“Among my first concerns when my mother died in October of 1989 was the disposition of her literary papers. They had accumulated over the years and filled much of her bedroom, stacked on her desk and on the windowsill behind her bed. They had been the center of her life, in a sense, certainly of her intellectual life, and since she had been a published writer seemed very worth saving, in a place more orderly than I could provide. I thought first of Ursinus … and was delighted by their willingness to take the papers under their institutional arm, and have been delighted ever since by the seriousness and energy with which the staff of the Myrin Library has taken its custodial duty. It has been a great comfort to me. Most of a person’s world flies apart when they die, and in this regard at least my mother’s world remains intact and available. Ursinus was important to her. She found her intellectual footing there, as well as met her husband. Their closest friends remained friends from Ursinus in the Reading area, and Ursinus days often figured in their conversation. Whenever I think of her papers safe in the bosom of Ursinus, I smile, knowing how much this would have amazed, amused, and pleased her.” – John Updike, as quoted in the Spring 1991 Ursinus Bulletin magazine.
Linda Grace Hoyer (1904-1989) met her husband, Wesley Updike (1900-1972), as a student at Ursinus College. They both graduated from Ursinus in 1923. Their only child was Pulitzer-Prize winning author, John Updike (1932-2009). The Linda Grace Hoyer collection at Ursinus College consists of Linda’s professional and personal writings. Drafts and proofs of her many short stories as well as novels (published and unpublished) accompany correspondence with editors and publishing houses. Also in the collection is correspondence with family and friends spanning fifty years of her life. The collection is being digitized as time and resources permit and portions will be made available here.
Permissions to use these images for anything other than educational use should be directed to the Special Collections Department of the Myrin Library at Ursinus College.