Browne Popular Culture Library

PCL MS-216: Popular Press Collection

Introduction | Agency Sketch | Scope and Content | Series Description | Inventory

Scope and Content

Among the twenty-six cubic feet of Popular Press files, the author files are the largest and most complete series spanning the life of the press. These offer the most detailed picture of how book projects were submitted, selected, evaluated by subject specialists, edited, printed and promoted. Within the correspondence found in the various files, Pat Browne’s influential role as business manager and director emerges through her communications with scholars submitting manuscripts as well as with colleagues and staff involved in the many aspects of publishing a title.

The unpublished manuscript files are also a relevant series to the collection since they contain data regarding projects that were not selected for publication by the press. Some of the correspondence offers an explanation to authors as to why their project was not accepted for publication. Many times the replies reiterated that the press preferred to publish only specific types of scholarship within the field that would fit into textbook or reference work formats on relevant topics of interest to academic audiences. In some circumstances suggestions are offered that would assist authors in finding an appropriate publisher for their work. Unfortunately, the files only contain documentation of this nature for primarily the last few years that the press was located at BGSU.

Researchers interested in the arrangements made for the closing of the press would want to consult the correspondence and sale/transfer documents within the office files. These provide some details regarding the business and the transfer of the book inventory to the University of Wisconsin. Statistical data about titles published, royalties paid, copyright, etc. is available in the royalty tally/detail reports, inventory lists and by individual title within the author files.