The Jean Bothwell collection consists of manuscripts, notebooks, research material, photographs, printed material, professional material, correspondence, and other material.
Manuscripts by Bothwell in the collection include the serial "Through the Gate with Rama," published in the magazine Junior Friends (1940); the story "Chandra's Air Man" (1945); the serial "These Are My People," published in Classmate (1947); Onions Without Tears (1950); Story of India (1952); The First Book of Roads (1955); Ring of Fate (1957); Promise of the Rose (1958); The Missing Violin (1959); The Emerald Clue (1961); The Red Scarf (1962); The White Fawn of Phalera (1963); By Sail and Wind: The Story of the Bahamas (1964); Romany Girl (1964); Lady of Roanoke (1965); The Dancing Princess (1965); The Mystery Egg (1965); The First Book of India (1966); The Mystery Clock (1966); Ride, Zarina, Ride (1966); The Mystery Box (1967); The Vanishing Wildlife of East Africa (1967); The Holy Man's Secret: A Story of India (1967); The Mystery Cup (1968); Mystery at the House-of-the-Fish (1968); The Parsonage Parrot (1969); Defiant Bride (1969); The Mystery Tunnel (1969); African Herdboy: A Story of the Masai (1970); The Mystery Candlestick (1970); The Secret in the Wall (1971); and Festivals of India (unpublished).
Other manuscripts include autobiographical notes; illustration notes for The Animals World of India (1961), with memos to the editor; a play titled The Meaning of Politics (ca. 1966); a speech to the Nebraska Association for Childhood Education; writings on stamp collecting; poems; a "blueprint for a project to set up a department within an established agency to handle only juvenile writing," written by Bothwell for the William Morris Agency (1948); notes for a course in Indian history taught at Lucknow (1924-1925); a "diary supplement"; unpublished stories; material for an unpublished book on the Ganges River; notes for an abandoned series for Scribner's, titled "States of the Union"; miscellaneous notes and revisions for several novels; maps drawn by Bothwell; an essay written by a friend of Bothwell’s for use in Violin and Mango Tree; and other items.
Notebooks in the collection include a notebook listing Bothwell's publications from 1945 to 1961, and including some research notes for Onions Without Tears (1950); Hidden Treasure (1954); Story of India (1952); Ranch of a Thousand Horns (1955); writings published in Woman's Missionary Friend and Junior Missionary Friend, with an account of those magazines and her two pen names "Elizabeth M. Rogers" and "Priscilla J. Millward" (1928-1935); uncollected plays (1935); and a notebook of various items (1933-1965), including photographs (1962) and letters from Catherine Drinker Bowen and Rex Stout.
Research material in the collection includes notebooks, notes, and various documents used for Little Boat Boy (1945); Lost Colony (1953); The First Book of Roads (1955); Ranch of a Thousand Horns (1955); Search for a Golden Bird (1956); Tree House at Seven Oaks (1957); The Animal World of India (1961); Romany Girl (1964); The Mystery Gatepost (1964); The Dancing Princess (1965); Lady of Roanoke (1965); By Sail and Wind (1965); and African Herdboy (1970). Also present are notes and printed items regarding India, used for several books.
Photographs in the collection include images of Bothwell and some of her friends; a framed photo of Nebraska Conference District Superintendents, including Bothwell’s father; two group photos of North Nebraska Conference ministers, friends, and families; photographs taken in India; photographs featuring Marion Armstrong and William Russel French (1963); and others.
Printed material in the collection includes uncollected stories and articles by Bothwell, with some manuscripts laid in; profiles of authors Bothwell wrote for Wilson Library; promotional items by Bothwell; stories published in Trails for Juniors; several items (clippings, menus, programs, etc.) from India (1922-1936); newspaper clippings on various subjects circa 1960 to 1970; reviews; book catalogs and bulletins; advertisements; and other miscellany.
Correspondence in the collection includes letters from Bothwell's years in India, including letters from her family (1922-1936) and from missionaries in India (1936-1959); letters to Bothwell's friend, Helen Young Prall, a librarian (1929-1935); four notebooks with numerous fan letters from children mounted on the pages (1945-1966); a notebook of letters primarily with editors (1944-1961); seven notebooks of mounted professional letters, ordered chronologically (1945-1965); correspondence with publishers and fans (1953-1967); various items, including letters from editors, personal correspondence, and fan letters from children (1967-1969); and various other personal and professional letters (1969-1972). General correspondence includes material dating from the 1940’s to the 1970’s, and notable correspondents include Dorothy Salisbury Davis, Marian G. MacDowell, Evelyn Eaton, Charles Bracelen Flood, and Moss Hart.
Other items include material relating to Bothwell's years at Nebraska Wesleyan University (1912-1916), including her teaching certificate, transcript, photographs, and other material; several items from Bothwell's years in India, including photographs, a passport, and two ration books (ca. 1920-1935); material relating to the MacDowell Colony (ca. 1945), including correspondence, printed items, and other material; an original drawings of "Mystery Gatepost"; several original pen sketches by Margaret Ayer for Bothwell's books; Bothwell's baptismal certificate; accounting records (1944-1955, 1960-1966); sheet music and a program for a recital where Bothwell sang as a child (1906); a scroll given to Bothwell as a tribute by the Forum of Writers for Young People (1970); files of miscellany and ephemera arranged by Bothwell, including photographs, reviews, poems, book jackets, memorabilia, and other items.