University of Arizona

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Papers of Charles G. Finney

Charles G. Finney

Charles G. Finney was a writer and newspaper editor born in Sedalia, MO on December 1, 1905. He served in China as part of the U.S. Army 15th Infantry Regiment from 1927-1929 which was the inspiration for his novel The Old China Hands (1960). Upon returning from China in 1930, Finney moved to Tucson, AZ and became the editor of the Arizona Daily Star newspaper. Finney wrote a variety of novels and short stories including his most famous work The Circus of Dr. Lao, which was later adapted into a film.

A majority of the collection includes both unpublished and published typescripts and manuscripts of the works The Old China Hands, The Ghosts of Manacle (1964), six other stories, and articles. Annotations are on the unpublished materials. Additionally, there are correspondence, photographs, various publicity materials, and notes by June Fredman, a close family friend, who was working on a biography of Charles Finney at the time of her death. The letters are between Finney and his literary agent, former military personnel, and his readers. The collection also contains literature reviews of Finney's books published in newspapers across the United States, memorabilia related to the 1964 movie 7 Faces of Dr. Lao, notebooks, cassette tapes, correspondence with publishers, and a draft of the first few chapters of the biography, which was to be titled Magician out of Missouri.