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New Addition to the Archive

New Addition to the Archive

Monday, October 20, 2014

The Willa Cather Foundation has recently received a fascinating letter as an addition to our collection of Cather artifacts. The letter, written by "(Miss) Willa Sibert Cather," is addressed to "Mrs. Cleary," a woman we know as Kate M. Cleary, a fellow Nebraska writer. Mrs. Cleary, we surmise from the letter, had written to praise Cather's story "The Sculptor's Funeral," which had appeared in a 1905 issue of McClure's magazine. "Anyone who has lived in one of those little western towns," Cather writes, "must, I think, have a very keen and definite feeling about it, but it almost hopeless to try to communicate it to anyone who has not had that experience."

Though Cather scholars have known of the existence of this letter for some time, until now the letter has been held in a private collection. Thanks to the generosity of Gene and Connie Koepke, we are honored to give it a permanent home and make it available to Cather readers and scholars.