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Roy Catesby Flannagan

A Guide to the Roy Catesby Flannagan Pagpers, 1919-1947
Call Number Mss1 F6143a FA2


Abstract

Main Entry: Flannagan, Roy Catesby, 1897-1952
Title: Papers, 1919-1947
Size: ca. 550 items (5 boxes)
Biographical Note: Richmond, Va., journalist and author. Oldest child of Dr. Roy Knight and Lucy Gatesby (Jones) Flannagan. Born in Charlottesville, Va., and moved with his family to Richmond in 1912. Attended John Marshall High School. Attended the University of Virginia before joining the U.S. Army Air Corps and serving as a fighter pilot during World War I.

After the war, Flannagan began his newspaper career with the Richmond Virginian. In 1920, after working for a succession of small newspapers, he joined the staff of the Atlanta Journal, where he wrote for the Sunday magazine supplement. Also writing for the Journal was Gladys Victoria Iler, an Indiana native and graduate of Butler University in Indianapolis. The two were married in March 1922. The following year the couple moved to Richmond, where Flannagan began his three-decade career with the Richmond News Leader.

Scope Note: Flannagan's papers reflect his varied career as a journalist, author, political advisor and army officer. His general correspondence contains letters from such diverse personalities as Sherwood Anderson (1876-1941), Harry Flood Byrd (1887-1966), Harry Flood Byrd (b. 1914), Virginius Dabney (b. 1901), Clifford Dowdey (1904-1979), Patrick Henry Drewry (1875-1947), Douglas Southall Freeman (1886-1953), and Margaret Mitchell (1900-1949). Other less prominent correspondents include newspaperman James Stewart Bryan (1871-1944) and John Dana Wise (1897-1963), literary agents A. Mervyn Davies and Ruth F. Boyd, and editor and publisher Robert Lane Anderson (1907-1951), son of Sherwood Anderson. Flannagan's general correspondence also includes letters to his father, Dr. Roy Knight Flannagan (1870-1942), his daughter, Patricia Douglass (Flannagan) Hooker (b. 1926?), and his wife, Gladys Victoria (Iler) Flannagan (b. 1900?). Correspondence with his wife is primarily from 1922 to 1924 and 1942 to 1945 and documents a happy, although at times difficult, marriage. Most of the 1923 letters to her were written while Flannagan covered the Cumberland County murder trial of Robert O. Garrett, the clerk of court, and his brother, Larkin C. Garrett, the commissioner of chancery. These contain the writer's impressions of the case.

A section of correspondence with institutions consists almost entirely of letters of publishers concerning Flannagan's writings. A section of accounts and financial and land records precede materials relating to Flannagan's career as an army officer, on both reserve and active duty. These latter papers are arranged chronologically and consist of correspondence, memoranda, orders, certificates, charts and miscellany.

The rest of Flannagan's papers concern his career as a writer. Among these are materials, mostly correspondence, pertaining to the American Newspaper Guild (of which Flannagan was Richmond chapter president) and the Ember Club. In 1938, Flannagan published The Story of Lucky Strike for the American Tobacco Company exhibit at the New York World's Fair. Materials concerning the booklet include correspondence (mostly with American Tobacco Company executives), acknowledgements, and miscellany. Several folders containing rough drafts of Flannagan's articles, novels, and short stories follow. These are arranged alphabetically by type with the untitled short stories located at the end of the section. A draft of the novel The Whipping, a partial draft of the novel Amber Satyr, and several copies of "the Doorstop," a short story published in Story Magazine in 1935, are included. Also included are articles on Robert E. Lee (1807-1870) and General Charles Lee (1731-1782), as well as short stories by two other authors, Merrits Hemp and Eudora Ramsay Richardson (1892-1973). Miscellaneous materials include newspaper clippings, many from the Atlanta Journal between 1921 and 1922, and conclude Roy Catesby Flannagan's papers.

The papers of Gladys Victoria (Iler) Flannagan include correspondence and miscellany. Much of her correspondence is with unidentified persons. Miscellaneous materials consist primarily of copies of poems and articles written for the Atlanta Journal and Butler University publications. A folder of unidentified family correspondence concludes the collection.

Provenance: Gift of the Prestwould Company, Richmond, Va., in 1982. Accessioned 21 January 1986.
Restrictions: None

Collection Description

Richmond journalist and author Roy Catesby Flannagan was the oldest child of Dr. Roy Knight and Lucy Catesby (Jones) Flannagan. Born in Charlottesville in 1897, Flannagan moved to Richmond in 1912 and graduated from John Marshall High School four years later. After returning to Charlottesville to study writing at the University of Virginia, he joined the Army Air Corps and served as a fighter pilot during the First World War.

After the war, Flannagan began his newspaper career with the Richmond Virginian. In 1920, after working for a succession of small newspapers, he joined the staff of the Atlanta Journal, where he wrote for the Sunday magazine supplement. Also, writing for the Journal was Gladys Victoria Iler, an Indiana native and graduate of Butler University in Indianapolis. The two were married in March 1922. The following year the couple moved to Richmond, where Flannagan began his three-decade career with the Richmond News Leader.

During his tenure at the paper, Flannagan published four novels: The Whipping (1930), Amber Satyr (1932), County Court (1937), and Forest Cavalier (1952). He was also active in Democratic politics, serving as publicity advisor to the state party in 1929 and, three years later, managing the Virginia Byrd Committee, an organization founded to advance the favorite-son presidential candidacy of Harry Flood Byrd. During World War II, Flannagan was returned to active duty, coordinating air and ground operations and, in 1943, was promoted to lieutenant-colonel. After the war, he returned to the News Leader and wrote for that paper until his death in 1952.

Flannagan's papers reflect his varied career as a journalist, author, political advisor and army officer. His general correspondence contains letters from such diverse personalities as Sherwood Anderson (1876-1941), Harry Floor Byrd (1887-1996), Patrick Henry Drewry (1875-1947), Douglas Southall Freeman (1886-1953) and Margaret Mitchell (1900-1949). Other less prominent correspondents include newspapermen John Stewart Bryan (1871-1944) and John Dana Wise (1897-1963), literary agents A. Mervyn Davies and Ruth F. Boyd, and editor and publisher Robert Lane Anderson (1907- 1951), sone of Sherwood Anderson. Flannagan's general correspondence also includes letters of his father, Dr. Roy Knight Flannagan (1870-1942), his daughter, Patricia Douglass (Flannagan) Hooker (b. 1926?), and his wife, Gladys Victoria (Iler) Flannagan (b. ca. 1900). Correspondence with his wife is primarily from 1922 to 1924 and 1942 to 1945 and documents a happy, although at times difficult, marriage. Most of his 1923 letters to her were written while Flannagan covered the Cumberland County murder trial of Robert O. Garrett, the clerk of Court, and his brother, Larkin C. Garrett, the commissioner in chancery. These contain the writer's impressions of the case.

A section of correspondence with institutions consists almost entirely of letters of publishers concerning Flannagan's writings. A section of accounts and financial and land records precede materials relating to Flannagan's career as an army officer, on both reserve and active duty. These latter papers are arranged chronologically and consist of correspondence, memoranda, orders, certificates, charts and miscellany.

The rest of Flannagan's papers concern his career as a writer. Among these are materials, mostly correspondence, pertaining to the American Newspaper Guild (of which Flannagan was Richmond chapter president) and the Ember Club. In 1938, Flannagan published The Story of Lucky Strike for the American Tobacco Company exhibit at the New York World's Fair. Materials concerning the booklet include correspondence (mostly with American Tobacco), acknowledgments, and miscellany. Several folders containing rough drafts of Flannagan's articles, novels, and short stories follow. These are arranged alphabetically by type with the untitled short stories located at the end of the section. A draft of the novel The Whipping, a short story published by Story Magazine in 1935, are included. Also included are articles on Robert E. Lee (1807-1870) and General Charles Lee (1731-1782), as well as short stories by two other authors, Merrits Hemp and Eudora Ramsay Richardson (1892-1973). Miscellaneous materials include newspaper clippings, many from the Atlanta Journal between 1921 and 1922, and conclude Roy Catesby Flannagan's papers.

The papers of Gladys Victoria (Iler) Flannagan include correspondence and miscellany. Much of her correspondence is with unidentified persons. Miscellaneous materials consist primarily of copies of poems and articles written for the Atlanta Journal and Butler University publications. A folder of unidentified family correspondence concludes this collection.


Guide

Series I: Roy Catesby Flannagan (1897-1952)

Boxes 1-2: General correspondence, 1922-1947

Box 3: Correspondence with institutions, 1925-1945; accounts, financial materials and land records, 1922-1944; U.S. Army, 1934-1945; American Newspaper Guild, 1934-1939; Ember Club, 1938-1942; Story of Lucky Strike, 1937-1940

Boxes 4-5: Rough drafts

Box 5 (cont.): Clippings and miscellany

Series II: Gladys Victoria (Iler) Flannagan (1900?- )

Box 5 (cont.): Correspondence, 1919-1944; miscellany

Series III: Unidentified family correspondence

Box 5 (cont.)


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Last updated: October 2, 2000