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Frank Harris and Arthur Leonard Ross Papers

An inventory of their papers at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: --
Date: circa 1965

Biographical History

Frank Harris (1856-1931) was an Irish-American author. Born James Thomas Harris in Galway, Ireland, he ran away at the age of 15 and came to America where he worked at various odd jobs. Eventually he came to Lawrence, Kansas, where two of his brothers had settled, and where he attended the University of Kansas, worked at his brothers' butcher shop, and changed his name to "Frank Harris." In 1875 he embarked on a lengthy tour of Europe, visiting England, Germany, France, Italy, Greece, Austria, Russia, and Ireland, and upon his return to England began writing articles and book reviews. In 1883 he became editor of The Evening News and then in 1886 of the Fortnightly Review. In 1894 he left that position, bought The Saturday Review, and transformed it into a respected literary journal. In addition to his editorial and publishing work he continued to write, producing his first book of short stories in 1895 and another in 1900. Other works of this period include The Bomb (1908), The Women of Shakespeare (1911), and Oscar Wilde (1916).

From 1914-1921 he lived in America; while there, he published two volumes of Contemporary Portraits, edited Pearson's magazine, and became friends with American anarchists Emma Goldman and Thomas Bell. The first volume of his autobiography was published in Berlin in 1922, and in 1923 he settled in Paris, where he wrote two more volumes of Contemporary Portraits, On the Trail: Being My Reminiscences as a Cowboy, and Pantopia (1930), as well as numerous short stories.

Arthur Leonard Ross (d. 1975) was an American lawyer, Harris's attorney, and literary executor of the Frank Harris Estate.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Frank Harris and Arthur Leonard Ross Papers consists of correspondence and legal papers, printed material, clippings, and photographs.

Correspondence, much of which is photocopies, includes items from Winston Churchill, Hesketh Pearson, and Oscar Wilde. Legal papers consists of correspondence and documents relating to the case of Ross vs. Esquire. Printed material contains addresses, articles, books, a play, and miscellaneous. Clippings cover the years 1900-1968. A few assorted Photographs complete the collection.

Arrangement of the Collection

Correspondence is arranged chronologically, except for that with Churchill, Pearson, and Wilde, which is separated out and placed at the end of the series. Legal papers are subdivided into general correspondence (arranged chronologically) and that relating to Ross vs. Esquire (arranged alphabetically by type). Printed material is also arranged alphabetically by type.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Subject Headings


Harris, Frank, 1856-1931.
Ross, Arthur Leonard.


Authors, American.
Irish Americans.

Genres and Forms

Clippings (information artifacts)
Legal documents.



Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Frank Harris and Arthur Leonard Ross Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Table of Contents


Legal papers

Published material