Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Russell E. McMurray letters

Abstract

The Russell E. McMurray letters (dated 1942-1945; 0.03 cubic feet; 1 folder) comprise letters from Russell McMurray to his wife that document life in the US Army during World War II in Georgia, Africa, and Italy.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Russell E. McMurray letters
Date
1942-1945 (inclusive)
Creator
McMurray, Russell, E.
Extent
0.03 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Letters.
World War, 1939-1945.
Military life.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Campaigns -- Africa, North.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Campaigns -- Italy
Families.
Man-woman relationships -- United States -- 20th century
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
2009ms132.1079: [identification of item], Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Russell E. McMurray letters, 1942-1945, University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Russell E. McMurray (1905-1975) was born in Illinois to Louis J. McMurray (1875-1909) and Elizabeth M. Blumenshine (1879-1906). Between 1930 and 1940, he married Laura La Vonne (1906-1973) and together they had at least two children, Robert Louis (1938-2000) and George Anton (1941-1957). In the 1940 US Census, McMurray is listed as working as a chemist in a steel mill. During World War II and the Korean War, McMurray served in the US Army, attaining the rank of Lieutenant Colonel.
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 Russell E. McMurray letters (dated 1942-1945; 0.03 cubic feet; 1 folder) comprise letters from Russell McMurray to his wife that document life in the US Army during World War II in Georgia, Africa, and Italy. The letters discuss life at Camp Rucker, dealing with administrative paperwork, promotions for soldiers, taking inventory of supplies, what life in Africa is like, encountering debris and destruction from battles, antics his men get up to, the weather, visiting different cities, cultural differences, religious debates he has with friends, some differences between American and German artillery equipment, hearing from other family members, receiving multiple promotions, and his hopes to see his family soon.
The Russell E. McMurray 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
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

Russell E. McMurray to Laura L. McMurray, 1942-1945

  • Box WH-151, folder 9
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If you find description with problematic language that you think SCRC should review, please contact us at SCRC@uky.edu.

UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center is open Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 4:00pm. Appointments are encouraged but not required. Schedule an appointment here.

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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You may come across language in UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center collections and online resources that you find harmful or offensive. SCRC collects materials from different cultures and time periods to preserve and make available the historical record. These materials document the time period when they were created and the view of their creator. As a result, some may demonstrate racist and offensive views that do not reflect the values of UK Libraries.

If you find description with problematic language that you think SCRC should review, please contact us at SCRC@uky.edu.