“California Sorrows”

Hello everybody!

This week something exciting happened. While I was going through one of the “miscellany” folders, I found a wonderful poem about T.S. Eliot and Emily Hale’s time in Claremont. 
The following is my favorite part of the poem: “Eliot wished to ride with Emily Hale / east in her little roadster / across a scrubby desert / to a hamburger place called the In and Out / that became famous with the poets.” How funny is it to imagine THE T.S. Eliot at In n Out? 
It’s written by Mary Kinzie and I became curious to know her connection to the poets and Claremont. So I wrote to her. She responded back within minutes: “My source for information about Eliot and Emily Hale is the Eliot biography by Lyndall Gordon. I wrote parts of this sequence when I was visiting my daughter who was then attending CMC.” 
I hope to invite her to the Athenaeum to speak about her poem!
Here’s the full link to her poem if anyone’s interested: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20607437?seq=4#page_scan_tab_contents
Thanks for reading!

Archive Space

Hello all, 

Last week I started uploading the files to Archive Space! 
I still need to do the item by item for each file. This week I will be starting Omeka and start preparing for the presentation I will give!
My presentation will be on T.S. Eliot, the Claremont Connection. I can’t wait to see what you all have been working on as well. 
Zoey Ryu

Blog post for first week of April

Hello everyone, 

I realized I never uploaded my blog post for the first week of April. I apologize and here is my belated post:
Happy April! April is a special month for this CCEPS fellow because it’s practically T.S. Eliot’s month… One of Eliot’s most famous poem, “The Waste Land,” begins with “April is the cruellest month.” 
Here is a little excerpt: 
“April is the cruellest month, breeding Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing Memory and desire, stirring Dull roots with spring rain. Winter kept us warm, covering Earth in forgetful snow, feeding A little life with dried tubers.”
This week, I just worked on disposing old files and moving the materials to new folders. Nothing too exciting but productive. 

From Old Possum

Hello everyone, 

I finished reboxing the collection and arranging them alphabetically! 
This week I found T.S. Eliot’s drafts of “Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats.” The musical “Cats” is based on this book. Eliot had sent initial drafts to Emily Hale. It reads “for Miss Emily Hale, this not quite final text from Old Possum.” I love that he signed it not as from “T.S. Eliot” but from “Old Possum.” Next week, I want to compare this original text to the final version and see what changes were made. 
Thanks for reading!

Kay Koeninger

Hi everyone,

Wow, this week flew by! I almost forgot to write a blog post because I was convinced I had already written one for the week. 

This week I finished surveying the boxes. I am ready to relabel the folders and rearrange them into new boxes!
I also spent part of this week tracking down Kay Koeninger. She was a Scripps faculty member who took interest in T.S. Eliot’s visit to Claremont and wrote an article about it in the 80s after interviewing Scripps alumnae who remembered the visit. Her letters are fascinating. I hope to reach out to her and ask her about her research.
Thanks for reading!

Emily Hale & T.S. Eliot

Hello everyone,

I am still in the process of surveying the George-Eliot collection. This week I got through two boxes. 
The survey honestly has been taking longer than expected because I cannot help but stop and read every letter. Eliot’s letters at times deeply move me and at other times make me laugh out loud as if he and I share an inside joke. 
I particularly enjoy T.S. Eliot’s gossips: “Mrs. P is a type of stupid woman that I have come across before, and I know that the only way to save oneself from them in the long run is to run away.” He really hated this Mrs. P woman and I wonder if she really was as bad as he describes. 
And then there are the sweet concerns T.S. Eliot expresses about Emily Hale: “The exasperation of looking on at a situation about which I can do nothing has made me want at times to rush out into the garden and pull up all the prize dahlias and whatnots” (Eliot to Jeanette McPherrin about Emily Hale’s health and well-being 1935).
If I find more quotes I love from his letters, I will share them!
Thanks for reading! 

Processing Plan

Hello everybody,

I made a processing plan this week. I read the OAC Guide to the Kruska Japanese Internment Collection and the Guide to the Addison M. Metcalf Collection of Gertrude Steiniana for reference and now I am fascinated with both collections. (Dr. Allen told me that a Picasso painting of Gertrude Stein is housed at UCLA special collections! How cool!) 
CCEPS work honestly does not feel like work. It’s mainly just me fan-girling over fascinating, age-old documents. But back to T.S. Eliot, the three series are correspondence, photos and memorabilia, and printed materials. Ruth George Collection of T.S. Eliot is a very small collection, so I will have time later on to work on an online exhibit. 
I am excited for next week (though because of spring break, I will only work two days of the week). I plan to meet with librarians of both Honnold-Mudd and Denison to further discuss my plan. 
Thanks for reading!

Valerie Eliot’s Christmas Card

Valerie Eliot’s whimsical personality is evident even in her penmanship. 

I think I am drawn to Valerie Eliot’s cards to Jeanette McPherrin because I see so much of Eliot’s influence on Valerie here. Her signature has the same slanted line underneath her name that T.S. Eliot employs. 
Her handwriting is a lot easier to read than her husband’s, as hers is more bubbly and almost youthful. Valerie was 40 years younger than T.S. Eliot and she was a longtime fan of Eliot’s before she met him at Faber & Faber, where she purposefully worked as Eliot’s secretary (she used Charles Morgan’s connections to get a job at Eliot’s publishing company so that she could work in the vicinity of T.S. Eliot). Quite a fandom! Years after their deaths, I sit quietly at the Denison Library admiring Eliot’s writings, just as Valerie must have done when she was around my age. I wonder if Valerie knew about T.S. Eliot’s previous “relationship” with Emily Hale, Jeanette’s friend… A mystery indeed. 


Happy Valentine’s Day!

It feels befitting to start my CCEPS project on Valentine’s day because I will be working on the T.S. Eliot Collection at Denison Library. And this is so, not just because Eliot wrote many love poems, but because I will be examining Eliot’s (most likely) romantic relationship with Emily Hale, a former faculty member at Scripps. 
Thanks to this “friendship” (we really don’t know for sure what kind of relationship they had. I am certain though that we will know more when T.S. Eliot’s 1,131 letters to Hale become open to the public on 1/1/2020), T.S. Eliot was here in Claremont several times and the collection houses memorabilia, handwritten cards, and letters from Eliot. He made friends in Claremont through Hale and I am excited to explore his connection to Claremont by digging into the box!
This post card caught my eye today. It’s sent on April 6th, so I presume that the “Valentine’s Post Card” is just a printing company owned by someone named Valentine. But still, I thought it was cool and sort of relevant. Eliot writes to Jeanette McPherrin (a friend of Hale’s): “This is to let you know that there is still a good deal of snow about Inverness, which I left yesterday morning. Crocuses are out, however. T.S.E.” Decoding his handwriting has been tough. Initially I read “snow” as “show” and I could not figure out “crocuses” until Dr. Susan Allen helped me out. More to come, I’m sure.