How to see the rare J.R.R. Tolkien manuscripts on display in Milwaukee

How to see the rare J.R.R. Tolkien manuscripts on display in Milwaukee

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History buffs and fans of “Lord of the Rings” and “The Hobbit” alike will have the rare opportunity to view the original writings of J.R.R. Tolkien this fall at Marquette University’s Haggerty Museum of Art.

J.R.R. Tolkien: The Art of the Manuscript” will include nearly 150 items, many that have not been previously exhibited or published.

Among the collection are original manuscripts and multiple working drafts for three of the English author’s most celebrated books: “The Hobbit,” “The Lord of the Rings” and “Farmer Giles of Ham,” as well as the original copy of children’s book “Mr. Bliss.” It will also include a significant number of Tolkien manuscripts and artwork from the Bodleian Libraries at the University of Oxford.

One of the pieces from Marquette University’s collection of J.R.R. Tolkien manuscripts. (Photo courtesy: Marquette University website)

The J.R.R. Tolkien Collection is housed at Marquette’s Raynor Memorial Libraries‘ Department of Special Collections and University Archives. A selection of Tolkien’s materials was originally purchased by the university in 1957 for £1,500 (less than $5,000), and the “Lord of the Rings” manuscripts arrived in 1958 — long before the notoriety it has today.

The exhibit opens Friday, Aug. 19, and runs through Dec. 23. Tickets are on sale now at $10 for general admission, and $8 for senior citizens and active duty U.S. military members.


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