Crosby, Caresse, 1891-1970

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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

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 1807-1882. Autograph letter signed : Cambridge, Mass., to [Alexander Cuningham Robertson], 1854 May 4. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Brown, Adele Smith, 1910-. Oral history interview with Adele S. Brown and William H. Calfee, 1995 Jan. 11. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Klausner, Bertha, 1901-1998. Papers, 1897-1995. University of Wyoming, American Heritage Center
creatorOf Crews, Judson. Papers, 1935-1981 (bulk 1940-1966). Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
referencedIn Peter Neagoe Papers, 1928-1967 Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries
referencedIn Harry Crosby Papers, Crosby (Harry) papers, ca. 1919-1955 John Hay Library, Special Collections
referencedIn New Directions Publishing Corp. records, ca. 1933-1997. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Hiler, Hilaire, 1898-1966. Hilaire Hiler papers, 1925-1966. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Hemingway, Ernest, 1899-1961. Charles D. Field collection of Ernest Hemingway materials. Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Becker, Edwin J. Edwin J. Becker papers, 1944-1954. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
referencedIn The Nation, records, 1879-1974 (inclusive), 1920-1955 (bulk). Houghton Library.
creatorOf Crosby, Caresse Jacob, 1892-. Letter, 1936, July 23, Paris, to "Delicieuse et chere amie" [probably Caresse Crosby?]. Brown University, John Hay Library
creatorOf Porter, Edwin David, 1912-. Edwin David Porter papers, 1929-1969. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Crosby, Harry, 1898-1929. Papers, [ca. 1919-1955]. Brown University, John Hay Library
creatorOf Crosby, Caresse, 1892-1970. Caresse Crosby papers relating to the World Constitutional Convention and the World Man Center, 1964-1967. Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Harry Crosby Papers, Crosby (Harry) papers, ca. 1919-1955 John Hay Library, Special Collections
creatorOf Hemingway, Ernest, 1899-1961. Papers: 1873-1993 (inclusive), 1899-1961 (bulk). John F Kennedy Presidential Library
creatorOf Crosby, Caresse, 1892-. PORTFOLIO magazine inserts, 1946-1948. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Boyle, Kay, 1902-1992. Kay Boyle photograph collection, 1904-1980. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
referencedIn Crosby, Harry, 1898-1929. [Letters from Harry Crosby to his mother] / Harry Crosby. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
creatorOf Porter, David, 1912-. Edwin David Porter papers, 1929-1969. Smithsonian Archives of American Art
referencedIn Anaïs Nin collection of papers, 1932-1975 The New York Public Library. Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature.
referencedIn Ezra Pound papers : addition, 1862-1983, 1960-1971 Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Gore Vidal papers, 1875-2004 (inclusive), 1936-2000 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn Houghton Mifflin Company contracts, 1831-1979 (inclusive) 1880-1940 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn R. Buckminster Fuller papers, ca. 1920-1983 Stanford University. Libraries. Dept. of Special Collections and University Archives.
creatorOf Crosby, Caresse, 1892-1970. Caresse Crosby papers, 1912-1970. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
referencedIn Papers, 1929-1976 Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute
referencedIn Records, 1947-1976 The New York Public Library. Henry W. and Albert A. Berg Collection of English and American Literature.
creatorOf Crosby, Caresse, 1892-1970. Caresse Crosby collection, 1945-1969. Emory University Library, Special Collect Department
referencedIn Bertha Klausner Papers, 1897-1995 University of Wyoming. American Heritage Center.
referencedIn Judson Crews Papers TXRC94-A16., 1935-1981, (bulk 1940-1966) Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
creatorOf James Joyce Society (New York, N.Y.). Records, 1947-1976. New York Public Library System, NYPL
referencedIn Houghton Mifflin Company correspondence and records, 1832-1944. Houghton Library.
referencedIn Joyce, James, 1882-1941. Papers of James Joyce in the Charles E. Feinberg collection, 1904-1937. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
creatorOf Browning, Robert, 1812-1889. Autograph letter signed : New Cross, to Miss Eliza Flower, undated [ca. 1842?]. Pierpont Morgan Library.
referencedIn Lucien Goldschmidt, Inc. Records, 1930-1991 (bulk 1937-1986). Grolier Club
referencedIn Pound, Ezra, 1885-1972. Ezra Pound collection. [1908-1961]. University of Victoria Libraries, UVic
referencedIn Ginsberg, Allen, 1926-1997. Allen Ginsberg papers, 1944-1991. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Porter, Cole, 1891-1964. Typed letter signed, 1953 Sept. 1. Stanford University. Department of Special Collections and University Archives
referencedIn Lawrence, D. H. (David Herbert), 1885-1930. [Letter] 1929 Sept. 28, Villa Bean Soleil, ..., France [to Harry F.] Marks / D.H. Lawrence. Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
referencedIn George Grosz papers, 1893-1981 (inclusive) 1919-1959 (bulk). Houghton Library.
referencedIn Pound, Ezra, 1885-1972. Ezra Pound papers : addition, 1862-1983 (bulk 1960-1971). Yale University, Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Pereira, I. Rice (Irene Rice), 1902-1971. Papers, 1929-1976 (inclusive). Harvard University, Schlesinger Library
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Caresse Crosby photograph collection, 1890-1969 Southern Illinois University, Morris Library
Relation Name
correspondedWith Becker, Edwin J. person
founderOf Black Sun Press. corporateBody
associatedWith Boyle, Kay, 1902-1992. person
hasFamilyRelationTo Bradford, William, 1590-1657 person
associatedWith Brown, Adele Smith, 1910- person
associatedWith Browning, Robert, 1812-1889. person
associatedWith Cartier-Bresson, Henri, 1908-2004 person
associatedWith Crane, Hart, 1899-1932. person
associatedWith Crews, Judson person
associatedWith Crews, Judson. person
spouseOf Crosby, Harry, 1898-1929. person
associatedWith Fuller, R. Buckminster (Richard Buckminster), 1895-1983 person
associatedWith Fuller, R. Buckminster (Richard Buckminster), 1895-1983. person
hasFamilyRelationTo Fulton, Robert, 1765-1815 person
associatedWith Ginsberg, Allen, 1926-1997. person
correspondedWith Grosz, George, 1893-1959 person
correspondedWith Grosz, George, 1893-1959 person
associatedWith Hemingway, Ernest, 1899-1961. person
associatedWith Hiler, Hilaire, 1898-1966. person
associatedWith Houghton Mifflin Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Irene Rice Pereira, 1902-1971 person
associatedWith James Joyce Society (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
correspondedWith Joyce, James, 1882-1941. person
associatedWith Klausner, Bertha, 1901-1998 person
associatedWith Klausner, Bertha, 1901-1998. person
associatedWith Lawrence, D. H. (David Herbert), 1885-1930. person
associatedWith Lee, Canada person
associatedWith Longfellow, Henry Wadsworth, 1807-1882. person
correspondedWith Lucien Goldschmidt, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Makarios III, Archbishop of Cyprus, 1913-1977. person
associatedWith Miller, Henry, 1891-1980. person
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Miss Chapin's School (New York, N.Y.) corporateBody
associatedWith Moore, Harry Thornton. person
correspondedWith Nation (New York, N.Y. : 1865). corporateBody
associatedWith Neagoe, Peter. person
correspondedWith New Directions Publishing Corp. corporateBody
associatedWith Nin, Anaïs, 1903-1977 person
grandchildOf Peabody, Endicott, 1857-1944 person
spouseOf Peabody, Richard R. (Richard Rogers), 1892- person
associatedWith Pereira, I. Rice (Irene Rice), 1902-1971. person
associatedWith Porter, Cole, 1891-1964. person
associatedWith Porter, David, 1912- person
associatedWith Porter, Edwin David, 1912- person
associatedWith Pound, Ezra, 1885-1972 person
associatedWith Pound, Ezra, 1885-1972. person
alumnusOrAlumnaOf Rosemary Hall (Greenwich, Conn.) corporateBody
memberOf Van Rensselaer family. family
hasFamilyRelationTo Van Rensselaer, Robert, 1740-1802. person
associatedWith Vidal, Gore, 1925- person
associatedWith World Academy of Art and Science. corporateBody
associatedWith World Constitutional Convention Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith World Man Center, Inc. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
New Rochelle NY US
Rome 07 IT
Subject
Small presses
Peace--Citizen participation
Women publishers
Women periodical editors
Peace
Occupation
Writer
Activist
Publisher
Function

Person

Birth 1891-04-20

Death 1970-01-26

Americans

English

Information

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Ark ID: w69h6b1n

SNAC ID: 84097307