Guide to the Hortense McEwen Letters,
1911-1913

Print this Finding Aid | Email this Finding Aid


Results

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Excell, John Edward, 1888-1967
Title: The Hortense McEwen Letters
Dates: 1911-1913 ( inclusive )
Quantity: 1 box (.5 linear foot)
Collection Number: USU_COLL MSS 296
Summary: This collection consists of twelve love letters written to Hortense McEwen by three different men from 1911 through 1913. These letters reveal courtship patterns within the Mormon culture during this time period and document the missionary work of John E. Excell.
Repository: Utah State University. Special Collections and Archives
Manuscript Collection

Merrill-Cazier Library
Utah State University
3000 Old Main Hill
Logan, UT 84322-3000
Phone: 435 797-2663
Fax: 435 797-2880
Email: scweb@usu.edu

Languages: Material in English 

Biographical Note

Hortense McEwen was born July 26, 1890 in Cleveland, Utah the daughter of Edward Riley and Ellen Lovina Le Fevre McEwen. Hortense was educated in the common schools of area and studied to become a teacher. From 1911 to 1913, Hortense wrote John E. Excell while he was serving as a missionary in the Southern States for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Upon the completion of his missionary service, Hortense married John September 18, 1913 in the Salt Lake Temple. Thereafter they had four children, J. Edward, Grant, Dorothy, and one child that died in infancy. During her life Hortense worked as a school teacher in both Ogden and Layton, Utah. Hortense McEwen Excell died September 6, 1972 in Salt Lake City.

John Edward Excell was born January 14, 1888 in Panguitch, Utah to Henry and Elizabeth Austin Button Excell. On March 30, 1910 John married Millie Lee in the Manti Temple. Tragedy struck the couple three months later when Millie Lee died. Within one year of her death, John was called to serve for two years as a missionary in the Southern States for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. During these two years John served in both Georgia and Florida. Prior to leaving for his mission, John became acquainted with Hortense McEwen, whom he married upon returning from his mission. John Edward Excell died July 20, 1967 in Springdale, Utah.

Content Description

This collection consists of twelve love letters written to Hortense McEwen by three different men during 1911 and 1913. These letters reveal an interesting display of courtship patterns within the Mormon culture during this time period and document the missionary work of John E. Excell.

Folders 1—10 consist of ten letters written to Hortense by John Excell while he served as a missionary in the Southern States. These letters discuss Excell's view of life, his missionary work, and his love for Hortense.

Folders 11 and 12 contain two letters written by W. H. Allred and "Hyrum" in 1912. Allred's letter is flirtatious and discusses their past experiences together and his life on a ranch in Nevada. Hyrum's letter is also flirtatious and discusses life and their past experiences together as well.

Use of the Collection

Restrictions on Access :  

No restrictions on use, except: not available through interlibrary loan.

Restrictions on Use :  

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.

Permission to publish material from the Hortense McEwen Letters must be obtained from the Special Collections Manuscript Curator and/or the Special Collections Department Head.

Preferred Citation :  

Initial Citation: Hortense McEwen Letters USU_COLL MSS 296, Box [ ]. Special Collections and Archives. Utah State University Merrill-Cazier Library. Logan, Utah.

Following Citations:USU_COLL MSS 296, USUSCA.

Administrative Information

Processing Note :  

Processed in March of 2005

Acquisition Information :  

The Hortense McEwen letters were purchased by USU Special Collections & Archives in February 2003 from a dealer of historical materials.

Bibliography :  Sources:
  • Deseret News ,September 7, 1972
  • Deseret News , July 22, 1967.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Box
Folder
1 1 Incoming, from John E. Excell,of Waresburo, Georgia 1911 July 4
1 2 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Braxton, Georgia 1911 July 7
1 3 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Manor, Georgia 1911 August 11
1 4 Incoming, from John E. Excell, Bushnell, Georgia 1911 December 19
1 5 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of McDonald, Georgia 1912 March 2
1 6 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Griggs, Georgia 1912 April 8
1 7 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Jakin, Georgia 1912 June 7
1 8 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Douglas, Georgia 1912 August 5
1 9 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Douglas, Georgia 1912 September 7
1 10 Incoming, from John E. Excell, of Stanford, Florida 1913 January 20
1 11 Incoming, from W. H. Allred, of Blue Eagle, Nevada 1912 September 3
1 12 Incoming, from "Hyrum", of Cannonville, Utah 1912 January 5

Subjects

    • Personal Names :
    • Excell, Hortense McEwen, 1890-1972
    • Excell, John Edward, 1888-1967
    • Subject Terms :
    • Courtship.
    • Mormon missionaries.

    ^ Return to Top