The Ivan Doig Archive - Digital Collection

What is it?

Ivan Doig Archive - Digital Collection The Ivan Doig Archive - Digital Collection is found in the Montana State University Special Collections . The Ivan Doig Archive - Digital Collection scope encompasses diaries, literary manuscripts, research papers, legal documents, photographs and memorabilia created or collected by Ivan Doig that were donated to Montana State University by Carol Doig of Seattle, Washington on October 1, 2015.

Ivan Doig (June 27, 1939 – April 9, 2015), a third generation Montanan, was born in White Sulphur Springs, Montana. He grew up along the Rocky Mountain Front where much of his writing takes place. His highly acclaimed memoir, This House of Sky (1978), was a finalist for the National Book Award. A former ranch hand, newspaperman, and magazine editor, Doig graduated from Northwestern University where he received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in journalism, he earned a Ph.D. in history from the University of Washington in 1969, and during his career was the recipient of three honorary doctorates. In the century’s-end San Francisco Chronicle polls to name the best Western novels and works of non-fiction, Doig was the only living writer with books in the top dozen on both lists: English Creek in fiction and This House of Sky in non-fiction. He lived in Seattle with his wife, Carol, who taught the literature of the American West.

The Ivan Doig Archive consists of manuscripts, proofs and galleys, typed and handwritten writing fragments, pocket notebooks, note cards, diaries, journals, photographs, audio/visual material, and memorabilia. The material has been sorted into twelve series based on subject and/or document type, and there is some overlap between these divisions. The first series consists of Doig’s diaries and biographical information. The second series is the largest and consists of the various manuscript drafts and revisions, along with associated research and some publisher and promotion correspondence, all relating to sixteen books by Doig published between 1978 and 2015. The series of correspondence includes letters to and from other writers, publishers, and friends. Series four consists of essays, letters, and other materials by Doig on the process of writing and are not necessarily related to any given book title. His practice of taking notes on small pocket spiral notebooks, and also typing research findings or other writing ideas on note cards, are represented in two separate series. The note cards in particular relate back to the composition of Doig’s books and some boxes bear the titles of those works. Other series include photographs, slides, audio and video recordings used for research purposes as well as readings and interviews with Ivan about his work. A series of material titled “Medical Journey” documents Doig’s struggle with his final illness and includes both his own thoughts on the process as well as actual medical records. Finally, there is a small selection of Doig’s favorite research books that were taken from his office library. The arrangement and description of the archive closely follows a preliminary inventory created for the papers by Ms. Betty Mayfield, a close friend of the Doigs and the person who prepared the material for donation in 2015. Please visit the Ivan Doig Archive homepage to read more about Ivan and the archive.

Table of Contents

The MSU Library Collection 2602 - Ivan Doig Archive (1939-2015) Special Collections' Finding Aid has complete details on this archive's materials and their content and provenance.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], [Item permalink or DOI], Ivan Doig Archive - Digital Collection, Montana State University (MSU) Library, Bozeman, MT

Copyright Notice

Whenever possible, the Montana State University Library provides information about copyright in our digital collections records. We often do not own the rights in materials, and as such do not grant permissions for their use. Permissions and fees may be required from the individual copyright holder for uses beyond what is allowed based on U.S. Copyright Law (

Please attempt to determine if an item is protected by copyright and follow any copyright or use restrictions when applicable. Written permission from the copyright holder is required for reproduction of protected items beyond what is allowed by fair use or other exemptions. These materials may be used for personal use, research, teaching (including distribution to classes), or any "fair use" as defined by U.S. copyright laws.

For more information please contact Archives and Special Collections at the Montana State University Library or Leila Sterman, Scholarly Communication Librarian.


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