• Title
    Katharine Longley papers
  • Held at
  • Reference
  • Date
  • Creator
    Longley, Katharine (1920-2009) Dickens scholarMore Info on Creator
  • Scope and Content
    The collection represents material collected and produced by Katharine Longley whilst she researched the lives of Charles Dickens and Ellen Ternan. Also included in the collection are typescripts of articles and longer works written by Miss Longley. The largest of these is 'A Pardoner's Tale: Charles Dickens and the Ternan Family' which Katharine Longley worked on and added to over a period of several years. Following a meeting and growing friendship with Helen Wickham, Katharine Longley began to research the lives of Ternan and Dickens and the nature of their relationship. She concluded that Charles Dickens and Ellen Ternan had not been lovers and this concern is often reflected in the material she gathered and created whilst undertaking her research. She did a large amount of consulting of primary sources, including much genealogical and family history research into the Dickens and Ternan families and this too is reflected in the collection. Her evidence and arguments to support the belief that the relationship between Charles Dickens and Ellen Ternan was platonic find their fullest expression in 'A Pardoner's Tale' but they also underpin 'A Whispering Reed' and 'A Singular Light' Longley's works on Dickens, Ellen Ternan and how their relationship informed the writing of 'The Mystery of Edwin Drood'. A large part of the collection is made up of Katharine Longley's correspondence files. During her research she corresponded with various Dickens scholars and writers who were producing biographies of other studies of Dickens. As well as reflecting her own research this correspondence often discusses general issues of Dickens scholarship and debates. As well as this correspondence with those with an interest in Dickens, she also corresponded with individuals associated with both the Dickens and Ternan families. Also included in the collection is material gathered by Katharine Longley as part of her research including diaries of Gladys Wharton Robinson, Ellen Ternan's daughter, and copies of manuscript material, often from local record offices. Photocopies of articles from newspapers and periodicals reflecting Katharine Longley's research interest are also included in the collection as well as a number of books on Dickens and Ellen Ternan which Katharine Longley has annotated.
  • Conditions of access
    Open for research although 24 hours advance notice should be given.
  • Extent
    19 boxes
  • Language
  • System of Arrangement
    This material has been arranged in such a way as to reflect the system of arrangement and organisation which Katharine Longley herself imposed upon the material. It is organised into the following series: (1) Numbered Research Notebooks; (2) Research Notebooks Identified by Letter; (3) Correspondence Files; (4) Material Associated with the Wickham and Ternan families gathered by Katharine Longley; (5) Photocopies of Manuscript Material; (6) Photocopies from Periodicals; (7) Copy of 'The Charles Dickens Birthday Book'; (8) Material on 'The Mystery of Edwin Drood'; (9) 'A Singular Light' typescript; (10) 'A Pardoner's Tale' typescript; (11) 'Charles Dickens: Towards the Truth' typescripts; (12) Typescript Essays; (13) Printed Books; (14) Photographs and Negatives.
  • Finding aids
    Catalogued online (click on the "contains" icon below). A pdf version of the hard-copy is also attached to this description.
  • Related files
  • Related
    See also the Ternan family papers (ref: MS915) and the Michael Slater papers (MS1211).
  • Level of description
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