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[C.] Everett Turling Letters from Oakdale Sanatorium

Identifier: MsC0971

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Scope and Contents

In September 1933, Everett Turling began writing a weekly letter to his mother and father from Oakdale Sanatorium, where he stayed while suffereing from tuberculosis. These letters, plus a few others and some recipes, presumably included by his mother, make up this collection. In these letters he talks of his condition, the state of the sanatoroium, the weather (there are quite a few dust storms), the treatment he receives, some fellow residents, the staff, and old acquaintances. He infrequently addressed political issues, though one exception is a letter of July 9 in which he said, "See if you can scrape me up some sort of a Bible and mail it to me. I promised Rev. Voss I would study up on some things we were discussing and it is quite impossible to study wihout a book. I have read about everything else so I guess it willl do no harm to see what the Bible has to say. It should be right down my alley, for Christ was certainly the greatest Socialist ever." Mostly upbeat, these letters try for lightness and they often succeed, though at times one feels as if he is making light of his situation so as not to worry his parents. He submitted articles to the Stethoscope and eventually carried the title of Assistant Editor. At the end of July, he switched to writing post cards, probably because writing letters was too taxing. On August 10 he wrote his last post card, and his mother Ellen took over, writing letters to her husband, Charles, updating him on Everett's condition and making requests on Everett's behalf. Everett died at Oakdale on August 24, 1934, at the age of 27.


  • Creation: 1906-1934
  • Other: Date acquired: 2013-02-13


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply; please consult Special Collections staff for further information.

Biographical or Historical Information

Jacque Roethler


2.00 folders

0.25 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Method of Acquisition

Purchased in February of 2013.

Related Materials

Records of Oakdale Sanatorium RG 27.0020.001.

Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the University of Iowa Special Collections Repository

Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)