[Emporia, Ks. & Avalon, Mo.]: 1886-1888. pp. Primarily folio, with some smaller leaves. Light soiling and wear, some edge tears and chipping. Lightly soiled and toned. Highly legible. About very good. Item #3530
A small archive of notes and essays written by student Emil Pelz during his time at Avalon College in Missouri and subsequently at the Kansas State Normal School in Emporia. Pelz was actively involved in his schools' belles lettres societies, including the Philophronean Literary Society, writing essays and facilitating group discussions. Within this grouping, there are manuscript programs for two of the society's meetings, listing speakers and topics for the day's discussion. Pelz is listed as a discussion leader on one, the topic of which was "Resolved: that woman's influence does more in shaping the destiny of the human race than man's." Also included here is a manuscript draft of the society's first newsletter, "The Belles Lettres Echos," which comprises six leaves with manuscript corrections and notations. It is filled with local and foreign news tidbits, as well as witticisms, our favorite of which is the very Midwestern "Get all you can, & can all you get." Among Pelz's writings are an essay entitled "My First Day at the Emporia Normal," dated November 6, 1888, in which he waxes rhapsodic about the school library, its beautiful buildings, and the "appliances of lighting and heating." Other essays include "A Study of Sir Launfal"; "A Review of Called Back, a Novel by Hugh Conway"; "A Sketch of the Life of Longfellow"; and "Observations on Autumn." An interesting draft of an article for the society's paper is titled, "A Dreamed Description of the Model Belles Lettres Girl," and a lengthy article on "The Flax Plant." There are also several other miscellaneous letters and papers included. A brief archive of a Kansas college student's literary life.