Irene Bruce Papers

Identifier: 2017-26

Scope and Contents

The Irene Bruce Papers includes two notebooks of poems written by Irene Bruce. The first is inscribed by Bruce as "very early work" and includes a significant number of typed poems. Folded at the back of the notebook is a copy of her poem "I Saw Virginia City". The second notebook, titled "Odd Moments" and dedicated to her husband in 1939, includes a number of typed poems, some with pen annotations and corrections. The collection also contains a book jacket for and manuscript copy of her book Night Cry published by Poetry West in 1950. Finally, an addition of a printed broadside of "Sea Shell" and "Virginia City" is included.


  • 1939-1950


Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Materials must be used on-site; advance notice suggested. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law.

Biographical Note

Originally from Tulsa, Oklahoma, Irene Bruce (1903-1987) moved to Reno, Nevada in 1936 and took up writing. She attended the University of Nevada in Reno, but finding no course that would teach her how to write poetry, she founded the Reno Poetry Workshop in the 1940s. Bruce was very active in the local community, serving as the secretary of the Reno branch of the National League of American Pen Women, hosted a weekly poetry broadcast on KOH, and was the poetry editor for Nevada Magazine. She published more than 500 poems in the Christian Science Monitor, the New Mexico Quarterly Review, Nevada magazine, the Penwoman, Sunset, the San Francisco Examiner, and others. She was also the author of a number of books, including Night Cry (1950).

[Biographical note taken from: Glotfelty, Cheryl. Literary Nevada: Writings from the Silver State. Reno, Nevada: University of Nevada Press, 2008.]


0.21 Linear Feet (5 items)

Language of Materials



Irene Bruce (1903-1987) was a Nevada poet, poetry editor for Nevada magazine, founder of the Reno Poetry Workshop, and member of the National League of American Pen Women. The collection contains notebooks of poetry written by Bruce and a manuscript copy and a book jacket of Night Cry.


Arranged without hierarchy.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Donated by Michael Mackley in 2017.

Related Materials

Related archival materials held by the UNR Special Collections Department:

87-14, Irene Bruce Papers


Guide to the Irene Bruce Papers
Jessica Maddox and Jacquelyn Sundstrand
March 2017
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the University of Nevada, Reno. Special Collections Department Repository

Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center
1664 N. Virginia St.
Reno Nevada 89557-0322 USA
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