Collection ID: LMC 1860
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Collection context


Vonnegut, Kurt and Farber, Donald C.
The Vonnegut mss., 1941-2007, consists of the papers of novelist Kurt Vonnegut, 1922-2007.
49.5 Linear Feet (38 boxes, 1 oversize)
Materials are in English .
Preferred citation:

[Item], Vonnegut mss., Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana


Biographical / Historical:

Kurt Vonnegut, 1922-2007, was an American novelist. He was born in Indianapolis, Indiana on November 11, 1922. He attended Shortridge High School in Indianapolis, where he wrote for the Shortridge High School Echo, one of the few daily high school newspapers in the country. At the urging of his father, Vonnegut attended Cornell University to study chemistry and biology. While at Cornell, Vonnegut worked for the Cornell Daily Sun, even writing his own column. However, before he could complete his degree, he enlisted in the Army. While serving during World War II, Vonnegut survived the firebombing of Dresden as a prisoner of war, an experience that would later influence his novel Slaughterhouse Five (1969). Vonnegut had seven children in all, three from his first marriage to Jane Cox, his three nephews, and a daughter he adopted with his second wife, Jill Krementz. Vonnegut lived in New York with Jill until his death on April 11, 2007.

His first published work was a piece of short fiction "Report on the Barnhouse Effect" which appeared in Collier's, Feb. 1950. Over the years his short stories and articles have appeared in many magazines, but he is best known for his novels, the first of which, Player Piano, was published in 1952. Vonnegut has also written for both the stage and screen, and many of his works have been adapted to film, television and theater.

Scope and Content:

Much of the general correspondence is from colleagues, friends and fans. Along with major works the Writings section contains screenplays, teleplays, play scripts and many short stories and articles. The Farber files are those of Vonnegut's agent and lawyer Donald C. Farber. They consist of contracts, correspondence and notes concerning translation, performance, and publication rights and permissions. The Publishing Records include royalty reports, contracts and items related to the publication of his works. Miscellaneous items include: awards and trophies, artwork, family related materials, school papers, photographs, and clippings. The additions are materials received since 2002.

Acquisition information:
Acquired: 1997, 2002-2007, 2010

The collection is organized into the following series: I. General correspondence; II. Writings; III. Farber files; IV. Publishing records; V. Miscellaneous; VI. Additions; VII. Additions II.



This collection is open for research.


Prior arrangements are not necessary before coming to the Library. However, patrons from out of town are encouraged to communicate with the Library in advance of their visits to ascertain availability of materials.

Photocopying permitted only with permission of the curator.


[Item], Vonnegut mss., Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana

Indiana University Bloomington
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