On this day 7th of January…..
Happy New Year to everyone I hope everyone has had a pleasant holiday season, with the United Kingdom back in lockdown research is going to be harder in accessing Parish documents and trying to workout some of the brick walls (metaphor for “stuck” in research). Using the current lockdown to digitise all my paper records and Family trees.
So bear with me in the upcoming months.
Today is the 7th of January and on this day John Hall Wheelock the poet and descendant of the Ralph Wheelock ancestry was recipient of the Bollingen prize for Poetry.
John Hall Wheelock was born in 1886 in Far Rockaway in the borough of Queens, New York.
His writing career was one of the longest in American letters, beginning with the publication of his first book in 1905 and ending with his last book, published in 1978, also the year of his death.
Wheelock wrote his first book of poetry, Verses by Two Undergraduates (1905), with Van Wyck Brooks while the two were students at Harvard. It sold poorly and received no critical notice; however, his second book, The Human Fantasy (1911), brought him recognition and renown as a talented poet when he was still just twenty-five. Around the same time, Wheelock began working for Charles Scribner’s Sons publishers founded in 1846
His career with them would last until 1957, as he worked his way from clerk to senior editor. During his tenure at Scribner’s, Wheelock both helped solidify the firm’s reputation as a publisher of innovative modern prose and developed the Poets of Today series, which launched the careers of twenty-four poets. Among them May Swenson and James Dicke
After retiring from Scribner’s, Wheelock was able to devote more time to his own poetry. He won the Bollingen* Prize for Poetry in 1962, which he shared with Richard Eberhart, and in 1972 was awarded the Gold Medal of the Poetry Society of America.
He died in 1978.
*(The Bollingen Prize for Poetry is a literary honor bestowed on an American poet in recognition of the best book of new verse within the last two years, or for lifetime achievement. It is awarded every two years by the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library of Yale University)
- Verses by Two Undergraduates 1905
- The human fantasy. Sherman, French. 1911. John Hall Wheelock.
- The belovéd adventure. Sherman, French. 1912. John Hall Wheelock.
- Love and Liberation. Sherman, French. 1913. John Hall Wheelock.
- Dust and Light. Scribner. 1919. John Hall Wheelock.
- The Black Panther. Scribner. 1922. John Hall Wheelock.
- The Bright Doom, Scribner, 1927
- Collected Poems, 1911-1936, Scribner, 1936
- Editor to Author: The Letters of Maxwell E. Perkins, 1950. (editor)
- Poems Old and New, Scribner, 1956
- The Gardner and Other Poems, Scribner, 1961
- What is Poetry?, Scribner, 1963
- Dear Men and Women: New Poems, Scribner, 1966
- By Daylight and in Dream: New and Collected Poems, 1904-1970, Scribner, 1970
- In Love and Song: Poems, Scribner, 1971
John Hall Wheelock | The Bollingen Prize for Poetry (yale.edu)
“Twentieth Century Authors, A Biographical Dictionary of Modern Literature”, Edited by Stanley J. Kunitz and Howard Haycraft, published 1942 in New York by The H. W. Wilson Company. “Twentieth Century Authors, First Supplement,
A Biographical Dictionary of Modern Literature”, Edited by Stanley J. Kunitz and Vineta Colby, published 1955 in New York by The H. W. Wilson Company.
“Contemporary Authors”, edited by Clare D. Kinsman, published 1965 by Gale Research Company.
“Contemporary Authors”, edited by Frances Carol Locher, published 1979 by Gale Research Company.
William Cahill, Molly McKaughan (Fall 1976). “John Hall Wheelock, The Art of Poetry No. 21”. The Paris Review.
Van Wyck Brooks; John Hall Wheelock; Bacon Collamore (1905). Verses by two undergraduates.
John Hall Wheelock (credit: Elizabeth Dunn, Duke University)