The Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University

Other Research Collections

The largest research collections relating to Thomas Merton, besides the Thomas Merton Center at Bellarmine University, are to be found at Columbia University, Harvard University and St. Bonaventure University.

Boston College, Syracuse University, University at Buffalo and the University of Kentucky have substantial Thomas Merton collections.

  • Boston College
    • The John J. Burns Library at Boston College holds a collection of Merton materials including lecture and conference notes, correspondence, photographs, drawings, and proofs and original manuscripts of several books by Merton. The collection also holds materials donated by Jim Forest and Basil Pennington which relate to Merton. A finding aid for the Thomas Merton Collection at Boston College is available here.
  • Syracuse University
    • The department of Special Collections at Syracuse University Library houses a collection which includes ten of Merton's working notebooks, some correspondence, essays and other materials.
  • University at Buffalo, State University of New York
    • The majority of the Merton material in the Poetry and Rare Book Collection of the University at Buffalo came as a gift from Merton between 1948-1952. There is also some Merton material in their Kayak Magazine Collection and in their Jargon Society Collection. Details of these collections are not currently available on their web pages, though an inventory is available at the Merton Center.
  • University of Kentucky
    • The Margaret I. King Library at the University of Kentucky holds correspondence between Merton and Erich Fromm, Boris Pasternak, Daisetz Suzuki, and Merton's friends Robert Lax and Carolyn and Victor Hammer along with holographs and typescripts, carbon copies and mimeographs of Merton's. Finding aids for the two main collections are available at: The following link provides all results from the Kentuckiana Digital Library. This search displays holdings at the University of Kentucky regarding Merton, but also includes a collection at the Filson Historical Society in Louisville.

A number of other Universities hold varying amounts of materials by Thomas Merton, frequently these Merton collections relate to other figures with whom Merton was in touch, such as Dorothy Day, Jacques Maritain, and Ed Rice, whose papers were subsequently donated to these institutions.