Eudora Welty House & Garden

Eudora Welty Digital Archives Launches Online

Mississippi Department of Archives and History (MDAH) is pleased to announce that The Eudora Welty Digital Archives is now available to the public on the MDAH website. This digitization project was funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities with a matching contribution from the Eudora Welty Foundation

The Eudora Welty Digital Archives represents only a sample of Welty-related material housed at MDAH and features selections of correspondence, manuscripts, photographs, and other media related to Eudora Welty (1909-2001), master of the short story and one of America's greatest authors. 

"MDAH is grateful to the National Endowment for the Humanities for their generous grant which allowed for the construction of the world's most extensive digital archive of Eudora Welty materials," said Katie Blount, director of MDAH. "We are excited to share this incredible resource with researchers and fans of Eudora Welty."

Eudora Welty had a long relationship with the MDAH, making her first donation of manuscripts, papers, and photographs in 1957, and continuing to donate throughout her life. In addition to documents, the collection includes the house where Welty lived most of her life and wrote her greatest works, her furniture, art, and books, and the garden in which she worked alongside her mother. The complete collection is accessible at the MDAH.

Eudora Welty was born on April 13, 1909, the daughter of Christian Webb Welty and Chestina Andrews Welty. In 1925 the family moved to 1119 Pinehurst Street in Jackson, where Welty would reside until her death. Welty graduated from Jackson's Central High School in 1925, attended Mississippi State College for Women, University of Wisconsin, and Columbia University in New York City.

She received a Guggenheim Fellowship and the 1973 Pulitzer Prize for her book, The Optimist's Daughter—originally published in The New Yorker in 1969. Welty was also an accomplished photographer.

From 1955 to 1970, Eudora Welty published two short stories dealing with the Civil Rights Movement, "Where Is the Voice Coming From?" and "The Demonstrators," and worked on scenes for a novel while caring for her family.  

Eudora Welty died in Jackson on July 23, 2001. 

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this database do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.                              

For more information call 601-576-6850, or email info@mdah.ms.gov.   

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MDAH Closures for Christmas and New Years

MDAH offices and archives library will be closed Friday, December 23 to Monday, December 26. All museum sites will close at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 24, and reopen on Tuesday, December 27.

The archives library will be closed on Saturday, December 31, and all museums will close at 2 p.m. on Saturday, December 31, and reopen on Tuesday, January 3. MDAH offices will also be closed on Monday, January 2.

Visit www.mdah.ms.gov/explore-mississippi for more information about our one-of-a-kind museums, historical sites and cultural attractions throughout the state. Explore our wide ranging Digital Archives herehttps://da.mdah.ms.gov/.

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2022 Eudora Welty Fellow Named

Pamela J. Merryman, a doctoral student at Southern Methodist University, has been named the 2022 Eudora Welty Fellow. Merryman will use archival holdings at the Mississippi Department of Archives and History (MDAH) to research how Eudora Welty constructed her identity in her writing.

“I am honored to have the opportunity to conduct research in the Eudora Welty archives and am grateful to those who make the Eudora Welty Research Fellowship possible,” said the 2022 Welty Fellowship recipient. “Through my research in the Welty archives, I hope to gain a deeper and broader knowledge of the personal inspiration and creative process that went into Welty’s writing of her only children’s book, The Shoe Bird. Ultimately, I seek to note how this entertaining tale of Arturo the Parrot and the bird community—who gather from all over the world to learn about the power and value of communication, love, memory, and freedom—provides insight into Welty’s other literary works that also explore these vital aspects of the human experience."

Established by MDAH and the Eudora Welty Foundation, the fellowship seeks to encourage and support research in the Eudora Welty Collection by graduate students.

“We’re grateful to the Foundation for their continued support of the fellowship,” said David Pilcher, director of the MDAH Archives and Record Services Division. “I am certain Ms. Merryman will learn a lot and make extensive use of the Welty Collection this summer.”

After receiving her BA in secondary education from Howard Payne University, Merryman completed her MA in liberal arts at Southern Methodist University where she is currently working toward her PhD. Merryman will use the $5,000 fellowship to cover travel, housing, and other expenses incurred while doing primary research at the William F. Winter Archives and History Building in Jackson.

Beginning in 1957, and over the course of more than forty years, Welty donated materials to the department, primarily literary manuscripts and photographs. At her death her remaining papers were bequeathed to MDAH and included unpublished manuscripts and 14,000 items of correspondence with family, friends, scholars, young writers, and noted writers.

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