Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Pettus-Speiden family papers

Abstract

The Pettus-Speiden family papers (dated 1891-1928, bulk 1904-1917; 1.4 cubic feet; 4 boxes) comprise letters and short writings that document the experiences of an upper class family in Louisville, Kentucky during the last decade of the nineteenth century through World War I.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Pettus-Speiden family papers
Creator
Pettus, Harriet, 1879-1952
Extent
1.4 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Letters.
Railroad companies -- United States -- History.
Railroads -- Kentucky.
Arrangement
Collection is arranged chronologically. The Wade Hall Collection of American Letters has been processed into discrete collections based on provenance.
Finding Aid Author
Sarah Coblentz
Preferred Citation
2009ms132.0126: [identification of item], Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Pettus-Speiden family papers, 1891-1928, bulk 1904-1917, University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Harriet P. Pettus (1879-1952) was born in Louisville, Kentucky to Joseph Pettus (1844-1925) and Harriet Mitchell (1860-1946). Joseph was an auditor for an insurance company for a majority of his life; however, he served in the Sixth Kentucky Confederate Cavalry during the Civil War and was one of Morgan's Men in John Hunt Morgan's Raid. Harriet married Fillison Latham Speiden (1876-1980) on October 24, 1904, and together they had three children – Joseph Hart Speiden (1905-1985), Fillison L Speiden Jr (1908-1980), and Marian M Speiden (1911-2011). Fillison worked for the Louisville and Nashville Railroad first as an auditor and later as an agent with the Louisville Freight Bureau Tariff. The family lived in Washington, D.C. and Atlanta, Georgia for a time before returning to Louisville, Kentucky for the remainder of their lives.
American Letters collector Wade Hall (1934-2015) was a native of Union Springs, Alabama. Starting in 1962, he lived in Louisville, where he taught English and chaired the English and Humanities/Arts programs at Kentucky Southern College and Bellarmine University. He also taught at the University of Illinois and the University of Florida. He held degrees from Troy State University (B.S.), the University of Alabama (M.A.), and the University of Illinois (Ph.D.). He served for two years in the U.S. Army in the mid-fifties. Dr. Hall was the author of books, monographs, articles, plays, and reviews relating to Kentucky, Alabama, and Southern history and literature. His most recent books include A Visit with Harlan Hubbard; High Upon a Hill: A History of Bellarmine College; A Song in Native Pastures: Randy Atcher's Life in Country Music; and Waters of Life from Conecuh Ridge.
Scope and Content
The Pettus-Speiden family papers (dated 1891-1928, bulk 1904-1917; 1.4 cubic feet; 4 boxes) comprise letters and short writings that document the experiences of an upper class family in Louisville, Kentucky during the last decade of the nineteenth century through World War I. Initially, the letters are primarily from Joseph Pettus to his daughter, Harriet, while she was visiting family in different parts of Kentucky. They corresponded weekly, and his letters discuss everyday activities of the family, visits from friends, personal health, work, and reminiscing on his service in the Confederate Army during the Civil War. From the 1900s onward, the main correspondent becomes Fillison Speiden, Harriet's future husband. They wrote to each other frequently as he had to travel for work and she traveled to visit relatives often. Their letters discuss plans to visit each other, activities with friends, arguments, their wedding, children, and his traveling for work after their marriage. Additionally, there are some short writings and poems by Speiden and programs from organ recitals by Speiden.
The Pettus-Speiden family papers are part of the Wade Hall Collection of American letters, which includes correspondence and diaries from all over North America covering the time period of the Civil to Korean Wars. The materials were collected by Wade Hall and document everyday men and women.

Restrictions on Access and Use

Conditions Governing Access
Conditions Governing Access The collection is open to researchers by appointment.
Use Restrictions
The physical rights to the materials in this collection are held by the University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.

Contents of the Collection

Correspondence, 1891-1928, undated

Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1891-1894

  • Box 213, folder 1
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1895-1897

  • Box 213, folder 2
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1898-1899

  • Box 213, folder 3
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1900

  • Box 213, folder 4
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1901

  • Box 213, folder 5-6
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1902

  • Box 213, folder 7-10
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1903

  • Box 213, folder 11-12
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1904

  • Box 214, folder 1-4
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1905

  • Box 214, folder 5-8
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1906

  • Box 215, folder 1-2
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1908-1909

  • Box 215, folder 3
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1911-1912

  • Box 215, folder 4
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1913

  • Box 215, folder 5
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1914

  • Box 215, folder 6
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1915

  • Box 215, folder 7-11
  • Box 216, folder 1-3
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1916

  • Box 216, folder 4
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1917

  • Box 216, folder 5-7
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1920-1922

  • Box 216, folder 8
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1923-1924

  • Box 216, folder 9
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, 1926-1928

  • Box 216, folder 10
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Pettus-Speiden family correspondence, undated

  • Box 216, folder 11
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Short writings, poems, and programs, 1890, 1905, 1917, undated

  • Box 216, folder 12
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Researchers are required to have an SCRC Researcher Account in order to request or order digital copies of materials. Research Account set-up and use instructions can be found at: http://libguides.uky.edu/SCRCaccount

If you are visiting the Breckinridge Research Room, please request materials at least 48 business hours in advance of your arrival.

For all other questions, contact us at: https://libraries.uky.edu/ContactSCRC.

Researchers are required to have an SCRC Researcher Account in order to request or order digital copies of materials. Research Account set-up and use instructions can be found at: http://libguides.uky.edu/SCRCaccount

If you are visiting the Breckinridge Research Room, please request materials at least 48 business hours in advance of your arrival.

For all other questions, contact us at: https://libraries.uky.edu/ContactSCRC.

Requests

No items have been requested.