Fonds - William E. Fredeman fonds

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William E. Fredeman fonds

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  • 1952-1999 (Creation)
    Fredeman, William E., 1928-1999

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Physical description

2.78 m of textual records and other material

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Name of creator


Biographical history

William Evan (Dick) Fredeman was born in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, in 1928. He was raised in Little Rock and attended schools in Arkansas and in Tennessee. He served in the U.S. Navy in World War II and then attended university in Arkansas and Oklahoma (Ph.D., 1956). While teaching high school and completing his graduate degrees, he served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Army Reserve. Fredeman joined UBC's Department of English in 1956. He received the first of many Canada Council, SSHRC, Killam, and Guggenheim Fellowship grants in 1959 and spent the following year in London doing research for Pre-Raphaelitism: A Bibliocritical Study, based on his Ph.D. dissertation, which was published in 1965. Although he was enormously interested in and published widely about the Victorian era, Fredeman continued to focus on the Pre-Raphaelite poets and painters for the rest of his life. He wrote more than fifty articles and reviews on Rossetti and the Pre-Raphaelites, Tennyson, and bibliography, as well as the Introductions to A Bookman's Catalogue: The Norman Colbeck Collection of nineteenth century and Edwardian poetry and belles lettres in the Special Collections of the University of British Columbia, and Thomas Bird Mosher Pirate Prince of Publishers. He had also completed two volumes of his major study, Dante Gabriel Rossetti's letters, at the time of his death. Other publications and activities included: editor of William Michael Rossetti's PRB Journal (1975); A Rossetti Cabinet (1991); three John Rylands Library monographs; three special numbers of Victorian Poetry; and four volumes of the Dictionary of Literary Biography (with Ira B. Nadel). Fredeman also served as president of the Victorian Section of the Modern Language Association of America; founding member and first vice-president of the Research Society for Victorian Periodicals; member of the editorial boards for Victorian Poetry, Victorian Studies, and the Journal of Publishing History; co-editor of the Journal of Pre-Raphaelite & Aesthetic Studies, 1987-91; and co-chair of the Canadian University Committee of the Editorial Boards, Encyclopaedia Britannica (1986-1999). While at UBC he was instrumental in arranging the donation of English bookseller Norman Colbeck's collection of nineteenth century and Edwardian literature to the Library in 1967, as well as for Colbeck's own hiring by the University to catalogue the collection. He also assisted the Library in acquiring other significant collections of Victorian literature, including both books and manuscripts. Fredeman also lectured extensively at learned societies and universities in Canada, the United States, and Great Britain, and was a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. He himself was also an avid collector of books, antiques, and art. He died on July 15, 1999, four days before his 71st birthday.

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Scope and content

The fonds contains materials which document William Fredeman's professional activities and his personal life. It consists of correspondence, reports, copies of articles, course materials, a journal, clippings, microfilms and photocopies of original manuscripts, written notes and other research materials, photographs, videocassettes, a set of index cards, and a metal seal bearing the logo of the Journal of Pre-Raphaelite & Aesthetic Studies. The materials are arranged in the following series: Colbeck Collection, JPRAS (Journal of Pre-Raphaelite & Aesthetic Studies), Emily Faithfull and the Victorian Press, Victorian Poetry, T.J. Wise and UBC Materials, Mosher Books, Correspondence, Subject Files, Miscellaneous, Microfilm, and Audiovisual Materials. The photographs and videocassettes are stored and described separately.

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Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Most materials were acquired from William Fredeman's wife Betty in 2000. A small selection of subject files and Colbeck-related material was acquired in 2003.


Where the original order of the material is obvious, that order has been maintained. Otherwise, the material has been re-organized in a logical manner.

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Online Finding Aid
Photographs and videocassettes are described in the Historical Photograph Database and the Sound and Moving Image Database, respectively.

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BCAUL control number: UBCARCH-918

Physical description

Includes 50 reels of microfilm, 4 black-and-white photographs, 2 videocassettes, 1 set of index cards, and 1 metal seal or stamp.

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