ARCHIVE OF LETTERS, mostly typed, written by the editor and publisher of THE ACOLYTE, an important amateur magazine, most addressed to contributor Harold Wakefield, a Canadian fantasy fiction fan, then residing in Toronto. A total of 40 letters comprising 60 pages (approximately 30,000 words). Several letters are mimeographed or carbons, one is handwritten, the remainder are typewritten. Section 1 comprises 34 typed letters (TLs) totaling 52 pages, all addressed to Harold Wakefield, and they are, unless otherwise stated, single-spaced on letter-size paper signed, with dates running from 1942 to 1948, most signed "Fran," others with a typed "FTL." Section 2 comprises 6 typed letters (TLs) totaling 9 pages, addressed to various others, and are, unless otherwise described, single-spaced on letter-size paper, one signed; several are mimeographed form letters, one is a rare carbon fanzine: the first -- and only? -- issue of BRAGGADOCIO, written to inform friends of his recent book finds. One is a curious sort of "hybrid" two-page semi-form letter addressed to Duane Rimel and F. Lee Baldwin, written as one letter, typed with a carbon and sent off as two documents, each one with one top copy and one carbon copy. Laney was in the top tier of fandom, editor/publisher of THE ACOLYTE, one of the most eagerly sought after fanzines today. Wakefield was a fan in Toronto, an amateur writer, a subscriber of and contributor to THE ACOLYTE. "You are easily ACOLYTE'S #1 fan, and in the top 3 contributors ... " (22 August 1946) "One thing that stands out from this correspondence is how active fans were, acting vigorously as readers, collectors, scholars, dealers, writers, illustrators, editors, publishers -- and through it all, interacting profusely with others of a like mind, corresponding individually or by form letter or chain mail or magazine, and in person at the regional conventions and conferences that sprang up and quickly multiplied. It was not at all unusual for a fan to have participated in many or all of these related activities. With a mimeograph machine (obtainable for $20 or less) and cheap supplies, the world of what is now called desktop publishing was open to anyone interested -- fifty years before the spread of the personal computer and the Internet. The technology has changed since then and lowered the 'barriers to entry' (whether that's an entirely good thing is open to debate: if you had to pay at least some money to disseminate your views and had to gain subscribers who likewise had to pay something, this may have winnowed out some of the chaff inevitably generated in creative efforts). Fans interacted actively with each other, but not always harmoniously. In a couple of the letters we hear of acrimonious relations between Laney and A. Langley Searles, another important amateur scholar (and publisher of the important fanzine, THE FANTASY COMMENTATOR). Another interesting aspect of these letters, the bulk of which were written in the early-to-mid 1940s, during World War II, is how few references they have to the war." - Robert Eldridge. A few letters have mild edge-chipping or light soiling, most are very good or better. A detailed calendar is available. (#136816).