University of New England - Innovation for a Healthier Planet

Ruth Mendelsohn papers, 1969-1995

Full finding aid (pdf)

Collection Scope and Content

The collection consists largely of poem drafts (handwritten and typed) and notes for poems and other writing projects. It includes copies of, and publicity/correspondence about, her chapbook, Sixteen Pastorals. The collection also includes materials from writing classes, correspondence to/from family and friends, tax paperwork as well as photographs.

Biographical/Historical Note

Born in 1949, Ruth Mendelsohn grew up in Cleveland, Ohio and graduated from the University of Oregon. In 1978, she moved to Maine where she lived, among other places, in Portland and East Vassalboro. She worked as a journalist for the Lewiston Daily Sun, and as a freelance writer. Her chapbook, Sixteen Pastorals, won the first Maine State Commission on the Arts & Humanities’ poetry chapbook competition in 1982. This chapbook, published by Theodore Press of Bangor, was Mendelsohn’s first ever poetry submission, for which she won $100. She died in 2009 in Scarborough, Maine at the age of sixty.