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Leland Hickman Papers
MSS 0186  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Acquisition Information
  • Preferred Citation
  • Publication Rights
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Creator: Hickman, Leland
    Title: Leland Hickman Papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1950-1991
    Extent: 15.40 linear feet (34 archives boxes, 14 oversize folders, 3 card file box)
    Abstract: The papers of Leland Hickman, actor, American poet, and editor. The bulk of the material dates from 1979 to 1989 and is related to the publication of the literary magazines Bachy, Boxcar, and Temblor, including extensive correspondence, original submissions, paste-ups, and edited galleys. Also included are typescripts and manuscripts of Hickman's major verse work Tiresias; an audio recording of Hickman reading Great Slave Lake Suite; original plays; juvenilia; photographs; and audio and video recordings. The papers are arranged in eight series: 1)CORRESPONDENCE, 2) PUBLICATIONS, 3) THEATRE MATERIALS, 4) WRITINGS BY HICKMAN, 5) MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS, 6) WRITINGS OF OTHERS, 7) AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS and 8) ORIGINALS OF PRESERVATION PHOTOCOPIES. The accession processed in 1996 contains recent correspondence (1990-1991), photographs, writings and miscellaneous materials. The accession is arranged in four series: 1) CORRESPONDENCE, 2) PHOTOGRAPHS, 3) MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS and 4) WRITINGS.
    Repository: University of California, San Diego. Geisel Library. Mandeville Special Collections Library.
    La Jolla, California 92093-0175
    Collection number: MSS 0186
    Language of Material: Collection materials in English


    Collection is open for research.

    Acquisition Information

    Not Available

    Preferred Citation

    Leland Hickman Papers, MSS 0186. Mandeville Special Collections Library, UCSD.

    Publication Rights

    Publication rights are held by the creator of the collection.


    Leland Hickman was born on September 15, 1934, in Santa Barbara, California. He moved with his family to Bakersfield, lived on a farm in Carpinteria, and returned to Santa Barbara where he attended high school. In addition to acting in high school plays, Hickman performed in local theatre productions of the Children's Theatre of Santa Barbara and the Group L Theatre Workshop. He graduated from high school in June 1952. Hickman attended the University of California at Santa Barbara and later studied at Berkeley, where he played with the Berkeley Drama Guild.
    After a tour in the Army, he moved to New York City to continue his career in theatre. Hickman toured nationally with the Bishop's Company in 1957, worked in the Canal-Fulton Summer Theatre in Ohio in the summer of 1958, and performed with the Equity Library Theatre in New York City. He subsequently studied on scholarship at the New York Academy of the American Shakespeare Festival. In 1961, Hickman returned to California to play at the Equity Library Theatre West in Los Angeles. He remained in Los Angeles for three years, then returned to New York. In 1969, Hickman moved again to Los Angeles, then to San Francisco briefly, and finally settled back in Los Angeles in 1971.
    Leland Hickman's literary career began in the middle 1960's. In 1967, The Hudson Review published "Lee Sr Falls to the Floor," an introductory poem to Hickman's major work, Tiresias, his "ongoing long-poem" about his feelings for mankind, poetics, and America. Hickman continued to write poetry through the 1970's. A section of Tiresias entitled The Great Slave Lake Suite was published in book form by Momentum Press in 1980. Additionally, portions of Tiresias have been published in Manhattan Review, Trace, Momentum, Bachy, New American Review, Newletters, LA Weekly, Los Angeles Herald Examiner, Rara Avis, Little Caesar, Invisible City, Box Car, and the anthology The Streets Inside: Ten Los Angeles Poets.
    Hickman worked as the poetry editor for the Los Angeles literary magazine Bachy, published by Papa Bach Bookstore, from 1977 to the spring of 1981. He edited issues nine to eighteen. In 1981, he co-founded with Paul Vangelisti the magazine Boxcar: A Magazine of the Arts. Only two issues were published. In 1985, Hickman began editing and publishing Temblor, which continued for ten issues. Temblor is noted for the publication of many east and west coast language-related poets. Hickman's editorial and publishing activities brought the work of many established and emerging poets into the public view.
    Leland Hickman died in Los Angeles in 1991.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    Accession Processed in 1991
    The LELAND HICKMAN PAPERS relate mainly to his activities as a poet and poetry editor. They primarily document the West Coast contemporary poetry scene and his relationship to it; materials documenting Hickman's own work as a poet are less well represented. The collection is organized into eight series: 1) CORRESPONDENCE; 2) PUBLICATIONS; 3) THEATRE MATERIALS; 4) WRITINGS BY HICKMAN; 5) MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS; 6) WRITINGS OF OTHERS; 7) AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS and 8) ORIGINALS OF PRESERVATION PHOTOCOPIES.
    The CORRESPONDENCE series contains letters from numerous poets to Hickman seeking publication of their work in the magazines Bachy, Boxcar, and Temblor. Included in the series are letters from Gerald Burns, Kate Braverman, David Bromige, Clayton Eshleman, Susan Howe, Martha Lifson, Dennis Phillips, and Holly Prado. The bulk of the correspondence dates from Hickman's return to Los Angeles in 1971 onward. Materials are organized alphabetically by correspondent, then chronologically.
    The PUBLICATIONS series comprises materials that reflect Hickman's activities as editor for Bachy, Boxcar, and Temblor. The Bachy materials are mostly paste-ups for the last three issues of the magazine, while the Boxcar materials include submissions and galley proofs. A more complete representation of Hickman's editorial work is found in the Temblor materials, which contain submissions and edited galleys that are arranged by author within individual issues.
    The THEATRE MATERIALS series includes newspaper clippings, playbills, photographs, and memorabilia from Hickman's dramatic endeavors. Of special note is a scrapbook Hickman kept of his high school activites. Materials in this series date from the early 1950's to the middle 1960's.
    The WRITINGS OF HICKMAN series pertains to his work as a poet and writer. Materials related to his long poem "Tiresias" form a subseries; of interest is Hickman's personal journal which reflects the development of Tiresias. Also included in the series are plays and prose that he composed while in written during high school.
    The MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS series consists mainly of photocopies of articles on Hickman and the Los Angeles poetry scene. Included are publicity materials for Hickman readings in the Original Language Poetry Series in Los Angeles. Of special interest are portrait photographs of Leland Hickman taken early in his theatrical career in New York.
    The WRITINGS OF OTHERS series contains literary materials submitted to Hickman which were not published in Bachy, Boxcar, or Temblor. These writings are arranged alphabetically by author.
    Sound recordings and moving images are located in the AUDIO AND VIDEO RECORDINGS series. Hickman explored the early part of his life in an extensive retrospective interview with his mother which he recorded on eight cassette tapes. Visual images of Hickman reading are rare. The Sophie Rachmuhl videotape contains the Lee Hickman segment for her longer Innerscapes: 10 portraits of LA poets. In the short portrait, Hickman reads from "Tiresias" and answers several questions. In Bill Mohr's videotape for the program "Put Your Ears On," broadcast in May 1990, Hickman reads among other poems "The Hidden." Of particular interest is his reading of "Lee Sr. Falls to the Floor," his first poem to receive national acclaim. Finally, the series contains the Dennis Phillips audio recording of Hickman reading Great Slave Lake Suite for a Radio Station KPFK broadcast in 1980.
    Materials of high acid content have been photocopied and removed to this series.
    Accession Processed in 1996
    The accession processed in 1996 contains recent correspondence (1990-1991), writings, photographs and miscellaneous materials. Materials are arranged in four series: 1) CORRESPONDENCE, 2) PHOTOGRAPHS, 3) MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS, and 4) WRITINGS.
    The CORRESPONDENCE series comprises letters written close to the time of Hickman's death and letters of condolence to Charles Macaulay. Of particular importance is a substantial file of letters from Hickman to his mother, Mary Perry Haynes.
    The PHOTOGRAPHS series contains an abundance of childhood photographs of Hickman and other family members. Included are two photograph albums from the turn of the century.
    The MISCELLANEOUS MATERIALS series contains memorabilia, address books, Hickman's baby book and high school yearbooks.
    In the WRITINGS series are several poems and journal entries by Hickman. Also included is a critical essay by Clark Allison on Hickman's GREAT SLAVE LAKE SUITE.

    Indexing Terms

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


    Hickman, Leland -- Archives
    American poetry -- 20th century
    Photographic prints -- 20th Century.


    Andrews, Bruce, 1948- -- correspondent
    Ashbery, John, -- correspondent.
    Barnett, Anthony, 1941- -- correspondent
    Bernstein, Charles, 1950- -- correspondent
    Bromige, David, -- correspondent
    Butterick, George F., -- correspondent
    Clark, Tom, 1941- -- correspondent
    Coolidge, Clark, 1939- -- correspondent
    Cooper, Dennis, 1953- -- correspondent
    Einzig, Barbara, -- correspondent
    Equi, Elaine, -- correspondent
    Eshleman, Clayton, -- correspondent
    Hejinian, Lyn, -- correspondent
    Howe, Susan, 1937- -- correspondent
    Phillips, Dennis, -- correspondent
    Scalapino, Leslie, -- correspondent
    Vangelisti, Paul, -- correspondent
    Weinberger, Eliot, -- correspondent
    Hickman, Leland. -- Tiresias
    Hickman, Leland. -- Great Slave Lake suite