Department of Special Collections
Washington University Libraries
Washington University in St. Louis

Finding-Aid for the Conrad Aiken Collection (WTU00127)

Finding aid prepared by:
Special Collections Staff

Summary Information
Title: Conrad Aiken. Collection,
Creator: Aiken, Conrad, 1899-1973
Inclusive dates: 1964.
Extent: 2 items
Call number: WTU00127
Language: English
Repository: Washington University in St. Louis
St. Louis, MO 63130

Access and Use:
Source of Collection:

Access Restrictions:


Use Restriction:


Users of the collections must read and abide by the Rules for the use of manuscript collection materials.

Users of the collections who wish to use items from this collection, in whole or in part, in any form of publication (as defined in the form) must sign and submit to the Washington University Department of Special Collections a hard copy of the Notification of intent publish manuscript collection materials form.

All publication not covered by fair use restricted to those who have permission of the copyright holder.


Aiken, though neglected today and largely unappreciated during his lifetime, is one of the most significant figures in the development of American Modernism. Aiken enrolled at Harvard in 1907, thus qualifying him as a member of one of the famous classes of 1910-1915 which included T.S. Eliot, E.E. Cummings, John Reed, Robert Benchley, and Walter Lippmann. Leaving Harvard in his senior year, Aiken embarked on the first of several trips to Europe. There he met Ezra Pound and Amy Lowell who were then launching the Imagist movement. Soon after his graduation, Aiken moved to Europe and began writing and reviewing for New Republic , Poetry , Dial , and other periodicals. By 1925, he was settled in Boston and well into a writing career that produced more than 50 books of poetry, fiction, and criticism.

Collection Scope and Content Note

Scope and Contents Note

The two letters are to Arthur Cohen. The first one (1/24/1964) comments on Aiken’s recent appearance in Time, and the second (11/18/1964) humorously relates Aiken’s selling attempts on behalf of Cohen.


Bonnell, F.C. and F.W., comp. Conrad Aiken, a Bibliography (1902-1978). (San Marino, CA: Huntington Library, 1982).

Harris, Catherine Kirk. Critical Recognition, 1914-1981: A Bibliographic Guide . (New York: Garland Publishing, 1983).

First Printings of American Authors . Vol. 4. (Detroit: Gale Research Co., 1977-1979).

Subject Terms

  • Aiken, Conrad, 1899-1973