Woodson Research Center, Rice University

Guide to the Edward Knoblock papers, 1904-1936, MS 324 MS 324



Title: Edward Knoblock papers
Dates: 1904-1936
Abstract: Playwright, scenarist and novelist, Edward Knoblock (1874-1945) was born in New York City and educated at Harvard, but spent most of his professional life living and working in Great Britain. The Knoblock papers are comprised of correspondence received by Knoblock between the years 1904 and 1936, relating to theater in Great Britain during the early 20th century. Most of Knoblock's correspondents in this collection are well-known literary figures of the day, or prominent managers and producers from the world of the theatre, including Sir William Nicholson (1872-1949).
Identification: MS 324
Identification: 1019
Quantity: 0.25 Linear Feet1 box
Language: English
Repository: Woodson Research Center, Rice University, Houston, Texas

Biographical Note

Edward Knoblock (1874-1945) was born in New York City and educated at Harvard, but spent most of his professional life living and working in Great Britain. Playwright, scenarist and novelist, Knoblock was in constant touch with many of the leading literary and artistic figures of his generation, as the ensuing collection will show. As well as working independently, Knoblock often collaborated with others. The plays, Milestones (1912), and, London Life (1924) were produced with the assistance of Arnold Bennett. Similarly, The Good Companions, originally published in 1929 by J.B. Priestley, was dramatised jointly by Knoblock and the author in 1931. Plays written by Knoblock alone include, The Faun (1911), Kismet (1911), My Lady's Dress (1914), Marie-Odile (1915), and Tiger-Tiger (1918). Among the novels written by Edward Knoblock are, The Ant Heap (1929), The Man With Two Mirrors(1931), The Love Lady (1933), and Inexperience (1941). Some of these works are referred to throughout the collection, notably by Dame Edith Sitwell and David Belasco.


Scope and Contents

The Edward Knoblock collection comprises 45 folders of correspondence received by Knoblock between the years 1904 and 1936, relating to theater in Great Britain during the early 20th century. Correspondence relates to British theater in the early 20th century.

Most of Knoblock's correspondents in this collection are well-known literary figures of the day, or prominent managers and producers from the world of the theatre. Some of these are: Sir Arthur Wing Pinero (1855-1934), the English dramatist and actor; J.B. Priestley (1894- ), the Yorkshire born novelist, essayist, playwright and critic; all the members of the literary Sitwell family, especially, Edith (1887-1964), Osbert (1892-1969), and Sacheverell (1897- ); Sir Hugh Walpole (1884-1941) the New Zealand born novelist and son of the bishop of Edinburgh; Sir Charles Wyndham (1863-1913), the English actor and stage manager; David Belasco (1854-1931), the San Francisco born New York stage manager and producer; Arnold Bennett (1867-1931), the famous English novelist and dramatist of the 'Five Towns' region; Noel Coward (1899- ), the playwright, actor, and composer; English actors, Sir John Gielgud, born in 1904, and Sir Charles Hawtrey (1858-1923); statesman, and first Labour Prime Minister, Ramsey MacDonald (1866-1937); novelist, journalist, and critic, Compton MacKenzie (1883- ); and, Cyril Maude (1863-1951), the English actor, co-manager of the Haymarket theatre in London (1896-1905) and manager and builder of the Playhouse until 1915.

Owing to the volume of correspondence from him contained in the collection, Sir William Nicholson (1872-1949) deserves a special mention. Nicholson was principally a portrait painter, although he also devoted time to painting figure subjects, still life and open-air studies. He was also a wood engraver and designed posters along with his brother-in-law James Pryde under the name of the Beggarshot Brothers. A series of woodcuts were published including, The Square Book of Animals (1896), and An Almanac of Twelve Sports (1898), this latter being produced in collaboration with Rudyard Kipling. Most of Nicholson's letters to Knoblock are accompanied by small illustrations of some kind, and the collection concludes with ten miscellaneous sketches by this artist.


Arrangement

The correspondence has been arranged in alphabetical order by correspondent's last name, with the exception of Sir William Nicholson's correspondence, which has been filed last.

Restrictions

Conditions Governing Access

Stored off-site at the Library Service Center. Please request this material via woodson@rice.edu or call 713-348-2586.

Access Restrictions

This material is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish material from the Edward Knoblock papers must be obtained from the Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library.


Index Terms

Theatrical productions
English drama -- 20th century
Playwriting
sketchbooks
corrrespondence
Theater
Priestley, J. B. (John Boynton), 1894-1984
Sitwell, Edith, Dame, 1887-1964
Walpole, Hugh, Sir, 1884-1941
Wyndham, Charles, 1837-1919
Mackenzie, Compton, Sir, 1883-1972
Maude, Cyril, 1862-1951
Nicholson, William, Sir, 1872-1949
Pinero, Arthur Wing, 1855-1934
Bennett, Arnold, 1867-1931
Belasco, David, 1853-1931
Knoblock, Edward, 1874-1945
Hawtrey, Charles, 1858-1923
Gielgud, John , 1904-2000
Coward, Noel, 1899-1973

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Edward Knoblock papers, 1904-1936, MS 324, Woodson Research Center, Fondren Library, Rice University

Acquisition Information

Purchased 1955 through Friends of Fondren.

Processing Note

The abbreviations used in the following description of the collection are defined as:

ALS: Handwritten signed letter.

TLS: Typed signed letter.

AC: Handwritten card.


Detailed Description of the Collection

Series I. Correspondence

Box Folder
1 1 Sir George Alexander to Edward Knoblock 1912-03-05-1919-02-05
AC Sir George Alexander to Edward Knoblock An expression of thanks. 1919-02-05
ALS Sir George Alexander to Edward Knoblock Invitation to be a guest at the annual dinner of a theatrical fund. 1912-03-05
Box Folder
1 2 William Archer to Edward Knoblock 1908-10-06
ALS William Archer to Edward Knoblock Agreeing to attend the rehearsals. 1908-10-06
Box Folder
1 3 Enid Bagnold to Edward Knoblock 1918-02-24
ALS Enid Bagnold to Edward Knoblock Praising and discussion some of Knoblock's poems. 1918-02-24
Box Folder
1 4 Squire Bancroft to Edward Knoblock 1914
ALS Squire Bancroft to Edward Knoblock Saying he had made use of Knoblock's name, privately. 1914-06-09
ALS Squire Bancroft to Edward Knoblock Acknowledgement of a gift to the Academy of Dramatic Art. 1914-10-01
Box Folder
1 5 David Belasco to Edward Knoblock 1918-1919
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Praising him for his play 1918-07-10
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Saying how well is progressing, and asking for more. 1919-03-25
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Saying he is glad Knoblock is out of the war and is looking forward to receiving a new Ms. 1919-05-29
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Writing about Knoblock's new play 18 July 1919
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Telling of the progress of on tour. 1919-10-06
TLS David Belasco to Edward Knoblock Asking Knoblock to write some verse for framing. This series from Belasco also contains a flier about a life of David Belasco by a William Winter. 1919-12-01
Box Folder
1 6 ? to Edward Knoblock 1917-10-12
AC ? to Edward Knoblock A note of thanks. 1917-10-12
Box Folder
1 7 Arnold Bennett to Edward Knoblock 1918-07-12
ALS Arnold Bennett to Edward Knoblock Asking Knoblock if he would like to be a secretary of a new entertainment-of -foreigners committee which is being formed. 1918-07-12
Box Folder
1 8 Irving Berlin to Edward Knoblock 1926-12-04
TLS Irving Berlin to Edward Knoblock Thanks for a wire and hoping for a visit. 1926-12-04
Box Folder
1 9 Louis Bromfield to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Louis Bromfield to Edward Knoblock Saying he will be coming to London.
Undated, ALS Louis Bromfield to Edward Knoblock About Knoblock's request for French lodgings for a freind of his.
Box Folder
1 10 Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock 1920-1935
Undated, ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Congratulaing Knoblock on producing a new play and offering his criticisms.
Undated, ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Hoping to negotiate a West End opening with Douglas Fairbanks and Robin Hood.
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Thanks, and asking him to use his first name and not the formal mode of address. 1920-08-20
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Asking for a lunch date. 1922-10-22
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Glad to hear Knoblock can come up to London for rehearsals. 1924-05-31
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Letter from the Kurhaus Hoven - a sanatorium/ convalescence home. 1935-08
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Letter from Freiburg 1935-07-23
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edward Knoblock Letter from Konstanz/Bodensee. 1935-08-09
ALS Sir Charles Cochran to Edwards Knoblock Letter from Freiburg. 1935-08
Box Folder
1 11 Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1928-1933
ALS Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1928-03-29
ALS Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1929-04-10
ALS Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1931-05-22
ALS Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1933-09-21
ALS Noel Coward to Edward Knoblock 1933-09-29
Box Folder
1 12 Edith Craig to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Edith Craig to Edward Knoblock Discussing a children's performance of The Old Woman I'm the Shoe.
Box Folder
1 13 Clemence Dane to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Clemence Dane to Edward Knoblock Thanking him for a gift and hoping they can meet soon.
Box Folder
1 14 Ruth D. to Edward Knoblock
ALS Ruth D(raper) ? to Edward Knoblock
Box Folder
1 15 Eddy Dennis to Edward Knoblock 1920-12-28
TLS Eddy ? Dennis to Edward Knoblock Everything is much the same in London; the usual parties, the usual gang. I don't go to any of them. 1920-12-28
Box Folder
1 16 Lynn Fontanne to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Lynn Fontanne to Edward Knoblock
Box Folder
1 17 St. John Simms to Edward Knoblock 1928-06-25
TLS St John Simms to Edward Knoblock Trying to arrange a time to meet. 1928-06-25
Box Folder
1 18 John Gielgud to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS ? (John Geilgud) to Edward Knoblock
Box Folder
1 19 Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock 1920-1925, Undated
Undated, ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock
ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock 1920-11-02
ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock 1922-07-12
ALS Helen Granville Barker to Edward Knoblock 1925-02-01
Box Folder
1 20 Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock 1919, Undated
Undated, C Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock
Undated, C Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock
ALS Yvette Guilbert to Edward Knoblock 1919-05-19
Box Folder
1 21 Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock 1912-1920, Undated
Undated, ALS Sacha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, C Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock
ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock 1912-08-11
ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock 1912-12-12
C Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock 1912-10-12
ALS Sasha Guitry to Edward Knoblock 1920-06-14
Box Folder
1 22 Sir Charles Hawtrey to Edward Knoblock 1919, Undated
ALS Sir Charles Hawtrey to Edward Knoblock
TLS Sir Charles Hawtrey to Edward Knoblock 1919-12-22
Box Folder
1 23 Anita Loos to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Anita Loos to Edward Knoblock
Box Folder
1 24 E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock 1919-1934, Undated
ALS E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock
ALS E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock 1919-11-06
ALS E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock 1934-06-03
ALS E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock 1934-07-16
ALS E.V. Lucas to Edward Knoblock 1934-06-18
Box Folder
1 25 Sir Edward Lutyens to Edward Knoblock 1928-03-15
ALS Sir Edward Lutyens to Edward Knoblock 1928-03-15
Box Folder
1 26 Ramsey MacDonald to Edward Knoblock 1935-11-18
TLS Ramsey MacDonald to Edward Knoblock 1935-11-18
Box Folder
1 27 Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock 1917-1919
ALS Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock 1917-10-15
ALS Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock 1917-11-10
ALS Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock 1918-10-15
TLS Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock 1919-02-07
TLS Compton MacKenzie to Edward Knoblock (Missing) 1935-11-18
Box Folder
1 28 Eddie Marsh to Edward Knoblock 1922-1931, Undated
Undated, ALS Eddie Marsh to Edward Knoblock
ALS Eddie Marsh to Edward Knoblock 1922-11-29
ALS Eddie Marsh to Edward Knoblock 1922-05-08
ALS Eddie Marsh to Edward Knoblock 1931-03-24
Box Folder
1 29 A.E.W. Mason to Edward Knoblock 1934, Undated
ALS A.E.W. Mason to Edward Knoblock
ALS A.E.W. Mason to Edward Knoblock 1934-08-13
ALS A.E.W. Mason to Edward Knoblock
ALS A.E.W. Mason to Edward Knoblock 1934-12-20
Box Folder
1 30 Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock 1904-1911, Undated
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock
ALS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock 1904-09-22
TLS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock 1908-12-29
TLS Cyril Maude to Edward Knoblock 1911-03-07
Box Folder
1 31 Mary Moore to Edward Knoblock 1910-01-01
ALS Mary Moore to Edward Knoblock An invitation to dinner and an apology for missing Knoblock earlier. 1 January 1910
Box Folder
1 32 Margot Oxford to Edward Knoblock 1930-07-11, Undated
Undated, ALS Margot Oxford to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Margot Oxford to Edward Knoblock
ALS Margot Oxford to Edward Knoblock Dinner invite. 1930-07-11
Box Folder
1 33 Arthur Pinero to Edward Knoblock 1916-1928
ALS Arthur Pinero to Edward Knoblock A note of thanks. 29 August 1916
ALS Arthur Pinero to Edward Knoblock 1920-10-23
ACS Arthur Pinero to Edward Knoblock 1921-02-20
ALS Arthur Pinero to Edward Knoblock 1928-05-28
Box Folder
1 34 J.B. Priestley to Edward Knoblock 1932, Undated
TLS J.B. Priestley to Edward Knoblock
TLS J.B. Priestley to Edward Knoblock 1932-02-15
Box Folder
1 35 Edith Sitwell to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Edith Sitwell to Edward Knoblock Offering her opinions on Knoblock's novel The Ant Heap.
Box Folder
1 36 George Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 1930-08-10
ALS George Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 1930-08-10
Box Folder
1 37 Osbert Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 1934-1936
TLS Osbert Sitwell to Edward Knoblock Asking if he can convert a book into a play. 1934-10-06
ALS Osbert Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 5 January 1935
ALS Osbert Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 4 March 1936
Box Folder
1 38 Sacheverell Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 1930-08-14
ALS Sacheverell Sitwell to Edward Knoblock 1930-08-14
Box Folder
1 39 Elanor Smith to Edward Knoblock
Undated, ALS Eleanor Smith to Edward Knoblock
Box Folder
1 40 Herbert Tree to Edward Knoblock 1914, Undated
? ALS Herbert Tree to Edward Knoblock
ALS Herbert Tree to Edward Knoblock
TLS Herbert Tree to Edward Knoblock Also contains an incomplete letter in the hand of Tree, but not listed as a separate item. 1914-02-17
Box Folder
1 41 Lewis Waller to Edward Knoblock 1912-07-08-1912-07-12
TLS Lewis Waller to Edward Knoblock 1912-07-08
ALS Lewis Waller to Edward Knoblock 1912-07-12
Box Folder
1 42 Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1918-1925, Undated
? ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1918-06-02
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1919-10-06
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1925-07-27
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1925-09-25
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1919-05-14
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1925-03-14
ALS Hugh Walpole to Edward Knoblock 1923-03-11
Box Folder
1 43 Lord Wyndham to Edward Knoblock 1911-1913, Undated
? C Lord Wyndham to Edward Knoblock
? ALS Lord Wyndham to Edward Knoblock
ALS Lord Wyndham to Edward Knoblock 1911-05-11
ALS Lord Wyndham to Edward Knoblock 1913-02-05
Box Folder
1 44 Francis Brett Young to Edward Knoblocks 1921-06-18
ALS Francis Brett Young to Edward Knoblock 1921-06-18
Box Folder
1 45 Sir William Nicholson to Edward Knoblock 1907-1936, Undated
General
11 sketches/pictorial items sent by Nicholson to Knoblock at various times
46 Edward Knoblock Correspondence List