Skip to main content
Please contact the Booth Family Center for Special Collections for assistance with accessing these materials.

Drafts of Short Assorted Fictional Prose P-Z, Poetry, and Non-Fiction Articles

 File — Box: 7

Scope and contents note

From the Collection:

The George Horton Papers consist of 34 boxes. The collection is arranged into eight series: Correspondence; Diaries, Memoirs, and Lectures; Manuscripts and Drafts; Photographs; Newspaper Clippings; Horton Family Scrapbooks and Schoolbooks; Miscellaneous Documents; and Nancy Horton Materials. The contents of these series range from circa-1870 to 1964, with the bulk of the materials dating from 1923-1940.

The collection includes information on Horton's work for the U.S. Consular Service from 1893-1924, with a particular focus on Greece (Saloniki and Athens), Hungary (Budapest), and Turkey (Smyrna, pre-1923). The bulk of Horton’s correspondence—especially during the years from 1923-1924—relates to his role as U.S. Consul in Budapest, and references his time as U.S. Consul in Smyrna. Unfortunately, much of Horton’s pre-1923 correspondence was lost in the Great Fire of Smyrna in 1922. The collection also includes legal documents relating to a shipping dispute ca. 1910, that Horton had to help settle in his role as U.S. Consul, and the collection includes two of Horton’s poems about consular service: “Homesick” (published in the Saturday Evening Post) and “The Song of the Consular Service,” circulated among various consuls abroad as a sort of in-joke. Additionally, the collection includes a Papal Certificate given to Horton in 1917, recognizing Horton’s role in helping Christians at Smyrna ca. 1915-1917.

The collection also includes information on the early twentieth-century circle of writers known as the “Chicago Renaissance,” which included Theodore Dreiser and Eugene Field. Prior to ca. 1907, Horton was making a name for himself as a writer and journalist. He had several published works, including the best-selling “Like Another Helen” (1901), “In Argolis” (1902), “Songs of the Lowly and Other Poems” (1892), “Aphroessa, A Legend of Argolis, and Other Poems” (1897), and “The Tempting of Father Anthony” (1901)—among others. Georgetown's Rare Book collection includes first editions of a number of Horton's published works, given as a gift by Nancy Horton. The collection also includes a copy of “Leaves of Grass,” inscribed to Horton by Walt Whitman. Horton's description of his meeting with Whitman can be found in the box containing “Diaries, Memoirs, and Lectures.” The collection also includes a signed and inscribed leaf detatched from an addition of “Sister Carrie” from Theodore Dreiser to George Horton, which can be found in “Miscellaneous Documents.”

After Horton retired from the consular service in 1924, he again began to produce published works, including “Recollections Grave and Gay: The Story of a Mediterranean Consul” (1927) and “Home of Nymphs and Vampires” (1929). Horton’s most famous work of this period—and perhaps his most controversial— is his non-fiction account of the events at Smyrna, “The Blight of Asia” (1926). Many of the newspaper clippings in the collection are reviews of Horton’s literary work, or are articles written by Horton when he worked as a journalist in Chicago. Not all of Horton’s work was published, however. Our collection includes drafts and manuscripts of unpublished short stories and novels written while Horton was in the consular service and after his retirement. These include several novels, such as “Phryne,” “The Senator’s Wife” (also titled “Hungarian Rhapsody”), and “The Sultan’s Ruby” (also titled “The Fez of Jasmine Daddy” or “The Fez of Hammer Daddy,” with the subtitle “The Last Days of Abdul Hamid”). Much of Horton’s correspondence includes letters to his publishers and to editors, sending queries about publication for his novels and short stories. His correspondence also includes a series of letters to Ruth Kimball Gardiner, with whom he collaborated on a play (a draft of which is included in the collection) and a writer friend named Mary O’Connor Newell. Additionally, Horton was a friend to the Greek people, and then-Prime Minister of Greece, Eleftherios Venizuelos, wrote a forward for “The Sultan’s Ruby,” which Horton sent to his publishers. At the last minute, the publication of the book fell through, and the forward was returned to Horton. The forward is in the collection, in the box that contains “Drafts, P-O.” The collection also includes a signed and inscribed photograph of Venizuelos.

Other notable correspondents include Sir Harry H. Lamb, the British consul at Smyrna during the Great Fire; Stephen Bleeker Luce; Henry Cabot Lodge; J. Loder Park; Dr. Mitchell Carroll, President of the Art and Archaelogy League of Washington; Sir Arthur Crosfield, of Highgate; Amelie Louise Rives Troubetzkoy; H. Earle Russell; Brainerd P. Salmon; Ruth Kimball Gardiner; and Leland B. Morris.

Additionally, the memoirs and diary entries in Horton’s collection provide detailed first-hand accounts of life as a child in New York and Michigan during the 1860s and 1870s, and of life in San Francisco in the 1880s. His diary entries and lectures also provide a first-hand account of a westerner encountering Japan in 1901, and of a trip through Siberia, also in 1901. These travel journals and accounts provide information on customs and ways of life in Japan and Siberia, from a western point of view.

Finally, the collection includes many early twentieth-century photographs of Greece and other Mediterranean nations. Most of these are landscapes, or photographs of traditional ways of life. The collection also includes portraits of George Horton and other family members. Additionally, the collection includes four boxes of glass lantern slides, which appear to have been used by Horton when giving lectures on Greece.


  • From the Series: ca. 1890-1940
  • From the Series: Majority of material found within 1890 - 1940

Conditions Governing Access note

Most manuscripts collections at the Georgetown University Library Booth Center for Special Collections are open to researchers; however, restrictions may apply to some collections. Collections stored off site require a minimum of three days for retrieval. For use of all manuscripts collections, researchers are advised to contact Special Collections in advance of any visit.


From the Collection: 13.16 Cubic Feet (34 boxes)

Language of Materials


Container Summary

Drafts, arranged alphabetically by title and type.


Repository Details

Part of the Georgetown University Manuscripts Repository

Lauinger Library, 5th Floor
37th and O Streets, N.W.
Washington DC 20057