Upon its completion in 1942, O'Neill had a sealed copy of the play placed in the document vault of publisher Random House, and instructed that it not be published until 25 years after his death. A formal contract to that effect was drawn up in 1945. However, O'Neill's third wife Carlotta Monterey transferred the rights of the play to Yale University, skirting the agreement. The copyright page of Yale editions of the play states the conditions of Carlotta's gift:
All royalties from the sale of the Yale editions of this book go to Yale University for the benefit of the Eugene O'Neill Collection, for the purchase of books in the field of drama, and for the establishment of Eugene O'Neill Scholarships in the Yale School of Drama.
The play was first published in 1956, three years after its author's death.