Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Thomas R. Atwood letters

Abstract

The Thomas R. Atwood letters (dated 1935-1959, undated; 0.35 cubic feet; 1 box) comprise letters that document the military experience of Thomas Atwood in the US Army during World War II.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Thomas R. Atwood letters
Creator
Atwood, Thomas R., 1925-
Extent
0.35 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Family.
Correspondence.
War -- Relief of sick and wounded
World War, 1939-1945.
World War, 1939-1945 -- Medical care.
Arrangement
Collection is arranged by recipient. The Wade Hall Collection of American Letters has been processed into discrete collections based on provenance.
Finding Aid Author
Sarah Coblentz
Preferred Citation
2009ms132.0166: [identification of item], Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Thomas R. Atwood letters, 1935-1959, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Thomas R. Atwood (b. 1925) was born on a farm in Clermont County, Ohio to Charles M. Atwood (1889-1975) and Erna Atwood (1898-1983). In 1943, he attended Ohio State University as an engineering student, but was drafted into the US Army in January 1944. He was assigned to the 341st Infantry Regiment, 86th Infantry Division. In early 1945, Atwood's division was sent to the East Coast to prepare for the European Theater of Operations, disembarking in France in late February. While engaging in combat in Germany, in late March or early April, Atwood was wounded in the face and nearly lost an eye. After spending time in a hospital in England, he arrived back in the United States for recovery, initially at Halloran General Hospital in Staten Island and then Billings General Hospital at Fort Benjamin in Indiana. In 1947, Atwood married his first wife, Dorothy Virginia Skaggs, whom he ultimately divorced, and in 1977, he married his second wife, Jane Lee Coursey (b. 1935). In the time between these two marriages, Atwood relocated from Ohio to Louisville, Kentucky.
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 Thomas R. Atwood letters (dated 1935-1959, undated; 0.35 cubic feet; 1 box) comprise letters that document the military experience of Thomas Atwood in the US Army during World War II. The letters are organized by name of recipient; the majority are between Atwood and his parents. The letters to Atwood's parents discuss his movements between camps while in basic training and later specialized training once assigned to a unit, the trip to France, the weather in Europe, and his treatments in hospital after being wounded in combat. The letters sent to Atwood are primarily from his mother, Erna, mostly after the family did not receive any letters from him in early 1945 after he was wounded; there are a few letters from other family members that discuss births and children's activities. His parents discuss how the farm is doing, visiting relatives and having visitors, and later concern over their son's wound. There is one letter to Uncle John from Thomas that discusses his classes at Ohio State University, and two other letters that discuss visiting Erna Atwood and inquiring about a position for Thomas. Additionally, Atwood's report cards from sixth, seventh, and eighth grade are included in the collection.
The Thomas R. Atwood letters 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 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

Elementary report cards [6th-8th grades], 1935-1938

  • Box 244, folder 1
To top

Thomas Atwood letters to parents, 1943-1945

  • Box 244, folder 2-6
To top

Letters to Thomas Atwood, 1943-1945

  • Box 244, folder 7-10
To top

Thomas Atwood letter to Uncle John, 1943 October 14

  • Box 244, folder 11
To top

General letters, 1959, undated

  • Box 244, folder 12
To top

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.