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Sayers Family Papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: Wade-A-104 and A-106

Scope and Contents

There are 4 series in the Sayers Family Papers archive: Correspondence, Bound Volumes, Certificates, and Various Papers.

The Correspondence series contains letters between members of the Sayers and Leigh families (particularly Dorothy’s aunts and mother), and some correspondence between Dorothy and family friends and old retainers.

Bound Volumes included in the archive are a 1930 diary and signature book from Sayers’s Aunt Mabel, a scrapbook from Sayers’s mother, Nellie Leigh, a notebook recording Henry Sayers’s sermons, and a book of visitor signatures.

The Certificates series pertains mostly to Henry Sayers’s ministry work with certificates relating to his two posts in Bluntisham (1897-1917) and Christchurch (1917-1928).

Various Papers includes materials relating to family wills and accounts, some early family history recollections, and a handful of music scores written by Henry Sayers.


  • Created: 1879-1941


Conditions Governing Access

Copies or publication of materials by Dorothy L. Sayers require permissions from the Sayers Literary Executor.

Biographical or Historical Information

The papers in this collection show select family interactions and history from the late 1800s until the 1940s. For additional family information and genealogical charts, see Geoffrey Alan Lee's "The Descent of Dorothy L. Sayers: A Genealogical History" in the "related materials" listing of the finding aid. A copy of this work is stored with the research copy of this archive.

The material in this archive was acquired at auction from Sotheby's in London by the Wade Center in 2000. The original Sotheby's lot(s) included in this archive are: Lot 292 ix, and 300, i. Some materials were removed from this collection and placed in the Dorothy L. Sayers Papers, and in the Sayers Manuscript collection.


2.00 boxes : 24 folders and one boxed oversize scrapbook

0.8 Linear Feet

Language of Materials



This archive contains correspondence, certificates, and other documents and records relating to the family of Dorothy L. Sayers.

Source of Acquisition


Related Materials

Researchers interested in this archive may also wish to consult the following resources in the Wade Center holdings:

The Dorothy L. Sayers Papers letter collection

Lee, Geoffrey Alan. “The Descent of Dorothy L. Sayers: A Genealogical History.” Occasional Papers No. 1. The Dorothy L. Sayers Society, June 1993. (one copy in the Wade Center Bound Periodicals collection, and the other is stored in the front of this archive)

Reynolds, Barbara. "Dorothy L. Sayers: Her Life and Soul." New York: St. Martins Press, 1993. (biography)

Sayers Manuscript collection

Other materials in the Wade Center holdings may relate to the topics in this archive. See the archivist for further research assistance.

Other Descriptive Information

Includes photographs. There is an acquisition file for this collection. Some original pages from folder 20 are stored in the Contaminated Materials box in Fragile Storage due to significant mold damage. Oversize box (A-106) contains Nellie Leigh's scrapbook. There is a research copy of this collection.

Processing Information

Processed by Laura Schmidt

Sayers Family Papers
Laura Schmidt
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Marion E. Wade Center Repository

Wheaton College
501 College Ave.
Wheaton IL 60187-5593 US