Fletcher, John Gould
- Existence: 3 January 1886 - 10 May 1950
Born in Little Rock, Arkansas to a prominent family, John Gould Fletcher entered Harvard University in 1903 to study law. Following the death of his father in 1906, Fletcher withdrew from Harvard to pursue a career as a poet. Supported by the money left to him by his father, he left for Europe and settled in London where he self-published five volumes of poetry in 1913. Influenced first by Ezra Pound and then by Amy Lowell, he became well-known as an Imagist poet with the publication of five additional volumes of poetry and was featured prominently in the annual Some Imagist Poets anthologies. Fletcher married Florence Emily “Daisy” Arbuthnot in 1916. Influenced by the poetry of William Blake and by Oriental art and religion, Fletcher’s poetry took on religious undertones for his next three volumes of poetry. He also acquired a reputation as a literary journalist and befriended T. S. Eliot. Fletcher visited Nashville, Tennessee in 1927 as a lecturer and met John Crowe Ransom. He was invited to contribute an essay to the Agrarian manifesto I’ll Take My Stand and became a strong supporter of the Agrarian movement. He returned to Little Rock in 1933. After his divorce from Florence Arbuthnot, he married Charlie May Simon. A life-long sufferer from depression, Fletcher drowned himself in 1950.
Found in 2 Collections and/or Records:
This collection contains 1.67 linear feet of materials on the Fugitive Poets and the Nashville Agrarians. Most of the materials have to do with the years in the 1920’s when the Fugitive poet group was formed and the resulting poems, manuscripts, and correspondence. In addition there are a few items, mostly articles, that concern the Agrarian group.
This collection, 3.34 linear feet, is an addition to the Fugitive and Agrarian Collection MSS 160. It includes a wide range of items relating to the Fugitive and Agrarian groups and is especially valuable in the holdings of items from the 1980’s and 1990’s including correspondence, articles, book reviews, and other materials. In addition to the Fugitives and Agrarians themselves, whose biographical notes follow below, associates represented in this collection include: