ArchiveUM
University LibrariesDigital CollectionsHomeCatalogResearch PortAsk us!Archives UM HomeSpecial CollectionsSearchAbout Archives UMHelpHow Do I...?Site Index A-ZSearch

Leon Washington Condol papers

Abstract

Title:
Leon Washington Condol papers
Author/Creator:
Condol, Leon Washington
Collection number:
86-158
Size:
1.50 linear feet
Inclusive dates:
1809-1972
Collection Area:
State of Maryland and Historical Collections
Repository:
Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries, Hornbake Library, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9212, Fax: 301-314-2709, Email: askhornbake@umd.edu
Abstract:

The Leon Washington Condol collection consists of photographs, family documents, and newsclippings. Also included in the collection, and of particular interest, is a rare, autographed copy of Sketches Old and New (1875), a collection of Mark Twain stories. One of the sketches in the volume is said to be based on the life of Leon Condol's great-grandmother, a woman who endured slavery, family separation and reunion, and who eventually worked for Mark Twain at Quarry Farm in Elmira, NY. Much of the Condol collection, in fact, centers on the family's history in slavery in Maryland and Virginia, a period before Leon Washington Condol's birth in 1887. There is, however, some information on Condol's life with his family in upstate New York, New York City, and Washington, D.C.

Important Information for Users of the Collection

Restrictions:

This collection is open for research.

Preferred citation:

Leon Washington Condol papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1903.1/1231
Publication rights:

Photocopies of original materials may be provided for a fee and at the discretion of the curator. Please see our Duplication of Materials policy for more information. Queries regarding publication rights and copyright status of materials within this collection should be directed to the appropriate curator.

Status:

This collection is PROCESSED.

Historical Note

Leon Washington Condol was born on January 6, 1887, the son of William Henry and Louise Washington Condol in Elmira, New York. The oldest of two sons, Condol grew up in Elmira. He later worked in New York City for a representative of a French cloth manufacturing firm (possibly Victor Galaup Inc.). He joined the Navy in 1913, serving throughout the First World War as a cook. During 1917 and 1918, Condol served on the U.S.S. Agamemnon and the U.S.S. Wilhelmina, naval transport ships that carried thousands of troops from New York to France. In 1914, Condol married Marie Erienne Stent, a dressmaker from Charleston, SC, with whom he had two children, Louise (1915-1998) and Willfred (1917-1920). After his divorce from Stent, Condol was employed again in New York City between 1924 and 1927, this time as a valet, cook and general houseman to Mr. Robert Angles. Around 1930, he worked as a servant in the home of Henry Ufford, a stockbroker living in Montclair, NJ. Condol moved to Washington, D.C. in the early 1930s and married Virginia Lewis Callaway, a graduate of Howard University and great niece of the Banks family from Baltimore, on October 31, 1931. In Washington, D.C., he was employed by the Freedman's Hospital as chief storekeeper from the time of his marriage to his retirement, while Virigina worked as a public school teacher. The Condols moved to Elmira, NY, around 1953 and remained there through the 1960s. Leon W. Condol died October 22, 1986, while living in a retirement home in Olney, MD.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Leon Washington Condol Papers are composed of family photographs and materials associated with a rare Mark Twain collection of sketches.

Mr. Condol's heritage is the focus of the collection. With few exceptions, the materials he has collected and donated center around his family's early history as slaves in Maryland and Virginia and their gradual migration north in the nineteenth century. Apart from Leon and his wife, Virginia, the materials highlight the story of his great-grandmother, Mary Ann Cord.

"Auntie" Cord's life story as a slave, her separation from her children, surprising reunion with her youngest son, and eventual employment with the Samuel L. Clemens family was captured by Clemens in his sketch entitled "A True Story. Related Word For Word As I Heard It." A rare copy of the collection of sketches, entitled Sketches Old and New (1875), autographed by the author, was handed down through the family and is included in the collection.

Custodial History and Acquisition Information

The Leon Washington Condol Papers were donated to the University of Maryland Libraries by Mr. and Mrs. Leon Condol in February 1986, after they were made aware of the University's interest in the material through solicitations carried out by Professors Emory Evans and J. Kirkpatrick Flack of the History Department. Dr. Flack donated additional materials in 2001.

Processing Information

Processed by:

Processed by Betsy Parkin, Summer 1986. Edited by Leslie P. May, Winter 1987. Biographical information added and Series 3 rearranged by Amanda K. Hawk, September 2013.

Processing note:

The order of the collection was maintained as much as possible as received from Mr. Condol in 1986. All duplicates and materials not directly related to the collection were discarded. Photographs were separated and the remaining material sorted according to type and organized. The collection originally contained a copy of the Centennial issue of the Elmira Star- Gazette and Advertiser, from which relevant articles were clipped. A leather letter case, and picture frames for some of the photographs were discarded. All materials were placed in acid-free folders and labeled, reboxed and the guide was written. The volume of Twain's Sketches was removed from the collection and transferred to the Marylandia and Rare Books Department.

Encoded by:

EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Janna Robinson, January 31, 2005.

Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Family Documents, 1864-1931 (0.25 linear inch)

Includes marriage license, teaching certificate, letter of employment and company card, photocopy of sketch entitled "A True Story. Related Word for Word as I Heard It."

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Photocopy of appropriate pages of collection of sketches series 1box 1folder 1
Family documents, 1925, 1927, 1931, undated series 1box 1folder 2

Series 2: Newspaper clippings, undated (0.75 linear inch)

Includes all clippings associated with the Twain volume and other family announcements. This series also contains an 1865 copy of the New York Herald newspaper.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / Frame
Newspaper clippings, 1955, 1958, 1980, undated series 2box 1folder 3
Elmira Star-Gazette and Advertiser, 1964 series 2box 1folder 4
New York Herald, 1965 series 2box 1folder 5

Series 3: Photographic Material, 1860s-1950s and undated (28 items)

Primarily photographs, tintypes, and negatives of various members of the Condol, Washington, and Callaway families. All photographs have been separated from the collection and placed in the photographic collection.

DescriptionSeriesBox / ReelFolder / FrameItem
Photographic material series 3box 1folder 1
Jane Pearson Condol (photograph), circa 1890-1900 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 4
Leon Condol (photograph), 1918 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 13
Leon Condol (photograph), circa 1915-1920 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 14
The Lex Club, Sigma Delta Tau (photograph), circa 1930 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 15
Leon and Virginia Condol (photographs), circa 1935 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 16
Leon W. Condol (photographs), circa 1935 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 17
Virginia C. Condol (photographs), circa 1935 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 18
Virginia C. Condol and Dr. Frank S. Horne (photograph), circa 1950-1960 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 19
Unidentified women (tintype), circa 1860s-1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 20
Maria (Mariah) Conway Washington (photograph), circa 1880-1900 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 5
Henry Crummell Washington (photograph), circa 1880-1900 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 6
Louisa Florence Washington Condol (photograph), circa 1970 series 3box 1folder 1item 7
Elisa Virginia Lewis (cabinet card photograph), circa 1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 8
Elisa Virigina Lewis (cabinet card photograph), circa 1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 9
Robert Callaway (cabinet card photograph), circa 1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 10
Leon Washington Condol (hand-colored portrait), circa 1890 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 11
Leon Condol (photograph), 1913 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 12
Unidentified family (tintype), circa 1860s-1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 22
Unidentified family (tintype), circa 1860s-1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 23
Two unidentified women (tintype), circa 1860s-1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 24
Mary Ann Cord (1 carte de viste and 1 negative), circa 1875-1885 series 3box 1folder 1item 1
Unidentified woman, possibly Mary Ann Cord (1 tintype and 1 negative), circa 1860s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 2
Unidentified woman, possibly Mary Ann Cord (1 cabinet card photograph and 1 negative), circa 1860s-1870s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 3
Three unidentified women (photograph), circa 1900-1915 (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 25
Unidentified baby (2 cabinet card photographs), circa 1870s-1890s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 26
Unidentified young girl (cabinet card photograph), circa 1870s-1890s series 3box 1folder 1item 27
Portrait of unidentified man (negative), circa 1840s-1860s series 3box 1folder 1item 28
Unidentified woman (tintype), circa 1860s-1880s (Online) series 3box 1folder 1item 21

Series 4: Portraits, 19th Century (5.5 linear feet)

Contains three portraits. One, by an anonymous painter, is of an unidentified gentleman and is now displayed in the History Department (Francis Scott Key Hall) at the University of Maryland. Two other portraits, assumed to be of Burwell and Charity Banks and attributed to William Simpson, 19th century Afro-American artist, are presently on display at the Banneker- Douglass Museum at Annapolis.

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

Series 5: Oral Histories, 1982-1983 and undated (0.25 linear foot)

Contains two 60-minute cassette tapes of oral histories conducted with Leon and Virginia Condol. Transcripts of the tapes are also available. Included is a record of an interview with "Aunty Cord's Granddaughter, Mrs. Louise Washington Condol."

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

Series 6: Memorabilia, 1809-1944 and undated (1 linear inch)

Consists of coins, medals and tokens from the estate of a relative of Leon Washington Condol. The coins are primarily from the U.S., France and Germany and date from 1809-1944. The tokens are from "D of C Capitol Transit" and are undated. One medal states "To Mrs. Govans for the Best Piece of Worsted Work at the 1st Lit & Artistic Demonstration Among Colored People in Balto. Feb 25, 1850" and the second is to "E. Virginia Lewis, First Honor 1875: Public Colored Schools, Wash and Geo'Town."

The box inventory for this series is not currently available online. Please refer to the series description above for a broad description of the materials or contact the department for more information.

Related Material

For other related archival and manuscript collections, please see the following subject guides.

Selected Search Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the University of Maryland Libraries' Catalog. Researchers desiring related materials about these topics, names, or places may search the Catalog using these headings.

Subjects