Crosby, Caresse, 1891-1970Variant names
Caresse Crosby was born Mary Phelps Jacob on April 30, 1891 in New Rochelle, New York, daughter of a prominent New England family. After a brief marriage to Richard Rogers Peabody, she married Harry Crosby in 1922 and soon after moved to France. In April, 1927, they founded a publishing company soon to become The Black Sun Press. The publications included a Hindu Love Book, The Fall of the House of Usher, and letters by Harry's cousin, Henry James, to Walter Berry. Other contributors to the Black Sun Press included D.H. Lawrence, James Joyce, Kay Boyle, Hart Crane's, Ernest Hemingway, Hart Crane, Rene Crevel, T.S. Eliot, and Ezra Pound among others. Caresse wrote a book of poetry, Crosses of Gold, which they also published. In 1928, Harry met Josephine Noyes Rotch with whom he had an ongoing affair. On December 10, 1929, in an apparent suicide pact, Harry and Josephine were found dead in a hotel room. After Harry Crosby's suicide, Caresse kept the Black Sun Press going. She also established, with Jacques Porel, a side venture, Crosby Continental Editions, that published paperback books by Ernest Hemingway, William Faulkner and Dorothy Parker, among others. Ahead of her time, her paperback books did not sell well, and the press closed in 1933. The Black Sun Press, however, continued publishing into the 1950s. In 1936 Caresse and her new husband Selbert Saffold moved to Bowling Green, Virginia where she kept company with Salvador Dalí, Henry Miller and Anaïs Nin. By 1941, having divorced Saffold, Caresse moved to Washington D.C., where she opened the city's only modern art gallery. She also started Portfolio: An Intercontinental Quarterly, a magazine that sought to continue her work with young and avant-garde writers and artists. She published six editions before she ran out of funds and sponsors. This was her last major publishing effort. She became politically active and founded the organizations Women Against War and Citizens of the World, which embraced the concept of a "world community" which other activists like Buckminster Fuller also supported. In 1953, Caresse published her autobiography, The Passionate Years. She died in relative obscurity from complications from pneumonia in Rome on January 24, 1970, aged 78.
From the description of Caresse Crosby papers, 1912-1970. (Southern Illinois University). WorldCat record id: 276943580
Caresse Crosby (1892-1970) co-founded the Black Sun Press with her husband, Harry Crosby, in 1927 under the name Editions Narcisse. They primarily published books in English for the American expatriate literary circles in Paris, supporting some of the earliest works by authors such as James Joyce, Kay Boyle, and D. H. Lawrence. After Harry's death in 1929, Caresse continued to publish and support artists in America, France, Italy, and Greece and acted as publisher of the Black Sun Press until 1950. Among her many publishing ventures, one of her most significant was Portfolio: An Intercontinental Quarterly (1945-1947). Only six issues were published, but the literary journal featured important writers and artists of the period, such as Charles Bukowski, Henri Cartier-Bresson, Albert Camus, and Pablo Picasso. D.H. Lawrence scholar and professor of English at Southern Illinois University, Harry Thornton Moore was the assistant editor for volume one of Portfolio: An Intercontinental Quarterly. Crosby appointed Moore as the executor of the Crosby Library and assisted with Moore's biography on D. H. Lawrence. Crosby spent the last part of her life working as a peace activist and died at her home, a 15th century castle in Italy called the Castello de Rocca Siniblada.
From the description of Caresse Crosby collection, 1945-1969. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 706677798
Caresse Crosby (1892-1970), poet and publisher.
From the description of Caresse Crosby papers relating to the World Constitutional Convention and the World Man Center, 1964-1967. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 702193360
Editor, publisher of PORTFOLIO magazine; a post second World War publication covering contemporary art activities in major European cities. The format of PORTFOLIO was literally that; loose sheets of poetry, prints, and plans gathered in a folder.
From the description of PORTFOLIO magazine inserts, 1946-1948. (Unknown). WorldCat record id: 122565529
|Oral history interview with Adele S. Brown and William H. Calfee
|Archives of American Art
|Caresse Crosby photograph collection, 1890-1969
|Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
|Women periodical editors