|Creator:||Gibbs, Philip, 1877-1962.|
|Title:||Philip Gibbs Letters|
|Quantity:||51 items (SC)|
|Abstract:||Papers of the British journalist, novelist, lecturer. Outgoing correspondence, mostly of a business nature.|
|Repository:||Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010
Philip Gibbs (1877-1962) was a British journalist, novelist, and lecturer.
Sir Philip Hamilton Gibbs was born in 1877 in London, England to Helen Hamilton and Henry Gibbs. He is best remembered for his work as a war correspondent during the First World War. At the outset of war, Gibbs travelled to France to report for the Daily Chronicle. Gibbs was chosen as one of the five accredited correspondents for Allied Forces during the war. As a result of his contributions, he was made a Knight of the Order of the British Empire in 1920. He died in March 1962.
|1900||The Street of Adventure|
|1914||Beauty and Nick, a Novel of the Stage and the Home--the Artistic Temperament in Fateful Action|
|1915||The Soul of the War|
|1920||Back to Life|
|Now It Can Be Told|
|Realities of War|
|1923||Adventures in Journalism|
|The Middle of the Road; a Novel|
|1930||Since Then; the Disturbing Story of the World at Peace|
|1937||Ordeal in England (England Speaks Again)|
|1938||Across the Frontiers|
|This Nettle, Danger|
|1941||Sons of the Others, a Novel|
The Philip Gibbs Letters are a collection of 51 outgoing items written between 1900 and 1928 by the British journalist, novelist and lecturer. With the exception of a group of twelve personal letters written in 1901 to Mrs. Suverkrop and a single item to Christie Murray (10 Nov 1925), most of the correspondence is of a business nature. The letters include suggestions and discussions about Gibbs's work with his literary agent Curtis Brown and his assistant, Miss Easterbrook. Included among the letters are arrangements to have Gibbs's manuscripts typed and distributed, discussions concerning financial and legal commitments, suggestions for serialization of Gibbs's novel, Back to Life, and placement of various of Gibbs's work in Harper's Magazine, Ladies' Home Journal, and McClure's Magazine. Also included in the collection are a series of four letters written between 1916 and 1928 to American lecture agent James B. Pond, who offered to represent Gibbs in arranging a lecture tour of the United States. Responding to one of these proposals, Gibbs writes (23 May 1928):
...nothing except extreme destitution would persuade me to give another lecture tour! I found it killing work and I am a rotten lecturer.
As a journalist who established his reputation during World War I, Gibbs was often approached concerning possible topics for books about war-time experiences. After considering the possibility of writing about the Scottish contribution to the war effort, Gibbs writes to Curtis Brown (21 May 1919):
The truth is, that apart altogether from time, when I sat down to write about the heroic deeds of the Scots I felt that in a psychological way I simply could not do it. The only thing I want to write now about the war is absolute realism, giving the plain unvarnished truth of its misery and abomination, as well as its heroism. A romantic narrative of the Scots in action, such as would be necessary for a school book, would not only be very false in its picture, but would, I know, damage my reputation in the larger sense. It would be nothing but a pot-boiler at its best, and I think the time has come when I ought to give up writing pot-boilers.
The collection contains one series, Correspondence, which is arranged alphabetically by recipient.
The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.
Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.
Preferred citation for this material is as follows:
Philip Gibbs Letters
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
Created by: KM
Date: Feb 1989
Revision history: 05 Nov 2008 - converted to EAD (LDC); 19 Oct 2018 - folders for 1919 combined (MRC)