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Miriam Davenport Ebel papers

Document | Digitized | Accession Number: 1991.158.88

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    Miriam Davenport Ebel papers

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    The Miriam Davenport Ebel papers consist of correspondence, identification papers, mementos, photographs, and printed materials documenting Davenport’s wartime experiences in Marseilles and Ljubljana; her work and friendships with Varian Fry, Mary Jayne Gold, Walter Mehring, Hans Sahl, and others; and relief committees including the Emergency Rescue Committee, the International Relief and Rescue Committee, the Progressive Schools Committee for Refugee Children, and the Refugee Relief Trustees, Inc.
    Correspondence consists of letters, notes, and telegrams between Miriam Davenport and Mary Jayne Gold, Varian Fry, Daniel Bénédite, Katia Landau, Walter Mehring, and Hans Sahl. The correspondence describes wartime life in Marseilles, advises Davenport on strategies for returning to the United States, and catches Davenport up on news in post‐liberation France. A note from Walter Mehring includes a small sketch of a rabbit, and a note from Hans Sahl encloses a poem. This series also includes a couple of letters Davenport drafted on behalf of the Progressive Schools Committee for Refugee Children, her condolences to Fry’s family on his passing, and a letter about Albrecht Ragg’s project on German socialist immigration to the United States during the Hitler years accompanied by a photocopy of his chapter on rescue.
    Identification papers include Miriam Davenport’s calling card, French identification card, and Yugoslav visa.
    Mementos include calling cards, tram receipts and Davenport’s Yugoslav visa documenting her summer in Toulouse and Marseille, a hand painted‐program for a 1941 Andalusia festival in Marseille, and Davenport’s English translation of a German story by an unnamed refugee client.
    Photographs depict Miriam Davenport, Varian Fry, Mary Jayne Gold, and Hans Sahl.
    Printed materials consist of promotional brochures created by Miriam Davenport Ebel, Harold Oram, and Eileen Fry for the Emergency Rescue Committee, the International Relief and Rescue Committee, the Progressive Schools Committee for Refugee Children, and the Refugee Relief Trustees, Inc.
    inclusive:  1938-1989
    bulk:  1938-1945
    Credit Line
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum Collection, Gift of Miriam Davenport Ebel
    Collection Creator
    Miriam Davenport Ebel
    Miriam Davenport Ebel (1915-1999) was born Miriam Davenport in Boston, studied art and architecture history at Smith College, New York University, and the University of Paris, and escaped to Toulouse and then Marseille during the German invasion in May 1940. She worked with Varian Fry at the Centre Américain de Secours, a cover for the Emergency Rescue Committee, helping to smuggle antifascist artists, writers, and intellectuals out of Europe. She joined her fiancé in Ljubljana, Yugoslavia, in October, returned to the United States via Lisbon just after Pearl Harbor, and continued to work for relief, rescue, and refugee organizations. After the war she pursued her career in painting and sculpture and as an instructor in art and French. She married Charles Ebel (1937-2013) in the 1960s.

    Physical Details

    English French
    1 box
    System of Arrangement
    The Miriam Davenport Ebel papers are arranged as five series: I. Correspondence, 1940-1980 (bulk 1940-1945), II. Identification papers, 1938-1940, III. Mementos, 1940-1989 (bulk 1940-1943), IV. Photographs, 1940-1941, V. Printed materials, approximately 1943

    Rights & Restrictions

    Conditions on Access
    There are no known restrictions on access to this material.
    Conditions on Use
    Material(s) in this collection may be protected by copyright and/or related rights. You do not require further permission from the Museum to use this material. The user is solely responsible for making a determination as to if and how the material may be used.

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Miriam Davenport Ebel donated the Miriam Davenport Ebel papers to the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in 1991.
    Funding Note
    The cataloging of this collection has been supported by a grant from the Conference on Jewish Material Claims Against Germany.
    Record last modified:
    2023-08-25 09:53:18
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