The holograph works of Charlotte and Emily Brontë make up the bulk of the Ransom Center's Brontë family collection, 1833–1858, along with works by Anne and Patrick Branwell Brontë. The collection is organized into two series: Series I. Brontë Family Works and Letters, 1833-1858 (1.5 boxes), and Series II. Works and Letters by Others, 1850 (.5 box). This collection was previously accessible through a card catalog, but has been re-cataloged as part of a retrospective conversion project.
The Brontë Family Works and Letters Series is divided into five subseries, arranged alphabetically by family member name: Subseries A. Brontë, Anne, 1836-1838; Subseries B. Brontë, Charlotte, 1833-1853; Subseries C. Brontë, Emily, 1837-1842; Subseries D. Brontë, Patrick, 1850; and Subseries E. Brontë, Patrick Branwell, 1834-1836.
Anne Brontë's writings are represented by typescripts of three poems and a list of characters she used in her stories and poems of the fictitious land of Gondal. The Charlotte Brontë subseries is more robust with holograph versions of "The Green Dwarf," "Julia," and "Something About Arthur." Also present is a letter to William Smith Williams, her publisher. Contained in the Emily Brontë subseries are two holograph poems and an essay in French.
The men of the Brontë family are represented in the final two subseries. Patrick Brontë's subseries contains a letter to an unknown recipient, and the Patrick Branwell subseries holds a holograph poem, a short story titled "A Narrative of the First War by Harry Hastings," and a commonplace book in which Patrick Branwell contributed four pages of poetry and sketches.
The Works and Letters by Others Series contains a musical score written by Ernest Powell for a poem by Emily Brontë and a biographical essay on Charlotte Brontë by Harriet Spofford. Also present are two letters, including one from Mary Taylor, one of Charlotte's life-long friends.
|Title||Letter to Charlotte Brontë|
|Creator||Taylor, Mary, 1817-1893|
Dear Charlotte, About a week since I received your last melancholy letter with the account of Ann's death and yr utter indifference to every thing, even to the success of your last book. Though you do not say this it is pretty plain to be seen from the style of your letter. It seems to me hard indeed that you who would succeed better than any one in making friends & keeping them should be condemned to solitude from your poverty. To no one would money bring more happiness, for no one would use it better than you would. - For me with my headlong selfindulgent habits I am perhaps better without it, but I am convinced it would give you great and noble pleasures. Look out then for success in writing. You ought to care as much for that as you do for going to Heaven. Though the advantages of being employed appear to you now the best part of the business you will soon please God have other enjoyments from your success. Railway shares will rise, your books will sell and you will acquire influence & power - & then most certainly you will find something to use it in which will interest you and make you exert yourself. What you say of Joe agrees with the melancholy account of him both in his own letters & other people's. I cannot give advice or propose a remedy. All seems to depend on himself & he - like all other people with his disease, is so powerless! His passion for marrying seems just to have come because it is the only thing serious enough to excite him - if that were done what would there be left? Your endeavour to persuade him to repose & quiet is certainly the best that could be made - may you succeed as you deserve! You will certainly do yourself good, tho it will be to both sides a melancholy meeting.
Harry Ransom founded the Humanities Research Center in 1957 with the ambition of expanding the rare books and manuscript holdings of the University of Texas. He acquired the Edward Alexander Parsons Collection, the T. Edward Hanley Collection, and the Norman Bel Geddes Collection. Ransom himself was the official director of the Center for only the years 1958 to 1961, but he directed and presided over a period of great expansion in the collections until his resignation in 1971 as Chancellor of the University of Texas System. wiki/Harry_Ransom_Center