de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
The University of Southern Mississippi

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Creator: Arthur C. Clarke
Title: Arthur C. Clarke Papers
Dates: 1966 - 1976
Dates: [bulk 1966]
Quantity: .30 cubic feet (1 box)
Identification: DG0191

Abstract: Sir Arthur C. Clarke is a world-renowned physicist, novelist, and ex-chairman of the British Interplanetary Society. A prolific author of both fiction and nonfiction for adults and children, he has won multiple literary awards, been nominated for an Academy Award, and has been knighted by Queen Elizabeth II. The Arthur C. Clarke Papers contain two pages of typescript from a short story and two letters sent to the de Grummond Collection in 1966 and 1976.

Biographical Note

Arthur Charles Clarke was born in Minehead, Somerset, England on December 16, 1917. As a boy he became fascinated with science fiction after reading an early science fiction magazine, Amazing Stories, and began writing stories of his own while in his teens. Lacking the funds for higher education, Clarke worked as an auditor for the British Civil Service between 1936 and 1941. His job gave him time to write science fiction and to join a new group, the British Interplanetary Society (BIS), for which he began to write scientific articles.

During World War II Clarke's service in the Royal Air Force introduced him to mathematical and electronics theory. After the war he pursued a degree in physics and pure and applied mathematics at King's College in London. He spent two years as an assistant editor for a technical journal, but by the early 1950s the success of his own science books and science fiction novels were earning him enough money to pursue writing as a full-time profession.

Over the course of his career Clarke has written more than sixty fiction and non-fiction works, winning multiple awards for both science and science fiction writing, including designation as a "Grand Master" by the Science Fiction Writers of America. Clarke's best-known work is 2001: A Space Odyssey, developed simultaneously as a book and film, for which he was nominated for a Best Screenplay Academy Award. Clarke lived in Colombo, Sri Lanka (formerly Ceylon), from 1956 until his death, where he developed an interest in undersea exploration and took up scuba diving and photography.

Arthur C. Clarke passed away on March 19, 2008.

Major Authors and Illustrators, pp. 483-9
Biographical sketch from's "Brilliant Careers" profiles, (accessed 29 January 2002)
Arthur C. Clarke Unauthorized Homepage, (accessed 29 January 2002)

Scope and Content Note

The Arthur C. Clarke Papers consist of two edited typescript pages from the author's short story "The Cruel Sky," and two letters sent to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection in 1966 and 1976. The material is organized into two series: short fiction and letters sent.

The short fiction series consists of two typescript pages from the 1966 short story "The Cruel Sky," which was published in The Wind From the Sun: Stories of the Space Age (1972). The pages are typed in red ink, edited in blue pen, and include a handwritten note from Clarke stating that these pages came from the first story he had written in three years.

The letters sent series contains a letter sent to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection in 1966 and a standardized form letter apparently sent to any fan or researcher who requested information from the author, dated 1976. The form letter includes a short, typed note to the de Grummond Collection. The letters were selected and photocopied from the de Grummond Collection's correspondence file because they reveal information about the author's personality and work. They are arranged chronologically.

Series and Subseries

A. Short Fiction (1966)

"The Cruel Sky" (1966)

B. Letters Sent (1966 - 1976)


Restrictions on Use

Noncirculating; available for research.

Copyright Restrictions

The collection is protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). Reproductions can be made only if they are to be used for "private study, scholarship, or research." It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials, other than that noted above.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

(Identify the item and cite the series), Arthur C. Clarke Papers, de Grummond Children's Literature Collection, University of Southern Mississippi Libraries.


These papers were donated to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection of the University of Southern Mississippi Libraries by Arthur C. Clarke in 1966.

Processing Information

Processed by C. Alder, January 2002. Encoded into EAD Version 1.0 by Danielle Bishop Stoulig. This finding aid is the product of a grant funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Container Listing



Short Fiction

"The Cruel Sky" in The Wind From the Sun: Stories of the Space Age (New York: Harcourt, Brace, Jovanovich, 1972)
1/1Typescript, edited, pp. 100 - 101, with note dated 20 November 1966, (3 items)


Letters Sent

1/2Selected letters sent from Arthur C. Clarke to the de Grummond Children's Literature Collection, 1966 - 1976, (2 items)





The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection

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