shakespeare, Edgar Allan Poe, Rudyard Kipling and Edwin Markham. There were also trees in the Poets Garden dedicated to Jesus, the Divine Mother (Mary) and Brotherhood. The slogan of the Garden was "Bread, Beauty and Brotherhood." Le Prade hosted events at Christmas and Markham's birthday every year in the garden, and many of the people represented in this collection were attendees of these events.
    However, the Poets Garden was not just a physical garden. It also consisted of Ruth Le Prade's circle of acquaintances, friends and correspondents, most of whom were writers and/or poets. Le Prade kept much of her correspondence with "members" of the Poets Garden (there was, however, no official membership). In some cases, most notably Gordon Norris and Robert Whitaker, Le Prade received the papers and correspondence of her friends to add to her collection. Beginning in 1953, Le Prade began to donate most of her collection (both books and paper records) to the University of Southern California. She also gave a collection documenting Florence Hamilton's relationship with Edwin Markham to the Library of Congress in 1953.

    Scope and Content

    The records of Poets Garden contain Ruth Le Prade's personal papers, those of her friends she considered part of the Poets Garden, a small section on Eugene Debs (who died before the Garden was established as such), and publications collected either by Le Prade or one of the Garden's other members. Le Prade's personal papers include her correspondence with people not individually represented at the series level in the collection, financial records, typescript and manuscript drafts of her works (both prose and poetry, published and unpublished), her manuscript notes, scrapbooks, photographs and newspaper and periodical clippings. The records for the people named at the series level generally include their correspondence both to and from Ruth Le Prade. However, they may also include any combination of the following: typescript and manuscript drafts, correspondence with people other than Le Prade, correspondence to or from Le Prade about the series's namesake, clippings by, about or collected by the series's namesake, photographs, awards, plaques and scrapbooks.


    The Poets Garden records are organized into 26 series. 25 of the series reflect Ruth Le Prade's original arrangement of the collection and are based on specific people. These series contain the correspondence both to and from Ruth Le Prade with these people, along with any other files Le Prade created or received from them. The last series consists of the publications found throughout the collection. The series of the Poets Garden records are:
    1. Ruth Le Prade
    2. Edwin Markham
    3. Florence Hamilton
    4. Alzire Adrienne "Faith" Chevaillier
    5. Eugene Debs
    6. Robert Whitaker
    7. Guy Bogart
    8. Genevieve Farnell Bond
    9. Verne Bright
    10. Grace Bush
    11. Ethelean Tyson Gaw
    12. Moon Kwan
    13. Seumas MacManus
    14. Eric Mayne
    15. Juanita Miller
    16. Angela Morgan
    17. Dion O'Donnol
    18. Gordon Norris
    19. Ruth Clay Price (Ruth Price Simpson)
    20. Adeline de Walt "Grandma" Reynolds
    21. Luther Standing Bear
    22. John Milton Scott
    23. Ruth Forbes Sherry
    24. Selman Warren Stone
    25. Lucia Trent
    26. Publications

    Conditions Governing Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE. Advance notice required for access.

    Conditions Governing Use

    All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

    Preferred Citation

    [Box/folder# or item name], Poets Garden records, Collection no. 0110, Special Collections, USC Libraries, University of Southern California

    Related Archival Materials

    USC Cinematic Arts Library Collection no. 2137, Adeline De Walt Reynolds Papers.
    Edwin Markham Papers, Library of Congress.
    Florence Hamilton Collection Relating to Edwin Markham, Library of Congress.
    The Edwin Markham Library and Manuscripts Collection, Wagner College, Staten Island, New York.
    The Cornelius Greenway Collection of Edwin Markham Papers (MS 74-17), Wichita State University.
    Joaquin and Juanita Miller Collection (H2007.4), Special Collections, Honnold/Mudd Library, Libraries of The Claremont Colleges.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    American literature -- 20th century -- Archival resources
    American poetry -- 20th century -- Archival resources
    Christian socialism -- Archival resources
    Dakota Indians -- Archival resources
    Families of prisoners of war -- Archival resources
    Poets, American -- 20th century -- Archival resources
    Prison reformers -- Archival resources
    Prisoners -- Correspondence
    Religious poetry, American -- California -- Archival resources
    Socialism -- California -- Archival resources
    Socialism and literature -- United States -- History -- 20th century
    Socialists -- California -- Los Angeles -- Archival resources
    United States -- History -- 20th century -- Archival resources
    Women -- United States -- History -- 20th century -- Archival resources
    Women social reformers -- United States -- Archival resources
    World War, 1939-1945 -- Repatriation of war dead -- United States -- Archival resources
    World War, 1939-1945 -- United States -- Archival resources
    Los Angeles (Calif.) -- History -- Archival resources
    Le Prade, Ruth -- Archives
    Le Prade, Ruth -- Correspondence
    Bogart, Guy -- Archives
    Bogart, Guy -- Correspondence
    Bond, Genevieve Farnell -- Archives
    Bond, Genevieve Farnell -- Correspondence
    Bright, Verne -- Archives
    Bright, Verne -- Correspondence
    Bush, Grace E. -- Archives
    Bush, Grace E. -- Correspondence
    Cheyney, Ralph -- Archives
    Chevaillier, Alzire A. (Alzire Adrienne) -- Archives
    Chevaillier, Alzire A. (Alzire Adrienne) -- Correspondence
    Debs, Eugene V. (Eugene Victor) -- Archives
    Debs, Eugene V. (Eugene Victor) -- Correspondence
    Gaw, Ethelean Tyson -- Archives
    Gaw, Ethelean Tyson -- Correspondence
    Hamilton, Florence -- Archives
    Hamilton, Florence -- Correspondence
    Kwan, Moon -- Archives
    Kwan, Moon -- Correspondence
    MacManus, Seumas -- Archives
    MacManus, Seumas -- Correspondence
    Markham, Edwin -- Archives
    Markham, Edwin -- Correspondence
    Mayne, Eric -- Archives
    Mayne, Eric -- Correspondence
    Miller, Juanita Joaquina -- Archives
    Miller, Juanita Joaquina -- Correspondence
    Morgan, Angela -- Archives
    Morgan, Angela -- Correspondence
    Norris, Gordon W. -- Archives
    Norris, Gordon W. -- Correspondence
    O'Donnol, Dion -- Archives
    O'Donnol, Dion -- Correspondence
    Price, Ruth Clay -- Archives
    Price, Ruth Clay -- Correspondence
    Reynolds, Adeline de Walt -- Archives
    Reynolds, Adeline de Walt -- Correspondence
    Scott, John Milton -- Archives
    Scott, John Milton -- Correspondence
    Sherry, Ruth Forbes -- Archives
    Sherry, Ruth Forbes -- Correspondence
    Standing Bear, Luther -- Archives
    Standing Bear, Luther -- Correspondence
    Trent, Lucia -- Archives
    Trent, Lucia -- Correspondence
    Wells, Wesley Robert -- Correspondence
    Whitaker, Robert -- Archives
    Whitaker, Robert -- Correspondence