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Pleiades Club Collection

Call Number



1893-1943, inclusive


Neiman, Howard S.
Mann, Sivia Brenner (Role: Donor)


4.5 Linear Feet in 4 boxes

Language of Materials

Materials are in English


The Pleiades Club was a Greenwich Village literary society of the early 20th century. Howard Neiman was a member of the Board of Governors throughout the Club's history, and served in other posts at the Club. The collection includes Neiman's club correspondence and printed items which illuminate aspects of the literary and artistic life of the Village of that time.

Historical Note

The Pleiades Club emerged in 1896 from the gatherings of some members of the Greenwich Village artistic community in the small Italian restaurant of Maria del Prato on MacDougal Street. Among the customers of Maria's, the Pleiades Club named: Amos Cummings, Colonel William Gulder, Ripley Oswood Anthony, Paul Du Chaillu, Clara Louise Kellogg, Mark Twain, Valerian Gribayedoff, Signor Tagliapietra, "Billy" (W. E. S) Fales, Cleveland Moffett, Stephen Crane, "Billy" Welsh, Henry Tyrrell, Sam Chamberlain, Colonel Patton, William Garrison, George Luks, and Ernest Jarrold as its progenitors. For several seasons (each season lasted December through May) the Club continued to meet weekly at Maria's, first on Saturday and then on Sunday nights. As it became more widely known, the Club moved in search of larger quarters, first to the Black Cat (Uptown) and then to the Hungaria. After the first few years of uncertain and varying policies, in 1901 a new Board of Governors was elected, the name Pleiades Club regularly adopted, and the incorporation papers granted on January 9, 1902. After several seasons of moves, the Club settled in 1906 at the Hotel Brevoort, where it remained for most of its existence, with the exception of a few short-term stays at Reisenweber's and Hotel Martinique.

The Club's activities primarily consisted of weekly dinners, accompanied by an entertainment program, such as music performances and poetry readings, where club members and guests of honor gathered "to enjoy and foster the allied arts of Music, Drama, Art and Literature, and to Promote the spirit of good fellowship" (The Pleiad, 1931-32). The Club saw its mission as providing a friendly and appreciative audience to the inexperienced artists, helping the needy artists with free scholarships in the various branches of arts. The Club also published a yearbook, The Pleiad.

The Club apparently continued to function at least through the 1935/1936 season, since the 1936 yearbook was published (it is a part of The New York Historical Society collection).

Howard Seiger Neiman (1868-1947) was a patent attorney, editor and publisher of Textile Colorist magazine (1918-1944). Born in Norristown, PA, he received a B. S. degree from Lehigh University in 1888 and entered the dyestuff and chemical industries. Neiman had studied at New York Law School, set up offices as a patent and trademark attorney, and became a leading legal adviser for the cosmetic industry. He served as chemical expert for Leopold Cassella & Co., H. A. Metz & Co. and other concerns.

Throughout his life, Howard Neiman belonged to numerous clubs and associations. He was a member of the American Chemical Society since 1893. A charter member of the American Institute of Chemists, he was named its honorary secretary in 1946, after having served as its secretary for twenty years. He was a member of the Salesman's Association of the Synthetic Organic Chemical Manufacturers Association, the Chemists Club, Theta Delta Chi, Old Colony and the Manhasset Bay Yacht Club. He also was president of the Municipal Opera Association and a Mason Knight Templar and Shriner.

The Pleiades club was one of Neiman's long-time commitments. He was a member of the Board of Governors throughout the Club's history, served as its Secretary in 1905-1908 and again in 1928-1933, and was elected President of the Club three times.


The Pleiad The New York Times Obituary (Nov. 2, 1947, 73:2)


Folders are generally arranged alphabetically by subject/author heading.

The files are grouped into four series.

Missing Title

  1. Series I: Books is arranged alphabetically by author's last name.
  2. Series II: Yearbooks are arranged chronologically.
  3. Series III: Correspondence is arranged alphabetically by correspondents' last name.
  4. Series IV: Ephemera is arranged into two subseries.

Scope and Content Note

Howard S. Neiman's collection consists of books, yearbooks, scrapbooks, letters and miscellaneous items. The material primarily relates to the Pleiades Club of the Greenwich Village, but also include some items relating to other activities of Howard Neiman.


Series I, Books, (1899-1949): consists of books from Neiman's library, written mostly by the members of the Pleiades Club. Nearly all books and pamphlets are inscribed to Neiman by their authors. Two books have manuscript poems and correspondence laid in.

Series II, Yearbooks, (1906-1932): contains volumes of The Pleiad for years 1907-1922 (missing volumes for 1908/09, 1911/12, and 1920/21 seasons), volumes for 1927/28, 1928/29 and 1931/32 seasons and a folder containing loose pages from various issues of the yearbook (1906-1915). Six volumes are inscribed or signed by the contributors.

Series III, Correspondence, (1903-1918): comprised of over 150 letters (virtually all autograph), from minor writers, journalists, celebrities of the day, politicians, editors etc. Letters are addressed predominantly to Neiman as a secretary of the Pleiades Club, and sometimes to other Club officials (John Ryan, Edward Foley). Among the more famous names are Louis Rhead (3 letters), Secretary of State John Hay, Arthur Guiterman, Dan Beard, Otis Skinner. Several letters and postcards concerning Neiman do not relate to the Pleiades Club.

Series IV: Miscellaneous, (1893-1960): consists of two subseries

Subseries A consists of the materials relating to the Pleiades Club, such as scrapbooks and folders.

Subseries B consists of materials relating to other interests of Howard Neiman, such bound volumes of newspaper clippings and poetry, Textile Colorist editorials, selection of materials on actor George Clarke, opera libretto etc.

Access Restrictions

Materials are open to researchers. Please contact the Fales Library and Special Collections,, 212-998-2596.

Use Restrictions

Copyright (or related rights to publicity and privacy) for materials in this collection was not transferred to New York University. Permission to use materials must be secured from the copyright holder. Please contact the Fales Library and Special Collections,, 212-998-2596.

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:

Identification of item, date (if known); The Pleiades Club Collection; MSS 035; box number; folder number; Fales Library and Special Collections, New York University Libraries.


The collection consists of papers and books of Howard S. Neiman donated to Fales Library by Sivia Brenner Mann in 1994.

Separated Material

There is no information about materials that are associated by provenance to the described materials that have been physically separated or removed.

Collection processed by

Jane Gorzhevskaya, Fall 1997. Collection reprocessed by Emily King, 2014.

About this Guide

This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on 2023-08-20 17:05:11 -0400.
Language: Description is in English.


Fales Library and Special Collections
Fales Library and Special Collections
Elmer Holmes Bobst Library
70 Washington Square South
2nd Floor
New York, NY 10012