Bradbury Chronicles Correspondence Database

The Center for Ray Bradbury Studies maintains photocopies of letters to and from Bradbury written between 1938 and the early years of the twenty-first century. The photocopy letter files are not available to researchers, but the date, archival location and correspondent records are in the process of being calendared and entered into the Bradbury Chronicles Correspondence Database. As it comes on-line, the Chronicles Database will represent the only consolidated listing (union catalog) of letters to and from Bradbury held in various institutional and private collections around the country. The listing is continually growing as new holdings are identified and calendared.

The BCCdb is designed to be a searchable web-mounted relational database. Beyond the basic calendar information (writer, recipient, date written), the data fields for each letter's record include content keywords and the location of the original document. The holding institutions are identified by the standard Library of Congress MARC code designators; for ease of reference, the institutions and their MARC codes are listed below. An updated hard copy of the database will be maintained on-site for use by visiting researchers. Letter contents will not be reproduced in this database; researchers seeking to study letter contents will need to contact the holding archive for information concerning permissions and access. All letters deemed personal, confidential or sensitive in nature will not be calendared in the database. Letters held in restricted collections will not be calendared unless permission has been granted by both the author (or executor) and the owner of the collection.

The off-line database prototype consists of calendar records for more than 180 letters between Mr. Bradbury and his editors at the Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction (the majority written between 1949 and 1967). Limited core fields (author-recipient-date-location) have been completed on another thousand letters, and these will be entered into the database as time permits. Once the prototype is fully searchable and data entry procedures perfected, the listings will be brought on-line. A target date has not been established for on-line status, but an interim non-searchable spreadsheet version will provide a partial calendar record while the main database records are converted into a searchable format. A sample interim spreadsheet, containing the first eight letters calendared in the F&SF prototype format, appears below. The holdings identified for this sample include The Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, Indiana (InUlilly), Syracuse University (NySyU), and Bradbury’s personal papers (designated CABradbury).

- JE

Writer

Recipient

Date

Location

Description

Keywords / Abstracts

Notes

Bradbury, Ray

Boucher, Anthony

1947.07.10

InUlilly

TLS

Thanks Boucher for his review of Dark Carnival. Hopes to meet him soon. References to Heinlein, Brackett.

 

Boucher, Anthony

Bradbury, Ray

1949.09.05

CABradbury

TLS

Considering reprint of "The Silent Towns" for second issue of F&SF. Suggests title change from earlier Charm printing.

 

Bradbury, Ray

Boucher, Anthony

1949.09.06

NySyU

TLS

Discusses "The Silent Towns," Charm, "Way in the Middle of the Air," "There Will Come Soft Rains," "And the Moon Be Still As Bright," The Martian Chronicles.

 

Bradbury, Ray

Boucher, Anthony

1949.09.09

NySyU

TLS

Discusses "Ylla," The Martian Chronicles, MacLean's, the Poe Centennial, Mick McComas, [Lawrence] Spivak.

 

McComas, J. Francis

Bradbury, Ray

1949.09.19

CABradbury

TLS (S&S ltrhead recto)

F&SF wants a Bradbury story for the second issue. Passes on buying  "The Silent Towns" and "Ylla."

Excerpt in The Eureka Years (1982).

McComas, J. Francis

Bradbury, Ray

1949.09.28

InUlilly

TL; carbon (S&S ltrhead verso)

Suggests changes to Hawthorne and Bierce characterizations in "The Exiles"; enjoys Bradbury's characterization of Poe.

Published in The Eureka Years (1982).

Bradbury, Ray

McComas, J. Francis

1949.10.03

NySyU

TLS

Discusses "The Exiles," "The Emissary," "Uncle Einar," Dark Carnival, The Martian Chronicles, Unknown, "Way in the Middle of the Air."

Published in The Eureka Years (1982).

McComas, J. Francis

Bradbury, Ray

1949.10.07

InUlilly

TL; carbon (S&S ltrhead verso)

Conditionally accepts "The Exiles" as a reprint title for second issue of F&SF, pending revisions. Discusses Hawthorne characterization.

Published in The Eureka Years (1982).