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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 808

Collection of Ilse Gay, 1894-2013


Collection of correspondence, an autobiography, trial transcripts, etc., assembled by Ilse Gay while preparing an account of her grandmother's family background and incarceration entitled Love and Skisskes fr Mother: A Family's History (2013).


  • 1894-2013

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Unrestricted.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Ilse Gay is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


1.4 linear feet ((3 + 1/2 file boxes) plus 1 photograph folder, 1 oversize folder)

Collection includes a copy of Love and Skisskes fr Mother: A Family's History (2013); a manuscript autobiography, "Songs My Mother Taught Me," by Gay's father Alder Morrell Jenkins; correspondence (originals and transcripts) among Alder and his mother Minnie and others, 1929-1935; letters to Jenkins family members from Minnie's accomplice and lover, Julius Goldberg, while in prison, 1929-1931; district attorney records and trial transcripts; timelines of events compiled by Alder Jenkins and Ilse Gay; photograph of Minnie Morrell Jenkins, ca.1894; clipping re: trial; etc.

The arrangement and description of the collection is largely the work of the donor, who also chronologized and transcribed the correspondence. Numbering and annotations were also made by Alder Morrell Jenkins. Gay's notes are scattered throughout the collection.

The photograph in this collection is or will be digitized and available online.


The daughter of Sylvia Glidden Loomis and Alder Morrell Jenkins, Ilse Gay wrote an account of her grandmother's life entitled Love and Skisskes fr Mother: A Family's History (2013), in which she described the poverty, alcoholism, and crime afflicting the family which led to the incarceration of her grandmother, Minnie Morrell Jenkins, for forgery in 1929. Jenkins served her time in a number of jails, including Harlem Prison, Welfare Island, and Raymond Street Jail. Gay based her account on original correspondence among family members; letters from Jenkins's accomplice and lover, Julius Goldberg; trial transcripts, etc., of which most had been assembled by her father, Alder Morrell Jenkins.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 2014-M139

This collection was given to the Schlesinger Library by Ilse Jenkins Gay in August 2014.

Processing Information

Processed: September 2014

By: Anne Engelhart

Gay, Ilse. Collection of Ilse Gay, 1894-2013: A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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