Hoke Norris Papers

Institution: Newberry Library
60 W. Walton St.
Chicago, IL 60610
Phone: 312-255-3506
Date: 1934-1977
Extent: 13.52 Linear Feet
Finding Aid

Biographical/Historical Note:
Reporter, book reviewer, novelist, and public affairs director. Hoke Marion Norris was born on October 8, 1913 in Holly Springs, North Carolina. Norris left North Carolina in 1955 to work as a reporter (1955-1958), and literary editor (1958-1968), at the Chicago Sun-Times. During the 1960’s he played a significant role in reporting the events surrounding Civil Rights movement in the South. After leaving the Sun-Times, Norris served on the editorial board of the Chicago Daily News from 1968-1970, and taught creative writing at the University of Chicago. In 1971, Norris became the Director of Public Information at the Chicago Public Library, where he worked until 1974. He then served as the Assistant Vice-President for Public Affairs and Director of the Office of Public Information at the University of Chicago until 1976. In addition to his contributions to newspapers, Norris edited and wrote short stories, magazine articles, and novels. Norris died on July 8, 1977 at the age of 63.

Scope and Content Note:
Correspondence, scrapbooks, photographs, clippings, literary manuscripts, research materials, and miscellaneous ephemera documenting the personal and professional life of Hoke Norris.

The bulk of the collection consists of Norris' works, which are primarily typescript, and include entire novels as well as drafts and clippings of reviews, reportage, short stories, poems, lectures, proposed anthologies, assorted notes, and collaborations between Norris and other writers. Correspondence is between Norris and friends, relatives, coworkers, colleagues, and publishers. Prominent correspondents include Marshall Best, Gwendolyn Brooks, Lewis Lapham, and Henry Miller.

Related Material: None