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Steele (Wilbur Daniel) Papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Conditions Governing Access
  • Conditions Governing Use
  • Immediate Source of Acquisition
  • Preferred Citation:
  • Biographical / Historical
  • Scope and Contents
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  • Language of Material: English
    Contributing Institution: Department of Special Collections and University Archives
    Title: Wilbur Daniel Steele papers
    Creator: Steele, Wilbur Daniel, 1886-1970
    Identifier/Call Number: M0019
    Identifier/Call Number: 1731
    Physical Description: 7 Linear Feet
    Date (inclusive): 1907-1970
    Abstract: Wilbur Daniel Steele (1886-1970) was an American author and playwright.

    Conditions Governing Access

    Open for research with the exception ofg accession 1989-109. Note that material must be requested at least 36 hours in advance of intended use.

    Conditions Governing Use

    While Special Collections is the owner of the physical and digital items, permission to examine collection materials is not an authorization to publish. These materials are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study. Any transmission or reproduction beyond that allowed by fair use requires permission from the owners of rights, heir(s) or assigns.

    Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Mrs. J. F. Jenners and Wilbur D. Steele, 1961, Peter Steele, 1988, David Jenness, 1989, and some additions from other sources.

    Preferred Citation:

    [Identification of item] Wilbur Daniel Steele Papers, M0019, Dept. of Special Collections, Stanford Libraries, Stanford, Calif.

    Biographical / Historical

    Author Wilbur Daniel Steele was born in 1886 in Greensboro, N.C. His father became Professor in the School of Theology at the University of Denver in 1893 where Wilbur D. Steele had his early education and later won a two year scholarship where he was active in athletics. His love of art brought him to Boston where he attended the school of fine arts attached to the Boston Museum. He showed great promise in art, but began to write short stories.
    In 1913 he married Margaret Thurston who was a talented painter. They had two sons. In 1931 Mrs. Steele died. In 1932 he married Norma Mitchell, an actress and playwright with whom he collaborated on several plays. They make their home at Lynne, Connecticut where they still reside.
    He was several times winner of the coveted O. Henry Short Story Prize. He traveled widely in Africa and Europe, basing many of his stories from various places he lived or visited.
    BIOGRAPHICAL DATA (biographical sketch written by W.D. Steele)

    Missing Title

    1886 Born Mar. 17, Greensboro, N.C. (of damyankee parents).
    1890-1892 Binney's Compend of Theology.
    1893-1907 Grade, Prep & College (A.B.), University Park, Denver. Letters in 5 sports, captain in 2.
    1907-1908 Boston Museum of Fine Arts
    1908-1909 Paris, various art courses - began writing there & in Italy.
    1909-1920 Provincetown, Mass. Co-founder of Provincetown Players. Married Margaret Thurston, 1913 - sons, Thurston, `15, Peter, `18 - and during this period, following breaks.
    1917 Travel (for Harpers magazine) in lesser Antilles & Demarara.
    1918 Correspondent, attached to Navy, for Cosmopolitan Mag., Eng., Ireland & France.
    1919-1920 Bermuda
    1920-1922 North Africa (for Harpers) Riviera & England.
    1922 Removed from Provincetown to Nantucket - resided there until 1929
    1922-1923 So. Norwalk, Conn. 1923-4, France 1924-5, Westport, Conn. 1925-6, Switzerland 1926-7 & 1927-8, Charleston, S.C. (There's a winter missing, be dogged if I know where.)
    1929 Removed from Nantucket. 29-31, Chapel Hill, N.C. Wife, Margaret, died there.
    1932 Married Norma Mitchell (actress & playwright) in London -- removed to her home (then new) in country neighboring Lyme, Conn. Resided there ever since. With following breaks: winters: 1932-33 & 1933-4, Hollywood (very sad) 1934-5, 1935-6, 1938-9, N.Y.C. 1939-40, Hollywood (still sadder). 1944, I made extended trip around South America, flying.

    Scope and Contents

    Includes correspondence, chiefly letters by Steele to various members of his family, manuscripts of numerous short stories, plays and novels, three etchings done by Steele, 1908, the privately printed story, "A Life," publishers agreements, photographs, press releases, clippings and other papers.


    Page from catalog record: https://searchworks.stanford.edu/view/4082749