Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Minnie Thomas letters

Abstract

The Minnie Thomas letters (dated 1934-1948, undated; 0.35 cubic feet; 7 folders) comprises letters sent to Minnie from friends and family serving in the military that document their experiences serving stateside and abroad during World War II.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Minnie Thomas letters
Creator
Thomas, Minnie Ober
Extent
0.35 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Letters.
Correspondence.
Military correspondence.
Military life.
Family.
World War, 1939-1945.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Personal narratives, American.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Europe
World War, 1939-1945 -- Campaigns -- Pacific Area
Ocean travel
Military training camps.
Europe
Health
Arrangement
Collection is arranged by subject. The Wade Hall Collection of American Letters has been processed into discrete collections based on provenance.
Finding Aid Author
Sarah Coblentz
Preferred Citation
2009ms132.0595: [identification of item], Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Minnie Thomas letters, 1934-1948, undated, University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Minnie Thomas née Ober (1872-1967) lived in Louisville, Kentucky. In 1889, she married George W. Thomas (1870-1924), a laborer, and together they had three children: Alva George (1892-1960), Lela (1896-1984), and Fay (1916-1988). After her husband's death, Minnie married again, this time to Ira Winguard (1864-1928), and after his death, she did not remarry. Her son, Alva, married Pauline Quince (1895-1976) in 1913, and together they gave Minnie five grandchildren: Herbert R. (1914-1968), Wayne D. (1918-2007), Richard L. (1922-2004), Betty (1923-2011), and Janet (1935-2009).
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 Minnie Thomas letters (dated 1934-1948, undated; 0.35 cubic feet; 7 folders) comprises letters sent to Minnie from friends and family serving in the military that document their experiences serving stateside and abroad during World War II. The majority of the letters come from four soldiers; however, Minnie corresponds with many more than that. The letters discuss military training, life in a stateside camp, anticipation for deployment orders, life overseas, descriptions of Europe and the Pacific, life on a ship, their desires for her home cooking, and their hopes to return home soon. She receives letters from her grandsons, all serving in the military, and they write about their daily lives, opinions on military life, running into friends also serving, where they are located, personal health, inquiries about their family members, and plans for returning home.
The Minnie Thomas letters collection is 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 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

Joe R. Brown to Minnie Thomas, 1942-1945

  • Box WH-54, folder 1
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A.E. Calhoun, Jr. to Minnie Thomas, 1941-1944, undated

  • Box WH-54, folder 2
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Lonnie A. Ford to Minnie Thomas, 1943-1947

  • Box WH-54, folder 3
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Richard L. Thomas to Minnie Thomas, 1942-1945

  • Box WH-54, folder 4
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Family to Minnie Thomas, 1942-1948

  • Box WH-54, folder 5
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Letters to Minnie Thomas, 1942-1945

  • Box WH-54, folder 6
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Fay Thomas letters, 1934, 1945

  • Box WH-54, folder 7
To top

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UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center is open by appointment only on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays. Materials must be requested at least 5 days before your appointment.

Researchers must have an SCRC Researcher Account to request materials. View account set-up and use instructions here.

Questions? Contact SCRC via our Contact Form.

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