Scope and Contents
This collection contains correspondence regarding the authorship of “Sassafras,” a poem first published in the Crawfordsville Journal and attributed to James Elmore. Elmore denied authorship and it was later believed to have been written as a joke by Jesse A. Greene, editor of the Crawfordsville Journal. The collection includes typewritten copies of letters written in April 1945 by Caroline Dunn, Indiana Historical Society librarian; Louella D. Everett, associate editor ofBartlett's Familiar Quotations; and Frederic W. Bales, day editor of the Journal Review (Crawfordsville). The collection also includes two original documents: a May 3, 1945 letter from William Randel at the University of Minnesota to the editor of the Indianapolis News, and an April 9, 1955 letter sent by Wayne Guthrie of the Indianapolis News to Miss Nellie M. Coats at the Indiana State Library.
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.
James Buchanan Elmore was born January 25, 1857 on the family farm near Alamo in Ripley Township, Montgomery County, Indiana, the son of Mattias and Mary Ann (Willis) Elmore. After graduating from the Alamo Academy, he taught school for twenty years and spent his summers farming. He married Mary Ann Murray on February 14, 1880 and they had 5 children, with two sons and a daughter living to adulthood. Referred to as "The Bard of Alamo," he wrote poems for newspapers in Crawfordsville and Indianapolis and published several books of poetry. He died at the age of 85 on March 12, 1942.
Banta, R. E., comp. Indiana Authors and Their Books, 1816-1916. Crawfordsville, Ind.: Wabash College, 1949.
History of Montgomery County, Indiana: With Personal Sketches of Representative Citizens, Vol II. Indianapolis: A.S. Bowen and Company, 1913.
0.01 Cubic Feet (1 folder)
Language of Materials