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New Mexico D. H. Lawrence Festival Records

Identifier: MSS-354-BC

Scope and Content

The collection contains administrative materials, including meeting minutes, financial records, grant materials (for NEH and the New Mexico Arts Division) and correspondence for the 1970 and 1980 New Mexico D. H. Lawrence Festivals. News clippings and articles, publicity, programs, and other ephemera are also found in the collection. One folder contains materials preliminarily organizing a 1982 festival. The collection was previously called the D. H. Lawrence Festival collection.


  • 1955-1981
  • Majority of material found in 1969-1971, 1979-1981

Language of Materials


Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Copy Restrictions

Limited duplication of CSWR material allowed for research purposes. User is responsible for compliance with all copyright, privacy, and libel laws. Permission is required for publication or distribution.


D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence was born at Eastwood, Nottinghamshire, England on September 11, 1885. A famed author who wrote and had published several novels and works of poetry, Lawrence traveled with his wife, Frieda to Taos, N.M. in 1922. Literary admirer Mabel Dodge Lujan gave the Lawrences the Kiowa Ranch, located outside of Taos where they lived from 1923-1928. During his time in New Mexico, Lawrence was involved in the swirl of the Taos art colony. While Lawrence was in New Mexico, The Plumed Serpent was published (1927) and he also finished work on and published Lady Chatterley's Lover (1928). Although he died in France, D. H. Lawrence's ashes were brought to the Kiowa Ranch where a small chapel was built to receive them.

In 1970, to commemorate the 40th anniversary of his death, the New Mexico D. H. Lawrence Festival was held in Taos from Oct. 1-5. The festival was sponsored jointly by the University of New Mexico and a committee of Taos residents. Clair Morrill, the main instigator for the Festival was named Chairman of the Festival Committee, and Mrs. J. P. Brandenburg was Executive Vice-President. Lawrence compatriot, Dorothy Brett was named an honorary member of the committee. Most of the money for the event was obtained from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the New Mexico Arts Commission. The Festival included exhibits of original Lawrence manuscripts, letters, and paintings, along with readings, plays, and a showing of the film "D.H. Lawrence in Taos." A two day conference was held October 1-2 in which a panel, lead by international literary scholars such as N. Scott Momaday, poet Robert Bly, and British novelist, Sean Hignett, discussed Lawrence the man; Lawrence in America; Lawrence and the importance of place; Lawrence the artist and critic: his attitudes toward sex, psychology and technology. The festival was a success, attracting a large number of participants and media attention.

A second New Mexico D.H. Lawrence Festival was held from July 16-20, 1980, with events in both Taos and Santa Fe. This festival commemorated the 50th anniversary of Lawrence's death. The idea for this festival originated with Anthony Branch and James Levy of Taos, and Tony Church of London, England. Church envisioned the 1980 festival in the same style as the 1970 Festival. Planning for the festival began early in 1979 with an appeal for outside funding which eventually was obtained from the New Mexico Arts Division and the New Mexico Tourism and Travel Division. Similar to 1970, the main events of the festival included a conference, exhibition, recital, plays, and showing of the film, "The Priest of Love". The conference was held at the Greer Garson Performing Arts Center, College of Santa Fe in Santa Fe, N.M. The theme was "D.H. Lawrence: Contemporary Life and Literature." Prominent American and British scholars and renowned authors were asked to discuss the relevance of Lawrence's work in prose, poetry and drama as it relates to and effects contemporary attitudes toward sex, religion, class, art, etc. The final list of speakers included N. Scott Momaday, Stephen Spender, A. Alvarez and Edward Albee.

The festival's recital, "Eagle in New Mexico," consisted of extracts from Lawrence's works. Contemporary actors including Jane Alexander, Anne Baxter, Tony Church, Richard Crenna, Julie Harris, Trevor Howard, Gayle Hunnicut, E.G. Marshal, Ian McKellan, Tony Randall, Diana Rigg, Eva Marie Saint, Dean Stockwell, and Elizabeth Taylor were asked to participate. Like the New Mexico D.H. Lawrence Festival of 1970, the 1980 festival was deemed a success by local newspapers and those who attended the event.


1 box (1 cu. ft.), plus oversize folder


The collection consists mainly of records, programs, background, correspondence and news articles pertaining to the 1970 and 1980 New Mexico D. H. Lawrence Festivals.

Related Archival Material

D.H. Lawrence Papers Center for Southwest Research, University Libraries, University of New Mexico
Finding Aid of the New Mexico D.H. Lawrence Festival Records, 1955-1981 (bulk 1969-1971, 1979-1981)
Processed by Illene Renfro
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is in English

Revision Statements

  • June 28, 2004: PUBLIC "-//University of New Mexico::Center for Southwest Research//TEXT (US::NmU::MSS 354 BC::New Mexico D.H. Lawrence Festival Records)//EN" "nmu1mss354bc.sgml" converted from EAD 1.0 to 2002 by v1to02.xsl (sy2003-10-15).
  • Monday, 20210524: Attribute normal is missing or blank.

Repository Details

Part of the UNM Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections Repository

University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research & Special Collections
University Libraries, MSC05 3020
1 University of New Mexico
Albuquerque NM 87131