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Michener Rights

Information about rights to the works of James A. Michener '29

James Michener '29 holding a lacrosse stick like a guitar

Department Overview

Above: A young Jim Michener '29 as a student at Swarthmore in the 1920s. Photo courtesy of Friends Historical Library.

James A. Michener '29 (1907-1997) attended Swarthmore College on a scholarship, graduated summa cum laude with a B.A. in English and history, and later became known as a Pulitzer Prize-winning author of more than 40 epic historical novels. Upon his passing in 1997, Michener left  

“the publishing responsibility, rights (including copyrights and royalties of all types), and profits from (i) the literary journals and other papers and (ii) the manuscripts, correspondence, notes, memoranda, notebooks, and papers of a similar nature...to Swarthmore College, for use for its educational purposes….”

Throughout his career and to this day, Michener's works have been widely published, translated, and adapted in many languages and multiple print, electronic, and audio formats as well as on stage and screen. Proceeds from those rights support Swarthmore’s endowment, ensuring the enduring impact of Michener’s literary legacy on the College. The James A. Michener Legacy Circle is named in honor of his remarkable gift.

To inquire about the rights to any of James Michener’s works, please contact Don Cooney at dcooney1@swarthmore.edu or 610-328-8285.