The University of Tulsa’s Department of Special Collections and University Archives would like to cordially invite our students, faculty, alumni, and the community in general to come in and take a look at our new exhibit titled Eudora Welty: Eloquence in Words and Pictures. This exhibit, planned and overseen by Special Collections’ very own Milissa Burkhart, deals with the life and work of Pulitzer Prize winner Eudora Welty. Welty was an American short story author and novelist whose main source of inspiration was the American South and the Great Depression.
Ms. Welty’s literary career began with the publication of “Death of a Traveling Salesman” in 1936, and extended all the way to the late 1980s with Morgana: Two Stories from the Golden Apples in 1988. One of Welty’s most celebrated stories “Where Is the Voice Coming From?” was a first-person account of the killing of an African-American NAACP leader in his town by a white Southerner and was published in The New Yorker immediately after the murder of Medgar Evers in 1963.
Eudora Welty was also a prolific photographer, and took photographs of people from all economic and social classes in her spare time. From the early 1930s, her photographs show Mississippi’s rural poor and the effects of the Great Depression. Collections of her photographs were published as One Time, One Place (1971) and Photographs (1989). Her photography was the basis for several of her short stories, including “Why I Live at the PO,” which was inspired by a woman she photographed ironing in the back of a small post office. Although focused on her writing, Welty continued to take photographs until the 1950s.
Our exhibit is comprised of number of vintage editions of Eudora Welty’s novels and collected short stories, as well as twenty prints of her photographs which beautifully capture the physical and emotional reality of the American South of the 1930s and 40s. The staff of TU’s Department of Special Collections and University Archives is proud to hold such an exhibit and hope that our public enjoys it.