MS Am 2102
Sissman, L.E., 1928-1976. L. E. Sissman additional papers, 1946-1989: Guide. Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA
© 2001 The President and Fellows of Harvard College
Last updated 2016 June 21
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard College Library, Harvard University
Location: Harvard Depository
Note: This collection is shelved offsite at the Harvard Depository. See access restrictions
below for additional information.
Call No.: MS Am 2102
Creator: Sissman, L.E., 1928-1976.
Title: L. E. Sissman additional papers,
Quantity: 2.5 linear feet (5 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Compositions by American author, L.E. Sissman along with correspondence.
Processed by: Jackie Dean.
91M-61. Gift of Anne (Bierman) Sissman;
received: 1992 June 29.
There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.
This collection is not housed at the Houghton Library but is shelved offsite at the
Harvard Depository. Retrieval requires advance notice. Readers should check with
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L. E. Sissman Additional Papers, 1946-1989 (MS Am 2102). Houghton Library, Harvard
L. E. Sissman (1928-1976) graduated from Harvard College in 1949 as Class Poet. He
settled outside of Boston and worked as an advertising copywriter. From 1964 to 1974,
his poetry and prose was published in the New Yorker
and Atlantic monthly. His books include the
poetry collections Dying: an introduction (1967) and
Hello darkness: the collected poems of L. E. Sissman,
published posthumously in 1978. His Atlantic monthly
columns were collected in Innocent bystander: scenes
from the '70s (1975). Sissman died of Hodgkin's disease.
Arranged into four series:
- I. Correspondence
- A. Letters from L. E. Sissman
- B. Letters to L. E. Sissman and Anne (Bierman) Sissman
- II. Compositions
- A. Poems
- B. Book Reviews
- C. "Innocent bystander" columns
- D. Other compositions
- III. Compositions by others
- IV. Other papers
These additional papers contain correspondence of L. E. Sissman including letters
Atlantic monthly and the New Yorker as well as letters received by his wife after
his death. The bulk of this collection is typescripts and proofs of Sissman's poems
book reviews published in the New Yorker and of his
Atlantic monthly column, The innocent bystander. There are compositions by
others, including a typescript of John Updike's forward to Sissman's Innocent bystander: scenes from the '70s, among other
- I. Correspondence.
- A. Letters from L. E. Sissman.
- (1) Sissman, L. E., 1928-1976. Letters, various dates. 1 folder.
Includes letters to:
- James Dickey, 1967.
- Howard Moss, 1969.
- Edward A. Muir, 1967-1971. (Photocopies).
- [Barbara Sissman?], 1946.
- (2) Sissman, L. E., 1928-1976. Letters to Edward
James Sissman and Marie (Anderson) Sissman
[his parents], 1947-1965. 2 folders.
- B. Letters to L. E. and Anne (Bierman) Sissman.
- (5) Vanguard Press, Inc. Letters, 1975-1985. 1 folder.
- (6) Letters from various correspondents, various dates. 3 folders.
Includes letters from:
- Jonathan Bishop, 1975.
- Emily Davenport, 1976.
- William Davenport, 1975-1976. Includes
letter to Davenport from Edward A. Muir, 1975.
- William Guthrie, 1976.
- Albert W. Haley, Jr., 1976.
- John F. Mangrum, 1969.
- Julian McMahon, 1969.
- James Ingram Merrill, 1969.
- Dianne Muller, 1975.
- National Book Critics Circle. 1975.
- Newsweek, 1974.
- Stuart Newton, 1975. Composition removed to
- Peter Ninn, 1976.
- Charles Saxon, 1975. (2 letters).
- Tom Sexton, undated.
Composition by Beverly A. Walters
removed to item (34 ).
- Marie (Anderson) Sissman, 1968.
- John Updike, 1971-1976. Composition removed
to item (33).
- Edward S. Van Winkle, 1976.
- The Writer, Inc., 1975.
- James R. Wilson, 1971. Composition removed to
- (7) Letters of condolences, 1976-1978.
Includes letters from Peter Davison, William Davenport, Richard Merkin, Edward A. Muir, John Updike, and Barry Spacks,
- Series: II. Compositions.
- Series: III. Compositions by others.
- (31) Davenport, William W. (William Wyatt). Response after
accepting the "Friends of L.E. Sissman" award : Ts (photocopy), 1977. 1 folder.
- (32) Newton, Stuart. The 20th armored: a recurrent dream in the
"formalist" traditions, or for "instrumental" purpose? : Ts
(photocopy), 1975. 1 folder.
- (32a) Pinck, Dan C. My years with Harold Ross : Ts with Ms
annotations and revisions in an unidentified hand (photocopy), undated. 1 folder.
- (33) Updike, John. Introduction [to Innocent bystander: the scene from the 70's] : Ts with AMs
annotations and revisons, 1971. 1 folder.
- (34) Walters, Beverly A. Sissman and the pursuit of honor : Ts
(photocopy), 1972. 1 folder.
- IV. Other papers.
- (37) Miscellany, various dates. 1 folder.
- Certificate from the Tenth Annual American
Television and Radio Commercials Festival, 1969.
- Memorandum from unidentified company, 1962.
- Ms notes in an unidentified hand.