Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)MS823
TitleBeatrice Warde Collection
Extent24 boxes
Date1860s-late 20th cent
DescriptionPersonal, family and professional papers of Beatrice Warde, principally 1920s-1960s,and including extensive correspondence with her mother, May Lamberton Becker; other personal and professional correspondence including letters from her husband, Frederic Warde and from Professor Sir Cyril Burt; a draft of her memoirs and copies and drafts of her writings and publications; papers of and relating to 'Books Across the Sea' founded by Warde and Becker in 1941; papers of the English Speaking Union which adopted 'Books Across the Sea' in 1947; publications of the political group, Americans in British Outpost of the Committee to Defend America by Aiding the Allies, 'News from the Outpost', later 'Outpost' with which Books Across the Sea was associated. This collection of papers relate to Beatrice Warde's wide ranging activities and interests in publishing, printing, journalism, literature and the furtherance of Anglo-American relations

The collection includes papers of the Lamberton family of New York, 1860s-1890s, including letters of May Lamberton Becker's parents, Ellis Lamberton and Emma Thurston and family photographs and memorabilia; other personal and professional papers of May Lamberton Becker including material relating to 'Books Across the Sea' which she co-founded with her daughter, to her work as an author and to the opening of the May Lamberton Becker Reading Room at the National Book League by T. S. Eliot as Vice-President of the League in 1960; papers relating to the English typographer, Stanley Morison (1889-1967); and papers of Alicia Street, fellow American and editor of 'The American Outpost' and which include material relating to the British American Canadian Associates (founded in 1931 to further understanding and cooperation between the three countries, particularly through a two-way transatlantic lecture programme) of which she was Vice-President in the 1980s and early 1990s
Finding AidsA preliminary handlist is available as a pdf file. Click on the link in the document field below. More detailed descriptions on the contents of some of the boxes may be available. Please ask staff for further information.
Access StatusOpen, but subject to some access restrictions
Creator NameBeatrice Lamberton Warde, (1900-1969) nee Becker, typographer
Administrative HistoryBeatrice Warde was born in New York City. She was the daughter of the celebrated childen's librarian and writer on children's literature, May Lamberton Becker. After graduating from Barnard College (the women's division of Columbia University), she was employed at the American Typefounders' Company Library in Jersey City becoming the acting head librarian under Henry Lewis Bullen. On 30 December 1922, she married the book designer and typographer, Frederic Warde (1894-1939), who was then the director of printing at Princeton University Press. Following a visit to the USA by Stanley Morison in 1924 and an offer of employment, Frederic resigned his position at Princeton to pursue his career in Europe In 1925 the Wardes arrived in England and Beatrice began writing scholarly articles on printing under the name of 'Paul Beaujon'. She was then recruited by the Monotype Corporation where she edited the Monotype Recorder and eventually became director of publicity. She also became a successful writer and lecturer; the educational aspect of typography became an important focus she and established connections with many printing schools and delivered a number of international lecture tours.: Her speech 'Printing should be invisible' presented to the British Typographers Guild in 1930 was republished several times. The Wardes separated in November 1926 and subsequently divorced.

In 1940, Beatrice Warde founded 'Books Across the Sea' in conjunction with her mother, May Lamberton Becker (1873-1958), author, journalist and editor in 1940. Following the cessation of import of printed books from America at the beginning of the war, Warde arranged with her mother, who was literary editor of the 'New York Herald Tribune' to receive copies of 70 new American publications and the parallel exchange of new British books lead to the formation of 'Books Across the Sea' resulting in a movement which promoted better cultural and literary understanding between the two countries. Societies were set up in London and Edinburgh in the UK and in New York and Boston in the US and by 1944, about 2,000 volumes had been received in London and 1,600 in New York .

May Lamberton Becker was the daughter of Ellis Lamberton (died 1886), and Mrs Ellis Tinkham Lamberton, described in her obituary as 'world traveller and educator', when she died at age 86.
Sources: obituaries and other papers in the collection
Custodial HistoryThe Lamberton family papers were passed to Beatrice Warde on her mother's death in 1958; Beatrice Warde's own papers were subsequently passed to Alicia Street, presumably on her death; the collection was donated by a descendant of Alicia Street to the University of Birmingham per Professor Dick Ellis, American and Canadian Studies, University of Birmingham.
AcquisitionPresented in December 2010
Archival NoteThe attached pdf of the box list was compiled by A. George, March 2015
Related MaterialCadbury Research Library also holds small group of papers relating to Papers Across the Sea collection (GB 0151 MS877); and Records of the British Association for American Studies (GB 0150 BAAS).
Associated MaterialsOther papers of Beatrice Warde in the UK are held by Cambridge University Library, Department of Manuscripts and University Archives MS. Add. 9817
Warde's correspondence with Sir Sydney Cockerell held at the British Library, Add MS 52758
St Bride Foundation hold papers relating to Beatrice Warde
Liverpool University also hold Beatrice Warde materials in their Papers of Sir Cyril Burt, D191


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