Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Alfred J. Blowers letters

Abstract

The Alfred J. Blowers letters (dated 1933-1934, undated; 0.45 cubic feet; 1 box) comprise letters that document the courtship of Alfred Blowers and Lempi Syrjala during the mid-1930s in Massachusetts and New York.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Alfred J. Blowers letters
Date
1933-1934, undated (inclusive)
Creator
Blowers, Alfred J., 1894-1972
Extent
0.45 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Long-distance relationships.
Love-letters
Divorce -- United States
Man-woman relationships -- United States -- 20th century
Marriage
Women -- employment
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
2009ms132.0308: [identification of item], Wade Hall Collection of American Letters: Alfred J. Blowers letters, 1933-1934, undated, University of Kentucky Special Collections Research Center.
Repository
University of Kentucky

Collection Overview

Biography / History
Alfred J. Blowers (1894-1972) was born in New York to Charles C. Blowers (1857-1935) and Jerretta Catherine Hedrick (1864-1943). In 1929, he married Evaline Bergey (1892-1933). After her death in 1933, Blowers began a relationship with Massachusetts divorcee Lempi S. Syrjala nee Koykka (1893-1978). The couple married in 1934, and had one child, Alfred Blowers Jr. (1935-2016).
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 Alfred J. Blowers letters (dated 1933-1934, undated; 0.45 cubic feet; 1 box) comprise letters that document the courtship of Alfred Blowers and Lempi Syrjala during the mid-1930s in Massachusetts and New York. The letters are primarily from Lempi to Alfred, and she discusses her divorce proceedings, employment, marriage, Christianity, visiting family and friends, trips taken, and her excitement on being able to freely see and speak with him after the divorce was finalized. There are a few letters from Alfred to Lempi, and he writes mainly of his excitement on marrying her, preparations to visit, and traveling for work.
The Alfred J. Blowers 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
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

Letter to Alfred J. Blowers, undated

  • Box 1, folder 1
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Alfred J. Blowers letters to Lempi Syrjala, 1934, undated

  • Box 1, folder 2
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, 1933 March-May

  • Box 1, folder 3
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, 1933 June-October

  • Box 1, folder 4
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, 1933 November-December

  • Box 1, folder 5
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, 1934 January-February

  • Box 1, folder 6
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, 1934 March-September

  • Box 1, folder 7
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Lempi Syrjala letters to Alfred J. Blowers, undated

  • Box 1, folder 8
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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.

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.

Requests

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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.