MS 9581 comprises correspondence between Christina Stead and her brother David Darwin Stead, during the period 1929-1983, with the majority dating from 1970s. Included are brief notes Stead wrote to her cousin Gwen Walker-Smith on the source for characters in her books The Salzburg tales and Seven poor men of Sydney. There is also the typescript of a poem written by Stead in 1916 titled "On a Belgian battlefield", photographs, the Premier's Literary Award Medal awarded in 1982 for her distinguished contribution to Australian literature, the Certificate of Honorary Membership presented by the American Academy and Institute of Arts and Letters, 1982, a school report for 1916, photocopy of Stead's death certificate, and journals and newspaper cuttings relating to Stead's career and death (1 box, 1 folio).
Novelist and short-story writer. Christina Ellen Stead was born and educated in Australia, but spent most of her life abroad. During the 1930s she began to have novels published, with her acknowledged masterpiece, The man who loved children, being released in 1940. Despite critical acclaim she did not win a more general following until the mid-1960s. In 1974, Stead returned to Australia, making it her home for the first time since 1928.
Manuscript reference no.: MS 9581.
Associated materials: Papers of Christina Stead, 1919-1996 MS 4967.
Associated materials: Papers of Christina Stead, 1937-1988 MS 8645.
Also available online http://nla.gov.au/nla.obj-383776058