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Collection of Waldo Peirce Materials

Identifier: PEIRCE-1

Scope and Contents

The collection comprises Waldo Peirce's correspondence (including letters to and from Ernest Hemingway); manuscripts; photographs; scrapbooks (documenting the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain, as well as time spent with Hemingway in Key West, Florida); and printed materials relating to his life and work.


  • 1907 - 1970


Language of Materials

Mostly English, with one illustrated manuscript, Don Ernesto en Pamplona in Spanish, and published article A La recherche du tabac et des billiard perdus (Ictiber 8m 1960, Harvard Alumni bulletin) in French.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Materials to be used on site during regular Special Collections hours or by appointment. Photocopying or scanning may be possible at discretion of staff for nominal fee. Materials may be protected by copyright.

Biographical/Historical Note

Waldo Peirce (1884-1970) was born in Bangor, Maine, and educated at Phillips Academy in Andover and Harvard University. He later studied at the Art Students League in New York City and at the Julian Academy in Paris. As an expatriate American, he drove ambulances for the French Army in World War I and led a bohemian life with notable companions such as Ernest Hemingway and John Reed. His later life was spent in Searsport, Maine, and Newburyport, Massachusetts, where he died at age 85. His paintings and writings relate strongly to his travels and to the state of Maine. Colby College awarded Peirce an honorary degree in 1957.


0.5 Linear Feet


The collection comprises letters, scrapbooks, and manuscript items by Waldo Peirce, an American painter, bohemian, and expatriate born in Bangor, Maine.

Arrangement Note

Arranged in six series by form of material: Correspondence, (1928-1965 and undated); Manuscripts (1923-1969 and undated); Photographs (1907-1930 and undated); Related printed materials (1934-1970 and undated); Scrapbooks (1927-1928); and Clippings (1936-1970).

Custodial History

Materials acquired via gift or purchase.


Gifts from Waldo Peirce, Peirce family and other sources.

Finding Aid to the Collection of Waldo Peirce Materials
Colby College Special Collections, Waterville, Maine
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Colby College Special Collections Repository

Special Collections & Archives (SC&A), located in Miller Library, is the college’s repository for historically and culturally -significant materials, including the college archives. Our fabulous materials range in date from the 12th to the 21st centuries and represent a wide range of formats. We fully support Colby’s academic program and innovative pedagogies through aspirational collection development, faculty and student engagement, teaching and exhibition.