Skip to main content

Madeleine L'Engle Papers

Identifier: CLRC-47

Scope and Content

The collection contains production materials for nearly a dozen titles written by L'Engle, including works for both children and adults, as well as a book of poetry. The material primarily includes typescripts and proofs, as well as some correspondence, and typescripts for speeches.


  • circa 1960-circa 1990


Conditions Governing Access

Open for use in the Elmer L. Andersen Library reading room.

Conditions Governing Use

This collection may be protected by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S. Code). It is the user's responsibility to verify copyright ownership and to obtain all necessary permissions prior to the reproduction, publication, or other use of any portion of these materials. Researchers may quote from the collection under the fair use provision of the copyright law.

Biographical Sketch

Madeleine L'Engle, nee Madeleine L'Engle Camp, was born November 29, 1918 in New York, New York. She attended Smith College, graduating with an A.B. in 1941, and married Hugh Franklin in 1946, and had three children. Ms. L'Engle was active in the theater during the 1940s as an actress and playwright and published her first play, 18 Washington Square South, in 1944. She also began writing children's and adult fiction during the 1940s, publishing her first adult novel, Ilsa, in 1944 and her first children's book, And Both Were Young, in 1949. Ms. L'Engle continued to write children's and young adult fiction, introducing the Austin family in 1960's Meet the Austins. In 1962 her best known book, A Wrinkle in Time, was published and won the Newbery Award the following year. A provocative story that mixes science fiction and fantasy with a Christian message, along with a strong emphasis on family love and responsibility, the book established Ms. L'Engle as an author capable of presenting complex themes and scientific theory as well as an able portrayer of realisitic family relationships and interactions. Ms. L'Engle continued to explore themes in her other Time Fantasy novels, several of them sequels to A Wrinkle In Time. The themes of good versus evil and the need for strong family relationships and personal responsibility are crucial elements of Ms. L'Engle's books, as is often an understated Christian message. Ms. L'Engle also moves some of her characters from book to book, providing a unique sense of character development and continuity. Ms. L'Engle has continued to publish works for children and young adults, as well as verse, fiction and non-fiction for adults. In 1990, Ms. L'Engle was awarded the Kerlan Award, given by the Children's Literature Research Collection at the University of Minnesota in recognition of her achievements in children's literature. L'Engle died in 2007.


2.5 Cubic Feet (2 record cartons)

Language of Materials



The collection contains typescripts and related material for titles written by Madeleine L'Engle.


Collection guide arranged alphabetically by published title, with speeches at the end.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Madeleine L'Engle

Madeleine L'Engle Papers, circa 1960-circa 1990
David E. Byer
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Collecting Area Details

Contact The Children's Literature Research Collections Collecting Area

Suite 113, Elmer L. Andersen Library