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Charles Morgan letters to Mrs. Hotson


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

British writer Charles Langbridge Morgan wrote several plays, eleven novels, and numerous essays.

Charles Langbridge Morgan was born on January 22, 1894, in Bromley, Kent. He was a cadet in the Royal Navy and later attended naval colleges at Osborne and Dartmouth. From 1911-1913, he served in the Atlantic and China before resigning to pursue a literary career. However, at the outbreak of World War I Morgan volunteered for reenlistment in the Royal Navy, joining the Naval Brigade forces at Antwerp. In the fall of 1914, Morgan was taken prisoner in Holland, where during his internment Morgan began writing his first novel, The Gunroom (1919) in which he was critical of the British Navy. Though critical of the Royal Navy, Morgan again volunteered for service during World War II, and he served in the British Admiralty from 1939-1944.

After studying at Oxford, beginning in 1921, Morgan worked as a drama critic for The Times of London. In 1926 he became the paper’s principal drama critic, a post he held until 1939.

In the 1930s and 1940s, when Morgan’s success as a writer was at its peak, he won three important literary prizes for his novels: the Prix Fémina-Vie Heureuse (1929); the Hawthornden Prize (1932); and the James Tait Black Memorial Prize (1940).

Morgan was one of the few foreigners to become an Académicien in the Institut de France. He also received honorary doctorates from St. Andrews University (LL.D., 1947), Université de Caen (1948), and Université de Toulouse (1948). Morgan died in London, on February 6, 1958.

Morgan, Charles.Selected Letters. Ed. Eiluned Lewis. London: Macmillan, 1967. "Charles Morgan."Contemporary Authors Online(reproduced in Biography Resource Center). (accessed November 2009)

These four holograph letters were written by British author Charles Morgan to an American friend from Maine named Mrs. Hotson. Morgan wrote to thank Mrs. Hotson for parcels of food and necessities sent by her to assist the Morgans with shortages caused by World War II.

Writing in the first two years following World War II, Morgan expressed his gratitude, but also provided his opinions on economic circumstances in Great Britain. Morgan criticized Britain's acceptance of loans from the United States and lamented the limits on travel outside of Great Britain. Morgan also mentioned his son in the Grenadier Guards and provided glimpses of daily life in Britain just after the war.

The letters are arranged chronologically.

Box 59, F0850: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0099 manuscript boxes.

Gift of Mark Samuels Lasner, 2009.

Processed and encoded by Anita Wellner, November 2009. Further encoded by George Apodaca, October 2015.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2009 November 16
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

Autograph letter signed, 1945 December 31.
Box 59 Folder F0850
Scope and Contents

Extensive letter thanking Mrs Hotson for a recent parcel. Morgan commented on the economy in post-war Great Britain, opposed accepting American loans, lamented the difficulties in financing travel outside of the island, mentioned his son, who served as a Grenadier Guard, and expressed his concerns about Russia's aggressive movements.

Physical Description

1 item (6 p.)

Autograph letter signed, 1946 April 9.
Box 59 Folder F0850
Scope and Contents

Morgan again thanked Mrs. Hotson for a recent arrival and mentioned a future trip to teach in Switzerland.

Physical Description

1 item (2 p.)

Autograph letter signed, 1946 April 16.
Box 59 Folder F0850
Scope and Contents

In this letter Morgan not only thanked Mrs. Hotson for a package but also an invitation to visit Maine. Morgan also discussed the continued shortages, his reluctance to travel to the United States because of currency issues and tomorrow's departure for Switzerland.

Physical Description

1 item (3 p.)

Autograph letter signed, 1946 June 14.
Box 59 Folder F0850
Scope and Contents

Written on his return from Switzerland, Morgan celebrated another parcel and mentioned the recent Victory March in London.

Physical Description

1 item (2 p.)

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