Langton, Jane (1922-2018)

The Jane Langton collection includes manuscripts, correspondence, printed materials, professional materials, research materials, audio materials, photographs, artwork, diaries and journals, electronic media, and more.

The collection includes manuscripts for many of Langton’s books, such as The Dante Game, God in Concord, The Esher Twist, Emily Dickinson is Dead, Good and Dead, Murder at Monticello, The Shortest Day: Murder at the Revels, Steeplechase, Dead as a Dodo, Divine Inspiration, The Deserter: Murder at Gettysburg, Face on the Wall, Love, The Thief of Venice (or The Venetian Bessarion), Dark Nantucket Noon, The Memorial Hall Murder, Natural Enemy, The Transcendental Murder, and Murderess Ink.  These manuscripts are frequently collected in preliminary drafts, alongside related correspondence, research materials, and artwork. Also included are the manuscripts for a lecture given by Langton at Bemis Hall and an unfinished article titled “Harvard at Gettysburg.”

Collected correspondence consists of letters, postcards, emails, faxes, and other items, dating primarily from 1974 to 2005. Letters often discuss literary matters, ranging from research and development to copyediting and copyright documentation. Notables include Cesare Vivante, Lynn Nicholas, and Tony Cockslurt.

Printed materials consist of proofs, reviews, book covers, and more. Brochures and maps from Langton’s travels to Oxford, Gettysburg, and Venice may be of particular interest.

The collection’s professional materials include Langton’s schedules; an application for a Fulbright Scholarship; and a proposal sent to Pam Dorman and Susan O’Connor at Viking Press.

Collected research materials reveal Langton’s extensive preparatory process. Items include scores, postcards, printed materials, blueprints, photographs, correspondence, sketches, and notes for nearly all of Langton’s books.

Audio materials in the collection include CDs of The Deserter: Murder at Gettysburg and Halfway to the Movies.

Many of Langton’s photographs capture famous sites, such as Monticello, Charlottesville, and Oxford, while others provide additional references for her work.

The collection’s artwork is constituted by an array of illustrations, pencil sketches, preliminary art listings, and scanned drawings, among other items.

Diaries and journals, maintained between 1997 and 1999, often document Langton’s travels and include descriptions of visited sites, to-do lists, and sketches.

Collected electronic media includes a set of CDs containing materials titled “Ministry of Public works Venice Water Authority,” along with related floppy disks.

Unique to Langton’s collection is a clay sculpture pertaining to Dead as a Dodo.

Notable Figures
1. Langton, Jane, 1922-
Associated Subjects
1. Mystery and Suspense Fiction Subject Guide
2. Literary Collections Subject Guide
3. Children's Literature Subject Guide
4. Helen Deutsch Research Section