Collection GA 52 - Bertram R. Davis collection

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Bertram R. Davis collection

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    Reference code

    CA ON00351 GA 52

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    Dates of creation area


    • [176-]-[ca. 1965] (Creation)
      Davis, Bertram R.

    Physical description area

    Physical description

    181 cm of textual records and other material
    16 photographs : b&w and col. ; 17 x 12 or smaller

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    Name of creator


    Biographical history

    Bertram Rolland Davis was born Bristol in 1897. Financial and familial situations prevented him from attending University, and after high school he began to work for the cable company established by his father, where he would stay for forty years. When not working he spent his free time as an amateur scholar with an interest in the Romantics and their links to Bristol. In particular, his interests tended towards former Poet Laureate Robert Southey and boy poet Thomas Chatterton. He corresponded with many of the leading Romantic scholars and critics of the twentieth century including Raymond D. Havens, E.H.W. Meyerstein, Maurice H. Fitzgerald, and Earl Leslie Griggs, and others. Davis also played an active role in preserving the history of Bristol and its famous residents.
    To support his research, Davis purchased as many documents relating to the Romantics as he could afford. He amassed a collection of forty-five manuscript groups comprised of original documents by Southey, Wordsworth, Coleridge, and their contemporaries as well as an extensive library relating to his academic interests. His library is known as the Bertram R. Davis “Robert Southey” collection.
    After Davis’ death, his personal library, manuscript groups, correspondence, and research files were by the University of Waterloo.

    Custodial history

    Scope and content

    Collection consists of materials created and accumulated by Bertram R. Davis on the history of Bristol and the romantics. Includes correspondence between 164 correspondents, 45 manuscript groups, research notes, photographs, clippings, articles, offprints, excerpts, and other ephemera. Also included is a file of correspondence from Bertram donated by Kenneth Curry and a file of correspondence relating to portraits of Southey donated by Dr. Warren U. Ober.

    Arranged in six series as follows:
    1. Manuscripts Held in Trust
    2. Chattertonian Manuscript;
    3. Correspondence;
    4. Articles, Offprints, etc.;
    5. Bertram R. Davis Research Files;
    6. Visual Materials.

    Notes area

    Physical condition

    Immediate source of acquisition

    Acquired in 1973 from Mrs. Doris Davis. Files 75a and 75b donated in 1986 by Kenneth Curry. File 171 donated in 2012 by Dr. Warren U. Ober.


    Language of material

    • English
    • French
    • Portuguese

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      Associated materials

      Associated materials can be found in GA 49

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