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Borowitz Collection

Manuscripts, Ephemera, Archives, and Artifacts

The Borowitz Collection includes a number of archives, manuscripts, ephemera, and artifacts collections dealing with true crime, crime in literature, and crime themes. These items are often closely related to subject areas represented in the book collections. Below are links to finding aids for non-book holdings in the Borowitz Collection. New materials are added on a continual basis.

Manuscripts

This collection includes a variety of manuscript materials relating to true crime and to crime, detective, and mystery writing.

 

This collection includes various correspondence and papers both written and received by Charles George Hodgson who served as Superintendant of the London City Police Force. The collection includes both personal letters and several dealing with professional matters and police business. Letters pertaining to the forgery through photography case of Pietro Rinaldi v. the Queen are also present.

 

The collection includes three letters from Joseph Bell to his longtime friend, the Rev. Hugh Black. The collection also includes correspondence between Black's son, Robert K. Black, and Vincent Starrett. Robert K. Black relates anecdotes that his father had told about Joseph Bell and describes (and transcribes) five Bell letters that his elderly father had found among his papers.

 

The collection includes letters to Vincent Starrett discussing Freeman's work, publications, and his hope to become better known in America. There is also a letter to P.M. Stone, describing his writing, and a letter from Vincent Starrett to Dave Borowitz presenting Freeman's autograph letters.

 

Ephemera

Pamphlets (usually 32 pages or fewer and bound in paper wrappers) about murders, executions, scandals, outlaws, etc. The majority of the pamphlets were published in the 19th century.

 

Crime pamphlets from Great Britain, mostly 18th-19th century publications.

 

Contains crime-themed board games.

 

A small collection of book dealer catalogs and trade publications featuring crime literature and related materials.

 

This collection consists of film stills (photographs) and lobby card posters from crime-related movies.

 

This collection consists of graphic materials related to true crime and crime themes in literature and the arts. Included are posters, prints, engravings, drawings, cartoons, and miscellaneous printed items.

 

This collection consists of playbills from crime-related plays, musicals, operas, etc., fact-based or otherwise.

 

This collection contains miscellaneous postcards related to crime.

 

In the early nineteenth century, much of the news of England's murders and executions was brought to the masses through penny and half-penny broadsides. The execution broadsides, which comprise most of this collection, usually describe the crime, trial, and hanging, and often provide verses emphasizing the sorrow and remorse of the convicted killer.

 

This collection contains criminal broadsides of the United States dating from the 19th- and 20th-centuries.

 

This collection contains ephemeral material related to Jack the Ripper and other "Ripper"-style murderers. Included are films, manuscripts, artifacts, penny dreadfuls (facsimiles), and other ephemeral materials.

 

A collection of press photographs related to the Lindbergh Case.

 

A collection of ephemera, including newspaper clippings, press photos, and other material related to the Lindbergh kidnapping case.

 

This collection contains newspaper articles and issue relating to various murder cases. Most of the articles are photocopies and are contemporaneous to the time of murders and trials.

 

This collection consists of postcards of prisons from the United States and a handful of other countries.

 

This collection contains a variety of ephemeral items related to the Sherlock Holmes stories and character created by Arthur Conan Doyle. Included are cigarette cards, postcards, greeting cards, and other collectibles.

 

This collection contains 175 English street ballads, printed on portions of broadside sheets, dating from around 1850-1870. The ballads centered on popular subject matter such as love, sex, marriage, politics, religion, fantastic tales, humorous anecdotes, and social reform.

 

Archives

The Albert Borowitz papers (1944-2010) include correspondence, manuscripts, research, newspaper clippings and reviews, much of it relating to the true-crime books and articles written by Albert Borowitz from the late 1970s through the present.

 

This collection contains over 500 photographs related to various criminal cases. Most are 20th-century press photos, but some 19th-century examples are also included.

 

This collection contains subject files on various prominent murder cases and other crimes. Files, most of which date from the 1990s, contain articles, clippings, essays, and other secondary sources.

 

This collection of nearly 7000 pieces of sheet music contains a wide variety of music from the mid-19th century to contemporary music of the mid-1980s. Some notable large holdings include composers Irving Berlin, George M. Cohan, Victor Herbert, Jerome Kern, Cole Porter, Rodgers and Hammerstein, Harry Warren and performers and productions such as Al Jolson and the Ziegfeld Follies.

 

This collection, dating from 1935-2000, consists of scripts based on factual criminal events, as well as crime-themed drama.

 

A small collection of selected films related to materials in the Borowitz Crime Collection.

 

A small collection of LP records, with some connection to true crime or crime themes.

 

This collection includes popular sheet music related to true crime incidents and crime-related themes.

 

A small collection of detective and true crime magazines, most of which date from 1939-1955. Included are many issues of Official Detective Stories and True Detective.

 

This collection contains articles, essays, and other publications written by Helen Osterman Borowitz.

 

This collection, dating from 1898-2001, consists of plays in the genre of mystery thrillers.

 

Artifacts

A collection of artifacts (sculptures, objects, memorabilia, and textiles) related to true crime and its impact on the arts and literature. Many of the artifacts in this collection are related to cases covered in the Borowitz book and archival collections.