Savannah Writers' Conference papers
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Savannah Writers' Conference papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Axley, Lowry, approximately 1890-1960.
Title: Savannah Writers' Conference papers
Dates: 1938-1940
Extent: 0.5 cubic feet (1 box)
Identification: MS 0711

Biographical/Historical Note

The person principally responsible for the Savannah Writers' Conference in Savannah, Georgia, was Lowry Axley, head of the English Department at Savannah High School, with the assistance of John P. Dyer, Professor of History at Armstrong Junior College of Savannah. Mr. Axley began his preparations for the Conference in 1938, and the conference was held in Savannah, April 6-8, 1939. Lecturers (called "staff") for the conference were well-known writers, including Allen Tate, his wife, Caroline Gordon, Andrew Lytle, John Peale Bishop, Samuel Gaillard Stoney, and George Stevens, then editor of The Saturday Review.

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of Lowry Axley's correspondence and other papers related to the Savannah Writers' Conference. Correspondents include: John P. Dyer, Edith D. Johnston, John Peale Bishop, Ernest A. Lowe, Henry F. Meyer, Allen Tate, George Stevens, Samuel Gaillard Stoney, Mabel C. Pollard, Anne D. Jones, Stark Young, John Peale Bishop, Grace Hall Hemingway, Margaret Mitchell, Andrew Lytle, Frank P. Graham, Paul Green, George Stevens, Joseph Brewer

Frederick H. Koch, Mary Ellington Mrs. Rosser H. Kaylor, Grace Hall Hemingway, Betty Myers, Vereen Bell, Buford Johnson, Virginia Tanner, Attie Camp, William S. Long, Dubose Heyward, Herbert L. Kayton, Anderson M. Scruggs, Margaret Curtis, Daisy Mae Roberts, and James Irwin Wallace. In addition to correspondence, the collection includes a cash book, programs, clippings and press releases, photographs and silhouettes of the staff, addresses of the conference staff for the Poetry Society of Georgia, and planning and arrangements lists.

Index Terms

Axley, Lowry, approximately 1890-1960.
Bishop, John Peale, 1892-1944.
Gordon, Caroline, 1895-1981.
Hemingway, Grace Hall.
Letters (correspondence)
Lytle, Andrew Nelson, 1902-
Mitchell, Margaret, 1900-1949.
Press releases.
Programs (documents)
Savannah (Ga.)
Savannah Writers' Conference (1938 : Savannah, Georgia)
Stoney, Samuel Gaillard, 1891-
Tate, Allen, 1899-1979.
Young, Stark, 1881-1963.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

Material was acquired from creator.

Preferred Citation

[item identification], Savannah Writers' Conference papers, MS 711, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Lowry Axley, 1953-1956.


Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Georgia Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Division of Library and Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Georgia Historical Society as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.


Encoding funded by a 2012 Documenting Democracy grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Container List



1Correspondence, 1938 November 8-1939 ( 25.0 items. )
Correspondents, in addition to Lowry Axley are: Samuel Gaillard Stoney; Allen Tate (2); Stark Young (2); John Peale Bishop (2); Grace Hall Hemingway; Margaret Mitchell (Marsh); Andrew Lytle (to John P. Dyer). Includes signed list of Savannah guarantors, January 7, 1939.


2Correspondence, 1939 January 18-February 2 ( 26.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are Samuel Gaillard Stoney (2); Frank P. Graham, President, U. of N.C.; Paul Green; George Stevens; Allen Tate (2); John Peale Bishop.


3Correspondence, 1939 February 2-28 ( 28.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are Samuel Gaillard Stoney; John Peale Bishop (3); Joseph Brewer, Pres. Olivet College; George Stevens; Andrew Lytle; Frank P. Graham; Bobbs-Merrill Company; J.B. Lippincot Co.; Wylly Folk St. John; Stark Young (2); Frederick H. Koch, Head of Dept. of Dramatic Art, U. of N.C.; Allen Tate; Mary Ellington; Mrs. Rosser H. Kaylor.


4Correspondence, 1939 March 1-11 ( 29.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are Grace Hall Hemingway; Betty Myers, Savannah; John Peale Bishop; Mrs. B.F. Bullard, Savannah; Allen Tate (3); Atlanta Constitution; Vereen Bell; Andrew Lytle; Mrs. E.S. Elliott, Savannah; Samuel Gaillard Stoney.


5Correspondence, 1939 March 12-20 ( 26.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are Buford Johnson, Savannah; George Stevens; Virginia Tanner; Attie Camp; Mrs. Mabel C. Pollard, Savannah (pledge); William S. Long; Mrs. E.H. Emery; Dubose Heyward.


6Correspondence, 1939 March 21-27 ( 26.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are Mrs. P.H. Strong, Savannah; Frances W. Hadley; Mrs. J.E. Cay; Mary Ellington; Allen Tate (2).


7Correspondence, 1939 March 28-April 3 ( 22.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley are John Peale Bishop; Allen Tate; Herbert L. Kayton, Savannah; Anderson M. Scruggs; Margaret Curtis, Savannah; Mrs. Leonard Beecher, Savannah; George Stevens; Mrs. S.L. Varnedoe, Savannah; E.T.H. Shaffer; Daisy Mae Roberts; James Irwin Wallace.


8Correspondence, 1939 April 4-May 1 ( 21.0 items. )
Correspondents in addition to Lowry Axley: John P. Dyer, Savannah; Edith D. Johnston, Savannah; John Peale Bishop; Ernest A. Lowe, Savannah; Henry F. Meyer, Savannah; Allen Tate; George Stevens (2); Samuel Gaillard Stoney; Mrs. Mabel C. Pollard, Savannah; Anne D. Jones, Savannah.


9Cash book ( 1.0 items. )
Guarantors, auditors, active members, students, miscellaneous, with amounts paid.


10Local arrangements ( 5.0 items. )
List, Director and staff; Mailing list; Program Committee; Signers for the Wormsloe reception and the luncheon.


11Programs; mimeographed and printed copies; admission ticket ( 4.0 items. )


12Press releases ( 23.0 items. )
carbon copies (one mimeographed) of news stories prepared by Lowry Axley for various newspapers. Names of newspapers are noted on some. Biographical résumés of Allen Tate and Caroline Gordon are attached to a release on them.


13Clippings regarding the conference, 1939 January 26-April 7


14Photographs and silhouettes of the staff ( 39.0 items. )
Photographs: Caroline Gordon (2) with negative of one; Allen Tate (2); Allen Tate and Caroline Gordon together; Nancy Tate; John Peale Bishop; George Stevens; Samuel Gaillard Stoney (3; one as a young man); 4 snapshots of the group at Fort Pulaski; snapshot on veranda at Wormsloe showing Helen Hatch Inglesby cutting a silhouette of John Peale Bishop. Silhouettes cut by Helen Hatch Inglesby: Andrew Lytle (original and 2 photocopies); Caroline Gordon (original and 1 photocopy); Allen Tate (original and 2 photocopies); George Stevens (original and 1 photocopy); Samuel Galliard Stoney (original and 2 photocopies); John Peale Bishop (original and 1 photocopy); Lowry Axley (2 photocopies); unidentified (7 photocopies).


15Miscellaneous ( 4.0 items. )
Addresses of the conference staff for the Poetry Society of Georgia; "The Mediterranean," by Allen Tate (mimeographed copy); Programs of the Olivet Writers' Conference, 1937 and 1939.


16Savannah Writers' Conference, (proposed), 1940 ( 11.0 items. )
2 letters, 8 returned questionnaires with replies on them, 1 clipping regarding organizing a Savannah Writers' Conference for 1940.