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William Shakespeare Hays Collection, 179?-1949

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Author

Archives Staff

Title

William Shakespeare Hays Collection

Date

179?-1949

Repository

Western Kentucky University Library special CollectionsBowling Green, Kentucky, 42101-3576 USA

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation Note

[Identification of item] William Shakespeare Hays Collection, 179?-1949, MSS 28,Library Special Collections, Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green.

Extent

2 1/2 boxes, 29 folders, 1,032 items

Biography/History

William Shakespeare Hays (July 19, 1837-July 23, 1907) was born in Louisville, Kentucky, and resided most of his life in that city. Hugh Hays, his father and a native Pennsylvanian, migrated to Louisville in 1832 where he married Martha Richardson. Will showed signs of musical talent at an early age and took a few violin lessons, but that seems to have been all of the musical training that he received. During 1856 and 1857, Will attended colleges in Hanover, Indiana; Clarksville, Tennessee; and Georgetown, Kentucky. While at Georgetown, he became known as the "boy poet." His first published song was "Little Ones at Home," which was written while he was at Hanover. This incident ignited a prolific writing career which resulted in Hays penning innumerable poems and newspaper columns in addition to approximately five hundred songs. He signed his manuscripts as "Will S. Hays." Some of his poetry was written to his future wife, Belle McCullough of Louisville. They were married in 1865.

Hays always had a love for the river, and his newspaper columns were based on river happenings and occurrences. During the Civil War, he commanded a river transport on the Mississippi, between Vicksburg and New Orleans. He continued to work on riverboats periodically during the sixties and the early seventies.

Hays began his newspaper work in Louisville in the late 1850s and maintained a position with the Democrat, and later, with the Courier-Journal and Times until his death. He served as marine editor for several years.

When he died in 1907, he was survived by his wife and two children, Dr. Samuel Brown Hays (1878-1933), and Mattie Belle Hays [Mrs. Fauche Warren Samuel] (1868-1947).

Scope and Content

The correspondence of Hays is comprised mainly of his letters to Belle McCullough, his future wife, written during the years of 1863 to 1866. Also, there is a diary entitled "My Leisure Moments to Belle," written by Hays during this same period while residing in Nashville, Tennessee. A few letters to Mattie Belle Hays Samuel and to Samuel Brown Hays constitute the Hays family letters. Manuscript poems, songs (chiefly lyrics), and newspaper columns of Hays, with accompanying typed and manuscript copies, are included. There are royalty and copyright contracts as well as lists of Hays' works. Many newspaper clippings of Hays' various endeavors are included, too. Additionally, there is a folder of George Grise's correspondence from 1947 to 1949, which he collected while researching and writing his thesis on Hays.

Subjects

  • Columnists and columns - Marine
  • Composers - Ky.
  • Contracts - Royalties and copyrights
  • Copyright - Contracts
  • Diaries - Hays, William, Shakespeare, 1864-65
  • Essays
  • Grise, George, Calvin, 1918-1961
  • Hays, William Shakespeare, 1837-1907 - Photos
  • Ireland - Wills, 179?,1810
  • Journalism - Columnists
  • Louisville - Social life and customs, 1863-1866
  • Lyrics
  • McCullough, Belle, -1935
  • Musicians
  • Poets - Ky.
  • Poetry
  • Scrapbooks - McCullough, Belle
  • Steamboats

Related Material

The Kentucky Library has the William Shakespeare Hays Sheet MusicCollection consisting of approximately 120 titles.

Collection Inventory

Hays family papers. 179?-1949. 259 items
[box: 1]
Letters to Belle McCullough. 1863-1866. 54 items
[box: 1, folder: 1]
Wills: (1) John McCollock, and (2) Thomas Kyle, both of Belfast,Ireland. 179?,1810.2 items
[box: 1, folder: 2]
Incoming letters to Hays, royalty and copyright contracts, andlists ofcompositions. 1847-1913. 14 items
[box: 1, folder: 3]
Letter from mother. 1847. 1 item
[box: 1, folder: 3a]
Letter from W. W. Hite. 1904. 1 item
[box: 1, folder: 3b]
Royalty and copyright contracts. 1867, 1884, 1911, 1913.4 items
[box: 1, folder: 3c]
List of compositions. 8 items
[box: 1, folder: 3d]
Incoming letters to Mattie H. Samuel. 1935, 1941. 3 items
[box: 1, folder: 4]
Letters, clippings, etc., of Samuel B. Hays. 1888, 1933.7 items
[box: 1, folder: 5]
Letters written to George Grise while he was writing histhesis. 1947-1949. 57 items
[box: 1, folder: 6]
Letters re: steamboats. 1947. 4 items
[box: 1, folder: 6a]
Letters re: "The Drummer Boy of Shiloh",1948, 1990. 4 items
[box: 1, folder: 6b]
Newspaper writings for various named columns.1863- .105 items
[box: 1, folder: 7]
"Driftwood" columns. 14 items
[box: 1, folder: 7a]
"Old Ike" columns. 22 items
[box: 1, folder: 7b]
"Our Log" columns. 1870, 1883. 30 items
[box: 1, folder: 7c]
"Syah" columns.1863-1864. 5 items
[box: 1, folder: 7d]
Hays' newspaper writings - river column. 12 items
[box: 1, folder: 7e]
Hays' miscellaneous newspaper writings. 22 items
[box: 1, folder: 7f]
Newspapers -The Inland Voyager, published by theGreen Line Steamers, Oct. 2-20, 1939, and related letter, Jan. 9,1940. 1939,1940. 17 items
[box: 1, folder: 8]
Poems. 1864-1907. 519 items
[box: 2]
Poems, A-G. 101 items
[box: 2, folder: 1]
Poems, H-M. 90 items
[box: 2, folder: 2]
Poem, "Marthy, John An' Jim".1 January 1888.1 item
[box: 2, folder: 2a]
Poems with information about them. 1 item
[box: 2, folder: 2b]
1. "The Hopewell Hymn"
[box: 2, folder: 2b]
2. "Old Shep"
[box: 2, folder: 2b]
Poems, N-S. 83 items
[box: 2, folder: 3]
Poems, T-Y97 items
[box: 2, folder: 4]
Poems, copies.38 items. Holographic & typed copies
[box: 2, folder: 5]
Poems, untitled. 44 items
[box: 2, folder: 6]
Untitled poems. 39 items. Originals
[box: 2, folder: 6a]
Untitled poems. 5 items. Holographic and typed copies
[box: 2, folder: 6b]
"In Memoriam" poems. 1864-1906. 55 items
[box: 2, folder: 7]
In memoriam of Capt. Pink Varble. 1892. 2 items
[box: 2, folder: 7a]
In memoriam poems; no date, alphabetized by title. 25 items
[box: 2, folder: 7b]
Poems, typed and printed. 2 items
[box: 2, folder: 8]
Poems written to and in honor of. 1882, 1885. 2 items
[box: 2, folder: 9]
Poems written in 1907. 1907.7 items
[box: 2, folder: 10]
Miscellaneous materials. 1864-1907. 254 items
[box: 3]
Manuscript lyrics for songs. 126 items
[box: 3, folder: 1]
Song, "When Sherman Marched Down to the Sea," and front coverfrom sheet music of the same. 2 items
[box: 3, folder: 1a]
Copies (holographic) of songs. 5 items
[box: 3, folder: 1b]
Photostat of Hays' song "Old Ike". 1 item
[box: 3, folder: 1c]
Article re: authenticity of song "Goodbye Susan Jane". 1 item
[box: 3, folder: 1d]
Material concerning composer of "Dixie". 22 items
[box: 3, folder: 2]
List of Hays' songs in Kentucky Library.6 items
[box: 3, folder: 3]
Diary - "My Leisure Moments to Belle McCullough," 1864-1865.1 item. Original, photocopy, and two bound typedcopies
[box: 3, folder: 4]
Typescript copy of diary
[box: 3, folder: 4a]
Compositions. 5 items
[box: 3, folder: 5]
Indices to collections of Hays' materials. 4 items
[box: 3, folder: 6]
Scrapbooks - Belle's book, poems of Belle and of Will. 1862-1864. 3 items
[box: 3, folder: 7]
Papers re: Hays' 50th and 57th birthday celebrations. 7 items
[box: 3, folder: 8]
Printed items. 1899-1947. 68 items
[box: 3, folder: 9]
Article about steamboats. 1 item
[box: 3, folder: 9a]
Clippings re: Hays' newspaper columns. 1899. 10 items
[box: 3, folder: 9b]
Clippings re: Will S. Hays and his works. 1941. 15 items
[box: 3, folder: 9c]
Clippings re: George Grise's inquiries concerning Will S.Hays. 1947. 4 items
[box: 3, folder: 9d]
Clippings of Hays' poems and songs. 24 items
[box: 3, folder: 9e]
Clippings and photostat re: authorship of "Dixie". 9 items
[box: 3, folder: 9f]
Tributes to Will S. Hays. 1907. 5 items
[box: 3, folder: 9g]
Photographs and pictures. 9 items
[box: 3, folder: 10]
Biographical material about Will S. Hays. 3 items
[box: 3, folder: 11]

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