An Inventory of The Common Pasture Manuscripts at the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
Hilary Masters (1928-), author and lecturer, was born in Kansas City, Missouri, to writer Edgar Lee Masters and his wife, Ellen (Coyne) Masters. Masters attended Davidson college from 1944-1946. He interrupted his education to serve as a naval correspondent from 1946-1947, and then graduated from Brown University in 1952.
Masters has had a varied literary career. He began a career as a theatrical agent in New York from 1953-1956 and later was a newspaper editor and publisher for the Hyde Park Record from 1956-1959. During the 1970s and 1980s, Masters was a visiting scholar at such institutions as Drake University (1975-1977), Clark University (1978), Ohio University (1979), and also served as a Fulbright lecturer in Finland (1983) and at Carnegie-Mellon University (1983-1985).
In addition to these pursuits, Masters has written several novels, including The Common Pasture (1967), An American Marriage (1969), Palace of Strangers (1971), as well as Last Stands: Notes from Memory, a 1982 autobiographical account of his family history. Masters' short fiction has been published in a variety of journals, including Greensboro Review, Massachusetts Review, Ohio Review, and Sports Illustrated.
Hilary Masters is a member of the Authors Guild, the Author's League of America, and the Association of Poets, Playwrights, Editors, Essayists, and Novelists.
One and a half document boxes contain typescripts, drafts, galley proofs, filmscripts, and scenic production notes for Masters' first novel, The Common Pasture (1967), dating 1965-68.
The collection consists of a succession of five typescript drafts of the novel, arranged chronologically from original to final version. All of the drafts are heavily revised with corrections by the author, as well as printer's and editor's marks on the final draft.
The collection also contains two typescript drafts of the screenplay, both with the author's revision, and typescript scene sketches for a film. The latter is prefaced by the notes of the producer, Jaqueline Baxlin, indicating script and plot changes. It is not clear whether this film was ever completed.
There is no material in the collection relating to Masters' other literary works or to his personal life. No correspondence is present.
Open for research
Christopher D. Filippi, April 1995
Hilary Masters Papers--Folder List