CELIA CATHCART Correspondence II

Pine Mountain Settlement School
Series 09: BIOGRAPHY – Staff
Celia Cathcart
Correspondence II

CELIA CATHCART Correspondence II, 1925 & 1926

Celia Cathcart (Holton):
PMSS teacher, fundraiser (1915-1919) & trustee

TAGS: Celia Cathcart Correspondence II, Celia Cathcart Holton, Mrs. Caryl Holton, Girls’ Industrial Building, weaving, baskets, little school, student activities, Berea College, Marguerite Butler, folk-schools, Aunt Sally Creech, fundraising for Aunt Sal’s Cabin restoration

The following letters were found in 2021 in the PMSS Archives among a collection of miscellaneous correspondence. One letter was written, in 1925 and the rest in 1926, to Celia Cathcart by the executive staff at Pine Mountain Settlement School.


[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. The initials at the bottom left of most PMSS letters indicate the writer (along with initials of the secretary). For example, “EZ” are the initials for Ethel de Long Zande, “KP” refers to Katherine Pettit, and “EKW” to Evelyn K. Wells, The following list of contents is in chronological order and not necessarily in the order of the image numbers.]


[013], [013a] May 14, 1925. Two-page letter to Celia Cathcart (Mrs. Caryl Holton) in London, OH, from EKW (Wells), [013, page 1], who is pleased to receive her letter. Describes the new Girls’ Industrial Building, including the weaving room, and progress of the baskets. “Mrs. Causey now divides her attentions between us and the settlement at Wooten, and is in bad health most of the time, so we really get very few. …Miss Stokin, the girl who has run the weaving this year, took them all to her shop in New Hampshire for summer trade.” Still making melon baskets and Kentucky egg baskets, if Cathcart wishes to place an order.

Describes activities of a “little school” set up by the Model Home (Country Cottage) teacher, for Charles and Wilmer Creech, Berto Zande, and one or two neighbor children. Describes other student activities: declamation contests, basketball games, spelling matches, plays, and Chapel services. Clara Siler received a scholarship at Chautauqua this summer; Clara Callahan goes to the Girl Scout camp outside Cincinnati; Boone, Dillard Turner, and Kitty Ritchie have been at Berea College this year.

Marguerite Butler and Miss Campbell visited; Butler packed up her things from Open House. “They are trying to decide where to settle for their folk-school.Aunt Sal (Sally Creech) died last month: “The place seems so strange without her.” 

[013a, page 2] Gives updates about Fred, Bish, Barton, Sallie Wilder, Pete Cornett’s Jesse, Mr. (Leon) Deschamps, May Deschamps and their children.


[017] March 18, 1926. To Cathcart from EZ (Zande). PMSS is raising money, about $250, to help restore Uncle William and Aunt Sal Creech’s old log house (Aunt Sal’s Cabin); describes arrangements with the Creech children and plans to furnish it and create a garden of Aunt Sal’s flowers. “Bill Creech has been saving a poplar tree for years for the shingles. The ‘boys’ (Bill, Henry, and Columbus) are going to do much of the work of moving and setting up the house.”

[016] May 31, 1926. To Cathcart from [unsigned], who responds to Cathcart’s letter about her children and activities; tells how she will handle Cathart’s donation to the restoration of Aunt Sal’s cabin; describes Miss (Ruth B.) Gaines accident: “…[S]he jumped from a runaway logging train on the mountain, as it was going sixty miles an hour, and cut and broke her leg.”  

[015] August 13, 1926. To Cathcart from EZ (Zande), who encloses “one of our new booklets for children who are applying.” The School may need new dormitories for the boys and girls, “for we have had to turn away so many children this year. … The School’s fame seems to be spreading abroad as never before.” 

[014] November 5, 1926. To Cathcart from KP (Pettit), who comments on Cathcart’s letter and photos of her children; urges her to visit PMSS. Describes the Tri-School Meet at PMSS last week, consisting of 30 boys and teachers coming from Wooton and Redbird, a party for them, and a day of basketball, track events, and declamation contests in the evening. Dean Baird from Berea College was the judge. Miss Gaines visited Brasstown.

See Also:
CELIA CATHCART Staff – Biography

Private: CELIA CATHCART 1916-1918 Road Correspondence – Listings of published articles by and about Cathcart and letters in the possession of Julia Holton King Todd, Celia’s granddaughter, dated 1916-1918.