Letter 069

To Archibald Ogden

Archibald Ogden was Rand’s editor on The Fountainhead (originally titled “Second-Hand Lives”). His almost legendary status among Objectivists was secured when he put his job on the line, telling his employer, D.L. Chambers of Bobbs-Merrill, that if The Fountainhead wasn’t the book for them, then he wasn’t the editor for them. Rand and Ogden remained friends until 1967, when Ogden submitted an introduction to the 25th anniversary edition, an introduction that Rand considered inappropriate. See her August 24, 1967, letter below.


139 East 35th Street
New York City

December 8, 1941

Mr. Archibald G. Ogden
The Bobbs Merrill Company
468 Fourth Avenue
New York City

Dear Mr. Ogden:

I should like to have included in our contract for the publication of my novel at present entitled “SECOND-HAND LIVES,” the following paragraph which appeared in my contracts with the publishers of my first novel:

“It is understood and agreed that no changes of any nature whatsoever will be made from the copy as submitted without the approval of the Author.”

I shall, however, welcome the editorial suggestions which you might care to make, and give them earnest consideration.

Sincerely yours,