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Series 2 | A Finding Aid to the Esther McCoy papers, 1876-1990, bulk, 1938-1989 | Digitized Collection

Esther McCoy papers, 1876-1990, bulk, 1938-1989

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Series 2: Correspondence, 1896-1989
(Boxes 1-6, 4.9 linear feet)

This series contains copies of McCoy's outgoing letters and incoming letters focusing on her personal relationships with family, friends, and lovers, and general correspondence relating primarily to her work as a writer.
The series is organized into three subseries:
2.1: Family Correspondence, 1896-1988
2.2: Personal Correspondence, 1908-1989
2.3: General Correspondence, 1922-1989
2.1:Family Correspondence, 1896-1988
This subseries contains correspondence between McCoy and her parents, James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, and between her brothers Clarence, William, John, and Frank, sister Ruth McCoy Hahn, and various other family members. Files for some of the family members represented here, including James L. McCoy, also contain business papers documenting activities such as the family lumber business. The folder of correspondence between various family members includes letters from Esther McCoy.
DescriptionContainer
Hahn, Ruth McCoy, to James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, circa 1924-1961
1
32
McCoy, Clarence, to Esther McCoy, 1948-1962
1
33
McCoy, Clarence, to James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1919, 1937-1955
1
34
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with Ruth McCoy Hahn, circa 1938-1977, 1988
1
35-37
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1917-1939
1
38-42
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1940-1944
1
43-47
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1945-1949
1
48-52
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1950-1954
1
53-57
McCoy, Esther, correspondence with James L. and Katie Mae McCoy, 1955-1963
2
1-5
McCoy, Frank, to Esther McCoy, 1938
2
6
McCoy, Frank, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1924-1938
2
7
McCoy, James L., Personal and Business Correspondence, 1920-1945
2
8-10
McCoy, John, to Esther McCoy, circa 1940s-1950, 1975-1977
2
11
McCoy, Julia Stephens, to Frank McCoy, 1928-1937
2
12
McCoy, William, to Esther McCoy, 1952
2
13
Various Family Members, 1896-1916, 1933-circa 1970s
2
14-16
2.2:Personal Correspondence, 1908-1989
This subseries contains personal correspondence between McCoy and her friends, lovers, and colleagues. The letters concern McCoy's personal and love relationships, her views on politics, culture, and the literary world, and her struggles as a writer.
Correspondence between McCoy and lovers, including Geoffrey Eaton, John Mitchell, John Vick, Albert Robert (also known as "Timmie"), and her husband, Berkeley Tobey, is especially well represented. Much of the extensive correspondence between McCoy and Albert Robert is undated. A few letters between McCoy and her lovers include photographs.
There is also significant correspondence with fellow writers, including Theodore Dreiser, Ray Bradbury, Millen Brand, John Collier, John Cowper Powys, and historian Lewis Mumford. Correspondence with Ray Bradbury includes discussions of theater, art and architecture. Letters from Helen Dreiser include Dreiser's opinions on manuscripts written by McCoy. Theodore Dreiser's letters provide insight into the research assignments McCoy carried out for Dreiser and his opinions of her writing. The letters include the typescript of a poem, possibly written by Dreiser. William A. Swanberg, who wrote a book on Dreiser, sought McCoy's opinions and impressions of the author, and their correspondence includes many observations and theories concerning Dreiser's personal life. Also of note is extensive correspondence between McCoy and her close friend Katheryn (Kay) Metz.
DescriptionContainer
Babb, Dorothy, 1951, 1954
2
17
Bradbury, Ray, 1958-1989
2
18
Brand, Millen and Helen, 1948-1951, 1958
2
19
Collier, John and Harriet, circa 1953-1978
2
20-21
Darrow, Clarence, to Geoffrey Eaton, February 23, 1928
2
22
Dreiser, Helen, circa 1939-1955
2
23
Dreiser, Theodore, circa 1924-1943
2
24-28
Dreiser, Theodore, Undated Letters, circa 1926-1938
2
29
Dreiser, Vera, 1952
2
30
Durden, Jim, 1951-1985
2
31
Eaton, Geoffrey, 1926-1929
2
32-37
Eaton, Geoffrey, Undated Letters, circa 1926-1929
2
38-39
Evans, Jean, 1941-1979
2
40-41
Grainger, Boyne (Bonnie), 1931-1950s
2
42
Grotz, Dorothy, Paul and Stefan, circa 1958-1989
2
43
Hanson, Ruth, circa 1967-1989
2
44-45
Hunt, Nolya, circa 1923-1951
(includes photographs, possibly of Hunt, and illustrated letters)
2
46-48
Kahn, Gordon, circa 1951-1953
2
49-51
Kuifer, John, circa 1924-1925
2
52
Lee, Cora Vernon, Regarding Lee's Estate, 1952-1953
2
53
Metz, Kathryn (Kay), 1951, 1961-1989
(includes an original print by Metz)
3
1-8
Mitchell, John, 1928-1933
3
9-11
Mitchell, John, Undated Letters, circa 1928-1933
3
12-14
Mitchell, John, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1929-1932
3
15
Mumford, Lewis, 1953-1963, 1974
3
16
Powys, John Cowper, 1934, 1948
3
17
Read, Allan, 1928, 1935-1938, circa 1952
3
18
Robert, Albert, circa 1925, 1932-1934
3
19-21
Robert, Albert, circa 1935
3
22-26
Robert, Albert, 1936-1942
3
27-32
Robert, Albert, Undated Letters, circa 1932-1942
3
33-48
Robert, Albert, Undated Letters, circa 1932-1942
4
1-6
Robert, Albert, Photographs found with Letters to Esther McCoy, circa 1930s
4
7
Robert, Albert, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1930-1940
4
8
Spence, Andy and Sique, 1977-1989
4
9
Swanberg, William A., 1962-1965
4
10
Tobey, Berkeley, circa 1944-1959
4
11-14
Tobey, Berkeley, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1908-1909
4
15
Tobey, Berkeley, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1922-1940
4
16-19
Tobey, Berkeley, Personal and Business Correspondence, 1941-1952
4
20-23
University of Pennsylvania (regarding her donation of Dreiser's letters), 1950-1951
4
24
Van der Velde, Edward, 1928
4
25
Vick, John, 1923
4
26
Vick, John, 1924
4
27-31
Vick, John, 1925-1927
(includes photographs of Vick)
4
32-35
Vick, John, Undated Letters, circa 1923-1927
4
36
Weigel, Henrietta, 1955
4
37
2.3:General Correspondence, 1922-1989
This subseries primarily contains letters concerning McCoy's career in architectural history and criticism. Her career in fiction writing is covered to a lesser degree. Among the correspondents are researchers, writers, professors, architects, art professionals, publishers, and professional associations. Topics covered include research and writing projects, Los Angeles area preservation and restoration projects, and grant projects.
Major correspondents in this series include the American Institute of Architects, the Graham Foundation, City of Los Angeles Cultural Heritage Board,
Domus
Magazine,
Los Angeles Times
, editor Monica Pidgeon, architectural critics Reyner Banham, David Gebhard, William Jordy, Robin Middleton, Allan Temko, and Nathan Shapira, and architects J. R. Davidson, Craig Ellwood, Joseph Giovannini, Hans Hollein, A. Quincy Jones, and Bruno Zevi. Also found is extensive correspondence with the University of California, Berkeley, Santa Barbara, and Santa Cruz. Correspondence for 1959 contains a letter from Albert Camus requesting McCoy's assistance with helping Spanish refugees, and correspondence for 1989 contains photographs of Esther McCoy and others at the Athenaeum at Caltech for the third annual gala of the Historical Society of Southern California.
See Appendix for a list of selected correspondents from Series 2.3.
DescriptionContainer
General Correspondence, 1922-1929
4
38
General Correspondence, 1946-1952
4
39-42
General Correspondence, 1953-1959
4
43-46
General Correspondence, 1960-1965
4
47-51
General Correspondence, 1966-1968
5
1-4
General Correspondence, 1969-1970
5
5-8
General Correspondence, 1971-1973
5
9-13
General Correspondence, 1974
5
14-16
General Correspondence, 1975
5
17-19
General Correspondence, 1976-1978
5
20-24
General Correspondence, 1979
5
25-27
General Correspondence, 1980-1981
5
28-32
General Correspondence, 1982-1983
5
33-37
General Correspondence, 1984
5
38-41
General Correspondence, 1985
5
42-44
General Correspondence, 1986
5
45-47
General Correspondence, 1987
6
1-4
General Correspondence, 1988
6
5-7
General Correspondence, 1989
6
8-10
Undated Correspondence, A-Z, circa 1940s-1980s
6
11-14
Undated and Unidentified Correspondence, circa 1940s-1980s
6
15

Make a Request

  • To request an appointment to view materials, make your selections using the checkboxes and click the "Reading Room" button. Please note, you will receive the full box.
  • To request reproductions, make your selections using the checkboxes and click the "Reproduction" button.