Carpenter (Floyd Smith) Papers, 1905-1961 (bulk: 1913-1922)

Descriptive Summary

Carpenter (Floyd Smith) Papers, 1905-1961 (bulk: 1913-1922)
Carpenter, Floyd Smith
1.375 linear ft.
Two manuscript boxes house the entire collection which has been arranged chronologically.
Finding Aid Author
Colleen Schiavone
University of Louisville

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Floyd Smith Carpenter was born in or earlier than 1896. Carpenter's mother Ellen (Mrs. John S. Carpenter) grew up in Pee Wee Valley and was the daughter of Fortunatus Cosby, a pioneer in public education in Louisville. In 1917, Floyd received a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Rose Polytechnic Institute, Terre Haute, Indiana. He was a graduate student at the University of Louisville in 1918-1919.
Floyd Carpenter worked as an engineer for Louisville Gas & Electric Co. His grandfather and his father Frank operated an insurance agency (Carpenter & Dudley) at 3rd & Main Streets.
Floyd was a member of Calvary Episcopal Church. He never married and when he died on February 7, 1971, his only heir was a sister, Eleanor in Virginia. After her death, the remainder of Floyd's estate, $150,000, was donated to the Episcopal Diocese.
Scope and Content
The Floyd Smith Carpenter Papers were donated to the University of Louisville Archives on May 29, 1980 by Mr. George Yater. On February 20, 1987, the Archives acquired an accretion of approximately 150 additional letters from Mr. Yater. The clear majority of the letters are from Floyd Carpenter's parents to their son at college. Seventeen folders in two manuscript boxes occupy 1.0 linear feet. The material is filed chronologically with the envelopes, when present, in front of the letters.
The collection consists mainly of letters to Carpenter from his family which detail life in Old Louisville. A few of the letters are written by Floyd Smith. Other correspondents include Mary Lou, Eleanor, Uncle Sam Carpenter, Aunt Mamie, Floyd (nephew), Frank, Alice, Grandma, Joe, Bill & Mary Bradley, Margaret, Mabell, Uncle John, Karl, Martha, and Lucia B. Hollerith.
There are approximately 600 letters covering the period 1905-1961. The letters' main concentration is from 1913-1922. One interesting letter in the "Undated" folder is to Floyd Carpenter from Karl Smith concerning an initiation in the Athenaum, a Male High School fraternity. He tells the storyof being smeared with castor oil, molasses, shoe polish and a mustache put on his face with iodine. He also tells how members beat him so hard that he couldn't sit for days. In addition to the correspondence, one folder contains photographs and memorabilia.
This body of approximately 600 letters consists mostly of letters from a Louisville family to a young man away in college. They cover the period from 1905-1961. The majority of the collection consists of correspondence from 1913-1922. There are also a few undated letters, some photographs and other memorabilia.

Contents of the Collection

Letters, 1905, 1906, 1912

  • Box 1, folder 1
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Letters, Jan. - Nov. 1913

  • Box 1, folder 2
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Letters, Feb. - June 1914

  • Box 1, folder 3
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Letters, Jan. - Oct. 1915

  • Box 1, folder 4
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Letters, Nov. - Dec. 1915

  • Box 1, folder 5
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Letters, Jan. - Feb. 1916

  • Box 1, folder 6
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Letters, Mar. - Apr. 1916

  • Box 2, folder 7
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Letters, May - Dec. 1916

  • Box 2, folder 8
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Letters, Jan. - Dec. 1917

  • Box 2, folder 9
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Letters, Jan. Nov. 1918

  • Box 2, folder 10
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Letters, Feb. - Dec. 1919

  • Box 2, folder 11
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Letters, June 1920

  • Box 2, folder 12
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Letters, Jan. - July 1921

  • Box 2, folder 13
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Letters, Jan. - Apr. 1922

  • Box 2, folder 14
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Letters, July 1926 - Jan. 1961

  • Box 2, folder 15
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Undated Letters

  • Box 2, folder 16
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Photographs & Memorabilia

  • Box 2, folder 17
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