Scope and arrangement
The Jack Kerouac archive spans the years 1920 to 1977, with the bulk dated 1935 to 1969. The collection chiefly consists of holograph and typescript drafts of Kerouac's novels, stories, poetry, plays and screenplays, journals, diaries, notebooks, autobiographical and spiritual prose, fantasy horseracing, and fantasy baseball game. Other materials include Jack Kerouac's artwork, incoming and outgoing correspondence, photographs, personal and financial papers (including bank statements and canceled checks), publishing contracts, newspaper cuttings, maps, and realia.
The Jack Kerouac Papers are arranged in sixteen series:
Drafts of novels, The Town and the City,On The Road,notebooks, and letters 1938-1965, and undated, (bulk 1938-1965).
Jack Kerouac devised an alphanumeric organizational system for his literary papers. Papers were arranged by Jack Kerouac and placed in folders labeled A1 through D9. The original order of these papers has been maintained in Series I, recording Kerouac's folder order in the entry for each item. Following Series I the Archive is divided into a further fifteen series, including literary manuscripts, journals, diaries, incoming correspondence, personal papers, artwork, photographs, contracts, financial papers, maps, and realia.
Literary and personal papers 1930-1965, n.d. (bulk 1938-1952).
Consists of Kerouac's working drafts for his novels, notebooks, journals, notes, sketches, poetry, and some incoming correspondence.
This series, and its subseries, include drafts of novels, stories, poetry, plays, screenplays, notebooks, materials collected in an envelope labeled "1944 'Self-Ultimacy' Period," materials collected in a folder labeled "1949," essays, notes, and literary fragments, autobiographical prose, spiritual texts, and scrolls. Includes The Town and the City, andOn The Road,and notebooks. (bulk 1940-1969).
Personal (College Athletics and Football), & Horseracing (Real and Fantasy).
Fantasy Baseball and Fantasy Baseball Game.
Includes incoming and outgoing correspondence of Jack Kerouac, and the incoming and outgoing correspondence of Jack Kerouac's childhood friend Sebastian Sampas (in Subseries 7.3 and 7.4).
This series includes educational documents (including school reports and grade cards); biographical documents (including official documents such as Jack Kerouac's passport, birth certificates, marriage certificates and divorce papers); and other miscellaneous personal papers such as Jack Kerouac's address book.
This series includes Jack Kerouac's artwork and some artwork by Kerouac's contemporaries that Kerouac collected.
Includes press cuttings, tearsheets, photographs, notes and artwork by Kerouac's contemporaries.
Box 81: There are 53 photographs of Jack Kerouac (pictured alone), and 47 photographs of Jack Kerouac with members of his family and friends. There are also 131 photographs of Jack Kerouac's family members and various friends (in which Jack Kerouac does not appear), and 24 photographs of members of the Sampas family. There are also 13 photographs of Jack Kerouac's cats, and 5 photographs of domestic exteriors. Some photographs in this collection are annotated by Jack Kerouac. His annotations sometimes identify persons and places, and provide dates. Other annotations are provided by John Sampas. Total number of photographs: 273. [The photograph of Jack Kerouac in the Chinese restaurant, holding a teacup, was taken by Joel Cohen. This photograph was acquired separately, and was not previously part of Jack Kerouac's archive.
Jack Kerouac's publishing contracts, arranged alphabetically by title of work. Some contracts have Kerouac's holograph notes.
Boxes 83 and 84 contain Jack Kerouac's canceled checks, from 1959 to 1969. Many checks are counter-signed by Jack Kerouac's mother, Gabrielle Kerouac. Box 85 contains Jack Kerouac's bank statements.
Includes maps used by Jack Kerouac between 1953 and 1968.
Includes sheet music for "Kerouac," and newspaper cuttings relating to Kerouac's athletic career and reviews of Kerouac's work.
Includes personal items owned and used by Jack Kerouac, including his Buddhist prayer bells, harmonicas, pocket watch, wallets, spectacles, shoes and crutches.