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

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Series 3: Personal Writings , 1919-1989
(Boxes 6-14; 8.1 linear ft.)

This series contains writings not directly relating to McCoy's career as an architectural historian and critic. Included are scattered diaries, drafts of her personal memoirs, and numerous notebooks. Also found are drafts of published and unpublished works of fiction written by McCoy, and writings by McCoy's friends and colleagues.
The series is organized into five subseries:
  • 3.1: Diaries, 1919-1972
  • 3.2: Notebooks, circa 1930s-1983
  • 3.3: Memoirs, circa 1940s-1989
  • 3.4: Fiction, circa 1929-1988
  • 3.5: Writings by Others, circa 1920s-1989, undated
3.1: Diaries, 1919-1972
This series contains six diaries belonging to Esther McCoy as well as two travel diaries belonging to her mother, Katie Mae McCoy. Esther McCoy's "Sophomore Days" volumes contain journal entries and mementos from her 1919 school year. Two diaries document her time at Central College for Women (1920) and Baker University (1922-1924), and a diary from 1926 records her first year in New York City. Also found is a personal journal documenting her 1972 trip to Europe.
Description Container
Diary, "Sophomore Days, Volume 1,", 1919
6
16
Diary, "Sophomore Days, Book 3,", 1919
6
17
Diary, early 1920s
6
18
Diary, 1922-1924
6
19
Diary, 1926
6
20
"Journal: 1972 Trip to London, Paris, Vienna, Venice, Milan,", 1972
6
21
"Diary of European Tour," Katie Mae McCoy, 1956
6
22
"Diary of Alaskan Trip," Katie Mae McCoy, 1957
6
23
3.2: Notebooks, circa 1930s-1983
Found here are notebooks kept by McCoy throughout her professional career. The notebooks consist of travel itineraries, travel notes, notes about architecture and folk art seen during trips, notes on interviews with architects, notes about architects and buildings, notes for articles, and other miscellaneous jottings and writings. The notebooks are difficult to decipher, as most were handwritten in pencil.
Description Container
Notebook, circa 1930s
6
24
Notebooks, circa 1940s
6
25-26
Notebooks, 1950-1954
6
27-30
Notebooks, 1955
6
31-35
Notebooks, 1956
6
36-37
Notebooks, 1956
7
1-3
Notebooks, 1957
7
4-7
Notebooks, 1958-1959
7
8-12
Notebooks, circa 1950s
7
13-36
Notebooks, 1960-1962
8
1-5
Notebooks, 1963-1969
8
6-10
Notebooks, circa 1960s
8
11-23
Notebooks, 1970-1972
8
24-28
Notebooks, 1973-1974
8
29-32
Notebooks, 1975-1976
8
33-34
Notebooks, 1976-1983
9
1-4
Notebooks, circa 1970s
9
5
Loose Pages from Notebooks, circa 1940s-1950s
9
6
3.3: Memoirs, circa 1940s-1989
This series contains autobiographical writings by Esther McCoy documenting various moments in her life. Many of these writings are in a short story format and were given a title by McCoy. Subjects covered in her memoirs, some of which were published, include her mother, childhood, and living in New York and Malibu. Also of note is the piece of writing titled "Geoff/Bo: Paris" describing her time in Paris in 1928 and her relationship with Geoffrey Eaton, and the story "Happy Birthday RMS" about working for architect R. M. Schindler. A folder of manuscripts about Theodore Dreiser contains drafts of three manuscripts relating to Helen and Theodore Dreiser and other literary figures McCoy knew in New York during the 1920s and 1930s. One titled manuscript about Dreiser, "Outward Journey" (1946-1947), can also be found in this subseries.
Description Container
[About Her Mother], circa 1960s
9
7
[Abraham Christopher Columbus III], circa 1960s
9
8
[Annie the Dog], circa 1970s
9
9
"Auction at Four-Ten" ("Daga at Four-Ten"), circa 1950s
9
10
"The Dream,", circa 1975
9
11
"Driving in England,", circa 1950s
9
12
"Family Eating: 1919" and "Family Reading: 1919,", 1958
9
13
"Geoff/Bo: Paris,", circa 1950s
9
14
"Happy Birthday RMS,", circa 1950
9
15
[Malibu in the 1930s], circa 1960s
9
16
"My Life in the Arts,", cira 1963
9
17
"My Summer in the Museum of Modern Art,", 1946-1947
9
18
[New York in the 1920s], circa 1950s
9
19
"Outward Journey,", 1946-1947
9
20
"A Pail of Roasting Ears,", 1955
9
21
"Patchin Place,", circa 1950s
9
22
"Reading," ("How to Read"), circa 1940s
9
23
"Robert Venturi: To Whom it May Concern,", 1987-1988
9
24
"Story of Jean,", circa 1950s
9
25
[Theodore Dreiser,], circa 1960s-1989
9
26
Loose Notes on 1974 Presidential Impeachment, 1974
9
27
Notes and Fragments Writings for Memoirs, circa 1950-1960s, 1979
9
28
3.4: Fiction, circa 1929-1988
Fictional works found in this subseries include drafts of novels, short stories, and teleplays written by McCoy. A folder of stories submitted to H.L. Mencken includes introductions endorsing the stories by Theodore Dreiser and Edgar Lee Masters with related correspondence. Many of the short stories in this subseries were published in literary magazines and journals, and files may contain correspondence regarding publication and related notes. Of note is a series of files for McCoy's short story, The Pepper Tree, which includes related writings and research material about Japanese internment camps during World War II.
The life of a California architect forms the basis for drafts of three novels, L.A. L.A., The Vickery Job, and Ward and Associates. These three sets of draft manuscripts appear to be closely connected, although it is not clear if they were stages in the development of a single novel. Other draft novels found here include Land Gerard, June is the Cruelest Month, and The Wind's Eye. None of these novels were published.
Description Container
Records of Published and Unpublished Writings (incomplete), circa 1940s-1950s
9
29
Stories Submitted to H.L. Mencken, 1943
9
30
7 O'Clock Train from Rome, circa 1957
9
31
1849: New York City, circa 1940s
9
32
The Adoption, 1960
9
33
And Devoutly Kneeling, circa 1940s
9
34
Anna's Eye ( Mourning Bride), circa 1940s
9
35-36
The Bearer and the Borne, 1946
9
37
Bifel In That Season ( In That Season On That Day), circa 1950s
9
38
The Big Project, circa 1960
9
39
Big Town, circa 1950s
9
40
Blackberry Winter, 1930
9
41
The Blindness of Mrs. Moore, circa 1950
9
42
Blonde Bomber ( The Impossible Takes Longer), circa 1942
9
43
The Blue Rug, 1962
9
44
The Bonzai Tree ( The Earthward Tree), 1960
9
45-46
The Boy Lost Forever ( Beefy Brenda), circa 1950s
9
47
[Brasilia] (Fragments), circa 1959-1961
9
48
But Not Love, 1938
9
49
The Candy Kid, circa 1950s
9
50
The Cape, 1946-1949
9
51
Cause of Death ( The Window), circa 1950s
9
52
The Character of Lucy Barr, 1948
9
53
A Circuit Rider's Wife, circa 1940s
9
54
The Client, circa 1955
9
55
The Coffee is All Right ( The Clinic), circa 1950s
9
56
Cover Shot, circa 1940s
9
57
Dance of Death, 1942
9
58
The Day of the Twenty-Third Confession, circa 1950
9
59
The Day the Picassos Were Gone, circa 1940s
9
60
Dear Jim, circa 1940s
9
61
Divorce in Cuernavaca, circa 1950s
9
62
A Dog Poisoner, 1953
9
63
Don't Make Me Cry, circa 1940s
9
64
Duffy, Manuel, and the Aquaduct, circa 1940s
9
65
The Dummy, circa 1940s
9
66
Emergency, circa 1959
9
67
Fairy Story, circa 1929
9
68
The Family Plot, 1949-1951
9
69
Family Style: Circa 1920, circa 1950s
9
70
The Featherbed Rut, 1961-1962
10
1-2
Fire Bug, 1963
10
3
The Fire in the Moon, circa 1959
10
4
The Giver and the Gift, circa 1960
10
5
Goodtime Charley, circa 1946
10
6
The Hidden One, 1946-1952
10
7
High Heels, 1948-1950
10
8
High Street, circa 1940s
10
9
The House, circa 1950s
10
10
The House That Refused to Die, circa 1950s
10
11
I Am Roger, circa 1955
10
12
I Call to Simon, circa 1950s
10
13
If You Wait Long Enough, 1936
10
14
The Important House, 1948, 1963
10
15
Is She a Teenage Mother?, circa 1968
10
16
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft 1, circa 1988
10
17-18
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft 2, circa 1988
10
19
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft 3, circa 1988
10
20-21
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft 4, circa 1988
10
22-24
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft 5, circa 1988
10
25-26
June is the Cruelest Month, Draft Fragments and Notes, circa 1988
10
27-29
The Lady from the Sea, circa 1947
10
30
LA, LA, Draft 1, circa 1960s
10
31
LA, LA, Draft 2, circa 1960s
10
32
LA, LA, Draft 3, circa 1968
11
1
LA, LA, Draft 4, circa 1960s
11
2-3
LA, LA, Draft 5, 1968-1969
11
4
LA, LA, Draft Fragments, circa 1968-1969
11
5
LA, LA, Notes and Printed Material, circa 1950-1968
11
6
Land Gerard, Draft 1, circa 1940s-1960s
11
7
Land Gerard, Draft 2, circa 1940s-1960s
11
8-11
Land Gerard, Draft 3, circa 1940s-1960s
11
12
Land Gerard, Draft 4, circa 1940s-1960s
11
13-15
Land Gerard, Draft 5, circa 1940s-1960s
11
16-18
Land Gerard, Draft Fragments, circa 1940s-1960s
11
19
Leo Gallagher, circa 1940s
11
20
Lily Bird, 1941-1946
11
21
Limbo, 1938
11
22
Listen Caroline, 1942
11
23
Lost Sister, circa 1950s
11
24
Luke, 1943-1945
11
25
Main Street, Heaventown, circa 1940s
11
26
The Male Grapes, 1946-1947
11
27
The Man Who Dreamed of Murder ( Suspense), circa 1940s
11
28
The Man Who Remembered Everything, 1958
11
29
The Man With the Birthmark, circa 1953
11
30
Miss Vanity Fair, circa 1940s
11
31
The Mortgage, circa 1951
11
32
Mother Lies in the Baggage Coach, 1943-1945
11
33
Murder at the Oleanders, circa 1940s
11
34
Murder to Music, circa 1940s
11
35
The New Terrain, 1954-1957
11
36
The Old House, circa 1940s
11
37
One and Divisible, 1943-1947, 1958
11
38
People Never Learn, 1936
11
39
The Pepper Tree, Drafts, circa 1941-1948
12
1-3
The Pepper Tree, Notes and Related Writings, circa 1940s
12
4
The Pepper Tree, Research Material, 1941-1947
12
5
The Pepper Tree, Published Copies, 1953
12
6
The Pickpocket Murder, circa 1948
12
7
A Poem About War Ending, 1946-1947
12
8
Poetry, circa 1970-1985
12
9
The Print, circa 1943
12
10
The Quarrel ( The Summer House), 1950-1951
12
11
The Quiet Season ( The Woman Who Was Trained), 1948-1951
12
12
Remind God, 1937
12
13
Return, 1945
12
14
Robin's Sister, 1945-1950
12
15
The Sin of Puppchen Graff, 1947
12
16
The Snapshot, 1947
12
17
Solitaire, 1932
12
18
The Special Delivery Letter, 1954-1956
12
19
Stay With Me Flagons, circa 1940s
12
20
St. Bernard, circa 1940s
12
21
St. Stephen, 1943
12
22
Suicide Clinic, circa 1940s
12
23
The Sweet Gum Tree, circa 1946
12
24
The Sweet River Trip, circa 1950s
12
25
Tell Me, Tell Me, 1937
12
26
There's No Place To Run, circa 1950s
12
27
They Designed it Themselves, 1951
12
28
Tomorrow's Soldier, circa 1950s
12
29
Trouble With Phillip ( The Lightening Holes), 1944-1951
12
30
The Try-Out ( The Summer House), 1962
12
31
Two Dollar Job, 1937
12
32
Uncle Haz and the Leafage, 1946
12
33
Uncle Walt and the Dalton Boys, circa 1950
12
34
The U. S. Marshalls Mrs. Bounds Knew (See Also Uncle Walt and the Dalton Boys), 1937
12
35
Valentine's II Less Six, circa 1947
12
36
The Vickery Job, Draft 1, Book 1, circa 1970s
12
37
The Vickery Job, Draft 2, Book 1, circa 1970s
12
38
The Vickery Job, Draft 2, Book 2, circa 1970s
12
39
The Vickery Job, Draft 3, circa 1970s
12
40
The Vickery Job, Draft 4, Book 3, circa 1970s
12
41
The Vickery Job, Draft 5, Book 1, circa 1970s
12
42
The Vickery Job, Draft 5, Book 2, circa 1970s
12
43
The Vickery Job, Draft 6, Book 1, circa 1970s
12
44
The Vickery Job, Draft 6, Book 2, circa 1970s
12
45
The Vickery Job, Draft Fragments, circa 1970s
12
46
The Vickery Job, Notes, circa 1968-1977
12
47
The Voices, 1944-1951
13
1
Ward and Associates, Draft 1, circa 1960s
13
2-4
Ward and Associates, Draft 2, circa 1960s
13
5-6
Ward and Associates, Draft 3, circa 1960s
13
7-8
Ward and Associates, Draft 4, circa 1960s
13
9-11
Ward and Associates, Draft Fragments, circa 1960s
13
12-16
Ward and Associates, Outlines and Notes, circa 1960s
13
17-19
Ward and Associates, Source Material, circa 1963-1969
13
20
When Writing Mention This Number, circa 1950
13
21
The Wind's Eye, Draft 1, circa 1949
13
22
The Wind's Eye, Draft 2, circa 1949
13
23-24
The Wind's Eye, Draft 3, Part 1, circa 1949
13
25
The Wind's Eye, Draft 3, Part 2, circa 1949
13
26
The Wind's Eye, Draft 3, Part 3, circa 1949
13
27
The Wind's Eye, Draft 4, Part 2, circa 1949
13
28
Work for the Night is Coming, 1943-1944
14
1
Untitled Writings, Fragments, and Notes, circa 1940s-1970s
14
2-3
3.5: Writing by Others, circa 1920s-1989, undated
This series contains writings, some in draft form, by McCoy's friends and colleagues. Included are several pieces of writing about architecture, urban planning, and design. Of note are two essays about Esther McCoy written by architect Denise Scott Brown, and writings by architects Evans Woollen, Yona Friedman, and Paul Sterling Hoag. Also found are short stories written by McCoy's lovers, John Mitchell and Albert Robert, including a story by Albert Robert as "Pierre St. Clement," and unidentified writings not written by McCoy.
Description Container
Denise Scott Brown, "Knowing Esther McCoy" and "Esther McCoy and The Second Generation,", 1988-1989
14
4
J. K. Cruz, "Pressure at Their Respective Crises Zones" ("The Variances"), circa 1970s
14
5
Jean Evans, "Three Studies in Conflict,", circa 1952
14
6
Jean Evans, "The Golden Years (Introduction),", undated
14
7
Yona Friedman, "A Research Program for a Scientific Method of Planning,", undated
14
8
Cecil Gray, "Chameleon's Dish,", undated
14
9
Paul Sterling Hoag, "Wisdom From the Doheny's Back Hall,", 1987
14
10
Raymond Marcel, "Builders and Humanists: The Renaissance Popes as Patrons of the Arts,", 1966
14
11-13
Gabriel Garcia Maroto, "Popular Architecture in Mexico,", undated
14
14
Mrs. J. L. McCoy, "A Fictionalized Story of the Book of Philemon,", undated
14
15
John Mitchell, Various Writings, circa 1920s-1930s
14
16-18
Paul B. Ohannesian, "Letters from Pauline Schindler: 1969-1977,", circa 1977
14
19
Albert Eide Parr, "Paths of Dispersal and Encounter in the City,", circa 1970
14
20
Albert Robert, "Temporary Gentlemen,", circa 1930s
14
21
Stephen Spender, "I Think Continually?,", 1934
14
22
Pierre St. Clement (Albert Robert), "Heroism and Other Magic,", circa 1930s
14
23
Eleanor Walker, "The Nineteen Forty-Niners of Malibu Hills,", circa 1949
14
24
Evans Woollen, "Towards an Architecture of Process,", 1984
14
25
Various Authors, Department of Architecture, National Institute of Fine Arts, Mexico, Conference Presentations, 1954
14
26
Unidentified Authors, Miscellaneous Writings, 1949, 1971, undated
14
27

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.