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SOUTH CAROLINIANA LIBRARY
UNIVERSITY SOUTH CAROLINIANA SOCIETY
MANUSCRIPTS DIVISION 2001
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Alice Cabaniss Papers, 1955-1997
One and one-quarter linear feet, 1955-1997, chiefly published works, letters, news clippings, vitae, notices of poetry readings, and miscellaneous printed items, constitute the South Caroliniana Library's initial unit of documentary materials pertaining to poet, author, and educator Alice Cabaniss. A native of Ulmer in Allendale County, Cabaniss holds degrees from Winthrop and The Citadel and in 1987 earned a Ph.D. in English from the University of South Carolina. Her works have appeared in such publications as South Carolina Review, Kudzu, South Carolina Magazine, Southern Voices, The New South, The State Magazine, Sandlapper, Auntie Bellum, Portfolio, and Circus Maximus.

For several years Cabaniss traveled to South Carolina schools as a poet-in-residence under the sponsorship of the South Carolina Arts Commission and over the course of her teaching career taught English and journalism at the University of South Carolina-Spartanburg, University of Mississippi, Trident Technical College, College of Charleston, and Charleston area high schools. She organized and coordinated a series of poetry readings for the city of Charleston's Piccolo Spoleto festival between 1978 and 1988. And from 1978 to 1982 she edited a small poetry quarterly, Tinderbox, that featured works by poets from across the United States. Her privately published book of poems, The Dark Bus and Other Forms of Transport, was issued in 1975.

An interview with Cabaniss appears in the 1986 book Conversations With South Carolina Poets by Gayle R. Swanson and William B. Thesing. Earlier, however, in an autobiographical sketch dating from around 1979, she had written of her craft-"Most of my poems are taken from personal experience, although names & sometimes circumstances are changed to protect the innocent-for I do not believe in sacrificing the individual dignity of a person for a good line." The full measure of Cabaniss' artistic vision and stature within her native state is affirmed by the fact that in 1984 her name was placed in nomination for poet laureate of South Carolina.

In addition to materials revealing something of the life, career, and literary pursuits of Alice Cabaniss, the collection includes a file that documents her research interest in South Carolina native and historian William E. Woodward.


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