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  1. Jack London: Two Unpublished Letters ‘Found’- Transcriptions

    October 29, 2014 by Pamela M. McMurray

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    Jack London letter to Dan [Murphy?] concerning the "Kempton-Wace Letters." Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

    Jack London letter to Dan [Murphy?] concerning the “Kempton-Wace Letters.” Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    Yesterday’s post introduced two letters from Jack London to his sometimes literary agent Dan Murphy. (See Jack London: Two Unpublished Letters ‘Found’.) I am adding transcriptions in this post for better search capabilities for other researchers.

     

    October 4, 1901, Jack London to Dan [Murphy?] letter, transcription:

                                                  Jack London

                                         56 Bayo Vista Avenue

                                                Oakland, Calif.

                                                   [stamped]

     

    Oct. 4/01 [typewritten]

     

    [typewritten; additional spaces left between quotes and words per original]

    Dear Dan:-

    Yes, The Book is progressing. Anna and

    I now have thirty thousand and more words done on it,

    and we do not expect to add more than twenty thousand

    more. So then you’ll have a double task on your hands–

    —-a sketch of Anna as well as the one of me.

     

    Anna reviewed the ” God of His Fathers ” in

    current ” Impressions. ” Of course you will have seen

    it ere this. But if you haven’t, write me and I’ll get

    you a copy. I haven’t one in the house just now. It

    is by far the best review the book has received. It hah

    has sympathy and understanding, which is something few

    reviews possess and then in only infintesiml(spl?)

    quantities.

     

    Please thank Mr. and Mrs. Markham for me

    for their kind invitation, which in itself gives me

    great happiness, though the signs for an Eastern trip

    are not auspicious.

     

    Mrs. London and Joan send regards,

    Jack London [signature]

     

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 1. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 1. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901, Jack London to Dan [Murphy?] letter, transcription:

    Jack London

    56 Bayo Vista Avenue

    Oakland, Calif.

    [stamped]

     

    Dec. 28/01 [typewritten]

     

    [typewritten]

     

    Dear Dan:-

     

    Do you know if the ATLANTIC permits

    the stuff it buys to be published in England? They

    are, I believe, on the eve of closing with a certain

    story of mine, which is a pretty fair sort of a

    story. Let me know whether McClure’s forward

    duplicate copies to you mentioned in last letter.

     

    Yes, I presume a fake publication was

    made of the SON OF THE WOLFin England in 1899 in

    order to obtain British copyright. Itwas only

    curiosity prompted me to ask, anyway, for Ward,

    Lock & Co., bought the copyright outright. Perhaps

    they are withholding publication for twenty years

    on the chance of my becoming famous.

     

    I have started the Success story, which

    I shall submit through your hands.

     

    Could you give me a line on what prices

     

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 2. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 2. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    [page 2, cut short]

     

    LIPPINCOTT’S and SMART SET usually offer for

    novelettes of ?? [two letters typed over to mark out] 25,000 to 35,000 words. And

    Are LIPPINCOTT’S open to adventure novelettes with

    a love thread woven in?

     

    The novel written long ago was accepted

    by McClure, Phillips & Co., [sic] They said they would

    first seek serial publication for it, and later

    bring it out themselves in book form. I haven’t

    much interest in the novel. It was my first.

     

    [Remainder of page appears to have been cut off.]

     

     

    Notes, Sources, and References: 

    1) Again, we greatly appreciate the kind assistance of Lisa Holland, Archivist, at the Horrmann Library, Wagner College, Staten Island, New York to locate these letters and other requested information. A thank you also goes out to the Dean of the college for allowing us to publish these letters in our blog and to share them at the Jack London Society 12th Biennial Symposium held on October 30-November 1, 2014, in Berkeley, California.

    2) Please contact the Horrmann Library at Wagner College, Staten Island, New York, for permission to publish the letters.

    3) Transcriptions by the author.

    4) London, Jack. Letter, 04 Oct 1901, to Dan [Murphy?]. Edwin Markham Archives, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

    5) London, Jack. Letter, 28 Dec 1901, to Dan [Murphy?]. Edwin Markham Archives, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

     

    Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images.

    Text copyright 2013-2014 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and Pamela M. McMurray. Please contact the Horrmann Library at Wagner College for permission to publish these letters.

     
     
    We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post, and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.

  2. Jack London: Two Unpublished Letters ‘Found’

    October 28, 2014 by Pamela M. McMurray

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    Jack London letter to Dan [Murphy?] concerning the "Kempton-Wace Letters." Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

    October 4, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?]. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    Two letters previously unknown to Jack London researchers and unpublished have been located  in the Horrmann Library at Wagner College in New York City. The letters were not catalogued  in any MARC records that I have found, and they are not available in the three volumes of The Letters of Jack London. The first letter reports on the progress of “The Book” published anonymously by Jack London and Anna Strunsky two years later as The Kempton-Wace Letters. The second note mentions the fake publication of Son of the Wolf in England, requests information concerning prices paid for various lengths of novelettes, and promises that “the Success story” London has just started will be submitted through Dan [Murphy?] as London’s literary agent.

    With the expert assistance of the Wagner College Archivist, Lisa Holland, the Edwin Markham Collection was searched to find any correspondence between Edwin Markham and Edward Biron Payne, my primary research focus. Both were west coast Christian Socialists, and I was trying to learn if they corresponded, or if Markham was involved in Payne’s Utopian colony of  “Altruria” in 1894-1896. Additionally, Payne had published an article in The Arena, a liberal magazine that advocated social reform, in July, 1899, entitled “The “Hoe man” on trial.” Payne addressed the controversy engendered by Edwin Markham’s  poem, “The Man with the Hoe,” so there was a possibility they had corresponded or met each other. (Payne’s library was burned in the 1923 Berkeley fire and only a small portion of his letters have survived.) Additionally, I requested copies of any  letters from Jack or Charmian London, as the Londons were friends with Markham (as well as with Payne, who married Ninetta Wiley Eames, the aunt who raised Charmian), and they traveled in some of the same social and literary circles. Charmian’s scrapbooks at the Huntington Museum contain images of Markham. Ms. Holland was not able to find any letters to/from Edward B. Payne, but did locate five letters each from Jack and Charmian, with two of the letters from Jack being previously unpublished.

    The letters are written to “Dear Dan,” who is most likely Daniel Murphy, a literary agent who promoted manuscripts abroad as well in the United States. There is a London letter addressed to”Dear Dan:-” dated December 17, 1901 published in London, Jack,  The Letters of Jack London: Vol. 1: 1896-1905. The Russ Kingman notes indicate it is to Dan Murphy who was acting as London’s British agent. Dan Murphy was also possibly Edwin Markham’s brother-in-law, as Markham married Anna Catharine Murphy as his third wife in San Francisco, California in 1898.

    Catharine was born in 1859 to Patrick Murphy (1827-?) and Mary __ (maiden name unknown) (1832-?), and was the mother of Edwin Markham’s only son, Virgil. (1899-1973). Catharine is found in the 1860 US Federal Census in her father’s household as the only child, age 1; in 1870, she is listed at age 10 with Margaret, age 9, Mary E., age 7, and John Murphy, age 6 in the household. As Catharine’s full name was Anna Catharine Murphy, and it appears she was called by her middle name as a child, the John Murphy in the family may possibly be Daniel John, and the addressee of London’s note many years later. More research is needed into the life of Dan Murphy, but I have not yet located the family in the 1880 US Federal Census; with the name a common one, more detailed research will be required to confirm the hypothesis that he was Edwin Markham’s brother-in-law. The fact that letters to him are found in the Markham Archive lend credence to this hypothesis.

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 1. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 1. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 2. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    December 28, 1901 letter from Jack London to Dan [Murphy?], page 2. Published with permission of the Edwin Markham Archive, Horrmann Library, Wagner College. (Click to enlarge.)

    Tomorrow: transcriptions of these letters.

     

    Notes, Sources, and References: 

    1) We greatly appreciate the kind assistance of Lisa Holland, Archivist, at the Horrmann Library, Wagner College, Staten Island, New York to locate these letters and other requested information. A thank you also goes out to the Dean of the college for allowing us to publish these letters in our blog and to share them at the Jack London Society 12th Biennial Symposium held on October 30-November 1, 2014, in Berkeley, California.

    2) London, Jack,  The Letters of Jack London: Vol. 1: 1896-1905; Vol. 2: 1906-1912; Vol. 3:1913-1916. Edited by Earle Labor, Robert Leitz III, and I. Shepherd. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1988.

    3)  Markham, Edwin. ”To the Man with the Hoe” in The Arena, July 1899. The Arena 22, no. 1 (1899): 15-16.

    4) Payne, Edward B. “The ‘Hoe Man’ on Trial” in The Arena, July 1899. The Arena 22, no. 1 (1899): 17-24.

    5) 1860 U.S. Census, Alameda County, California, population schedule, Eden Township, page no. 112 (written), dwelling 923, family 934, Catharine Murphy; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 28 Oct 2014) citing National Archives microfilm publication Roll: M653_55; Page: 114; Image: 114; Family History Library Film: 803055.

    6)  1870 U.S. Census, Sonoma County, California, population schedule, Vallejo Township, Petaluma Post Office, page no. 8 (written), dwelling 48, family 47, Catharine Murphy; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 28 Oct 2014) citing National Archives microfilm publication Roll: M593_91; Page: 453B; Image: 474; Family History Library Film: 545590.

    7) Other Edwin Markham papers may be viewed in the Markham Archive at Horrmann College and online at http://cdm16694.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/search/collection/p15052coll4/searchterm/%22Edw%20B%20Payne%22/field/all/mode/any/conn/and/order/nosort/ad/asc

    8) “To Dan Murphy” letter dated December 17, 1901 published in London, Jack,  The Letters of Jack London: Vol. 1: 1896-1905. (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1988), 260.

    9) London, Jack. Letter, 4 Oct 1901, to Dan [Murphy?]. Edwin Markham Archives, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

    10) London, Jack. Letter, 28 Dec 1901, to Dan [Murphy?]. Edwin Markham Archives, Horrmann Library, Wagner College.

     

     

    Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images.

    Text copyright 2013-2014 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and Pamela M. McMurray. Please contact the Horrmann Library at Wagner College for permission to publish these letters.

     
    We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post, and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.

  3. Mystery Monday: Roberts, Daniel, or ? in Early 1920s?

    October 27, 2014 by Pamela M. McMurray

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    Possible Roberts, Daniel, or ? Family Picture. Woman on front right is probably Edith Roberts. In with images from the early 1920s, possibly taken in Iowa.

    Possible Roberts, Daniel, or ? Family Picture. Woman on front right is probably Edith Roberts, man to her right with bow tie is probably George A. Roberts, Jr., Edith’s brother. (See below.) In with images from the early 1920s, possibly taken in Iowa.

     

    This image is in the photo album of Edith Roberts (later McMurray and then Luck), in with images taken in the early 1920s. The woman in the front on the right appears to be Edith, but it is unknown who the other persons are. Since she is by herself and we do not recognize any of the men in the picture, she may not yet have been married nor had her son, Edward A. McMurray. (He was born in 1924.)

    We would be very interested in learning more about any of the people in this picture! Please contact us if you know them.

     

    REVISED later in the day after looking at more family photos: The man with the bow tie to the right of Edith is probably her brother, George Anthony Roberts, Jr. The woman two persons to the left of Edith, holding a little girl with a barrette in her hair, may be Edith’s sister, Ethel Gay (Roberts) Robinson (1891-1969). The child may be Ruby Robinson, born 1915, or Helen Viola Robinson, born 1921. Ethel’s husband Bert Robinson (1890-1977) may be the man in the back, just to the left of  “Georgie” Roberts. These assumptions/guesses are just from knowing these people in later life and looking at the few pictures we have of them. The man in the center with a tie (in front) may be George A. Roberts, Sr. OR Robert Woodson Daniel. There is a picture of RW Daniel somewhere in the family archives, as I remember Ed McMurray talking about it as we viewed an image. It is on a little cassette video somewhere, just begging to be digitized. Even better would be finding the original, which has not turned up in boxes of family pictures. I am now leaning toward this being a group photo of the Daniel family, as George Roberts, Sr., was not happy with his daughter Ethel’s choice of husband, and he disowned her when she married Bert Robinson; thus, a picture of them all together was unlikely as Geo. Sr. was a strong-minded man (per his daughter Edith). George Sr.’s wife and the mother  of Edith, George, and Ethel’s was Ella V. Daniel, but she had passed away 17 Jan 1922; I don’t believe she is in this picture, which may help date it after 1922 or so. R.W. Daniel’s wife, Margaret Ann Hemphill, died in 1915, so that may also date the photo. Again, any help would be appreciated with identifying the people in this image.

     

    Notes, Sources, and References:

    1) Family treasure chest of photo albums.

    Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images.

    Copyright 2013-2014 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

     
    We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post, and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.

  4. Thankful Thursday: Ed McMurray’s Whooping Cough Party

    October 23, 2014 by Pamela M. McMurray

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    "Whooping Cough Party" from left: John Warburton, Dick Barquest, Mary Lou Harvey, Mary Warburton, Bob H[arvey?], Edward A. McMurray

    “Whooping Cough Party” from left: John Warburton, Dick Barquest, Mary Lou Harvey, Mary Warburton, Bob H[arvey?], Edward A. McMurray

    Whooping cough, or pertussis, is a dangerous disease that has taken the lives of many  infants and children throughout the years. Adults can get it as well- often from their children.

    The initial symptoms of this highly contagious bacterial respiratory disease are often mild and may be misdiagnosed. Also called the “100-day cough”, pertussis then causes violent coughing fits that may cause fainting, hemorrhage, rib fracture, brain injury, and even death, especially in young infants. Making it hard to breathe, the coughing occurs in clusters of 5-10 coughs and then a ‘whoop’ as the patient breathes in. Typically this stage lasts six weeks but often continues ten weeks or longer; the whooping may last for some time even after the person has recovered from pertussis.

    There is no real treatment for whooping cough- antibiotics are sometimes given to reduce how infectious the person is (that period may last 5 weeks or more) and possibly reduce side effects of the disease. Vaccination is currently the only way to reduce the risk of acquiring pertussis, and the immunity fades over time, requiring vaccination throughout the years.

    There had been an average of over 175,000 cases of whooping cough reported per year in the US before a vaccine was available in the 1940s. The incidence decreased to only about 1,000 cases per year until 1976, when cases again began to rise. In the US, in 2012 there were more cases reported than since 1955; in 2014, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reported a 30% increase in cases. (Keep in mind that many cases go unreported, so actual numbers are probably higher.)

    1939 Whooping Cough Party. The Independent, St. Petersburg, Florida.

    1939 Whooping Cough Party. The Independent, St. Petersburg, Florida.

    Back at the turn of the twentieth century and into the 1930s, whooping cough epidemics scoured our nation. Schools would be closed because such a large number of children were absent due to the cough, and there were many deaths. Epidemics would occur every 2-5 years.

    Imagine a large family of children, maybe a newborn and children aged 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 12,14, and all of them coming down with whooping cough, one at a time, each at a different stage of the illness…   The disease may last 100 days, so an entire year or more might be spent with a family dealing with whooping cough, and the very youngest might not survive. The ‘whooping’ children would get bored and be distraught that they could not enjoy their birthday or other happy event. So parents invented “Whooping Cough Parties” to entertain the sick children- only those infected or who had already had the cough were invited. Parents as well as children were thankful for a respite from being sick.

    New Zealand also dealt with whooping cough as an epidemic, as did countries around the world: Whooping Cough Party in Bay of Plenty Times. A creosote mixture was a part of the meal as a relish, and prizes were given for those who could whoop the longest and loudest; a booby prize was given to those who whooped the least.

    There was even a mention of a whooping cough party in both the The American Journal of Clinical Medicine and The Boston Medical and Surgical Journal!

    Back to the picture above- there are two sets of siblings in the picture, which shows how infectious the disease was. The photo was taken probably about 1930 in Newton, Iowa, at 609 South Sixth Street. Ed McMurray and Johnny Warburton were best friends, and they lived across the street from each other. Ed stated that his mother planned the party since so many were sick. This may have been an April birthday party, or a party just to keep those poor coughing kids occupied.

    CAUTION- PLEASE NOTE:

    None of the information in this post should be considered medical information or advice- please consult a doctor if you want more information or think you or a loved one may have whooping cough.

    Pertussis is the only disease with increasing occurrences today that has a vaccine available. Sadly, the increasing number of persons who are not vaccinating their children or getting them booster shots increases the risk for all of acquiring this sometimes fatal disease. At least 90% of the population needs to be vaccinated to prevent outbreaks, and in some areas of the US, 75% of the parents are NOT vaccinating their kids, thus there is no “herd immunity.” (Measles and polio are coming back as well because of so many not vaccinating.)

    I have seen queries online about having a “Whooping Cough Party” to infect one’s child to develop the immunity- that is NOT what these parties were years ago, and it can be very dangerous to hold these ‘parties’. In the early 1900s, the parties were for children who were actually sick. Since some of the children may have attended while still infectious, some states enacted laws against these gatherings:

    Whooping Cough Party Hostess is Arrested. 21 Dec 1911, San Francisco Call.

    Whooping Cough Party Hostess is Arrested. 21 Dec 1911, San Francisco Call.

    So please don’t hold a “Whooping Cough Party”- it is very risky and we don’t want to lose any of those cute little timeless faces like in the above picture to such a horrible, preventable disease.

     

    Notes, Sources, and References:

    1) “Whooping Cough Party is Success for 25 Children” accessed 10/13/14 at http://news.google.com/newspapers?id=-N5PAAAAIBAJ&sjid=r1QDAAAAIBAJ&pg=5627%2C5984160

    2) See also an 1899 article from Australia about whooping cough, in which a sick child had 27 of her friends with the same illness: http://trove.nla.gov.au/ndp/del/article/89827706

    3) New Zealand Whooping Cough Party article: http://paperspast.natlib.govt.nz/cgi-bin/paperspast?a=d&d=BOPT19070925.2.42

    4) CDC information about pertussis and current outbreaks: http://www.cdc.gov/pertussis

    5) Creosote compounds were used for their antibacterial properties that helped with respiratory illnesses, and given frequently for tuberculosis. Guaifenesin, currently used in Mucinex and other medications, is a synthetic modification of these compounds. See Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Creosote.

    6) Pertussis article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pertussis.

     

     

     

    Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images.

    Copyright 2013-2014 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

     
    We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post, and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.

     

     

     

     


  5. Amanuensis Monday: Lee-Russell Postcard from Golden, Colorado, 12 July 1922

    October 20, 2014 by Pamela M. McMurray

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    Pahaska Teepee, Buffalo Bill Memorial Museum, Lookout Mountain, Colo.

    Pahaska Tepee, Buffalo Bill Memorial Museum, Lookout Mountain, Colo.

    Buffalo Bill’s memorial was a popular place. The back of the postcard description states,

    “PAHASKA TEPEE ATOP LOOKOUT MOUNTAIN, COLORADO

    The Wm. F. Cody “Buffalo Bill” Memorial. Erected by the City and County of Denver, in honor of the noted Scout and Indian fighter, 1921. The “Tepee” contains the many relics and paintings of the famous frontiersman and was opened to the Public May 29th, 1921. From May to November 1921, 70,000 people from every corner of the globe wrote their names in the register and 280,000 visitors passed through the Museum.”

     

    Postmarked Golden, Colorado July 1922, -PM, the card is addressed to Mrs. Sam Lee, or Dorothy Adele Aiken (1884-1953), called “Dottie” by family and friends. The Lees were living at 1038 Grandview, St. Louis, Missouri, at the time.

    The note is signed, “Mother,” and if it was Dottie’s mother, she would have been Dora J. (Russell) Aiken (1864-1955); if Sam Lee’s mother, it would have been Maria Louisa (Brandenburger) Lee. I am inclined to think that if was addressed to both, “Mr. and Mrs. Sam Lee” it might have been written by Maria, but since it is only addressed to Dottie, my hypothesis is that the writer was her mother, Dora J. (Russell) Aiken.

     

    Reverse of Buffalo Bill Memorial Postcard, 1922

    Reverse of Buffalo Bill Memorial Postcard, 1922

    The card reads:

    “Wed-12. Lookout Mt

    I am sending you this card from this building up pretty high but a wonderful ride up here. am feeling fine. We are leaving Friday for Estes Park. I do not know when we will leave for the Springs or Manitou. will write soon.

    love, Mother”

     

    NOTE: The handwriting under the address is my note from the 1980s that “Mother” was probably Dora Russel per Gene and Vada Lee as we looked through family treasures and discussed them. I am so thankful we did that back then!

     

     

    Notes, Sources, and References: 

    1) Manitou was a mineral resort and at the foot of Pike’s Peak.

     

    Please contact us if you would like higher resolution images.

    Copyright 2013-2014 by Heritage Ramblings Blog and pmm.

     
    We would love to read your thoughts and comments about this post, and thank you for your time! All comments are moderated, however, due to the high intelligence and persistence of spammers/hackers who really should be putting their smarts to use for the public good instead of spamming our little blog.