Guide to the Papers of John Millett


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Manuscript Name Papers of John Millett
Manuscript Number MSS 14
Last Updated June 2008
Extent 3.48 m (32 boxes, 2 folios)
Location Academy Library, UNSW Canberra
Abstract This collection comprises manuscript papers and related material produced or accumulated by John Millett.

Collection Subject Type

Literary

Scope and Content

The papers of John Millett includes correspondence, manuscript drafts, diaries, proofs, personal, legal and financial papers, scrapbooks, photographs, audio visual material and posters.

Date Range of Content

1939-2000

Biographical Note

Wikipedia article: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Millett_(poet)

John Antill Millett was born at Woollhara, New South Wales on the 3 February 1921. He attended Walcha Public School, NSW, and after receiving his Intermediate Certificate worked as a junior Audit Clerk with Thomas Davis and Co., Chartered Accountant at Tamworth, NSW. He enlisted in the Australian Army on the 22 May 1941, serving as a Signalman, and was discharged on 7 December 1942; he then enlisted in the Royal Australian Air Force on the 9 December 1942, serving in No. 10 RAAF Squadron, Plymouth, England, and was discharged 17 April 1946. After the war he worked in the Repatriation Department, 1946-1947, he then studied law at Sydney University, 1948-1952, and graduated with an LLB in 1952.

For much of his career a practising lawyer and part-time writer, Millett has published several poetry collections, a verse novella, short stories, and a play with Grace Perry. His poetry has been published in numerous Australian and international journals.

Millett was the managing editor of Poetry Australia from 1967, and editor, 1988-1992. In 1999 he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM), for service to literature as editor of the journal.

References:
Who's who in the world, 18th ed., Marquis-Who's Who, New Providence, N.J., 2000, p. 1457
Millett's curriculum vitae
AustLit : the resource for Australian literature, 2006.

 

Administrative Information

 

Access and Copying Conditions

Access: Check with Curator

Copying: Check with Curator

Preferred Citation

Papers of John Millett, Academy Library, UNSW Canberra, Australian Defence Force Academy, Canberra, Box [Number], Folder [Number].

Provenance

The collection was acquired from John Millett in several consignments from 1986 to 2000.

Additional Information

Separated Material

Further papers of John Millett are held by the State Library of New South Wales at MLMSS3161.

 

Subject Keywords

 

Subjects

Poets, Australian poets, Australian poetry.

Personal Names

John Millett 1921-

Corporate Names

 

Occupations

Poets

 

Container List

 

Series 1 Correspondence, 1967-2000

This series comprises correspondence relating to Millett's personal and professional life with his friends, family, literary associates, publishers and readers. This series is restricted. Correspondence, cards, poetry, documents, artwork, cuttings and photographs written by or from C. Swart closed until two years after Millett's death.

Folder 1-9 
Correspondence etc from C. Swart, 1985-1991

Folder 10 
Correspondence, 1967-1986

Folder 11 
Correspondence, 1987

Folder 12-13 
Correspondence, 1988

Folder 14-15 
Correspondence, 1989

Folder 16 
Correspondence, 1990

Folder 17 
Correspondence, 1991-1992

Folder 18 
Correspondence, 1993

Folder 19 
Correspondence, 1994

Folder 20 
Correspondence, 1995-1996

Folder 21-22 
Correspondence, 1998

Folder 23-26 
Correspondence, 1999

Folder 27-28 
Correspondence, 2000

Folder 29 
Correspondence relating to Millett's OAM, 1998-2000

Folder 30 
Correspondence with the Academy Library, UNSW Canberra, 1986-2000

Folder 31 
Correspondence with Brad Strahan, 1986-1995

Folder 32 
Correspondence with Pamala Karol, 1987-1993

Folder 33 
Correspondence with Robert McDowell, 1985-1993

 

Series 2 Diaries and Notebooks, 1980-2000

This series comprises diaries and notebooks which are generally arranged in chronological order. They contain phone numbers and appointments; drafts of poems, prose and correspondence; tipped-in and loose manuscript and typescript drafts of poems and prose, newspaper clippings, travel brochures and tickets. A number of the notebooks are only partially filled with sometimes sporadic entries. Drafts of material relating to this series are included in Series 3.

Folder 1-4 
Undated diaries with appointments, phone numbers and poetry and prose drafts

Folder 5 
Notebook with poetry and prose drafts, 1980

Folder 6 
Notebook with notes and poetry drafts, 1980-1985

Folder 7 
Notebook with notes and manuscript poetry drafts and loose typescript poetry drafts, 1983

Folder 8-9 
Notebook with notes, manuscript, tipped-in typescript poetry and loose typescript poetry drafts, 1984-1986

Folder 10 
Diary with appointments, notes, manuscript prose and loose typescript poetry drafts, 1985

Folder 11 
Diary with phone numbers and notes, 1986-1987

Folder 12 
Diary with manuscript poetry drafts, 1986

Folder 13 
Notebook with parts of Blue dynamite : a narrative and other war sequence and 1st draft of View from the turret : World War II, 1985-1987

Folder 14 
Diary with manuscript poetry drafts, 1987

Folder 15 
Diary with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, 1987

Folder 16 
Diary with appointments, notes and phone numbers, 1986-1988

Folder 17 
Diary with manuscript poetry and prose drafts, 1986-1990

Folder 18 
Diary with manuscript poetry and loose and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, notes and tipped-in published articles, 1987-1988

Folder 19 
Diary with appointments and notes, 1988-1989

Folder 20 
Notebook with manuscript poetry and prose drafts, tipped-in postcards, photographs, maps, tickets and articles, 1988

Folder 21 
Diary with notes and manuscript poetry and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, 1988

Folder 22 
Diary with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, 1988-1989

Folder 23 
Diary with notes, phone numbers and manuscript poetry drafts, 1989

Folder 24 
Diary with phone numbers, appointments and notes, 1989-1990

Folder 25 
Europe notebook with manuscript and prose drafts, tipped-in tickets and articles, 1991

Folder 26 
Diary with phone numbers, appointments and notes, 1992

Folder 27 
Côte d'Azur diary with manuscript poetry and prose drafts, tipped-in letters, tickets, brochures, etc, 1992

Folder 28 
Diary with Millett's manuscript poetry and prose drafts, tipped-in manuscript and typescript drafts, also includes poetry drafts by Grace Perry, 1980-1993

Folder 29 
Notebook with notes, manuscript poetry and prose drafts and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, 1993

Folder 30 
Notebook with manuscript and tipped-in poetry drafts, 1994

Folder 31 
Diary with notes, manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts and tipped-in correspondence 1995

Folder 32 
Diary with notes and manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, 1995-1998

Folder 33 
Notebook entitled 'The gun metal sky' with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, July/August 1998

Folder 34 
Notebook with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry and prose drafts, 1998-1999

Folder 35 
Notebook entitled 'Gathered by ravens' with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry and prose drafts, [1999]

Folder 36 
Notebook with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry drafts, [1999]

Folder 37 
Notebook with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry and prose drafts, 1999

Folder 38-39 
Notebooks with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry and prose drafts, 1999

Folder 40-41 
Notebooks with manuscript and tipped-in typescript poetry and prose drafts, 2000

 

Series 3 Writings by John Millett, 1969-2000

This series comprises both published and unpublished works by Millett, including poetry, short stories, plays, reviews and criticisms. The published works include Calendar Adam (1971), The silences (1973), Love tree of the Coomera (1975), Tail arse Charlie (1982), Blue dynamite : a narrative (1986), The nine lives of big Meg O'Shannessy : poems (1989), The world faces Johnny Tripod (1992), View from the turret : World War II (1994), Dragonfly tie (1997), Iceman : an expansive narrative(1999) and Last draft (2002). Audio visual material and photographs relating to this series are included in Series 6 and Series 7.

Folder 1 
Calendar Adam, by Millett, published by South Head Press, Sydney, 1971

Including:
Annotated copy of the published book with tipped-in reviews and correspondence
Photocopies of reviews and correspondence

Folder 2 
The silences, by Millett, published by South Head Press, Sydney, 1973

Including:
Annotated copy of the published book with tipped-in reviews
Photocopies of reviews

Folder 3-4 
Love tree of the Coomera, by Millett, published by South Head Press, Sydney, 1975

Including:
Annotated copy of the published book with tipped-in reviews
Photocopies of reviews
Published copy with comments by Grace Perry

Folder 5-7 
Tail arse Charlie, by Millett; edited, augmented and arranged by Grace Perry, published by South Head Press, Berrima, N.S.W., 1982

Including:
Correspondence
Notes
Drafts of an article explaining the poems
Reviews
Annotated copy of the published book
Annotated copy of the French version published in Sud : revue litteraire

Folder 8 
Drafts and review of Tail arse Charlie, adapted for radio by Millett; produced by Rodney Wetherell for ABC Radio Helicon as a Special Feature at 5.30 pm on 26th April 1982; radio version renamed The world faces Johnny Tripod and published in the book of the same name in 1992

Folder 9-17 
Blue dynamite : a narrative, by Millett, published by South Head Press, Berrima, N.S.W., 1986

Including:
Correspondence
Research material
Drafts
Cover layout design and cover proof
Corrected paste-up copy
Page proofs
Galleys
Press release
Reviews

Folder 18 
'Blue dynamite', adapted for stage reading by Veida Dehmlow and David Price-Gresty with Bradley R. Strahan; produced by Strahan; directed by Dehmlow; first performed 22 October 1987 at The Art Barn, Rock Creek Park, Washington, D.C.

Including:
Correspondence
Draft
Advertising flyer
Program

Folder 19-28 
The nine lives of big Meg O'Shannessy : poems, by Millett, published by Story Line Press, Santa Cruz, Calif., 1989 and Poetry Australia (1989)

Including:
Correspondence
Research material
Drafts
Corrected drafts
Page proofs
Galleys
Notes
Annotated copies of the published work
Reviews

Folder 29-36 
The world faces Johnny Tripod, also incorporates the verse play with the same title, published by South Head Press, Berrima, N.S.W., 1992 (the radio play version was originally produced under the title Tail arse Charlie)

Including:
Correspondence
Notes
Drafts
Corrected drafts
Corrected page proofs
Paste-up
Galley proofs
Annotated published copies
Reviews

Folder 37-59 
View from the turret : World War II, published by Five Islands Press, Wollongong, N.S.W., 1994

Including:
Early annotated drafts entitled 'Clough', 'The Clough experience', 'The Clough sequence', 'Departure lounge', 'Clough and the rhinos' and 'Right of the line'
Correspondence
Contract
Notes
Drafts of View from the turret : World War II 
Corrected drafts
Corrected page proofs
Photograph proof
Cover designs
Reviews

Folder 60 
Dragonfly tie, published by Five Islands Press, Wollongong, NSW, 1997; originally published as Clothe yourself in summer, by Salmon Run Press, Anchorage, Alaska and Moscow, 1996

Including:
Correspondence
Annotated copy of Clothe yourself in summer 
Reviews

Folder 61-70 
Iceman : an expansive narrative, published by Salmon Run Press, Anchorage, Alaska and Moscow, (1999),

Including:
Early annotated drafts entitled 'Blood on the sea'
Correspondence and readers' reports
Annotated drafts
Corrected drafts
Page proofs
Press releases
Reviews

Folder 71-75 
Last draft, published by Five Islands Press, Wollongong, NSW, 2002

Including:
Correspondence
Drafts of the chapbook entitled 'The last millennium', included in Last draft 
Annotated drafts

Folder 76 
Annotated poems glued in a single binder, some published in magazines, 1969

Folder 77 
Poems by Millett, some with notations by Grace Perry

Folder 78-81 
Miscellaneous annotated poetry drafts

Folder 82 
Correspondence and annotated drafts of 'Australian footprints' x 2, 1988

Folder 83-86 
Drafts of published and unpublished short stories by Millett

Folder 87-88 
Drafts of plays by Millett, and a film script by Millett and Grace Perry

Including:
Last bride at Longsleep : a play, by John Millett and Grace Perry, published by South Head Press, Berrima, [1981?]
Two untitled and incomplete plays by Millett
One annotated photocopy typescript in verse for a proposed film about the Sydney to London, London to Sydney QANTAS flight, 'QF1, Night Mail', by Millett and Grace Perry; commissioned by Bill Bemmister?

Folder 89 
Drafts of reviews by Millett, 1987-1999

 

Series 4 Miscellaneous Papers, 1939-1999

This series comprises material relating to Millett, and works by other writers.

Folder 1 
Millett personal documentation, 1939-1999

Including:
Passport
List of additional material donated to the State Library of New South Wales
Curriculum vitaes
References
Documents relating to higher education qualifications
Certificates of admission
Employment letters
Certificates of Registration of business names
Photocopy typescript notes on Mrs Doris Millett
Photocopy of 'Ancestor treasure hunt : the Antill family, England 833 - America 1680, Australia 1809', by R.V. Pockley
Photocopy of notes on Florence Antill
Photocopies of published material relating to Captain Robert Andrew Wauch

Folder 2 
Documentation relating to Millett's World War 2 service in the Australian Army and Royal Australian Air Force, 1941-1946

Folder 3 
Correspondence, research material and transcript of John Millett being interviewed by his brother Brian Millett, 1976

Folder 4 
Correspondence and typescript draft of In the human night, by Peter Bakowski, (1995)
Poem entitled 'For the Vietnam dead', by Lawrence Dugan, 12/8/1985
Copy of Trinity Grammar School drama program entitled 'The Shakespearean festival of masquerade, music, murder, magic and mayhem', produced by Brian Millett, 1990

Folder 5 
Annotated typescript of 'The cold blood and the warm', by Harriet Asquith

Folder 6 
Anthologies and journals containing reviews, criticisms and poems by Millett, 1986-1999

 

Series 5 Realia

This series comprises Millett's Max Harris Literary Award medal, Returned Services League and R.A.A.F. Association badges.

Folder 1 
Max Harris Literary Award medal, 1999

Folder 2 
Returned Services League and R.A.A.F. Association badges

 

Series 6 Audio Visual, 1982-1994

This series comprises microcassettes, audio and video cassettes and computer discs relating to Millett's works, and a collection of music and poetry records. Technical note: System requirements for microcassettes, floppy discs and records not available.

Box 24 
Computer discs for works by Millett x 21
Untitled microcassettes x 10
Videocassette of John Millett reads his poetry at ADFA Library, 18/5/1989 (63 mins)
Videocassette of 7.30 : Olympic poet, Pamela Karol reading her poetry; produced by Claudia Bryant (3.40 mins)
Audio cassettes of Blue dynamite, recorded at the 2nd performance at the Australian Embassy, USA, 6 November 1987 x 2
Audio cassettes of Tail arse Charlie, adapted for radio by Millett; produced by Rodney Wetherell; first broadcast by the ABC as a Special Feature at 5.30 pm on 26th April 1982 x 5
Audio cassette of 'Storytime', aired Towson University, Baltimore, Maryland, 26/12/1987
Audio cassette of 'Grandma Clague', poems and descriptive verse (damaged tape)
Audio cassette of a session entitled 'Tensions and techniques in recent poetry and performance', Writers in the Park, readings at the Harold Park Hotel; recorded by John Millett at the Harold Park Hotel, Sydney; presented by Martin Harrison and Robyn Ravlich
Audio Cassette of poetry reading by Paul Trachtenberg and John Millett
Audio Cassette of poetry reading by Paul Trachtenberg, John Millett and Robert Peters at Berrima, NSW, 30 May, 1988
Audio cassette of Generic cowboy poetry, by Baxter Black
Audio cassettes of La Loca, Pamela Karol, 1987-1988 x 4
Audio cassettes: unidentified x 12, [1984-1994]

Box 25 
Miscellaneous music and poetry records x 37

 

Series 7 Photographs, 1960s-1994

This series comprises miscellaneous personal photographs and photographs relating to Millett's published books.

Box-folder 26 
Photographs and negatives of:
John Millett
Grace Perry
Berrima, NSW
Kylie Tennant
John Hinton

Box-folder 27 
Miscellaneous photographs and negatives of:
Grace Perry
Grace Perry and grandchildren
Moss Vale, NSW
Grace Perry and son Hugh, 1986
Grace Perry receiving her 1985 NSW Premier's Special Award for services to literature, 1986
Robert Peters and Millett, 1988
Paul Trachtenberg and Millett, 1988
John Millett
John Millett reading at the Academy Library, University College, Australian Defence Force Academy, taken by Jeff Doyle, 18/5/1989

Box-folder 28 
Miscellaneous photographs and negatives of:
'Heathcote', Niangala, NSW
Millett family photographs
Moss Vale, NSW, background for the town Greenville in Blue dynamite : a narrative 
Berrima, NSW
Monument, Moss Vale basis for the play 'Last bride at Longsleep', 1986
Walcha, NSW, 1987
K. Swart
John, Paul and Bob
Robert Peters, 1985
Research photographs for The nine lives of big Meg O'Shannessy : poems 
Photographs for View from the turret : World War II, 1994
Black and white school photograph

 

Series 8 Folios, 1936-2000

This series comprises certificates, photocopies of Millett's published pieces, scrapbooks, research material for Millett's published works and drawings by K. Swart.

Box-folder 1 
Certificate for New South Wales Premier's Literary Awards 2000, 'John Millett has been short-listed for The Kenneth Slessor Prize for poetry for 'Iceman''
Certificate for Order of Australia, Member in the Order of Australia (AM), 1999
Page proofs of The nine lives of big Meg O'Shannessy : poems 
Photocopies of published pieces, 1973-1999

Box-folder 2 
Scrapbook, 1997-2000
Research material, 1985-1999
Grace Perry's NSW Medical Board Certificate, 4 April 1951
Review of Snow in summer, by Grace Perry, 1981

Oversize 3 
Scrapbook, 1970s-1980s
Millett's Royal Life Saving Society Intermediate Certificate, 9/12/1936
Drawings and correspondence from K. Swart, 1988

 

Series 9 Posters

This series comprises posters and a photocopy of the Millett Wauch family pedigrees.

Oversize 1 
Poster entitled 'Discover northern perspective', Northern Territory University
Poster entitled Cuirt '87 international poetry festival, Nun's Island Arts Centre in association with Poetry Co-op

Oversize 2 
Photocopy of the Millett family pedigree, 16th century to c.1973
Photocopy of the Wauch family in Australia pedigree