RepositorySpecial Collections Archives (GB 0029)
Ref NoEUL MS 73
Datec 1928-1970s
Extent17 boxes
TitleMargaret Penn literary and personal papers including correspondence with Oliver Stonor
DescriptionThe collection includes the following literary works:
Three typescripts for the books 'Manchester Fourteen Miles', 'The Foolish Virgin', and 'The Young Mrs Burton' and the marked-up proof of 'Manchester Fourteen Miles'.
A notebook containing the manuscript for 'The Foolish Virgin'
A notebook containing an unidentified manuscript and a part manuscript.
Several other notebooks a few of which contain jottings, possibly relating to Penn's novels.
In addition to Penn's literary works the archive contains large runs of correspondence with key figures in Penn's life, including a very long exchange of several hundred letters with Oliver Stonor.
There are also letters and picture postcards to Margaret Penn from a variety of senders and a small collection of cards from her to Oliver Stonor and other recipients.
The papers include three boxes of personal effects, including pocket diaries, passport, driving licence, deeds to properties and financial papers.
Admin HistoryMargaret Hilda Penn, nee Kenworthy (1896-1982), autobiographical novelist, was born in Glazebrook, Lancashire, in May 1896, and lived most of her adult life in Devon, predominantly at Bixley Haven, Woodbury. She wrote three autobiographical novels, 'Manchester Fourteen Miles' (Cambridge University Press, 1947), 'The Foolish Virgin' (Cape, 1951) and 'Young Mrs Burton' (Cape, 1954), based on her alter ego Hilda Winstanley, who grew up in the fictional village of 'Moss Ferry', in reality Hollins Green, a village fourteen miles from Manchester. All three books were reprinted three times by Cambridge University Press in the period 1979-1982. In the introduction to the first reprint of 'Manchester Fourteen Miles', Professor John Burnett commented that when this book was first published 'it was one of a very small number of autobiographies depicting working-class life from first-hand experience, not yet part of the 'genre' which such writings have since become'.
Access StatusOpen
Related MaterialSee also the Ernest Martin papers at EUL MS 309/1/2/4 for a recorded interview with Margaret Penn made in 1976 (originally on an audio cassette but transferred to CD-R in 2007).
Access ConditionsFor the bulk of the collection the usual EUL arrangements apply. Access to some of the correspondence is currently restricted under the Data Protection Act.
ArrangementMuch of the correspondence was sorted into runs by Margaret Penn herself, which order has been maintained. The literary typescripts, picture postcards and some letters to Penn were organised by the depositor.
Creator_NamePenn; Margaret Hilda (1896-1982); nee Kenworthy; autobiographical novelist
Mgt_GroupLiterary papers
DS/UK/74Penn; Margaret Hilda (1896-1982); novelist1896-1982
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