Volume 2, Number 2


Learn more about plans to establish The American Writers Museum™


See what other people are saying about The American Writers Museum


Learn more about Executive Planning Team and National Advisory Council


Fill out our online survey and tell us what you want to see in The American Writers Museum


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The mission of the American Writers Museum Foundation is to establish the first national museum in the United States dedicated to engaging the public in celebrating American writers and exploring their influence on our history, our identity, our culture and our daily lives.

AWM About Panel (Fountain Pen)


"I write to express my hearty and enthusiastic support for the American Writers Museum...A national museum, which would offer a chance to explore the richness and vitality of one of the world's great cultural resources - the heritage of great American writing - is a remarkable idea and long overdue."

-David Spadafora, President, The Newberry Library, Chicago    



ChicagoTribuneChicago Tribune Features American Writers Museum


On June 25, the Chicago Tribune published an article highlighting The AWM Foundation's efforts to bring the nation's first museum for American writers to Chicago. "We don't underestimate the difficulty of the undertaking, but it will get done", Malcolm O'Hagan, the Museum's President stated in the article written by Sandra Jones. The Tribune went on to praise AWM, highlighting the fact that "the American Writers Museum would give the city its first major museum since 1999, when the Chicago Academy of Sciences opened the $33 million Peggy Notebaert Nature Museum in Lincoln Park. And it would solidify Chicago's growing reputation as a nexus for literature."

Read the article here.

ChicagoMeetingLocal Literary Community Gathers for AWM Briefing


What happens when 50 members of Chicago's literary community gather to share ideas? Great things! The AWM Foundation recently invited members of Chicago's vibrant literary community to an introduction of the museum's plans and progress, and provided the opportunity to share ideas about the new national museum which is likely to be established in the Windy City. Many thanks to the enthusiastic response from all those from the local library system, universities, literary, cultural and humanities organizations who joined the conversation during two sessions in June. Plans are in the works to form a Chicago Advisory Council as an adjunct to the National Advisory Council. Stay tuned.


  Chicago June Meeting 1       Chicago June Meeting 2

EdFolsomEd Folsom and Patrick Coleman Join AWM National Advisory Council


The American Writers Museum is pleased to announce the addition of Ed Folsom and Patrick Coleman to our National Advisory Council. Coleman has been the Acquisitions Librarian at the Minnesota Historical Society for the last three decades. He has also served as the president of the Library of Congress's Minnesota Center for the Book and has a passion for collecting Irish literature. Folsom is the Roy J. Carver professor of English at the University of Iowa. He has published ten books and has edited the Walt Whitman Quarterly Review since 1983. AWM is proud to add these two new members to the Council and looks forward to an exciting partnership.

AWMSurveyAWM Survey Participants Most Interested in Artifacts and Memorabilia     


More than 90% of the 283 participants of AWM's online survey want to see exhibits that feature first-hand encounters with artifacts, such as books, manuscripts, and authors' memorabilia. Personal stories of writers' lives drew 85% of participants' interests, coming in second as something participants would like to see. Stunning architectural space drew the least interest in comparison to the other experiences.  


We thank those who have taken the time to complete the survey and encourage those who have not done so already to do so here. We appreciate your input as AWM continues to grow! 

PoetryFoundationO'Hagan Praises New Poetry Foundation Building  

 Tribune photos of the Poetry Foundation building by Zbigniew Bzdak

The Poetry Foundation, an independent literary organization, presented its new environmentally sustainable building to the public on June 25. The new building fulfills a lifetime dream of Poetry magazine founder Harriet Monroe. Monroe imagined that the magazine would help poets pursue their art, increase public interest in poetry, and raise poetry's profile in society. President and founder of the AWM, Malcolm O'Hagan, praised the new building. "Chicago is lucky to add this wonderful three dimensional poem to its treasure of architectural gems," O'Hagan said. "The new Poetry Foundation building speaks to the quiet power and beauty of poetry, and is a fitting tribute to Harriet Monroe and Ruth Lilly. Kudos to the architect Mr. Ronan and the vision of the Poetry Foundation."


The building design uses a number of eco-friendly techniques, including a partial green roof and materials that are locally sourced or produced from renewable or recycled sources. The primary goal of the new building, however, is discovering and celebrating the best poetry in the literary world today. The ground floor is dedicated solely to public use with a garden, speaking venue, and an exhibition gallery.   


To learn more about The Poetry Foundation, visit their website here.  


Chicago Tribune photo of the Poetry Foundation building by Zbigniew Bzdak.

SpotlightLibraryofAmericaSpotlight on an AWM Friend: The Library of America


The Library of America is a non-profit organization that strives to keep literature alive in our communities. The Library honors America's history by publishing the nation's best and most significant writing in authoritative editions. Newsweek has called it "the most important book-publishing project in our nation's history." Their mission: to keep the price of the books affordable, to aid small public libraries and high schools with their purchase of volumes, and to publish and give credit to lesser-known works. Max Rudin, the publisher of The Library of America, is a member of AWM's National Advisory Council and an exemplary advocate of literature. Mr. Rudin writes on American history, literature, music, and popular culture for American Heritage and Raritan magazines. He also serves on the Board of Directors of The Great Books Foundation and The New York Festival of Song.  


To learn more or search for your favorite works, visit The Library of America's website here

TriviaQuestionTrivia Question: First to Answer Wins A Prize


Who was the legendary writer of the South, known mainly by his pen name, featured on the cover of TIME Magazine's July 2008 Annual Making of America Issue decades after his death?  


The first person to email the correct answer to general@americanwritersmuseum.org will receive a free AWM bookmark and a Writers for Writing poster, and be recognized in our next issue. Please make sure to clearly state the answer in the subject line. We will send an e-mail request for a mailing address to the winner.  

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