Series 1, The Hobbit, ca. 1930-1937, contains a holograph version of the novel, typescripts with corrections by Tolkien, a printer's typescript with corrections by JRRT, and three sets of page proofs with the author's corrections. Also included are a watercolor rendering by Tolkien of the dust jacket used by Allen and Unwin, printed maps with corrections by Tolkien, and a dust jacket from the German edition of The Hobbit. The records are arranged by type of manuscript and by chapter thereunder, corresponding to the final published version.

Series 2, Farmer Giles of Ham, ca. 1933-1938, 1948-1949, contains a holograph version, three typescripts with corrections by Tolkien, and two sets of galley sheets with corrections by Tolkien. It is arranged by type of manuscript.

Series 3, The Lord of the Rings, ca. 1937-1955, includes holograph renderings, typescripts with corrections by Tolkien, a typescript for the printer with corrections by JRRT, and galley sheets with corrections by the author. There are two sets of galley sheets for Books I and II, and three sets for Books II and IV. Also included are an advance proof copy of The Return of the King, printed maps, dust jackets from the original Houghton Mifflin edition, several drafts for an unpublished "Epilogue," a number of unpublished sketches, and manuscript fragments for The Silmarillion. The records are arranged by book and by type of manuscript and chapter thereunder, corresponding to the final published version. Additional manuscripts presented by Christopher Tolkien between 1987-1998 are currently arranged separately.

Series 4, Mr. Bliss, ca. 1935, is a children's story by Tolkien. The manuscript is in Tolkien's calligraphic hand, illustrated throughout with ink and colored pencil drawings by the author. It is a 50 page booklet, in finished form. A photocopy is included, along with a transcription and a set of 51 color slides, as well as galley sheets and an advance proof copy of the facsimile edition published in 1982. The condition of the Mr. Bliss manuscript precludes frequent handling. The Archives reserves the right to offer patrons the set of slides for viewing rather than the original document.

Series 5, Secondary Material Relating to J. R. R. Tolkien, 1938-2013, consists of secondary works, in a variety of different formats, on Tolkien and/or his writings. The series has grown slowly over the years with material donated from many individuals.  In 2013 the series was reorganized into seven sub-series to provide clearer organization and a structure for further growth.  The sub-series include a wide range of secondary materials: printed literature, calendars, artwork, sound recordings, motion pictures, games, fan fiction, and ephemera. The sub-series are arranged by type of material and chronologically thereunder. Any boxes marked "OS" means that they are "Oversized" (i.e., a very large, non-standard size). All books by and about J.R.R. Tolkien are cataloged in MARQCAT, Marquette University Libraries electronic catalog.

Series 6, Periodical Literature on Tolkien and Related Fantasy Writers, 1960-, contains fanzines and journals by groups of Tolkien enthusiasts. It is arranged by title of publication and/or organization and chronologically thereunder.

Series 7, Other Tolkien Writings, 1911-1976, the bulk of which were contributed by John Rateliff, contains photocopies of 30 poems by Tolkien, published from 1911 to 1974, and copies of letters and extracts of letters by Tolkien, as well as scholarly articles and obituaries. The series is arranged by type of material and thereunder chronologically.

Series 8, Screen Treatment, Scripts, and Screenplays 1957-1978, consists of a screen treatment by Morton Grady Zimmerman, written in 1957 for an animated version of The Lord of the Rings,with annotations by J.R.R. Tolkien; production notes and correspondence concerning the project; original donated by Morton Grady Zimmerman. Also the original script and production materials for a play cycle for "From The Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien," written by Marian L. Kleinau and  performed in 1967 at South Illinois University, donated by Richard E. Blackwelder. Also a photocopy of a screenplay of The Lord of the Rings by John Boorman and Rospo Pallenberg, prepared in 1970 for United Artists but never produced; and photocopies of three drafts of the screenplay by Chris Conkling and Peter S. Beagle, 1976-1978, of the animated version of "The Lord of the Rings," directed by Ralph Bakshi, donated by David N. Villalpando.

Related Collections

The Grace E. Funk Tolkien Collection contains more than 2,000 articles, essays, book reviews, encyclopedia and anthology entries, pamphlets, magazines, obituaries, abstracts of Ph.D. dissertations, and internet exchanges relating to both the scholarship and fiction of J.R.R. Tolkien. The collection is arranged alphabetically by author.

S. Gary Hunnewell Collection, 1960-ongoing.. A resident of Arnold, Missouri, S. Gary Hunnewell is building an inclusive collection of periodicals produced by Tolkien enthusiasts. The collection currently contains more than 225 U.S. and foreign titles, including many obscure publications from eastern Europe, as well as selected issues of general fantasy and science fiction " fanzines" relating to Tolkien. Detailed bibliographic descriptions about these publications are available in the archives. All titles have been cataloged in MARQCAT and WORLDCAT.

The Dr. Richard E. Blackwelder (1910-2001) amassed one of the largest collections of secondary sources on J.R.R. Tolkien ever to be developed. A comprehensive author and subject index to the collection is available in the archives. A preliminary inventory to the collection is available.

The J. R. R. Tolkien-Scholarship & Fandom collection is Marquette University's effort to capture Tolkien-related websites with a software called Archive-It in order to preserve them for future study. The websites are harvested twice per year. The collection allows visitors to view earlier iterations of each site.