Talk:Stephen Crane

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'Today, Crane is considered one of the most innovative American writers of the 1890s'[edit]

Maria, you really need to do something about the above. This is apparently the opinion of one person, Benfey. (I can't believe Benfey actually wrote that, to tell the truth.) So, the implication that it is the widespread, standard opinion is not true. Crane is generally considered a major innovator, no one is remotely 'as innovative' among the leading prose writers of the 1890s, or of the '80s or '00s for that matter. He is also a major inspiration to literary modernism. Maybe replace with something like "considered an important literary innovator and inspiration to the first American modernists." Definitely take out "of the 1890s." Haberstr (talk) 22:09, 8 October 2008 (UTC)

Crane's impact on the Modernists is already noted in the lead, so there's no need to repeat it. Because he wrote in the 1890s, it would seem obvious that he would be considered a highlight of that decade. "One of the most" also is less peacocky, and is quite easy to corroborate outside of Benfey. María (habla conmigo) 00:37, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
Also, in regards to "year" vs. "years" in the lead, Crane lived elsewhere in between his times in England. That is why the lead refers to "the last year", not years. This way is less complicated than explaining that he moved to England, lived in Cuba, went back to England... etc. María (habla conmigo) 00:41, 9 October 2008 (UTC)
He lived on and off in England for 3 years or so. The way you have it readers are misled into thinking he only lived there for the last year of his life. Anyway, he in fact did 'live' in England from mid-1897, it is just that he was away as a foreign correspondent for nearly all of 1898. I agree it's a little tricky how to say that in brief without misleading.Haberstr (talk) 15:39, 13 October 2008 (UTC)
Tricky, but I tried to clarify it with this: "During the final years of his life, he covered conflicts in Greece and Cuba, and lived in England with Cora where he befriended writers such as Joseph Conrad and H. G. Wells." I've been wavering about whether or not the lead should mention Conrad, etc, but it seems to make sense in this context. Any thoughts? María (habla conmigo) 16:09, 13 October 2008 (UTC)

How about this -- it's a paraphrase from the back of one of my books, Prose and Poetry: "Today, he is recognized as being one of the most innovative writers of his generation." I think "of his generation" cures the "1890s" problem, and the innovation is still front and center. What do you think? María (habla conmigo) 00:50, 9 October 2008 (UTC)

"of his generation" is acceptable, but more accurate and so a little better might be "of his time." He was significantly younger than, for example, Conrad or Wells, but both considered him their better in 'innovativeness'. But definitely 'generation' is a big improvement.Haberstr (talk) 15:39, 13 October 2008 (UTC)


  • The source for the image doesn't work.
  • "If the old book cover was not renewed along with the book, it fell into the public domain." - We need to demonstrate that the book was renewed, but not the cover.

Last image concern! Awadewit (talk) 21:31, 14 October 2008 (UTC)

You can't see me, but I'm shaking my first at the gods of copyright. I have no clue of even how I would find this out; I just took it from Hemingway's article. Should I just remove it? It was just filler, really. María (habla conmigo) 22:05, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
Here are some in the JFK library - many are labeled public domain. Why don't you look through those and upload one and I'll check it. Awadewit (talk) 22:27, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
The one entitled "Ernest Hemingway aboard 'Pilar'" (1950) is listed as being in the public domain and is already uploaded to commons: Image:Ernest Hemingway 1950.jpg. Would this do? María (habla conmigo) 23:51, 14 October 2008 (UTC)
I think it is ok, but those "published without a copyright" ones are tricky. You might want to check with Elcobbola just to make sure. Awadewit (talk) 00:07, 15 October 2008 (UTC)
Checked, and the master said it's okay with an updated copyright tag. Updated and added. María (habla conmigo) 12:13, 15 October 2008 (UTC)

Crane's spirit of rebellion[edit]

What's missing from the entry is Crane's fairly consistent rebelliousness in his actions against his still decorous, Victorian age. In the current summation of Crane there is too much emphasis, for example, on the words Crane wrote on how he loved and respected his parents. But in his behavior we see pretty spectacular (for the times) rebelliousness. From smoking under the boardwalk as a kid at the New Jersey Shore, to baseball playing, to frequenting prostitutes in New York, to having affairs with married women, to 'marrying' a prostitute, to leaving his 'wife' for nearly a year to live and write in Cuba and the Carribean, to his scandalously sarcastic 'news' article of the summer of '92 (completely missing from the biography), to, most importantly, the aggressive irony and sarcasm in much of his writing. Crane even famously carved or scrawled on his bedpost at the writer's coop Emerson's advice to young men to make their mark by rebelling against a decorous age. There's too much defensiveness in the current article, for example the latest revision adds that Munroe was "estranged" from her husband. Is that necessary, and do we even know what "estranged" means, or is it just more 'defending the good reputation of that fine young preacher's boy', Stephen Crane? I think it would be better, partly because it helps explain his way of writing and his choice of writing subjects, to go through the bulk of the biography and add countervailing factual indications that Crane in fact had an iconoclastic, devil-may-care attitude toward the morals of his time. In other words, that he was, as the New York police contended, in fact 'immoral' by the prevailing standards of his time. (Standards which are now perhaps largely obsolete, of course, but that doesn't matter in this context.) One good place to look for a "what's left out" viewpoint similar to mine is Wertheimer's 1998 review of Davis's biography in, I believe, the New York Times. The time for 'defending' Crane's 'virtue' is long over. Let's just be honest and put both sides of the unresolved case into the wikipedia biography. Finally, I'm not saying hardly anything actually needs to be removed from the bio, just that these multiple 'moral rebel/deviant' indicators need to be added. A great place to start would be adding some sentences about his summer of 1892 article on the labor marchers. That Crane article, also, by the way, has some fine examples of his sarcasm.Haberstr (talk) 15:45, 21 October 2008 (UTC)

While I don't believe the article defends Crane's behavior (it's made clear that he was thought to be immoral by many during the Clark case and that he took part in various questionable relationships and activities before and after), to blatantly state that Crane was intentionally rebellious would be original research by synthesis. You have some great suggestions for factual additions, however, that could help cure any perceived imbalance. The Emerson quote on a bedpost factoid would make a fun addition, for example; do you have a reliable source that says as much? I'll also look into adding information about Crane's 1892 article on the labor march, since I admit that the article is skimpy on this time period.
To address your comment about a recent edit of mine, that Munroe was estranged from her husband was not added in order to excuse her relationship with Crane; she was, in fact, estranged from the man for several years -- they lived apart and were not affiliated with one another for some time. I added this one important word in response to a comment at the FAC from Mike Christie, who was confused as to the context of her parents' disapproval. María (habla conmigo) 16:15, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
It's still confusing, and perhaps the fact that Munroe would have to divorce her (wealthy) husband in order to marry Crane also played a part in the family's opposition to a marriage. In any case, if you re-read you'll see that my suggestion was to add countervailing evidence and not to do anything blatant.Haberstr (talk) 16:42, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
She did divorce her husband eventually, only to remarry, so obviously that was less of a roadblock than Crane's lack of prospects. See Wertheim p. 74 for an account from an interview with Munroe saying as much. I'm trying to find accounts of the two 1892 articles you mentioned above, but as so many articles and stories were published during this time, I'm getting lost. Could you provide titles so I can narrow them down? María (habla conmigo) 16:51, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
See pp 11-12 of the Stephen Crane Encyclopedia by Wertheim (I mispelled his name above) for the article Crane wrote about the Art Students' League building where Crane notes the 'Emerson' quote (apparently Emerson never wrote the words). You could also look to pp. 40-42 of Cazemajou's "Stephen Crane" for a clear summation of what I'm getting at. In any case, Crane's rebelliousness was always indirect but nonetheless overflowing in his style, and usually subtle (though it wasn't subtle enough in the article about the workingmen's parade). The important excerpts from both my sources are in google books. Anyway, it's this winking sarcastic/ironic rebelliousness in his style, in his subject matter, and in his actions that is a big part of his attractivness and legacy. And it's an aspect widely commented on in the literature on Crane.Haberstr (talk) 17:08, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
I agree, it is a constant source of wonder for biographers and critics, and shouldn't be ignored. I'll look to the Encyclopedia, thanks. I wrote a hefty paragraph about the JOUAM march and its subsequent story and protest, so take a look to see what you think. María (habla conmigo) 17:16, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
It's good you added this material, and even a box quote would help readers see another real, wise-allecky, side of Crane. As for the quote allegedly by Crane's mother, I'd worry about quotes from Berryman, who relied on Beer's dubious letters. And the Crane's mother quote doesn't add anything to our knowledge of Stephen Crane, it only furthers the thesis that he was a nice young man who received decorous letters from his mom, and a biography of an incompletely documented person such as Crane shouldn't have that underlying thesis. The Stanley Wertheim review of Linda Davis's biography is at 'Nineteenth-Century Literature', Vol. 53, No. 4 (Mar., 1999), pp. 545-549. It's in JSTOR if you have access to that. It's a very revealing review on the dark side left out of Davis's biography. Not that we can be absolutely certain there was a dark side, but evidence for it needs to be provided readers. You may also want to include in your bio more detail on Hamlin Garland's role as Crane's mentor, and the fact that he later downplayed that role because he came to believe Crane had been a disreputable person. Read about this in Wertheim's Crane Encyclopedia, the Garland entry.Haberstr (talk) 19:36, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
Here are some suggestions for a revealing box quote on Crane's 1892 reporting: 1., from Crane's news article "Meetings Begun at Ocean Grove" (New York Tribune, July 3, 1892), on arriving ministers: "The sombre-hued gentlemen who congregate at this place in summer are arriving in solemn procession, with black valises in their hands and rebukes to frivolity in their eyes. They greet each other with quiet enthusiasm and immediately set about holding meetings." 2., from the New York Tribune report on the workingmen's parade, from Sunday, August 21, 1892: "The bona fide Asbury Parker is a man to whom a dollar, when held close to the eye, often shuts out any impression he may have had that other people possess rights. He is apt to consider that men and women, especially city men and women, were created to be mulcted by him." By the way, you may want to mention that the article was considered damaging to Whitelaw Reid, the Republicans' vice-presidential candidate that year. Crane didn't work for a newspaper for two years after he was let go by the Tribune, according to my source. Which is 'Stephen Crane, Literary-Reporter: Commonplace Experience and Artistic Transcendence', Joseph J. Kwiat, Journal of Modern Literature, Vol. 8, No. 1 (1980), pp. 129-138. It's in JSTOR, which again I'm not sure if you have access to. Haberstr (talk) 19:36, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
Finally, I don't think the dismissal by one anonymous colleague of the quality of 'reporting' work Crane was doing is helpful. Again, this is a matter of opinion and there's wide disagreement on the matter. Providing a box quote will allow readers to make up their own minds. Crane's editor, the one who dismissed him, whose name I think was Johnson (who was also a friend of the Crane family), wrote in hindsight that he thought the incident showed that Crane was the sort who was not cut out for mundane news reporting and who was destined for literary work.Haberstr (talk) 19:40, 21 October 2008 (UTC)

(outdent) I removed the dubious quote from Crane's mother, as I agree that it doesn't add much. A quote box is a great idea -- that way the article will have one from each genre: novel, short story, poem and journal article. I added one from the JOUAM parade as quoted in Wertheim, which is close to your second example, but it shows the dichotomy of the two kinds of people assembled and the irony that was attended. Is it sufficient? I didn't think that Arthur Oliver (the anonymous colleague, whose name I've added now) and his account were dismissive of Crane's work. I liked the juxtaposition of his quote, which pretty much says that Crane was a regular bloke, and the account of Crane causing such a stir with one story. As the article states, Willis Fletcher Johnson apparently denied firing Crane, but I'll see if I can find the flattering praise from him that you mention. I have access to JSTOR, so it shouldn't be difficult. Oh, and re: the Emerson quote, the Encyclopedia says that Crane wrote of such an inscription ascribed to Emerson on an "old beam", but it doesn't say anything about him professing to having made it. Pity, it would have been fun to include young Steve's petty vandalism. :) María (habla conmigo) 20:31, 21 October 2008 (UTC)

Rather than your more subtle irony, I'd rather have the open, angry sarcasm of the second example. It indicates some depth in Crane's character that's not obvious in the facts his life story. Not just that the summer of '92 was an unhappy, frustrated time in his life, but that he had some of that good ol' biblical, moral anger in him. About the Emerson quote, it's significant the way he lovingly describes the quotation and how he uses it in that sketch. But I don't have access to the original work now. Haberstr (talk) 22:06, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
Here's another interesting example of Crane's shore reporting, from July 30, 1889 when he was only 17: "After spending half a day in discussing the question “Is There Any Other Science Than Physical Science? If So, What & Why?” it was a curious sight to see a number of the reverend intellectual giants of the American Institute of Christian Philosophy seated in a boat fishing for crabs and gravely discussing the question “Is there any better bait for crabs than fish tails? If so, what and where is it to be found?” Other eminent lecturers went in bathing, and as they bobbed up and down in the waves they solemnly argued about immersion." As the source says, already there's Crane's journalistic voice, an ironic jokester. 'Stephen Crane and the New York Tribune: A Case Study in Traditional and Non-Traditional Authorship Attribution', Computers and the Humanities, Volume 35:3, August, 2001, pp. 319.Haberstr (talk) 22:55, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
The compliments to Crane by Johnson are here: 'Stephen Crane at Asbury Park', by Victor A. Elconin, American Literature, Vol. 20:3, (Nov., 1948), p. 286. Again, however, this may just be hindsight self-justification. I think his getting fired was a pretty devastating event for Crane, especially financially but also for his general outlook on what was possible for him as an artist who was intent on being as honest as he could be.Haberstr (talk) 23:06, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
Okay, I'll update the quotebox once I can get my hands on the article itself. After mulling it over, however, I think that the make-believe Emerson quote may be too tangential. We may be able to think of something more suitable for that period in his life. María (habla conmigo) 23:45, 21 October 2008 (UTC)
I agree with most of the recent changes (including removing the quote, which didn't exactly belong there in the first place; perhaps it should be relocated), although I removed the speculation regarding the cause for Crane's "derisive" reporting: "causes for this may have been Crane's frustrated plans for publishing Maggie and a lynching in early June witnessed and futilely resisted by his brother William in Port Jervis". Chronologically this doesn't pan out because Crane did not try to have Maggie published until that winter, and although both Davis and Wertheim mention the lynching, that it had an effect on Crane's reporting is only conjecture. To note that his writing became derisive, for whatever reason, will have to do as no concrete reason can be said. María (habla conmigo) 16:31, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
I don't have a problem with taking out the speculation on his changed tone; it is _too_ speculative, really. That lynching, however, was the perfect exposure of the darkness and hypocrisy underneath gentle, proper small-town surfaces. And it occurred directly across the street from his brother William's house, and he was out there trying to stop the townspeople. The event probably echoes in The Monster but I'm not sure it can be used even in reference to that story. Oh well.Haberstr (talk) 19:09, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
The connection makes sense, but seeing as how Crane personally wasn't a witness (although I'm sure he heard all about it from his brother and was possibly even of a similar mind), it doesn't quite fit and may be seen as off topic. There should really be an article for The Monster, don't you think? (hi how are ya!) Crane's opinion about race relations is quite interesting, especially in regards to the novella, so perhaps the lynching story would fit best under a context/background header at The Monster (short story). Something to think about if the sources are available... María (habla conmigo) 20:20, 22 October 2008 (UTC)
Yes, there should be an entry on it. The critical attention on The Monster continues to grow, though Crane was not exactly a non-racist in his other work. By the way, on your most recent edit, you give the 'Maggie' full title in the introductory section, so you don't necessarily need to repeat that when you discuss the early version/draft he showed Johnson. But, I think it looks fine the way you now have it.Haberstr (talk) 17:34, 23 October 2008 (UTC)
Actually, the lead section stands on its own, which is why it's so very comprehensive; it's a summary of the entire article. That's why things are generally linked/explained/described in full when they are first mentioned in the lead and when they are first mentioned in the body of the article. It can be confusing, especially in an article as long as this, to remember when things were first linked, etc, but I'm trying. :) I'm glad we can work together now that the article is featured, and I hope that Crane coverage on Wikipedia will continue to branch out overtime. If you're interested, I've recently started List of works by Stephen Crane, although it needs a lot of work. María (habla conmigo) 18:04, 23 October 2008 (UTC)

Mary Helen Crane[edit]

she used the name "Helen" not Mary. See Jonathan Townley Crane Sr.'s diary. Auntieruth55 (talk) 02:31, 28 August 2009 (UTC)

13, not 14?[edit]

Unless I'm missing something, before this guy was born, there were eight children, plus four who had died. That's twelve. Then, wouldn't he be the thirteenth child, as opposed to the fourteenth? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:26, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

His parents had fourteen nine children who lived to adulthood. Between the second youngest child, Luther, and Stephen, four children were born and died at an early age, so the implication is that another death had occurred previous to that. I couldn't find any definitive year for this, however, so that's why it's vague at the moment. Any suggestions as to how to reword it? María (habla conmigo) 12:41, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
I thought it was a child who died in the 1850s, before they got to Morristown. Auntieruth55 (talk) 16:21, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
Yeah, that would fit. If you have a source, feel free to add it. (Note, I made a mistake above, but it's corrected now.) María (habla conmigo) 16:30, 3 September 2009 (UTC)
I don't have a source, other than the 1860 census, which lists the children. There is a gap in the early 1850s, otherwise, she was having one every 18 months or so. The 1850 census has the two Mary Helens and JT, and the 1860 census has JT, MH and 7 kids, plus the servant. I think (if I remember correctly also from reading JT's diary, that there was a child that died in the first couple of years of their marriage.) Auntieruth55 (talk) 17:04, 3 September 2009 (UTC)

"Unneccessary Geneaology"[edit]

"Family legend maintains that Crane was descended from and named for a founder of Elizabethtown, New Jersey, who had come from England or Wales as early as 1665,[4] and a Revolutionary War patriot Stephen Crane (1709–1780) who served two terms as a delegate from New Jersey to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia."

What family legend is that exactly? His great-great grandfather was Stephen Crane, who served one term. He was descended from Jaspar Crane from England, who came to America in 1639. Mentioning the fact that he is closely related to General William Crane,Colonel Ichabod Crane adds interest to the story. An encyclopedic article should be based on fact, Stephen Crane wrote fiction, the article about him shouldn't be. 7mike5000 (talk) 21:45, 27 February 2010 (UTC)

I appreciate your enthusiasm for the subject matter, but you seem to have misunderstood the purpose of the original information. The "family legend" noted in the previous version of the article refers not to Crane's heritage, which is undoubtedly interesting and notable, but to his reputed namesake(s). "Stephen" is a fairly common name, but legend has it that he was named for his great-great grandfather as well as a separate "Stephen Crane" before him; as Reverend Jonathan Townley Crane wrote in his diary, he named his son after "the name of the ancestor of the Elizabethtown Cranes, who was one of the company of 'Associates' who settled at E. town in 1665; also of S. Crane of revolutionary times, who was prominent in patriotic labors and counsels for 15 years" (Wertheim (1994), pg. 2-3). The pertinent part of the article therefore dealt not with Crane's ancestors, but the two men he was named for; Jonathan Crane may have been mistaken about his own heritage, it's true. Now, Wertheim and other sources state that Stephen Crane the delegate served two terms in the Continental Congress, not one, but if that is somehow contentious, I have no problem leaving it neutral as it is now. I do, however, take issue with the cited sources; they aren't complete, and it's therefore difficult to verify them. Could you please give the publication information for the refs listed below? I would appreciate it.
  • "Family Records or genealogies of the first settlers of Passaic Valley and Vicinity above Chatham, with their ancestors and descendants, as far as could be ascertained in 1851. By John Littell, 1851. Page 100"
"*The American dictionary of dates, 458-1920 By Charles Ripley Damo"
María (habla conmigo) 03:24, 28 February 2010 (UTC)
I see now that the above listed works are from Google books, so I've cleaned up the first citation and included the publication info. While searching under Damo for "Crane", however, I couldn't find anything that isn't already noted in Littell, so I haven't included it. I also added back the second namesake, this alleged Stephen Crane who co-founded Elizabethtown, because it is of important note to Davis and Wertheim, as well as Crane's own father. Hope this helps, María (habla conmigo) 15:42, 28 February 2010 (UTC)

You're right about the family legend. But it's fiction. His father didn't have internet access; Genealogical and memorial history of the state of New Jersey By Francis Bazley Lee It mentions the part about a Stephen Crane being one of the founders of the Elizabethtown Associates and shows that it's misguided and untrue. That Stephen Crane (delegate) was his great- great grandfather is true. I kind of thought that the fact that another famous author (Washington Irving) appropriated the name of his grandfather's (William Crane) cousin, (Ichabod Crane) for the main character of the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, an interesting part of Americana. 7mike5000 (talk) 04:49, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

That is very interesting, I agree, but we don't want to dwell in familial trivia in a Featured Article. :) Fiction or not, Jonathan obviously wanted to doubly honor his supposed ancestry by naming his youngest son Stephen, and seeing as how all the major Crane bios agree as to the importance of the info, I believe it warrants mention here. I've clarified the iffy truth of the matter, however, by adding "supposed" and "according to family tradition"[1], but if more is needed, let me know. María (habla conmigo) 13:32, 2 March 2010 (UTC)

Edit request from Bobaird, 2 December 2010[edit]

{{edit semi-protected}} , of a massive tubercular hemmorhage

Bobaird (talk) 05:49, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

Not done: please be more specific about what needs to be changed. Adrian J. Hunter(talkcontribs) 11:12, 2 December 2010 (UTC)
It's already made obvious that Crane died of tb, as it's stated several times that is what he suffered from. María (habla conmigo) 15:18, 2 December 2010 (UTC)

-- As a reader wanting to know what he died of, I went to he "death" link. There is nothing there that indicates directly that it was TB. The "death" section should clearly indicate why he died. If it is to redundant, then that fact should be removed from other places and leave the mention in the "death" section. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:01, 14 January 2014 (UTC)

Crane and Dickinson[edit]

I thought the short POETRY section might be improved with the following remarks from the critics Hoffman and Wilson. Emily Dickinson is not mentioned on this site (unless I've overlooked it), and her influence on Crane seems clear and significant, perhaps for the ED bio, as well.

Crane may have been influenced by some poems of Emily Dickinson, published posthumously in several series during the last decade of Crane’s life. Crane “almost certainly found in Dickinson’s poem Two swimmers wrestled on a spar images he used…in his poem A man adrift on a slim spar.” Hoffman P. 206 Wilson p. 500-501 Hoffman continues, “As for Crane’s debt to Emily Dickinson for techniques, as well and images or themes, he may indeed have taken the idea of short-line poems from Dickinson…” Hoffman p. 206

That would be the addition, more or less, placed between the two existing paragraphs. Any suggestions or corrections?

Question: The Wiki Citation site explains "shortended footnotes", which we're using here. It says "A full citation is then added in a "References" section" after entering the short citation (with "ref/ref" method). How is the full reference entered? And also, I'm adding another citation from Daniel Hoffman - from a different book than the one now in the ref section. How to distinquish?

By the way - Publication Date for "A Man Adrift on a Slim Spar" According to the Stephen Crane Encyclopedia, "'A man adrift on a slim spar' was inexplicably omitted from War is Kind (1899) and was first published posthumously in the April 1929 issue of the Bookman" (215). --D. Campbell --Mysweetoldetc. 20:48, 18 February 2011 (UTC)

Additions from August 1, 2011[edit]

As can be seen with this edit, there were several additions made to the "Early life" and "Schooling" sections of this article, all of them attributed to a sub-standard source (Bonnie L. Lukes' Soldier's Courage: The Story of Stephen Crane, a young-adult non-fiction book). As was discussed between myself and the original editor (Phaeton23), these prose additions have been moved (sans Lukes) here to the talk page for discussion/verification by reputable sources. These additions can be seen below, with the info in question bolded:

  • Stephen Crane was born November 1, 1871, in Newark, New Jersey in a Methodist parsonage at Fourteen Mulberry Place.
    • I don't believe that the street address is encyclopedic. Also, we soon say that his father was a Methodist clergyman. I don't think we need any of this. -- Ssilvers (talk) 22:22, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Agnes taught him to read and write, and at four he was reading James Fenimore Cooper, despite the fact his father warned people against reading in fear it would create a "morbid love of excitement."
    • I don't think this adds much, even if true. -- Ssilvers (talk) 22:22, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
  • His mother returned after only being away for three months. Agnes got a job teaching at Mountain House School, which is where Stephen attended.
  • Townley was a professional journalist; he operated an agency that supplied the news stories to the New York Tribune, New York Sun, and the Associated Press. He also served as editor of the Asbury Park Shore Press and published the Newark Advertiser.
    • Not all of these details seem necessary. -- Ssilvers (talk) 22:22, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
  • Helen was elected president of the Asbury Park and Ocean Grove Women's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU).
  • The summer following Luther's death, he had his first work published. An Asbury Park newspaper printer a 300 word sketch that was unsigned that he had written.
  • After two years, Crane left Pennington. He left just before the Christmas break. A teacher accused him of hazing another student and Stephen denied it. When the teacher did not believe him, he packed his things and went home.
  • He rose rapidly in the ranks of the student battalion, in the fall of 1888 he was promoted to first lieutenant.
  • While in school, in a way to break the "preacher's son" reputation, he became somewhat of a "bad boy". He used foul language and smoked cigarettes, and hung out at pool halls and billiard rooms, as well as sang in the Methodist choir.
  • Crane was persuaded by his family to forgo a military career and transfer to Lafayette College in Easton, Pennsylvania, in order to pursue a mining engineering degree because his family owned stock in a Pennsylvania coal mine.
  • He did not find engineering to his tastes, he would much rather play baseball. He sent a letter to his brother Edmund to tell him he decided on a literary degree. He asked for help to convince their mother to allow his change in study, and she did not object.
  • He spent a lot of time at Thomas Durston's bookstore, where he Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina and War and Peace, and began to take his own writing more seriously. His first published story, The King's Favor, was published in the university's literary magazine.

I will attempt to better-source these additions with works already at use in the article. If anyone else would like to help in a similar fashion/comment on the propose additions, that would be very welcome. María (habla conmigo) 20:32, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

I made a couple of suggestions above. In general: This is Crane's article, and we should be careful about adding too many details about relatives and persons other than Crane. Secondly, some of the prose is unencyclopedic, for example "somewhat of a 'bad boy'", or "spent a lot of time". Finally, some of these details about Crane's childhood are less important than facts about his writing, so I would be careful about including too many anectodes and details about his childhood and school days, unless they help explain his progress and development. All the best! -- Ssilvers (talk) 22:22, 1 August 2011 (UTC)
Thanks for the input, Ssilvers. I agree about the danger of adding an un-encyclopedic tone, which we may get into re: Crane's supposed "bad boy" habits, etc. This view of Crane's early life is especially problematic, since it paints a somewhat one-sided view of the subject that several experts (Wertheim among them) contest. It's certainly part of the Crane mystique as we know it today, but just because he smoke cigarettes when young doesn't mean he was greaseball. I'll still look into it, however, when I get a chance. María (habla conmigo) 23:47, 1 August 2011 (UTC)

Port Jervis addition to lead[edit]

Crane first attended public school in Port Jervis, New York, where he frequently visited his brothers William H. and Edmund B. Crane throughout most of his adult life, the latter living in a nearby area of Sullivan County, New York, known as "Hartwood." [1]So great was Stephen's attachment to the Port Jervis area that he expressed his intention to settle in that small city or near his brother Edmund after he completed his wandering journeys. [2]

The above paragraph has been repeatedly added to the lead by ip: I've removed it so that we can discuss its inclusion, although I've already outlined my reasoning at the ip's talk page. Basically, the addition of this block of text violates WP:LEAD in that it gives undue weight to a minor topic in Crane's life (his upbringing in/visits to Port Jervis). The lead section is supposed to be a summary of the article, giving due weight to the major topics. That Crane lived in the town is already present in the body of the article ("Early life"), and that he frequently visited there after he moved away is mentioned in several other places. While the letter that the second part of the proposed addition is interesting, I don't personally believe that it's notable enough for inclusion -- at the very least, its presence in the lead again violates WP:LEAD because it introduces material that is not present anywhere else in the article. Also, personally, I find the wording to be awkward, in that it is obviously pro-Port Jervis; it reads more like an advertisement than something of encyclopedic value. However, if it can be proven that it is somehow a significant addition, we have to find a better place to mention it than the lead. Lastly, let's keep in mind that this is a Featured Article, so care must be taken. Any thoughts? María (yllosubmarine) 23:19, 8 February 2012 (UTC)

--Put the edit where you wish but please don't change the facts. Crane DID visit the Port Jervis area throughout most of his adult life and DID state his intention to move to that area after he had his fill of wandering. If you prefer to read it as a promotion of Port Jervis then so be it. Those are the facts. Please see the references for yourself and make the edits as you will on this article you clearly seem to believe is yours alone. Perhaps if you'd like to do an informal content analysis of the Crane Log, as I have done, you would see for yourself that, save New York City, there are more references to Sullivan County, Hartwood, Pike County, Twin Lakes and Port Jervis than any other place Crane lived or visited. As the article now stands it seems as if those areas are merely incidental which is not at all the case, especially as Crane had himself said he intended to live there. If this can not be resolved without further ado I suggest that we immediately move to arbitration. Thank you. (talk) 00:32, 9 February 2012 (UTC)

Thank you for discussing the matter with me, 96. Despite what you may believe, I don't think I own the article. As I've noted before, its status as an FA means that one must take great care while editing, and it's important that guidelines are followed. I happen to know these guidelines, which is why I'm explaining them to you. The facts -- that Crane visited the Port Jervis area many times, as well the playing an important role in his writing -- are present in the body of the article. That you seem determined to add a large chunk of Port Jervis background to the lead (some of which is repeated later on, some of which isn't) goes against both WP:LEAD and WP:UNDUE. I've read The Crane Log, and it's used as a source throughout the article; Wertheim and Sorrentino's work is great. However, you've sourced the speculation that Crane may have intended to settle down to Port Jervis to a letter that he wrote in 1897, four years before he died. Per policy (WP:RS and WP:NOR) we should be relying on reliable secondary sources. If you read the rest of the article, it relies solely on reliable secondary sources when it comes to piecing together Crane's biography. I feel it would degrade the quality were we to use Crane's correspondence to speculate as to his intentions. So if you have a better source in mind, maybe one that goes into the importance of Crane's experiences in Port Jervis, that would be very helpful; maybe we could word it in a less speculative way. María (yllosubmarine) 01:39, 9 February 2012 (UTC)
In my view, unless you can prove otherwise, Crane's own words are a definitive source and NOT speculation. Crane's own correspondence degrades the quality? Really? I think not. Have you done a content analysis? Generally speaking, I find the article to be little more than a regurgitation of Wertheim but then that methodology is what Wiki is all about, isn't it? With due respect, and frankly speaking, I care little about the style to which you appear immutably bound. I will leave such tedium to others such as yourself who seemly are deeply invested in and have much more time to spend than do I working on this website that some consider to be of dubious quality and usefulness, an opinion I am beginning to share. To arbitration we go. Thank you. (talk) 05:39, 9 February 2012 (UTC)
96, I've made a suggestion as to how we can best incorporate Crane's own words: via a reliable secondary source so we do not take the risk of incorrectly analyzing a primary resource. If you have such a source in mind, that would be great. As policy states, the danger with using primary sources stems from incorrectly synthesizing material in order to advance an opinion (WP:SYNTH). If you "care little" about the policies and guidelines that govern Wikipedia and its articles, which you deem of "dubious quality and usefulness", I fear you may find arbitration wholly unsatisfactory. María (yllosubmarine) 13:23, 9 February 2012 (UTC)
Take the anon's castigation of Wikipedia, his immediate and premature threats of arbitration, add in his Port Jervis-centered edit history and his probable agenda becomes readily apparent. ~ Alcmaeonid (talk)
Numberous prior attempts have been made via email to reason with YS, all for naught. In this writer's view, YS appears fixated upon a particular point of view regarding Crane that is not subject to change. If castigation and criticism are crimes then they are violations to which I admit guilt. From a block of stone the violence of a craftsman's hammer and chisel creates a work of art. What is "readily apparent" is that "birds of a feather flock together." A gold star on Wiki is, as I see it, about the adult equivalent of receiving the same from a kindergarten teacher. Alcmaeonid has not taken all the facts into account nor does that user appear to be intimately familiar with Crane's life. Consider, for instance, the following which is just a VERY brief beginning of the point that I am attempting to make, specifically, that the article does not give Port Jervis and its environs the proper standing that they deserve and which are instead treated only incidentally.
From "The Crane Log."
Pg. xxviii – Charles Becker “Like Crane, Becker grew up in Sullivan County.” Extortionist in Tenderloin. 9/1896 scandal re: Dora Clark. 1st person to die in electric chair at Sing-Sing.
Pg. xxxii - “Hartwood Club …This hunting and fishing preserve served as the setting for Stephen’s Sullivan County Sketches.” “…William Howe moved into the house on East Main Street in Port Jervis where Stephen often visited and wrote.”
Pg. 14 – “There were two large temperance groups in Port Jervis: The WCTU headed by Mrs. Crane and the Christian Temperance Union whose president was Dr. Charles Lawrence, father of Stephen’s later fraternity brother and friend, Frederic Lawrence.” 1878.
Pg. 20 – “The Port Jervis Evening Gazette lists Stephen Crane on the honor roll…” 3/18/1879. First documented appearance of Crane’s name in print.
Pg. 21 “Crane writes his first surviving poem:” December 1879.
Pg. 54 – As above in xxxii, regarding W.H. Crane’s Main Street home, October 1890. “Stephen often visits and writes during the next five years.”
Pg. 65 – “Crane joins Frederic M. Lawrence and two other Port Jervis friends…on a camping trip in Sullivan County.” Mid-June 1891.
Pg. 67- “Stephen makes Edmund his guardian.” 12/4/1891.
Pg. 69 – “In August (1892), as he does each summer through 1896, he (Stephen Crane) camps at Twin Lakes near Milford in Pike County, Pennsylvania.”
Pg. 70 – 21 February 1892 “The ‘Last of the Mohicans,’ datelined Hartwood…the first in a series of unsigned Sullivan County sketches and tales published in the Sunday issues of the Tribune through July.” Pages 70-76 make frequent references to Crane’s “Sullivan County Sketches.”
Pg. 85 - 18 March 1893 “’Maggie’ is reviewed in the Port Jervis Union, the earliest known review of a Crane work.”
The Stephen Crane Society. Washington State University
“Edmund Bryan Crane (1857-1922) was the brother with whom Stephen had the closest relationship, and his residences at Lake View, New Jersey, and Hartwood, New York, were as near to what can be called homes that Crane had in the United States.” --Stanley Wertheim, 2/12/05
Stephen Crane Letters -Page 147
"My idea is to come finally to live at Port Jervis or Hartwood. I am a wanderer now and I must see enough but - afterwards - I think of Port Jervis and Hartwood." Saturday October 29, 1897. Stephen Crane letter to his brother William in Port Jervis.
Crane's lifelong relationship to his brother William in Port Jervis where the latter served as a benefactor and as legal counselor is thoroughly documented. With regards to the "Red Badge of Courage," neither has anything been mentioned here about the NYS 124th Volunteers "Orange Blossoms" Brigade Company F that was assembled in Port Jervis and from which, the article already states, may have had members convey their war experiences to Crane in that city's Orange Square thus influencing Crane's most famous work. Company F participated in the Battle of Chancellorsville which Crane reveals in a subsequent story as that battle which is depicted in "The Red Badge."
If this is not sufficient proof of the point being raised then, in my opinion, the article will continue to be deficient in its failure to give Port Jervis and its environs proper credit for the impact they had upon Crane's life and work. I am SIMPLY suggesting that something to the effect of "Port Jervis and its environs had a significant place in the life and work of Stephen Crane" be included someplace in the article. Where it is placed is left to whomever might care to make that decision. In light of the above, is that really too much to ask?
I am done with this. My time is too precious to be spending it with nitpicking on something - an internet source - that, at the bottomline, I feel is relatively insignificant. I have no intention of following this thread further. Do what you will. Even a non-action is an action. Thank you. (talk) 20:20, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

(outdent) 96, you asked: "In light of the above, is that really too much to ask?" Yes, because what you are suggesting to introduce is original research by synthesis (WP:SYNTH). Nowhere in The Crane Log, or any other reliable source, is it stated that "Port Jervis and its environs had a significant place in the life and work of Stephen Crane". To say as much here, on Wikipedia, would be the result of taking various incidents in Crane's life and career, and drawing a conclusion: thus, until such a source exists, this "fact" is OR by SYNTH. Wikipedia values verifiability, not "truth" -- something that I know might seem like a meaningless phrase, but it's really quite clear if you read the policies I've linked to.

On another note, I find it strange that you refer to the "numberous"[sic] attempts you've made to email me; I remember one short exchange about a year ago from EarnestManVIII, so I'm guessing that is you? Several months before that, as another IP, you added some material about Crane's experiences in Port Jervis/Sullivan County. The additions about Sullivan County were largely kept because they were indeed helpful, but I added reliable sourcing. The addition about The Red Badge of Courage, sourced to an image of a historical marker, was removed and explained here. You resurfaced again in March to suggest I add information about the town as a source of inspiration to both Red Badge and The Monster -- I did, with reliable sourcing, and both articles are now also Featured. At this time I reminded you of the risk of OR by SYNTH, to which you replied that you were drafting a separate article dedicated to The Effect of Port Jervis on Stephen Crane and his writing -- my suggestion, albeit tongue in cheek. I thought it was a genial conversation, but I'm sorry you felt otherwise. The articles have improved as a result of our headbutting, as I hope you'd agree; however, it's also tiresome to have to repeatedly explain the core principles of Wikipedia's content editing. Simply, what you're asking (that we add a synthesized claim as to the importance of Port Jervis in Crane's writing/life) does not gel with Wikipedia's guidelines and policies. I'm sorry. María (yllosubmarine) 22:19, 11 February 2012 (UTC)

19th-century American novelists[edit]

Crane clearly belongs in Category:19th-century American novelists. He died before the start of the 20th-century. There is no reason to put him in parents of this category when it is a diffusing category.John Pack Lambert (talk) 17:02, 11 May 2013 (UTC)

There is no reason to continue messing with individual articles until some resolution is found regarding the larger issues with categorization. Nikkimaria (talk) 17:28, 11 May 2013 (UTC)
  • Actually, there is no reason to not diffuse to by century categories, which have no nominations against them, and by century categories fully diffuse, which means if the person is in one of more by century categories they should not be in the parent category.John Pack Lambert (talk) 18:44, 13 May 2013 (UTC)

Infobox anyone?[edit]

This article could sure use a nice writer infobox, if anyone is in the mood to make one... I Like Cheeseburgers (talk) 15:24, 5 June 2013 (UTC)

Nope, it's better without one. Nikkimaria (talk) 15:47, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
And why, Nikkimaria? -- (talk) 17:50, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
Such a template is unlikely to adequately capture the subtleties of the subject while avoiding the numerous other problems characteristic of many infobox implementations. Nikkimaria (talk) 19:35, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
I disagree. Just some basic info, such as is found on the Ernest Hemingway article would be beneficial, so you don't have to search through the text for basic info. Whether the standard for authors IS or IS NOT an infobox, it would be nice to have such similar articles consistent, if nothing else... I Like Cheeseburgers (talk) 17:22, 20 June 2013 (UTC)

Please de-uncorrect and recorrect my prior correction[edit]

Would anybody else please chime in? I fixed a grammatical error (verb tense), but the error was reintroduced on the grounds that "doing it the right way is 3 characters more" and because I used a "conditional", which I did not, which I proved, which claim was then backpedaled, but the error remains. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 16:47, 6 June 2013 (UTC)

Article got locked. Please revert this edit. One of my edits was "corrected", but that correction is an error. In the passage in question, the "would" version is correct:

As he waited in Jacksonville, Florida, for passage to Cuba, he met Cora Taylor, the madam of a brothel, with whom he [would maintain vs. maintained] a lasting relationship.

see Uses_of_English_verb_forms#Future-in-the-past:

A "future-in-the-past" tense (or form) is sometimes referred to.[1] This takes essentially the same form as the conditional, that is, it is made using the auxiliary would (or sometimes should in the first person; see shall and will). This form has a future-in-the-past meaning in sentences such as She knew that she would win the game. Here the sentence as a whole refers to some particular past time, but would win refers to a time which was in the future relative to that past time.

and Conditional_perfect#English:

Sometimes, in informal speech, the would have construction appears in the if-clause as well ("If we would have run faster, we would have arrived earlier"), but this is considered incorrect in formal speech and writing

If it doesn't sound right to your ear (the editor said it sounded conditional), it's probably because you come from one of the parts of the country (in my mind, Little Scandinavia, but I'm not sure) where people say "if I would have" rather than "if I had", in which case the proper use of would might confuse you. In that case add the word "subsequently" or "he went on to maintain" or some such. As it is, it is ambiguous because it sounds as if he bumped into (met) somebody he already knew. Yes, the sentence could be rewritten to make the whole thing better. (talk) 22:22, 5 June 2013 (UTC)

No, I don't come from Little Scandinavia. I understand the whole future-in-the-past thing; I just think on an encyclopedia article we keep that kind of thing to a minimum. "Would maintain" is 3 characters and one word longer than "maintained" and carries the same meaning. Less is more; stylistically, simple, clear sentences are preferable. --John (talk) 22:43, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
your change comment cited "conditional" which it is not, so in terms of understanding... it is not clear and understandable as written, it leaves open the distinct suggestion that he was already maintaining a relationship with her. The way I changed is correct English, period, if you think it is beyond the target grade level, then reword the sentence. (talk) 22:52, 5 June 2013 (UTC)

First sentence listy?[edit]

"novelist, short story writer, poet and journalist" seems like quite a list. The guy died at 28 and the types of work are not really unrelated. Couldn't we say something simpler like "writer"? "Author and journalist"? Was poetry really an emphasis of his or just a few pieces? I mean for someone like Herbert Hoover, it is probably important to discuss him both as a public servant and an engineer. Or Jack Kemp as politician and QB. But this feels like 4 flavors of writer...and Wiki has a general issue with being too listy.

Not a huge deal, just something to think about. Congrats on creating this article on such an important topic.

TCO (talk) 22:29, 5 June 2013 (UTC)

No. He's notable exactly for the reason that he achieved as much as he did and died at 28. He's one of the better known American authors, one of the best known for his period and for his specific type of writing. Besides, tomorrow there will be a huge fight about an infobox, along the lines of something like this, and part of that fight will be which fields to add. The primary editor here has already been driven off the project exactly because of an infobox fight the last time she had a TFA, so let's just leave it as it is. These are his achievements. Someone went to a lot of trouble to do an immense amount of research and write a nice article for this encyclopedia. That person deserves kudos for doing so. Sorry, soap-boxing, but it happens sometimes. Victoria (talk) 22:35, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
Don't worry, I got your back versus the Infoboxers. I'm just even more anti-cruft. Bigger images, less listy writing.  ;-) But no worries. I'm not even into the edit-warring or debating. Just putting an idea out percolate in the article author's mind, subversively...and influence over time.  ;-) TCO (talk) 22:41, 5 June 2013 (UTC)
Prob is, TCO: she's gone. When things calm down a bit here in a few days, I'll tidy up. I told her I'd watch her back when she left. But truly, Crane was amazing in what he achieved in his short life. Victoria (talk) 22:45, 5 June 2013 (UTC)

I took a shot at improving the lead. If the main author does not like it, or you in her stead, please revert. It's fine with me, honest. Just give it an honest chance/look. The rationale was to bring the "primarily known for" higher in the article as it will resonate with most readers coming here. Also I cut the listy different flavors of "writer" (if we wanted to go in the other direction, we could add "essayist".  ;-)

TCO (talk) 01:07, 8 June 2013 (UTC)

  1. ^ Wertheim, Stanley and Sorrentino, Paul. The Crane Log. A Documentary Life of Stephen Crane 1871-1900. New York, NY: G.K Hall & Company, 1994. ISBN 0-7838-1400-3
  2. ^ Stallman, R.W. and Gilkes, Lillian. Stephen Crane:Letters. New York University Press, 1960. p. 147