H.C. Branson papers Edit


MSS 319 large


  • approximately 1940-1968 (Creation)


  • 6 Linear Feet (Whole)
    6 boxes



  • Conditions Governing Access

    The collection is open for research.

  • Conditions Governing Access

    The material is stored offsite in Remote Storage. Please contact Special Collections three (3) working days in advance if you wish to use it.

  • Conditions Governing Use

    Copyright is retained by the author of the items in this collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

  • Preferred Citation

    Item, Folder number and/or title, Box number, H.C. Branson papers, MSS 319, Special Collections, MSU Libraries, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI.

  • Immediate Source of Acquisition

    Donated by Donald A. Yates in 1979, 2000, 2001, and 2008

  • Processing Information

    The H. C. Branson papers were processed by Kassy Fineout, August 2008.

  • Biographical / Historical

    Henry Clay Branson (1904-1981) grew up in Battle Creek, Michigan, and later attended Princeton in 1924. He then spent three years in Paris only to return to Michigan in 1929 to attend the University of Michigan. In Ann Arbor he married, fathered the first of his three daughters in 1934 and eventually graduated from the university in 1937. Branson read Doyle as a boy, followed Philo Vance’s cases in Paris in the pages of Scribner’s Magazine and was one of the most familiar of card-holders at the Ann Arbor Public Library, where he withdrew and consumed hundreds of mystery stories, all contributing to his becoming a mystery writer.

  • Scope and Contents

    Henry Clay Branson was a Michigan-based mystery writer active in the 1940s through the 1960s. Branson's mystery stories featured the detective character John Bent. This collection contains manuscripts with notes and revisions for all of his major mystery publications as well as his Civil War novel, "Salisbury Plain." Editorial and critical correspondence is also included.

  • Arrangement

    The H. C. Branson papers are arranged into two series. The first series (mystery novels) is arranged in four boxes by date of publication, then alphabetically. The second series (Salisbury Plain) is arranged alphabetically in two boxes.

  • General

    Box size varies.