Noncirculating; available for research.
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.
Christine Noble Govan was born in New York City. When her father died, she and her mother moved to Sewanee, Tennessee. She also lived in Nashville, Franklin, and Chattanooga, Tennessee, all of which have been incorporated into her stories. She has lived on Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga since the age of ten. As a child, her biggest influences were mysteries, especially The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes.
Govan's daughters, her son, and her husband are all writers as well. Her daughter Emmy Payne (Govan West) worked with H. A. Rey on Katy No-Pockets (1944) and also co-wrote 18 mysteries with her mother. Her daughter Mary Govan Steele, who writes under the name Wilson Gage, has also published a number of books for both adults and children and her book Journey Outside (1969) was chosen as a Newbery Honor Book. Her husband Dr. Gilbert Govan wrote biographies and wrote a daily column for The Chattanooga Times.
Govan is most noted for her mysteries for young adults, most of which were co- authored with her daughter Emmy. Many of the scenes in her books reflect the settings and people she grew up with, such as those in The Delectable Mountain (1962), and Those Plummer Children (1934). Govan's mysteries became so popular that many of them were published in England, Denmark, Germany, Japan and Sweden. She also wrote mysteries under the pseudonyms of Mary Allerton and J. N. Darby. Govan died February 28, 1985.
Scope and Content
The collection contains typescripts, galleys, and proofs for nine titles. There are also some unidentified illustrations and autobiographical information. The materials are arranged alphabetically by title. Within each title the materials are arranged in the probable order in which they were created.
Four of the books in the collection are mysteries, The Curious Clubhouse (1967), The House with the Echo (1937), Murder in the House with the Blue Eyes (1939), and Plantation Murder (1938). There are photocopied illustrations for The Curious Clubhouse, galleys for The House with the Echo, and proofs for Murder in the House with the Blue Eyes, which was written under the pseudonym of J. N. Darby. There is a bound dummy for Plantation Murder, which unlike most of her mysteries, was written for an adult audience.
The other books in the collection are fictional stories, most of which were based on people and places near her home in Tennessee. Rachel Jackson, Tennessee Girl (1955) is a biography and there are proofs and a dust jacket for this title. Phinny's Fine Summer (1968) is about a ten year old boy, who after suffering from typhoid fever, goes away from home for the summer. There are typescripts and galleys for this title. String and the No-Tail Cat (1939) is about an African- American boy who wants a dog and learns to love a no-tailed cat. There is a partial galley for this title. In Mr. Hermit Miser and the Neighborly Pumpkin (1949), a lazy, selfish man learns to be a good neighbor when he can not make his own pumpkin pies. There is a partial proof for this title.
There are related illustrations for Tilly's Strange Secret and The Surprising Summer in the Sari (Anne Fleur) Papers (DG 1174), Rachel Jackson, Tennessee Girl in the Sandra James Papers (DG 1175), and Mr. Hermit Miser and the Neighborly Pumpkin in the Anne Merriman Peck Papers (DG 1176).
A. Autobiographical Information
C. Unidentified Illustrations
Box/Folder A. Autobiographical Information 1/1 List of published books, 2 pp. Autobiographical statement, 2 pp. B. Books THE CURIOUS CLUBHOUSE by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by Leonard Shortall (Cleveland: World Publishing, 1967). 1/2 Illustrations, photocopied, 14 pp. FIVE AT ASHEFIELD by Christine Noble Govan (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Houghton Mifflin, 1935). 1/3-1/4 Galleys, minor corrections, 82 pp., 2 copies. THE HOUSE WITH THE ECHO by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by P. O. Palmstrom (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1937). 1/5 Galleys, minor corrections, 50 pp. MR. HERMIT MISER AND THE NEIGHBORLY PUMPKIN by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by Anne Merriman Peck (New York: Aladdin, 1949) 1/6 Partial final proof, photocopied, 3 pp. MURDER IN THE HOUSE WITH THE BLUE EYES by J. N. Darby (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1939). 1/7-1/8 Proof, 1/7 Chapters 1-10, pp. 1-166. 1/8 Chapters 11-16, pp. 167-302. PHINNY'S FINE SUMMER by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by Leonard Shortall (Cleveland: World Publishing, 1968). 2/1-2/2 Typescript, edited with typesetter's marks, 2/1 Chapters 1-6, pp. 1-66. 2/2 Chapters 7-12, pp. 67-133. 2/3 Galley, "author's set," 7 August 1968, 47 pp. PLANTATION MURDER by Christine Noble Govan (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1938). 2/4 Dummy, bound, 1 item. RACHEL JACKSON, TENNESSEE GIRL by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by Sandra James (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill, 1955). 2/5-2/6 Proofs, 2/5 Chapters 1-6, pp. 1-101. 2/6 Chapters 7-13, pp.102-192. 2/7 Dust jacket, 1 item. STRING AND THE NO-TAIL CAT by Christine Noble Govan, illustrated by Suzanne Suba (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1939). 2/8 Partial galley, minor corrections, 13 pp. C. Unidentified Illustrations 2/9 Unidentified illustrations, photocopied, 8 items. Unidentified illustrations, in proof form, 14 items.
Some illustrations were removed from the collection and added to their respective illustrators.There is one illustration for Tilly's Strange Secret and fourteen illustrations for Surprising Summer in the Sari (Anne Fleur) Papers (DG 1174). There are four illustrations for Rachel Jackson, Tennessee Girl in the Sandra James Papers (DG 1175). There is one illustration for Mr. Hermit Miser and the Neighborly Pumpkin in the Anne Merriman Peck Papers (DG 1176).
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The de Grummond Children's Literature Collection
Hattiesburg, MS 39406
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