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A.C. Edwards' Irish literary correspondence

Call Number: MS 379


This collection includes correspondence between University of Kansas English professor A. Carroll Edwards and Irish playwright Sean O'Casey (1880-1964), theatre director Gabriel Fallon (1898-1980), and copies of correspondence between O'Casey and author Lady Augusta Gregory (1852-1932), along with a small number of news clippings and other materials.


  • Creation: 1928-1936, 1959-1972


Conditions Governing Access

No access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Spencer Library staff may determine use restrictions dependent on the physical condition of manuscript materials.

Biography of A. C. Edwards (1909-2009)

Aubrey Carroll Edwards was born in Oklahoma in 1909 and grew up in southern Colorado, near Trinidad. He earned his A.B. degree from Southwestern College in Winfield, KS in 1933 and his A.M. (1938) and Ph.D (1939) from the University of Iowa. During the Great Depression he spent some time as a social worker, and during World War II he served in the U.S. Army Air Corps, teaching bombing and navigation at San Angelo Air Force Base in Texas.

Edwards joined the University of Kansas English faculty in 1947 as an associate professor, following his department head from Oklahoma State University - Stillwater. He was promoted to full professor in 1959 and received emeritus status in 1981.

Edwards' main teaching interests were in Geoffrey Chaucer and William Shakespeare, but in 1958 he started the scholarly journal Modern Drama. The following year he and his wife traveled through the United Kingdom and continental Europe, and while in England Edwards met with the Irish playwright Sean O'Casey (1880-1964). This meeting allowed him to establish a relationship with other members of the Irish theatre scene who could contribute to the journal.

Edwards met his future wife Virgie while at the University of Iowa, where they were both studying Old English. A. Carroll Edwards passed away just before his centennial birthday in 2009.

[Information retrieved from Endacott Society interview transcript with Calder Pickett and Meserve, Walter J., "In Memoriam," in Modern Drama vol. 52 no. 3 (Fall 2009): 259-261.]


.25 Linear Feet (1 document case + 1 oversize folder)

Language of Materials


Scope and Contents

The bulk of the collection concerns Edwards' efforts to publish Irish author Lady Augusta Gregory's letters to Sean O'Casey, which occurred in the spring 1965 issue of Modern Drama. Other topics in the correspondence between Sean O'Casey and Edwards and between Gabriel Fallon and Edwards include English and Irish theatre and drama, the journal Modern Drama and Edwards' publishing efforts, Yeats and other Irish literary figures associated with the Abbey Theatre, Edwards' classes and students, critiques and reception of O'Casey's work, and other leads for articles and research on Irish dramatists.

The collection also includes photocopies of the letters that Edwards transcribed from Lady Gregory to O'Casey. Some letters appear to have two copies; some letters are incomplete (and were so at the time of transcription in 1964). There are also copies of some related correspondence, including a letter from O'Casey to Katharine Gregory after Lady Gregory's death.

Physical Location

MS 379

Physical Location

MS Qa48

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, A. Carroll Edwards, 1995.


Edwards, A.C. "The Lady Gregory Letters to Sean O'Casey." In Modern Drama vol. 8 no. 1 (Spring 1965): 95-111.
Guide to the Aubrey Carroll Edwards Collection
A.C. Edwards' Irish literary correspondence
Finding aid prepared by mwh. Finding aid encoded by mwh.
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.
Finding aid permalink
Preferred citation
A.C. Edwards' Irish literary correspondence, MS 379, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, University of Kansas

Repository Details

Part of the University of Kansas. Kenneth Spencer Research Library Repository

1450 Poplar Lane
Lawrence KS 66045-7616 United States