MARY ROCKWELL HOOK Correspondence 1938 Box 18: 2-66

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: Biography
Series 05: Board of Trustees
Series 10: Built Environment
Mary Rockwell Hook Correspondence 1938
Published 2018-07-15 hw
Updated 2021-10-02 aae

MARY ROCKWELL HOOK Correspondence 1938 Box 18: 2-66

January 19, 1938 – December 14, 1938

Mary Rockwell Hook (1877 – 1978)
School Architect and Consultant 1913 through c. 1968
Member, PMSS Board of Trustees

TAGS: Mary Rockwell Hook, correspondence, 1938, architectural planning, early women architects, Sun-Up play, Glyn Morris, Gladys Morris, Arthur Dodd, fundraising, Whispering Sands, Board of Trustees meetings, School House stage plans, Professor Swift, Guest House plans, donations, Clyde Enix

CONTENTS: MARY ROCKWELL HOOK Correspondence 1938 Box 18: 2-66

[Note: Letters from PMSS staff in the PMSS Collections are carbon copies, typewritten, unsigned, and meant for the Office files. The original signed copies were sent to the correspondents. Mrs. Hook’s letters are handwritten. The following list of contents is in chronological order and not necessarily in order of the image numbers.]

January – March 1938

001 January 19, 1938. To Mary Rockwell Hook (Mrs. Inghram D. Hook), Kansas City, MO, from Glyn Morris, informing her of the letter he sent to the Trustees about an April meeting in Lexington or at PMSS. He urges her to attend since she is “so closely connected with the School for the [past] few years, probably more so than any one member of the Board.” He describes the community work that the girls are doing.

002 January 22, 1938. Western Union telegram to Morris from Hook in Sarasota, FL. She and Mrs. Guy will be visiting PMSS for one night.

003 January 25, 1938. Western Union telegram to Morris from Hook in Atlanta, GA, telling him that car trouble has caused them to cancel the PMSS visit.

004-004a March(?) 7, 1938. Two-page letter to Morris from Hook at Whispering Sands, Sarasota, FL, who has a London(?) address for Morris from her sister, Emily Cameron. Describes her plans en route to PMSS, traveling with Chuck Wegner and Jay Findlay (Chuck’s assistant). She will be staying at the home of Robert Bell, Mission Bells Inc(?), Black Mt., NC. Encloses information about horse-riding at Whispering Sands.

006 N.D. Newspaper clipping titled “Second Riding School For Sarasota. Valla Elam to Teach Equestrianism at Whispering Sands.”

005 N.D. Western Union telegram to Arthur W. Dodd from Hook in Washington, DC, telling him when she will arrive in Harlan.

007 March 25, 1938. To Hook, Kansas City, MO, from (unsigned), reminding her of the board meeting on April 9.

008-008a March 29, (no year). To (no salutation) from Hook, describing her travel plans and arrangements to stay at Open House

009 Address side of postcard to Pine Mountain Settlement School. 
009a March 30, (no year). Message side of postcard to (no salutation) from Hook “on Baltimore & Ohio to Wash. DC.” She is trying to connect with other trustees traveling to PMSS.

010 March 30, 1938. To Hook in Kansas City, MO, from (unsigned), sending her a revised Director’s Report to the Board of Trustees.

April – June 1938

011 April 3, 1938. Western Union telegram to Morris from Hook in Washington, DC, asking about using the school car when she arrives in Berea.
011a N.D. Reverse side of telegram, possibly the text for telegram to Hook in Washington, from A.W. Dodd, advising when the school car will leave Berea and that it will be crowded.

012 April 11, 1938. To Hook in Sarasota, FL, from (unsigned), telling her “how happy we were to have you here and how pleased we all are with the results of the meeting of the Board.” He is anxious to begin constructing the stage. Thanks her for the contribution toward the gasoline expense. Encloses a copy of his letter to Professor Swift.

013 April 17, 1938. Western Union telegram to Mr. and Mrs. Morris from Hook, wishing them a happy Easter season.

014-014c April 23, 1938. Four-page letter to Morris from Hook, who [014] writes about her camaraderie with Prof. Swift. “He is a rare spirit.” [014a] She will begin designing the stage when she returns home; will consult an expert about the strength needed for a “dancing load.” She may drive to PMSS to take measurements and do some staking. Asked about Boone (Callahan)’s availability; plans for the Guest House. [014b] Describes the people and activities at Sarasota. “Am molding Whis. Sands into a motor town for Florida, so as to have one to demonstrate.” [014c] Give her thoughts about “the two boys who might come here” (Denver and Paul) and how she should accommodate them. Needs to find work for “Chuck and Hella” (her assistants).

015-015a April 24, (no year; later notation: “1938”). Two-page letter to Gladys (Morris) from Hook. [015] “Your rotating hospitality to the Bd of Trustees & all their appendages was so cleverly planned & quietly accomplished that no-one realized the deep system underneath. It was just all so natural & pleasant for everybody & each person got a good cross-section of the school by your distribution system.” [015a] Refers to Sarasota as “my ‘Blue Heaven’ with a long view of bayou & white beach & ocean.” Tells about boat rides, horseback riding, swimming, inviting the “intelligensia” of Sarasota to a breakfast party. She will have the two boys next year; and could use two girls as waitress and chambermaid.

016 April 26, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, possibly Morris), who asks if she has worked on the School House stage plans. Mentions Fern (Hall) and Mrs. (Dorothy Olcott) Elsmith’s gift of $250 for the pool.

017 May 3, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, possibly Morris), who would like the stage built this summer; expresses need for a guest house; Miss (Esther) Weller “handles our small but growing placement bureau” and will deal with placing Denver and Paul.

018 May 14, 1938. To Hook in Kansas City, MO, from (unsigned), with a list of items and tasks that Morris wanted to be sent to Hook.

019 – 019c June 27, (no year: later notation: “1938”). Four-page letter to Mr. (Arthur W.) Dodd from Hook. [019] Mrs. Vogt took Jay Findlay with her as assistant. Hook is looking for “nitches” to put the PMSS boys and girls into. She received advice from St. Louis architects concerning the stage. One is Ray Chaffee who may visit PMSS. [019a] Gives instructions for Boone to prepare for the stage construction; describes what she and Chaffee will do on location. [019b] Suggests hiring Chafee; “Mr. and Mrs. Chaffee have a place in the mts of North Ga. where they have established an art school….they are both artists.” [019c] Suggests how Mr. Chaffee could be paid. She thinks the work will cost $1000.

020 N.D. A plan by Hook showing the dimensions and location of the stage (on stone piers), classrooms, a dressing room, lavatories, and a large tree that needs to be removed.
020a Reverse side of 020, showing letterhead for Ellis Hotel, Keene, NH.

021-021c June 28, (no year: later notation: “1938”). Four-page letter to Mr. Dodd from Hook, [021] who will forward his telegram about Denver to Mrs. Vogt in Maine. Hook wishes to place Denver somewhere for training before he goes to Sarasota. Clyde (Enix) is doing well, gardening and waiting tables. [021a] Will send a preliminary plan for the stage; studied books in the library on stage construction. [021b] Needs measurements. [021c] Asks about availability of Open House. 

July – August 1938

022 July 6, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, possibly Morris), who is pleased that Clyde is doing well at “Hook House” and hopes he stays all summer. Morris is anxious that the stage is done this summer; encloses measurements. Tells of a “drastic need for a guest house” and plans by Mrs. Elsmith and a group to raise money for it at a New York benefit performance. “I think Mrs. Elsmith is doing some very excellent work for Pine Mountain.”

023-023c July 8, (no year: later notation: “1938”). Four-page letter to Morris from Hook, [023] who is sending him literature from the Western Stage Equipment Co., and encloses a tentative plan. “The whole thing needs [023a] a lot more study & engineering advice.” She will consult the school board architect in Kansas City. Chaffee cannot leave work to visit PMSS, but researched and supplied her with some data on school stages. Still needs measurement of the height under the eaves from Boone. [023b] Asks Morris if he has any heavy logs for the proscenium arch and provides a sketch with measurements. [023c] Closing.

024 July 16, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, likely Morris), who will ask (Fred) Burkhard about Hook’s suggestion to send postcards to Trustees and Advisory Board members regarding publicity for the Pine Mountain Press. Will begin the stage construction after determining the estimated cost.

025 August 1, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, likely Morris), asking her to review the letter he is sending to a few midwestern people. He would like to “get various groups to sponsor and sell tickets for ‘Sun Up’ [in order to] clear up our current deficit (of $3,000).”
026 A draft of Morris’s letter for Hook’s review, stating “Either we must curtail Pine Mountain’s work or seek further aid from friends of the School….” He then describes the PMSS students’ production of “Sun Up” by Lula Vollmer and asks if it could be done in other places as a fundraiser for PMSS. (Handwritten notation: “Too humble!”)

027-027g August 4, (no year). Eight-page letter to Morris from Hook. [027] Charles A. Smith, school architect, is helping with the stage plans by having his engineer design the wood trusses. (Hook sketches the trusses with diagonal braces.) [027a] Suggests a workroom for stage crafts, but there is not enough funding. [027b] Asks his approval of a “rough house” interior. “Everyone feels at home in the simplicity of Open House. I had in mind skinned poles for the balconies & even for the trusses if it were possible.” (Later notation: “OK”) Provides suggestions for the exterior finish, such as slabs. Comments on Morris’s letter about “Sun Up,” [027c] wishing to build a theatre for the play at the Kansas City University. Otherwise, there is no other place in Kansas City that would carry the untrained voices of the PMSS children. [027d] Suggests other cities, but he should not take the play “on tour.” Suggests Grace Frick as a publicity agent. [027e] She has no time to work on Guest House plans and suggests getting someone else. Asks about a PMSS group at Excelsior Springs (Missouri). [027f] Angela Melville, who is looking for work next year, should run the Guest House. Provides her address in Jamaica. [027g] Hopes Morris can visit the drama dept at William & Mary.

028 August 8, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned), Secretary, acknowledging receipt of Hook’s letter in Morris’s absence.

029 August 17, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, apparently Morris), who agrees that the stage interior should be informal, using skinned poles. Tells of Mr. Callahan’s advice about “logging the interior.” The stage construction has been postponed until next year. Describes possible ways to do the construction more cheaply. Morris needs to hear from others before deciding about “Sun Up.” Gives the names of the group that went to Excelsior Springs to sing ballads and do folk dancing; Ruby Ayers, Joan Ayers, Lucille Christian, and Fern Hall. Asks for a sketch of the Guest House to present at a fundraiser that Mrs. Elsmith is arranging. Location of the Guest House will be Pole House Hill. Mentions the success of Mr. (Everett) Wilson’s summer camp.

030 N.D. To (no salutation) from Hook (possible continuation of Hook’s August 4th letter). Hook gives reasons why Morris should not consider “Sun Up” in Kansas City. Encloses check for Clyde Enix’s tuition.

031 August 30, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned), enclosing a receipt for Clyde’s tuition.

October – December 1938

032-032a October 1, 1938. Two-page letter to Morris from Hook, [032] who has the plans for the wood trusses in the roof that Mr. Smith’s engineer worked on. She hopes he finds an architect for the Guest House [032a] and the stage. She also has no time to do a Guest House sketch for the fundraising event’s program. Describes a suggestion from Mrs. Morris about building a car garage below Far House. Tells about sending Clyde Enix to his uncle’s in Tenn. and how Clyde seems to have improved.

033a Second page of letter from Hook. (FIRST PAGE IS MISSING.) She is anxious to know if Denver and Paul are coming to Florida. She will be going by train to Sarasota on October 10 for a month. Asks about “Sun Up” dates and the Junior College.

034 October 3, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, apparently Morris), who hopes to build the stage next summer and asked for the plans from Mr. Smith. Miss Weller will write her about Paul and Denver. A party of about six from PMSS is accepting her invitation to spend Christmas at Sarasota at $12.25 a day. He has no dates for “Sun Up” and, therefore, will personally tour with a new movie about the School’s history, plus some ballads. 

035 November 10, 1938. To Hook in Sarasota, FL, from (unsigned, apparently Morris), asking about his PMSS group coming to Florida for Christmas.

040-040a November 22, (no year). Two-page note to (no salutation) from Hook, [040] asking about the PMSS group’s plans to visit Sarasota. [040a] Encloses clippings she received from Grace Frick. Praises Mrs. Elsmith’s work.
041-041a N.D. Two-page note to (no salutation) from Hook, telling of a Englishman she heard sing ballads at the University of Kansas City. She hopes he will come to PMSS sometime.

036 November 26, 1938. To Walter Holtkamp, The Vetteler-Holtkamp-Sparling Organ Co., Cleveland, OH, from (unsigned, likely Morris), telling Holtkamp that he has referred his name to the Organ Committee of the Presbyterian Church in Harlan, who wish to install a pipe organ. 

037 November 28, 1938. To Hook in Kansas City, MO, from (unsigned, likely Morris), thanking her for “taking a box at the benefit” performance. He gives the names of the PMSS group that will be visiting Sarasota: Joan Ayers, Fern Hall, John Young, John Spelman, and Gladys Morris.

038-038a December 12, 1938. Two-page letter to Morris from Hook, enclosing a donation from Charles Baird. He was athletic director at Ann Arbor and from Harlan County and may be a donor for a PMSS athletic field. She is supportive of the “post-high” vocational program; surprised at the marriage of Dodd-Ayers and at Mr. Wilson’s marriage.

039 December 14, 1938. To Hook from (unsigned, likely Morris), who is looking forward to visiting Whispering Sands, but regrets that she will not be there. He plans to ask the Harlan Kiwanis Club to organize a county planning council.

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MARY ROCKWELL HOOK Correspondence Guide

GALLERY: MARY ROCKWELL HOOK Correspondence 1938 Box 18: 2-66

Box 18 – Folder 2-66 (72 items)