Carmer, Carl, 1893-1976

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Carl Carmer was an author, folklorist, and educator, known as a regional writer whose New York-based works achieved a national audience. Born in Cortland, New York, and educated at Hamilton College and Harvard University, he served as professor of English at several universities before commitiing himself to writing full-time in 1928. He worked as a columnist, and then became editor of Theatre Arts Monthly from, 1929-1933. He wrote poetry, essays, and juvenile fiction, often based in New York's Finger Lakes region; he also collected folklore from various regions, chiefly New York, and published several collections of folk tales.

From the description of Shrine [manuscript poem], circa 1930? (Pennsylvania State University Libraries). WorldCat record id: 146211357

Carl Lamson Carmer, son of Willis Griswold and Mary Lamson Turner, was born in Cortland, New York, on 16 October 1893. He earned an undergraduate degree from Hamilton College, and a masters degree from Harvard.

He taught briefly at Syracuse University before accepting a position teaching English at the University of Alabama from 1921-1927. While at the University he became interested in the history and culture of the state. In 1934 he wrote Stars Fell on Alabama, an autobiographical work relating his experiences in the state. The successful work led to his popularity as a writer in the 1940s and 1950s, known for his interest in folklore. Alabama native Ruby Pickens Tartt, assisted him with this 1934 work.

Carmer wrote or edited several more books including: Listen for a Lonesome Drum (1936); The Hudson (1939); Genesee Fever (1941); The Susquehanna (1955); and The Tavern Lamps Are Burning (1964). He worked as a folklore consultant for Walt Disney Productions and produced a folklore radio series called "Your Neck o' the Woods."

Carmer died on 11 September 1976, in Bronxville, New York.

From the guide to the Carl Lamson Carmer letter MSS. 0277., 1972 August 9, (W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, The University of Alabama)

Carl Lamson Carmer was born on October 16, 1893 in Cortland, New York to Mary Lamson Carmer and Willis Griswold Carmer. Carmer graduated from Hamilton College, his father's alma mater, in 1914 . Upon graduating from Harvard University with his Masters degree in 1915, Carmer accepted a position as an English instructor at Syracuse University. He subsequently held positions at various universities in central New York, before working at the University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa from 1921-1927 . Shortly after leaving the University of Alabama, Carmer began work on, Stars Fell on Alabama, based on regional folklore he collected during his career at the University. On December 24, 1928, Carmer married artist Elizabeth Black.

Carmer wrote both fiction and nonfiction. Perhaps his best known work is The Hudson, published in 1939, for which he earned critical praise. He died September 11, 1976, in Bronxville, NY.

From the guide to the Carl Carmer Correspondence, 1935-1942, (Special Collections Research Center, Syracuse University Libraries)

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Carmer, Carl Lamson, 1893-1976. Letter from Carl Carmer [manuscript], n.d. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Carl Lamson Carmer letter MSS. 0277., 1972 August 9 W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, The University of Alabama
referencedIn Savage, Henry, 1903-1990. Papers, 1927-1985; (bulk 1933-1971). South Carolina Newspaper Project
referencedIn Loveman, Amy. Amy Loveman letters, 1935-1943. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Walton, Marion, b. 1899. Marion Walton papers, 1915-1976. Archives of American Art
referencedIn Thompson, Harold William, 1891-1964. Harold William Thompson papers, 1942-1955. Cornell University Library
referencedIn Lockwood, Wolfert, d. 1979,. Irvington history files, 1872-1987. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
referencedIn Constance Pierrepont Noyes Robertson Papers, 1837-1972 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
creatorOf Adamic, Louis, 1899-1951,. Letters to Alfred Kreymborg [manuscript], 1921-1956. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Croswell Bowen papers, 1880-1967 (inclusive), 1928-1964 Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Marion Walton papers, 1915-1976 Archives of American Art
referencedIn Savage, Henry, 1903-1990. Henry Savage papers, 1927-1994 (bulk 1933-1986). University of South Carolina, System Library Service, University Libraries
creatorOf Carl Carmer Correspondence, 1935-1942 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
referencedIn Baker, Oliver. [Charles Sheeler, Carl Carmer and others] [graphic]. Archives of American Art
referencedIn Alexander Woollcott correspondence, ca. 1856-1943 (inclusive), 1920-1943 (bulk). Houghton Library
creatorOf Carmer, Carl, 1893-1976. Letter to Maxine Wood. New York, NY. 1931 Feb. 18. University of Iowa Libraries
referencedIn Bowen, Croswell, 1905-1971. Croswell Bowen papers, 1880-1967 (inclusive), 1928-1964 (bulk). Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library
referencedIn Cummings, E. E. (Edward Estlin), 1894-1962. Papers, 1870-1969 Houghton Library
referencedIn Schwab, Arnold T. Arnold T. Schwab collection, 1876-1988 (bulk 1929-1955). Library of Congress
creatorOf Meade, Julian R. (Julian Rutherfoord), 1909-1940. Papers of Julian Meade Rutherfoord, 1928-1940. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Scenic Hudson (Organization). Records relating to the Storm King case, 1963-1981. Campbell University, Wiggins Memorial Library
creatorOf Frank, Walter, 1882-1969. Papers of Walter Frank, 1921-1960. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Samuel and Bella Spewack Papers, ca.1920-1980 Columbia University. Rare Book an Manuscript Library
referencedIn Nils Gustaf von Schoultz Collection, 1949-1963 Syracuse University. Library. Special Collections Research Center
creatorOf Carl Carmer letter to Miss Clarke, 1947 New York Public Library. Manuscripts and Archives Division
creatorOf Rounds, Ruby M. Octagon buildings in New York State, 1954. Cornell University Library
creatorOf Carmer, Carl Lamson, 1893-1976. Letter to Paul Engle. Sarasota, FL. [19--] Feb. University of Iowa Libraries
creatorOf Carmer, Carl, 1893-1976. Typed letter signed Carl to: Rita September 29, 1965. Wellesley College
creatorOf Carmer, Carl Lamson, 1893-1976. Letter, New York, to Mr. Fowler [manuscript]. University of Virginia. Library
creatorOf Miller, Henry, 1891-1980. Papers of Henry Miller [manuscript], 1943-1946. University of Virginia. Library
referencedIn Horace Mason Reynolds papers, 1895-1965. Houghton Library
creatorOf Carmer, Carl, 1893-1976. Typed letter signed Carl to: Rita June 17, 1957. Wellesley College
referencedIn Scenic Hudson Collection (Records relating to the Storm King Case). Records, 1963-1981 (major authors Scenic Hudson, Inc.). Marist College, James A. Cannavino Library
referencedIn Erskine, John, 1879-1951. John Erskine papers, [ca. 1890]-1951. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
referencedIn Spewack, Samuel and Bella. Papers, ca.1920-1980. Columbia University in the City of New York, Columbia University Libraries
creatorOf Carmer, Carl, 1893-1976. Shrine [manuscript poem], circa 1930? Pennsylvania State University Libraries
referencedIn Scenic Hudson, Inc. Scenic Hudson, Inc. Administrative History Collection. Marist College, James A. Cannavino Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Bowen, Croswell, 1905-1971. person
correspondedWith Cummings, E. E. (Edward Estlin), 1894-1962 person
associatedWith Eaton, Emily Lovett. person
associatedWith Engle, Paul, 1908-1991, person
associatedWith Erskine, John, 1879-1951. person
associatedWith Finsterwald, Maxine, 1906-, person
associatedWith Fowler, Mr. person
associatedWith Frank, Walter, 1882-1969. person
associatedWith Kleeman, Rita Halle, b. 1885. person
associatedWith Lockwood, Wolfert, d. 1979, person
associatedWith Loveman, Amy. person
associatedWith Meade, Julian R. (Julian Rutherfoord), 1909-1940. person
associatedWith Miller, Henry, 1891-1980. person
associatedWith Noyes, Hilda Herrick. person
associatedWith Oneida Community. corporateBody
correspondedWith Reynolds, Horace Mason, 1896-1965 person
associatedWith Robertson, Constance Noyes person
associatedWith Rounds, Ruby M. person
associatedWith Savage, Henry, 1903-1990. person
associatedWith Scenic Hudson Collection (Records relating to the Storm King Case) corporateBody
associatedWith Scenic Hudson, Inc. corporateBody
associatedWith Scenic Hudson (Organization) corporateBody
associatedWith Schoultz, Nils Gustaf von, 1807-1838 person
correspondedWith Schwab, Arnold T. person
associatedWith Spewack, Samuel, 1899-1971 person
associatedWith Spewack, Samuel and Bella. person
associatedWith Tartt, Ruby Pickens, 1880-1974 person
associatedWith Thompson, Harold William, 1891-1964. person
associatedWith Walton, Marion person
associatedWith Walton, Marion, b. 1899. person
correspondedWith Woollcott, Alexander, 1887-1943 person
Place Name Admin Code Country
Alabama - Authors
Subject
folklife
Literature
Literature and Authors
Male authors, American
Southern Life and Culture
University of Alabama Faculty/Staff
Utopias
Women
Women of Alabama
Alabama
Alabama Women's Hall of Fame Inductees
Authors, American
Novelists, American
Occupation
Authors
Novelists
Activity

Person

Birth 1893-10-16

Death 1976-09-11

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