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W. Somerset Maugham correspondence

 Collection — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS SC 1496

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of correspondence between W. Somerset Maugham and others, including Ken McCormick, an editor-in-chief, and a Mr. Shively. Several handwritten and typed letters are by William and a few are addressed to him. The letters discuss his writings and are dated from 1950-1961. All the letters are signed as W.S. Maugham. A typescript copy of W. Somerset Maugham's "Purely for My Pleasure" is included at the end of the collection with a list of paintings that appear in the book, dated 1961. This essay was written about the circumstances in which Maugham acquired paintings in his collection, and published as a book in 1962.


  • 1950-1961


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to use material from this collection must be obtained from Reference Services at

Biographical / Historical

W. Somerset Maugham was born on January 25, 1874, in Paris, France. He went to school in London and eventually became a medical student, after which he earned his qualifications as a physician in 1897. However, he went on to become a writer and never practiced medicine. Maugham was married to Syrie Wellcome, and had one child. He also had a partner, Gerald Haxton, who was his secretary, and later, after Haxton's death, Alan Searle, who also worked as his secretary. He wrote his first novel, "Liza of Lambeth," in 1897, and his last soon after WWII. He gained national fame as a playwright, creating 32 plays in his life, the last in 1933. Maugham worked for the British Secret Service in WWI and traveled extensively throughout his life. He died December 16, 1965.


1 folder (0.01 linear ft)

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Acquired in 1979.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Acquired; 1979.


Western history (Mormon and Western American Manuscripts Collection Development Policy V.B.5.c, 2020).

Related Materials

See also W. Somerset Maugham letter to Sir Hugh Percy Lane (Vault MSS 378) and William Somerset Maugham writings on Rudyard Kipling (MSS SC 1497).

Processing Information

Processed; Isabella Titus; 2024.

Register of W. Somerset Maugham correspondence
Isabella Titus
2024 January 26
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States