Woolrich, Cornell, 1903-1968

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American author and student at Columbia University in 1925.

He frequently used a pen name, William Irish.

From the description of Manuscripts, 1958-1964. (Columbia University In the City of New York). WorldCat record id: 122377036

Cornell George Hopley-Woolrich was born on December 14, 1903 in New York City to Genero and Claire (neé Attalic) Hopley-Woolrich. In 1907 the family moved to Mexico and Genero and Claire divorced soon after. Cornell stayed with his father in Mexico for the duration of his childhood. As a teenager, he returned to the United States and lived with his mother, his aunt, and his grandfather on West 113th street. Cornell attended DeWitt Clinton High School and went on to attend Columbia University. He would have graduated in 1925, but dropped out his senior year.

Upon leaving school, Woolrich had a brief marriage to Gloria (Violet Virginia) Blackton. Woolrich befriended Blackton and her sister, Marion. After a few short dates, they married on December 6, 1930. A month later, Woolrich disappeared. While he was gone Gloria Blackton discovered his diary and realized that he had been having daily affairs with men throughout their marriage. She quickly divorced him. Woolrich moved back in with his mother and lived with her in the Hotel Marseilles until she died in 1957.

Although he was a guarded and mysterious individual, Woolrich was also a prolific author writing crime and suspense novels and short stories. Many of his works were adapted into films, radio and television plays. He is perhaps most known for his 1942 short story "It Had to be Murder" which was adapted into the Hitchcock directed classic, Rear Window. Woolrich also wrote under the pen name of William Irish.

He continued to write his whole life, however, he became even more of a recluse after his mother died. Woolrich stayed in his hotel room until he died in 1968. There is very little information about his personal life and the information that exists may or may not be true. Woolrich wrote an autobiography (unpublished), yet he sensationalized much of it and in some cases fabricated complete parts of it.

From the guide to the Cornell Woolrich Papers, 1958-1964, (Columbia University Rare Book and Manuscript Library, )

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Bleckner, Jeff, 1943-.... Fenêtre sur cour / Jeff Bleckner, réal. ; Cornell Woolrich, aut. adapté ; Eric Overmyer, Larry Gross, scénario ; David Shire, comp. ; Christopher Reeve, Daryl Hannah, Robert Forster, act. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
creatorOf Cristofer, Michael, 1945-.... Péché originel [Multimédia multisupport] / Michael Cristofer, réal., adapt. ; Cornell Woolrich, aut. adapté ; Terence Blanchard, comp. ; Antonio Banderas, Angelina Jolie, Thomas Jane... [et al.], act. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
referencedIn White mss., 1932-1969 Lilly Library (Indiana University, Bloomington)
creatorOf Cristofer, Michael, 1945-.... Péché originel [Multimédia multisupport] / Michael Cristofer, réal., adapt. ; Cornell Woolrich, aut. adapté ; Terence Blanchard, comp. ; Antonio Banderas, Angelina Jolie, Thomas Jane... [et al.], act. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
referencedIn Dannay, Frederic, 1905-1982. Papers, ca.1920-1982. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Woolrich, Cornell, 1903-1968. Manuscripts, 1958-1964. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Hayes, John Michael, 1919-2008. "Rear window" / screenplay by John Michael Hayes. Howard University
referencedIn Frederic Dannay Papers, ca.1920-1982. Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library,
creatorOf Cristofer, Michael. Dancing in the dark : [screenplay] / by Michael Cristofer ; based on the novel Waltz Into Darkness by Cornell Woolrich. Ohio University, Alden Library
creatorOf Truffaut, François, 1932-1984. La mariée était en noir / François Truffaut, réal., adapt., dial. ; William Irish, aut. adapté ; Jean-Louis Richard, adapt., dial. ; Bernard Herrmann, comp. ; Jeanne Moreau, Michel Bouquet, Jean-Claude Brialy... [et al.], act. Bibliothèque nationale de France, BnF
creatorOf William A. Bradley Literary Agency, 1923-1982. William A. Bradley Literary Agency Records 1909-1982. Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
creatorOf Cornell Woolrich Papers, 1958-1964 Columbia University. Rare Book and Manuscript Library,
referencedIn Donald and Katharine Foley Collection of Penguin Books, post 1965 Bancroft Library
creatorOf Carr, Richard. Alfred Hitchcock presents. Prod. 1509, "The big switch" / teleplay by Richard Carr ; story by Cornell Woolrich. University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign
referencedIn Donald and Katharine Foley Collection of Penguin Books, 1935-1965 Bancroft Library
referencedIn Dannay, Frederic, 1905-1982. Papers, ca.1920-1982. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Woolrich, Cornell, 1903-1968. Correspondence file, 1927-1928, from Boni & Liveright. University of Pennsylvania Libraries, Van Pelt Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Boucher, Anthony, 1911-1968 person
associatedWith Cristofer, Michael. person
associatedWith Dannay, Frederic, 1905-1982. person
associatedWith Foley, Donald L. person
associatedWith Foley, Katharine person
associatedWith Foley, Katharine person
associatedWith Hayes, John Michael, 1919-2008. person
associatedWith Irish, William, 1903-1968 person
associatedWith William A. Bradley Literary Agency, 1923-1982. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Subject
Detective and mystery stories
Crime writing
Crime--Fiction
Short stories
Authors, American
Gay authors
Recluses and authors
Occupation
Authors
Function

Person

Birth 1903-12-04

Death 1968-09-25

Male

Americans

English,

German

Information

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