Elma Stuckey papers, 1895-2001 (bulk 1940s-1988)

 

Descriptive Inventory for the Collection at Chicago History Museum, Research Center

 

 

Please address questions to:

Chicago History Museum, Research Center

1601 North Clark Street

Chicago, IL 60614-6038

Web-site: http://www.chicagohistory.org/research

 

 

© Copyright 2007, Chicago Historical Society

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Title: Elma Stuckey papers [manuscript], 1895-2001 (bulk 1940s-1988).

Main entry: Stuckey, Elma, 1907-1988

Inclusive dates: 1895-2001 (bulk 1940s-1988).

Size: 9.5 linear ft. (23 boxes)

1 oversize folder.

8 sound recordings. (Original).

15 sound cassettes. (Original).

 

Restriction: Original sound recordings may not be played. It is necessary to have a research copy made for listening purposes.

Accession #: 1998.0154 (most of the collection); 2000.0091.1 (most of boxes 20-21); 2005.0071 (interfiled items); 2009.0108.1 (most of boxes 22-23); 2008.0012.1 (box 23).

Provenance statement: Gift of Dr. P. Sterling Stuckey (1998.0154; 2000.0091; 2005.0071; 2008.0012.1; and 2009.0108.1).

Terms governing use: Copyright owned by Dr. P. Sterling Stuckey was retained by him. The Rights & Reproductions Dept., Chicago History Museum, may make copies of collection items but may not authorize any person to reproduce, disseminate, or publish collection items.

Please cite this collection as: Elma Stuckey papers (Chicago History Museum) plus a detailed description, date, and box/folder number of a specific item.

 

This descriptive inventory contains the following sections:

Summary description of the collection,

Description of some material related to the collection,

List of online catalog headings about the collection,

Arrangement of the collection,

Detailed description of archival series in the collection,

List of contents of the collection.

 

Summary description of the collection:

Autobiography; biography by her son, Sterling Stuckey; manuscripts of published and unpublished poetry by Elma Stuckey, and reviews and commentaries on her work; correspondence; incoming greeting cards, financial and medical records, and other papers of Stuckey, a Chicago resident who became famous for her poetry, which often dealt with slavery and its legacy in the United States.

 

Correspondents include her son (especially while he served in the U.S. Army, 1956-1957); her daughter, Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison; her aunt, Vivian E. Johnson Cook, known as "Aunt Sweet," 1914-1977; her brother and sister-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Clifford Johnson. Also present are materials relating to her husband, Ples Sterling Stuckey; correspondence between Evelyn V. Johnson, James Thomas Johnson ca. 1920s-1950s, and other relatives; and Sterling Stuckey's correspondence relative to his efforts to promote his mother's literary career and public renown, ca. 1970-2001.

 

Some materials relate to Memphis, Tennessee, where Elma Stuckey was born and several Johnson family members resided. Includes items about the family's interest in Manassas High School (Memphis), which Elma Stuckey attended. The school was founded by African Americans, including Spencer Johnson, and celebrated its centennial in 1999.

 

Correspondence with Vivian Cook is primarily in the form of photocopies.

 

Biographical information: Elma Stuckey was born 1907 March 15 and died 1988 Sept. 25.

 

Accession #: 1998.0154 (most of the collection);

Accession #: 2000.0091.1 (most of boxes 20-21);

Accession #:2005.0071:(box 1 folders 1, 8-9, 11;box 2 folder 6; box 6 folder 9; box 19 folders 1, 5; box 20 folder 1; box 21 folder 10);

Accession #:2009.0108.1: (most of boxes 22-23);

Accession #: 2008.0012.1: (box 23).

 

Description of some materials related to the collection:

Related material at Chicago History Museum, Research Center, includes the Sterling Stuckey papers; the Elma Stuckey family photograph collection (1998.0154); the Elma Stuckey photograph collection (2005.0071); and publications cataloged separately. Related artifacts also are held by Chicago History Museum and listed at the end of this document.

 

List of online catalog headings about the collection:

The following headings were placed in the online catalog of Chicago History Museum:

Subject entries:

Cook, Vivian E. Johnson.

Johnson, Clifford.

Johnson, Clifford, Mrs.

Johnson, Evelyn V.

Johnson family.

Johnson, Fred.

Johnson, Mollie Stafford.

Johnson, Spencer.

Morrison, Delois Jean Stuckey, 1929-1979

Stuckey, Elma, 1907-1988--Correspondence.

Stuckey, Elma, 1907-1988--Criticism and interpretation.

Stuckey, Sterling

Stuckey, Ples Sterling, 1904-1975.

Thomas, James Thomas.

Manassas High School (Memphis, Tenn.)

African American families--Illinois--Chicago--20th century.

African American families--Tennessee--Memphis--20th century.

African American women poets--Illinois--Chicago--20th century.

American poetry--African American authors--20th century.

Poets, American--20th century.

Slavery--United States--Poetry.

Chicago (Ill.)--Intellectual life--20th century.

Chicago (Ill.)--Social conditions--20th century.

Memphis (Tenn.)--Social conditions--20th century.

 

Form/genre:

Autobiographies.

Biographies.

Christmas cards.

Greeting cards.

Manuscripts (for publication).

Marriage certificates.

Poems.

Photocopies.

 

Added entries:

Cook, Vivian E. Johnson.

Johnson, Clifford.

Johnson, Clifford, Mrs.

Johnson, Evelyn V.

Morrison, Delois Jean Stuckey, 1929-1979

Roediger, David,

Stuckey, Sterling

Terkel, Studs, 1912-

Thomas, James Thomas.

United States--Illinois--Cook County--Chicago.

 

List of contents of the collection:

Box 1

folders:

1Handwritten and typed poetry 1938, 1945, 1976, 1978, undated

2Autobiography

3Biography by Sterling Stuckey

4David Roedigerís Winter 1977 Black American Literature Forum article on Elma Stuckey

5David Roedigerís March-April 1977 Negro History Bulletin article on Elma Stuckey

6Miriam De Costa Willisí 1993-1994 articles on Elma Stuckey

7Miriam De Costa Willisí June 1995 CLA article on Elma Stuckey

8American National Biography: Elma Stuckey, Vivian Cook 1998

9The Big Gate: Correspondence, reviews, comments from scholars, etc. 1975-1979, undated

10Evaluation of Elma Stuckeyís Poetry, Big Gate introduction by Stephen Henderson 1976, 1981, 1988, undated

11Tributes 1983-2001, undated

12Published Poetry: The Pan Africanist, March 1971, n. 1, v. 1

13Published Poetry: The Pan Africanist, June 1971, n. 1, v. 2

14Published Poetry: Journal of Black Poetry, Summer 1972, v. 1, n. 16

 

Box 2

folders:

1Published Poetry: Black Lines, Spring 1973, v.2, n. 3

2Published Poetry: Black American Literature Forum, Winter 1983, v. 17, n. 4

3Published Poetry: Quilt 4, 1984

4The Collected Poems: Cover art, undated

5Address book

6Address book

7Addresses

8Bible Promise book, inscribed March 15, 1987

9Books inscribed to Elma Stuckey (B-F)

10Books inscribed to Elma Stuckey (H-K)

11Sterling Stuckeyís army letters to his mother Elma, 1956 July-December

12Sterling Stuckeyís army letters to his mother Elma, 1957 January-April

13Sterling Stuckey-Elma Stuckey correspondence 1972-1988

14Elma Stuckey letters to Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1946-1960

 

Box 3

folders:

1Elma Stuckey letters to Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1948-1977 (photocopies only)

2Sterling Stuckey letters to Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1947-1958, 1974 (photocopies only)

3Willard J. Johnson letters to Elma Stuckey 1959-1960 (photocopies only)

4Elma Stuckeyís telegram (March 3, 1932) to her husband regarding Sterlingís birth

5Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1936-1959

6Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1960-1967

7Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1968-1969

8Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1970

9Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1971

10Studs Terkel material1971-1973

11Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1972-1974

12Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1975-1976

13Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1977-1978

14Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1979

15Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1980

16Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1981 Jan-May

 

Box 4

folders:

1Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1981 June-Dec

2Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1982 Jan-May

3Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1982 June-Dec

4Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1983-1984

5Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1985-1986

6Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1987 Jan-Sept

7Elma Stuckey's Guggenheim application 1987 October-1988 March

8Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1987 Oct-Dec

9Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1988 Jan-Apr

10Elma Stuckey autograph party1988 May 20

11Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papers1988 May-Dec, 1989 July

12Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papersUndated items

13Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papersUndated items

14Elma Stuckey correspondence and other papersUndated items

 

Box 5

folders:

1Motherís Day and Birthday cards, undated

2Christmas cards, Undated

3Christmas cards, Undated

4Crossword puzzle books

5"Welcome Elma Stuckey" paper banner, Undated

6Condolences1988

7Condolences1988

8Condolences1988

9Condolences1988

Unfoldered: Condolences1988

 

Box 6

folders:

1Elma Stuckeyís funeral and burial, 1988 October 1

2Obituaries, September, 1988

3-5Memorial service for Elma Stuckey, 1988 Nov. 12, Woodson Regional Library

6Memphis Black Writersí Workshop, 1989 Jan 20-21

7The Life and Work of the Poet Elma Stuckey program, 1992 Sept. 12, Woodson Regional Library

8"Ladies in Writing," by Bernice Herman

9Correspondence, clips sent to Sterling Stuckey 1960s-1970s

10Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1970-1978

11Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1980-1982

12Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1983-1985

13Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1986

14Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1987 Jan-Aug

15Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1987 Sept-Dec

16Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1988 Jan-Sept

17Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1992

 

Box 7

folders:

1Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1988 October-December

2Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1989 January-March

3Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1989 April-June

4Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1989 July-December

5Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1990

6Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1991

7Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1992 January-September

8Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1992 October-December

9Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1993 January-May

10Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1993 June-December

11Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry1994-1997

12Sterling Stuckey correspondence about his motherís poetry,Undated items

 

Box 8

folders:

1Ples Sterling Stuckey (Elmaís husband, b. Aug. 89, 1904-d. Nov. 9, 1975)1958-1985

2Ples Sterling Stuckey death and funeral 1975

3Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison (Elmaís daughter, b. Jan 17, 1929-d. Aug 12, 1979) 1945-1951

4Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison 1952

5Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison 1956-1971

6Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison 1977-1979 May, undated items

7Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison death and funeral 1979 August; 1985 monument

8Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison 1979-1982

9Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison poetry

10Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison cancelled checks, bills, etc. 1969-1981

11Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison medical bills, receipts, etc. 1978

12Delois Jean Stuckey Morrisonmedical bills, receipts, etc. 1979-1980

 

Boxes 9-10Financial papers

 

Boxes 11-12Medical matters

 

Box 13

folders:

1 Undated ms. of "Black Woman" poem

2-17 Elma Stuckey poetry and other writings

18 Poetry by Elma Stuckey for "Ribbons and Lace"?; Louise Bennet poem

 

Box 14

folders:

1 Elma Stuckey poetry

2-7 Elma Stuckey poetry The Big Gate

 

Box 15

folders:

1-7Poetry by Elma Stuckey "Ribbons and Lace"; 2 copies of The Collected Poems

 

Box 16Poetry Prize Fund

 

Box 17Mr. & Mrs. Clifford Johnson (Elmaís brother and sister-in-law)

 

Box 18Mr. & Mrs. Clifford Johnson holiday cards

 

Box 19

folders:

1Arkansas marriage certificate for Fred Johnson [Johntson (sic)] and Mollie Stafford 1895

2Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1914-1955 (photocopies only)

3Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1956-1969 (photocopies only)

4Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" 1970-1976 & undated (photocopies only)

5Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Home Fires" 1957, 1961

6Vivian E. Johnson Cook "Aunt Sweet" her estate (photocopies only)

7Ralph Cook (Vivianís husband) 1944-1949 (photocopies only)

8Evelyn V. Johnson1931-1955? (photocopies only)

9James Thomas Johnson (chiefly letters to his sister Evelyn V. Johnson 1925-1951 (photocopies only).

10Family funeral programs and obituaries

11Family history

12Family members

13Family members-Byas

14Family members-Cynthia Gregory

15Family members-Lane family 1908-1913

16Family members: Manassas High School, Memphis, Tennessee

17Family reunions

 

Box 20 (accn. 2000.0091.1 & 2005.0071)

folders:

1Misc. papers 1948-1979 & undated

2Misc. papers 1960-1979

3Misc. papers 1980-1982

4Misc. papers 1983-1988

5Misc. papers 1990-August 1998

6Misc. papers September-December 1998

7Misc. papers 1999

8Misc. papers 2000 & undated

9Health1983-1990

10Insurance and financial1969-1988

11Poetry Fund1990-1995

12Poetry Fund1996-1999 & undated

13Poetry Fund 2000 Morehouse College correspondence

14Delois Jean Stuckey Morrison

 

Box 21 (accn. 2000.0091.1 & 2005.0071)

folders:

1-9Manassas High School

10Spencer Johnson, founder of Manassas High School, undated

 

Box 22 (accn. 2009.0108.1)

folders:

1 Elma Stuckey correspondence, 1961-1992 & undated

2 Elma Stuckey poetry

3 Puryear trial, Memphis, 1937

4 Newspaper clippings: Race relations in Memphis, 1930-1932

5 Letters to and from Sterling Stuckey regarding Elma Stuckey

6 Elma Stuckey biography

7 National Literary Hall of Fame for Writers of African Descent, Inc.: 2001 inductees

8 Elma Stuckey papers donation to Chicago Historical Society

 

Box 23 (accn. 2008.0012.1 & 2009.0108.1)

folders:

1 Moorehouse College, Elma Stuckey Poetry Fund

2 Elma Stuckey Poetry Fund financial statements

3 Proposals for Elma Stuckey Poetry Awards

4 The Elma Stuckey Poetry Prizes, Columbia College, Chicago

5 The Life and work of the Poet Elma Stuckey, Carter G. Woodson Regional Library, Chicago, IL, September 12, 1992

6 Myron Goldsmith

7 Center for the Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences Fellow; Stanford, CA; Dedication of Studies 52 and 53 to Elma Stuckey and Vivian E. Johnson Cook

8"Tribute to the Life of Vivian E. Johnson Cook," Howard University , September 25, 2005

9 The Jean Morrison Award for Teaching

10 Family members

11 Medical matters

12 Miscellaneous and undated items

 

Oversize folder:

Marriage license for Ples Stuckey and Elma Earlene Johnson, 1928 June 7.

Elementary school teaching certificate for Elma E. Johnson, 1926-1930.

Grammar school diploma from Memphis City Schools for Clifford Theodore Johnson, 1916 June 9.

 

Audio tapes received with the collection (accn. 1998.0154):

Restriction: Original sound recordings may not be played. It is necessary to have a research copy made for listening purposes.

Stored in Mediated Media, Call#: 0MM.63

 

Audio tapes (reel-to-reel):

1Elma Stuckey reading poems at Malcolm X college, Chicago.

2Elma Stuckey on WFMT Chicagoís Fine Arts Station with covering letter from Dr. Michael Gross of the University of Haifa, June 11,1997.

3Dramatic reading by Elma Stuckey, Nov. 21, 1968.

4Elma Stuckey interview on Studs Terkelís radio program.

5Elma Stuckey interview on Studs Terkelís radio program: replacement tape with note by Lois A. Baum, WFMT, to Elma Stuckey, July 21, 1971.

6Elma Stuckey, Nov. 12, 1988 #3

7Black Women.

8Ms. Stuckey reading poetry.

 

Audio tapes (cassettes):

9WFMT radio interview of Elma Stuckey by Studs Terkel. [some sound interference near end]

10Studs Terkel interview of Elma Stuckey, March 16, 1961Show #420

11Studs Terkel interview of Elma Stuckey (copy)

12WBEZ Radio Station, ("The Idiom of Slavery: program 23)

13Elma Stuckey and K. Harris, WHCU Department Black Program, Winter 1978

14Elma Stuckey, September 1988

15National Public Radioís "Horizon-Songs Tell the Story" that includes an extract from Studs Terkel interview of Elma Stuckey.

16-17Sterling Stuckey on Radio Station KUCR (88.3), July 1, 1997.(tapes 1 & 2)

18-19Sterling Stuckey on Radio Station KUCR (88.3), July 15, 1997 (tapes 1 & 2)

20-21Sterling Stuckey on Radio Station KUCR (88.3), October 28, 1997(tapes 1 & 2)

22Sterling Brown on the Spirituals: Color Question Within, Washington, D.C., Oct 21, 1973 (Sterling and Michael Harper)

23Northwestern News feed, February 1989.Black History Month: Sterling Stuckey (4 parts)

 

Video cassettes received with the collection (accn. 1998.0154):

Restriction: Original videotapes may not be played. It is necessary to have a research copy made for listening purposes.

Stored in Mediated Media, Call#: 0MM.63

 

24Tribute to Elma Stuckey, Sept 12, 192?

25"Elma Stuckey," NTSC 525, 90 minute tape, dubbed December 1988.

 

Photographs received with accn. 1998.0154, 2005.0071, 2009.0107, and 2009.0108 transferred to Prints & Photographs.

 

Books received with accn. 1998.0154 transferred to library:

The Big Gate by Elma Stuckey, introduction by Stephen E. Henderson, Precedent Publishing, Inc., Chicago, 1976

 

The Collected Poems of Elma Stuckey, introduction by E. D. Hirsch, Jr., Precedent Publishing, Inc., Chicago, 1987

 

Trouble the Water 250 Years of African-American Poetry, edited and with an introduction by Jerry W. Ward, Jr., Penguin Books USA, Inc., New York City, 1997

 

Black on White, Black Writers on What It Means To Be White, edited and with an introduction by David Roediger, Shocken Books, New York City, 1998.

 

Books received with accn. 2000.0091.1 transferred to library:

The New Cavalcade African American Writing From 1760 to the Present.Volume 1.

Edited by Arthur P. Davis, J. Saunders Redding, Joyce Ann Joyce

Washington, D.C.: Howard University Press, 1991

 

WPFW89.3Poetry Anthology.

Edited by Grace Cavalieri

Washington, D.C.: The Bunny and the Crocodile Press, 1992

 

Elma Stuckey's personal effects received with accn. 1998.0154 transferred to Decorative & Industrial Arts:

.26 Hairbrush

.27 Hair comb

.28 Hand Mirror

.29 Pair of eyeglasses in vinyl glass case

.30 Compact mirror with photo of a young Sterling Stuckey on its back

.31 Small canvas zippered purse

.32 Small leather wallet with identification cards, photographs, business cards, etc.

.33 Red on black button with text "Say it Loud, Iím Black and Iím Proud" and inset illustration