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Heloise Durant Rose Letters

An inventory of her letters at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: KM
Date: Aug 1987

Biographical History

Heloise Durant Rose (1854?-1943) was an American author, playwright, and critic. The daughter of Heloise Durant and Union Pacific Railroad industrialist Thomas Clark Durant, she attended private schools in Europe and America and was fluent in Italian, French, German and Arabic.

Rose was a book reviewer for the New York Times and the author of plays, poems, essays, articles and short stories. Her dramatic poem Dante (1910) was translated into Italian and is believed to be the first American play produced on the Italian stage.

Rose founded the Dante League in 1917 "for popular propaganda for the study of Dante" and was a signatory of the "Memorial to the Columbia College Board of Trustees," an 1883 petition to allow female students to attend lectures and examinations at Columbia College. (Other signers included Parke Godwin, Georgina Schuyler, Caroline Sterling Choate, Susan B. Anthony, Chauncey M. Depew, Emma Lazarus, Josephine Shaw Lowell, Theodore Roosevelt, Charles Comfort Tiffany.)

[Portions of this biographical sketch adapted from the article "Rose, Heloise Durant" in the 1935 edition of Who's Who and What to See in Florida: A Standard Biographical Reference Book of Florida, pp 225-226.]

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Heloise Durant Rose Letters consist of incoming personal and business correspondence, much of which is in connection with the Dante League of America, of which Mrs. Rose was the founder. Correspondents include authors (Poultney Bigelow, Oliver Wendell Holmes, Joyce Kilmer, Edwin Markham, James Whitcomb Riley, Corinne Roosevelt Robinson, William Roscoe Thayer, Post Wheeler); publishers (Arthur Brisbane, G. H. Putnam); diplomats (Paul Claudel, Whitelaw Reid); and educators (Virginia Gildersleeve, Andrew D. White).

Regarding the production of her dramatic poem, Dante, Mrs. Rose received correspondence from several theatrical people including Maude Adams, Normal Bel Geddes, Adeline Genee, F. F. McKay, Otis Skinner, and Helen Westley. The play was said to be the first American drama produced for the Italian stage.

In the promotion of the arts and an appreciation of Dante in the United States, Rose cultivated the support of political figures (Chauncey M. Depew, John A. Dix, Abram S. Hewitt, Charles Evans Hughes, Theodore Roosevelt, Woodrow Wilson) and philanthropists (Andrew Carnegie, George Foster Peabody, Spencer Trask).

Among the personal correspondence are letters of condolence on the death of Rose's first husband, Arthur Frethey, and items from several clergymen, including James Darlington, Morgan Dix, John Haynes Holmes, William Thomas Manning, and Henry Potter. Also present are two personal letters from Anne Thackeray Ritchie, daughter of novelist William Makepeace Thackeray.

Arrangement of the Collection

Letters are arranged alphabetically by correspondent.


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


Adams, Maude, 1872-1953.
Baker, Samuel White, Sir, 1821-1893.
Barton, Bruce, 1886-1967.
Bigelow, Poultney, 1855-1954.
Brisbane, Arthur, 1864-1936.
Carnegie, Andrew, 1835-1919.
Carpenter, William Boyd, 1841-1918.
Claudel, Paul, 1868-1955.
Crane, Frank, 1873-1948.
Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321 -- Societies, periodicals, etc.
Depew, Chauncey M. (Chauncey Mitchell), 1834-1928.
Dix, John A. (John Adams), 1798-1879.
Dix, Morgan, 1827-1908.
Duff Gordon, Lucie, Lady, 1821-1869.
Geddes, Norman Bel, 1893-1958.
Gildersleeve, Virginia Crocheron, 1877-1965.
Hewitt, Abram S. (Abram Stevens), 1822-1903.
Holmes, John Haynes, 1879-1964.
Holmes, Oliver Wendell, 1809-1894.
Hughes, Charles Evans, 1862-1948.
Kilmer, Joyce, 1886-1918.
Mackay, F. F. (Frank Findley), 1832-1923.
Markham, Edwin, 1852-1940.
Ochs, Adolph S. (Adolph Simon), 1858-1935.
Peabody, George Foster, 1852-1938.
Potter, Henry Codman, 1834-1908.
Putnam, George Haven, 1844-1930.
Reid, Whitelaw, 1837-1912.
Riley, James Whitcomb, 1849-1916.
Ritchie, Anne Thackeray, 1837-1919.
Robinson, Corinne Roosevelt, 1861-1933.
Roosevelt, Theodore, 1858-1919.
Rose, Heloise Durant.
Rossi, Luigi Melano.
Sewell, Elizabeth Missing, 1815-1906.
Skinner, Otis, 1858-1942.
Taft, Helen Herron, 1861-1943.
Taglioni, Marie, 1804-1884.
Thayer, William Roscoe, 1859-1923.
Trask, Spencer, 1844-1909.
Warner, Charles Dudley, 1829-1900.
Westley, Helen, 1875 or 1879-1942.
Wheeler, Post, 1869-1956.
White, Andrew Dickson, 1832-1918.
Wilson, Woodrow, 1856-1924.

Corporate Bodies

Dante League of America.


Upper class -- United States.


United States -- Intellectual life.
United States -- Social life and customs.

Genres and Forms




Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Héloïse Durant Rose Letters
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

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