Sarabande Books records, 1990-2022

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Sarabande Books
Sarabande Books is a non-profit literary press publishing poetry and fiction. The Sarabande Books records include materials documenting the founding of the company as well as yearly publishing materials.
123.5 Linear Feet
Collection ID:


Scope and content:

This collection (accession #2000-0306) (4150 items, dated 1992-1996) documents the founding of the company. Many files mention editor and president Sarah Gorham and include start-up files, correspondence and author files, marketing materials, financial records, and other materials generated by the press. Also includes Gorham's memoir written during the first days of the press; files on prizes offered by the press (the Mary McCarthy Prize for short fiction and the Kathryn A. Morthon Prize for poetry); correspondence with authors Jane Mead, Lee Martin, Richard Frost, Sharon Bryan, Laura Jenson, Medbh McGuckian, and Liliana Ursu; and correspondence with Sallie Bingham about the formation of the press. Acquired as part of the Sallie Bingham Center for Women's History and Culture.

Addition (2001-0022) (2911 items, 4.4 linear feet; dated 1996-1997) continues to document the company's activities. Materials include correspondence files; author files; sales and marketing files; 24 color and 4 black-and-white photographs; 11 electronic (computer) files; and material relating to Sarabande's non-profit operations from 1996 to 1997. Much of the correspondence tracks letters to and from Sallie Bingham and Sarah Gorham. Authors represented include Dick Allen, Brian Griffin, Sharon Solwitz, Belle Waring, and Baron Wormser.

Addition (2002-0062) (2260 items, 6.3 linear feet; dated 1996-1998) comprises primarily author binders, files, and correspondence (1996-1998); and marketing and sales records, including examples of advertisements and reviews (1998). Also includes correspondence between Sallie Bingham and Sarah Gorham (1998); poetry and fiction galleys; documents related to the press' nonprofit activities, including 2 audio cassette tapes and paper records documenting board meetings (1998); 2 color and 10 black-and-white photographs and 1 black-and-white negative; and 18 electronic (computer) files originally received on one 3.5" diskette. Authors represented include Cathleen Hagenston, James Kimbrell, Stefanie Marlis, Shara McCallum, Jean Valentine, and Kate Walbert.

Addition (2003-0021) (2,300 items, 5.30 linear feet; dated 1995-2002) consists largely of author files (1997-2000) and printed material comprising journals and review publications (1998-1999). Also includes office correspondence (1995-2002); sales analyses, grant proposals, and marketing files (1996-2001); and documents related to conferences and events, special projects, board meetings, and nonprofit activities.

Addition (2004-0018) (4000 items, 6.6 lin. ft.; dated 1999-2001) includes author binders and files, correspondence, financial and marketing archives, and manuscript galleys. This accession is closed to researchers.

Addition (2005-0019) (3695 items, 6.0 lin. ft.; dated 2000-2001) primarily comprises authors' binders, including incoming and outgoing correspondence, as well as typescript drafts and galleys. Also includes reviews, press releases, and advertisements; notes from sales conferences and board meetings; consortium sales analyses; a non-profit activity file; and organizational materials for Sarabande-in-Education, a website program for college students and teachers. This accession is closed to researchers.

Addition (2006-0025) (3,750 items, 6.0 lin. ft.; dated 2001-2002) comprises correspondence, drafts, galleys, marketing and biographical files, contracts, press releases, and book reviews. This accession is closed to researchers.

Addition (2007-0041) (6,000 items, 9.2 lin. ft.; dated 1996-2003) contains autographed books, authors' files, manuscripts, the contents of author binders, marketing files, board meeting files, nonprofit activitiy files, Lila Wallace materials, sales kits, a Writer's Almanac CD, and a Sallie Bingham rehearsal tape for Short Fiction Series.

Addition (2008-0028) (4,500 items; 6.0 lin. ft.; dated 2004-2005) contains author files, correspondence, marketing files and galleys for books published in 2004-2005. Also included are 2 CDR's of the Writer's Almanac.

Addition (2009-0092) (8325 items; 11.1 lin. ft.; dated 1998-2009) includes administrative files, book reviews, press releases, author files and correspondence, and manuscripts and drafts from authors published by Sarabande.

Addition (2010-0028) (9000 items; 12.0 lin. ft.; dated 2001-2010) includes administrative files, Sarabande correspondence with authors, author files, poetry and fiction finalists, and various book reviews and advertisements.

Addition (2011-0076) (6750 items; 9.0 lin. ft.; dated 1994-2011) includes materials from conferences, non-profit activities, grants, correspondence, marketing, staffing, finances, and author files.

Addition (2012-0046) (3188 items; 4.5 lin. ft.; dated 2006-2011) includes correspondence, publicity files, author files, and manuscripts.

Addition (2013-0158) (5625 items; 7.5 lin. ft.; dated 2006-2012) includes author files, reviews, manuscripts, author correspondence and administrative materials.

Addition (2015-0150) (900 items; 1.2 lin. ft.; dated 2008-2014) includes administrative materials and author correspondence, foundation research and correspondence, and author files.

Addition (2015-0151) (2250 items; 4.5 lin. ft.; dated 2009-2015) includes administrative files, author files and author binders.

Addition (2016-0311) (3.0 lin. ft; dated 2011-2016) consists chiefly of author files. Also contains files related to prizes and awards.

Addition (2018-0011) (4.0 lin. ft.; dated 2016-2018) consists of publicity and author files that contain drafts of recently published works.

Addition (2019-0093) (1.5 lin. ft.; dated 2015-2017) consists of author files, including Sallie Bingham's publishing agreement and drafts of works.

Addition 2021-0075 (1.5 lin. ft.; dated 2019-2020) includes author files for books published in 2019 and 2020, Sarabande Writing Labs brochure, 2019 and 2020 catalogs, press releases and reviews for 2019 and 2020 books, and annual reports.

Addition 2022-0084 (3.0 lin. ft.; dated 1990 and 2010-2022) includes author files, Sarabande Writing Labs anthologies, catalogs, promotional ephemera, a poetry broadsides.

Biographical / historical:

Sarabande Books is a non-profit literary press publishing poetry and fiction. It was established in 1994 by Sarah Gorham in Louisville, Kentucky.

Acquisition information:
The Sarabande Books Records were received by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book Manuscript Library as a purchase in 2000-2003; further annual accessions were added to the collection from 2005-2022.
Processing information:

Processed by Lisa Stark and Ruth E. Bryan

Completed August 9, 2000 and February 16, 2001

Additions processed by Allan Maule; Danielle McGregor; Elizabeth Arnold; Meghan Lyon; Megan Lewis

Encoded by Ruth E. Bryan; Joshua A. Kaiser; Meghan Lyon; Megan Lewis

Accession 2021-0075 added and finding aid updated by Tracy M. Jackson, August 2021.

Accession 2022-0084 added and finding aid updated by Leah Tams, May 2022.

Rules or conventions:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard


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Collection is restricted.

In addition, some of the materials in this collection are not immediately accessible, because they require further processing before use.

Terms of access:

The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

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Preferred citation:

[Identification of item], Sarabande Books Records, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.