Title and statement of responsibility area
General material designation
- Textual record
- Graphic material
Other title information
Title statements of responsibility
- Source of title proper: Title based on contents of the fonds.
Level of description
Edition statement of responsibility
Class of material specific details area
Statement of scale (cartographic)
Statement of projection (cartographic)
Statement of coordinates (cartographic)
Statement of scale (architectural)
Issuing jurisdiction and denomination (philatelic)
Dates of creation area
1923-1990, predominant 1965-1985 (Creation)
- Lieber, Maxim
Physical description area
1 photograph : b&w ; 5 x 6 cm
Publisher's series area
Title proper of publisher's series
Parallel titles of publisher's series
Other title information of publisher's series
Statement of responsibility relating to publisher's series
Numbering within publisher's series
Note on publisher's series
Archival description area
Name of creator
Maxim Lieber was born in Warsaw, Poland to Jewish parents in 1897. In 1907, his family moved to New York City, where they settled in the Bronx.
In 1918, Lieber joined the West Ontario Regiment of the Canadian Overseas Expeditionary Force. In 1919, he enlisted in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, from which he was honorably discharged in 1920. After serving the in the army, Lieber founded a New York-based publishing house, Lieber & Lewis, which was eventually taken over by Albert Boni in 1923. In 1925, Lieber co-edited an anthology entitled Great Short Stories of the World for this publisher. From 1926-1930, Lieber worked as head of publishing for Brentano’s, an independent bookstore and publishing company.
In 1930, Lieber created the Maxim Lieber Literary Agency. Many significant authors were represented by the agency. It is likely that Langston Hughes, Erskine Caldwell, John Cheever, Nathan Asch, Bob Coates, Carson McCullers, Josephine Herbst, Thomas Wolfe, Louis Adamic, and more were affiliated with it, though in the absence of more detailed records in the Lieber fonds, this assertion cannot be confirmed. Lieber remained working at his agency until 1950.
Lieber, his wife, and their children moved to Mexico in 1951. Whittaker Chambers claimed in his 1952 memoir Witness that Lieber was involved in Communist espionage activities in New York City, which may explain Lieber’s departure from the United States. In 1954, Lieber moved with his family to Warsaw, Poland. After taking up brief residency in the United Kingdom in 1968, the Liebers returned to the United States, settling in East Hartford, Connecticut. Lieber died in this town on April 10, 1993.
Scope and content
The fonds primarily features Maxim Lieber’s personal correspondence, particularly from 1965-1985; correspondence with academics interested in aspects of his personal and professional life; and publishing contracts for his edited anthologies. Additionally, some personal correspondence belongs to Maxim Lieber’s wife, Minna Lieber. Significant individuals represented include Langston Hughes, Erskine Caldwell, Malcolm Cowley, Vladimir Solomonovich Pozner, Howard Fast, Albert Maltz (of the Hollywood Ten), and Allen Weinstein (author of Perjury: The Hiss-Chambers Case).
Records are arranged in files. Documentary forms include the following: personal correspondence; signed copies of poems; a photograph of Langston Hughes from 1965; signed contracts for Lieber’s various edited anthologies; and cheque stubs.
Immediate source of acquisition
Language of material
Script of material
Location of originals
Availability of other formats
Restrictions on access
Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication
Charles Humboldt Papers, 1910-1964: Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
Victor Jeremy Jerome Papers, 1923-1967: Yale University’s Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library