Stone Mountain collection > Samuel Hoyt Venable papers

Series 3
Samuel Hoyt Venable papers, 1915-1942
Box 15

Biographical Note

Samuel Hoyt Venable was born in Atlanta to William Richard and Sarah Cornelia (Hoyt) Venable. After a number of unsuccessful business ventures, Samuel and his brother, William Hoyt Venable, organized Venable Brothers Granite Company in 1879. In 1880 they joined with the owners of Stone Mountain to form the Southern Granite Company and by 1887 the Venables had purchased the mountain, which became one of the nation's leading sources of granite. In 1916 Samuel and his brother's heirs deeded 1000 feet of the face of Stone Mountain to the SMCMA for the carving of a Confederate Memorial.

Elizabeth Venable Mason was a supporter of the Confederate Memorial and sculptor Gutzon Borglum. The wife of New York native Frank Tucker Mason and mother of two, Elizabeth was one of the most respected women in Atlanta society. [For a more detailed history of the Venable family, see the booklet by Mildred Rutherford in Box 26, folder 11 and the material in Box 24, folder 20; both in this collection.]

Scope and Content Note

Series 3, the Venable papers, is made up of the papers of Samuel Hoyt Venable (September 27, 1856- ) and his sister, Elizabeth Venable (Mrs. Frank Tucker) Mason (1873-1951). Two themes dominate the Venable papers. Until the late 1920's most letters are complaints or accusations against the SMCMA. The specific topics range from salary disputes with Association secretary David Webb and accusations that Randolph was conspiring to use the Association for personal advantage to legal disputes concerning the Venable lease of Stone Mountain and the Venable family's defense of Borglum. Letters from the late 1920's and 1930's reveal the continuing efforts of Elizabeth Mason and Samuel Venable to work out a compromise that would allow Borglum to return to Stone Mountain. Occasional notes were written on the letters by Elizabeth Mason, identifying correspondents and providing background information. Principal correspondents are Preston Stanley Arkwright, Gutzon Borglum, Mary Borglum, Plato Tracy Durham, Gerald White Johnson, Hollins Nicholas Randolph, Eretus Rivers, Corinne (Mrs. Chauncy) Smith, David W. Webb, George Francis Willis and Rogers Winter. Also represented are Reuben R. Arnold, Tarleton Collier, Hugh Manson Dorsey, Clark Howell, Mrs. Samuel Martin Inman, John I. Kelley, James Lee Key, Eugenia Dorothy Blount Lamar, Eleanor Roosevelt, Mildred Lewis Rutherford, Elbert Lee Trinkle, and Clifford Mitchell Walker.

The press releases, legal documents, and resolutions are dominated by the same themes as the correspondence. Some press releases from Randolph and the UDC are also included, as are legal documents related to the hiring of Augustus Lukeman and various plans for turning Stone Mountain into a park.

Arrangement Note

The materials in this series have been separated by type, and each type is arranged chronologically.

Box Folder Content
15 1 Correspondence, 1915-1921
15 2 Correspondence, 1922-April 1924
15 3 Correspondence, June-July 1924
15 4 Correspondence, August -December 1924
15 5 Correspondence, January 1925
15 6 Correspondence, February-March 1925
15 7 Correspondence, April -October 1925
15 8 Correspondence, November-December 1925
15 9 Correspondence, January-February 5, 1926
15 10 Correspondence, February 6-May 1926
15 11 Correspondence, October-November 1926; 1926 undated
15 12 Correspondence, January-April 1927
15 13 Correspondence, May-October 1927; 1927 undated
15 14 Correspondence, January-April 1928
15 15 Correspondence, August-October 1928
15 16 Correspondence, November-December 1928; 1928 undated
15 17 Correspondence, January-September 1929
15 18 Correspondence, October-December 1929; 1929 undated
15 19 Correspondence, January-August 1930
15 20 Correspondence, September 1930-November 1931
15 21 Correspondence, 1932-January 1934
15 22 Correspondence, February-June 1934
15 23 Correspondence, August 1934-1936
15 24 Correspondence, 1937-1938
15 25 Correspondence, March-July 22, 1939
15 26 Correspondence, July 23-September 19, 1939
15 27 Correspondence, September 20, 1939-April 1940
15 28 Correspondence, July 1940-1942
15 29 Correspondence, Undated
15 30-32 Public statements and press releases, 1922-1928; undated
15 33-34 Legal documents, 1925-1937; undated
15 35 Financial records, 1924-1928
15 36 Resolutions, 1924-1928
15 37 Minutes of SMCMA annual meeting, 1924
15 38 Speeches, 1924-1927; undated
15 39 Lists of SMCMA Board of Directors and local press, 1918
15 40 Material re Venable family and home, undated