University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Shirley Brooks Collection 1858-1865

© 2016 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


Brooks, Shirley. Collection




0.25 linear feet (1 box)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


Charles William Shirley Brooks (1816–1874) was a British journalist and novelist. This collection contains correspondence between Brooks and various recipients, including Horace Mayhew. Also included is a collection of autographs from various artists associated with the British satirical magazine, Punch. The collection dates from 1858 – 1865, although some of the materials are undated.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Brooks, Shirley. Collection, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Charles William Shirley Brooks (April 29, 1816 – February 23, 1874) was a British journalist and novelist. Brooks was born in London to William Brooks, an architect, who died on 11 Dec. 1867, and his wife Elizabeth. Brooks marries Emily Margaret, daughter of Dr. William Walkinshaw of Naparima, Trinidad. Though he was an apprentice to his uncle, Charles Sabine of Oswestry, and he did pass the Incorporated Law Society’s examination, there is no record of Brooks ever becoming a solicitor. Brooks contributed to a number of British publications, including the Morning Chronicle, Illustrated London News, and the Literary Gazette, among others. Most notably, Brooks wrote as a staff member for the British weekly satire magazine, Punch. Upon the death of Mark Lemon, the magazine’s editor, Brooks assumed the position in 1851 until his death in 1874, at the age of 57.

Scope Note

The Shirley Brooks collection contains correspondence and assorted documents. Most of the letters are undated and outgoing from Brooks to various recipients. One letter is addressed to Brooks from author Horace Mayhew. Other documents in the collection include collection of autographs, mainly from artists for the satire magazine, Punch and a short Valentine’s Day poem, penned, presumably, by Brooks. The poem ends with the name “Faust,” possibly a reference to the duel between Goethe’s scholar of the same name and Valentin, another character in his play.

The collection was previously part of the Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection.

Related Resources

Browse finding aids by topic.

Subject Headings


Box 1   Folder 1

Correspondence, 1859 - 1869

  • Letter from Shirley Brooks to Mr. and Mrs. Mark Lemon, 1859 (Removed from PR4174.B4G7 1858 Rege)
  • Letter from Shirley Brooks to Horace Mayhew, November 9, 1865
  • Letter from Horace Mayhew to Shirley Brooks, date unknown
  • Letter from Shirley Brooks to unknown recipient (William Slecle?), November 5, 1869
  • Letter from Shirley Brooks to Dallas, date unknown
Box 1   Folder 2

Documents, 1858-1860

  • Collection of Autographed quotations, 1858-1860
  • Valentine’s Day Poem by Shirley Brooks, year unknown