Papers of Walter De La Mare (1873-1956)

  • This material is held at
  • Reference
      GB 237 Coll-193
  • Dates of Creation
  • Language of Material
  • Physical Description
      1 box containing 10 folders and case papers, 4 folders containing circa 111 pages, 2 separate letters.
  • Location
      MS 3081; Gen. 715/1; Gen. 1948/12/3-4

Scope and Content

The collection consists of letters and other papers at MS 3081 all collected into a box. The box contains a case of papers being author's proofs of Desert islands and Robinson Crusoe, as well as ten folders of letters both in manuscript and typescript form. In the collection there are also a couple of letters to W. Fraser Mitchell at Gen. 1948/12/3-4, and circa 111 letters to Miss J.G. Sime, 1940-1952, and to Dr. F. C. Nicholson, 1940-1956. The envelopes are included too.

Administrative / Biographical History

The poet, novelist, and anthologist Walter De La Mare was born in Charleton, Kent, on 25 April 1873. He was educated at St. Paul's Cathedral Choristers' School in London. From 1890 until 1908, De La Mare worked for the Anglo-American Oil Company in London. However, after the appearance in 1902 of his Songs of childhood, under the pseudonym of Walter Ramal, he spent more and more time writing and his first novel Henry Brocken was published in 1904. A large output of poems, stories, novels, books for children and anthologies continued throughout the rest of his life. His production includes Poems (1906), The return (1910), The listeners (1912), Peacock pie (1913), Memoirs of a midget (1921), Come hither (1923), Behold, this dreamer (1939), The Burning Glass (1945), The Traveller (1946), Inward Companion (1950), and O Lovely England (1953). He was made Companion of Honour in 1948, and received the Order of Merit in 1953. Walter De La Mare died in Twickenham on 22 June 1956. He was buried in St. Paul's Cathedral.

Access Information

Generally open for consultation to bona fide researchers, but please contact repository for details in advance.

Acquisition Information

Letters to Sime and Nicholson, Accession no. E63.21. Letters to W. Fraser Mitchell, Accession no. E73.52.


The biographical/administrative history was compiled using the following material: (1) Who was who 1951-1960. London: Adam and Charles Black, 1961. (2) The dictionary of national biography. The concise dictionary. Part 2. 1901-1970. Oxford: OUP, 1982.

Compiled by Graeme D Eddie, Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections Division.

Other Finding Aids

Important finding aids generally are: the alphabetical Index to Manuscripts held at Edinburgh University Library, Special Collections and Archives, consisting of typed slips in sheaf binders and to which additions were made until 1987; and the Index to Accessions Since 1987.

Related Material

The UK National Register of Archives (NRA), updated by the Historical Manuscripts Commission, notes other De La Mare papers in Scotland: letters to J.B. Chapman, 1924-1945, Aberdeen University, Special Libraries and Archives, NRA 22899 Chapman; letters to Marion Lochhead, 1937-1947, National Library of Scotland, Manuscripts Division, Ref. Acc 4220, NRA 29292 NLS misc., and letters to Alice V. Stuart, 1945-1956, as well as correspondence with John Dover Wilson, 1911-1959, Ref. MS 14315.