Lent Family Papers, 1910-1962; bulk, 1931-1953
SC21085

Quantity: 3 Boxes (1.0 cubic ft.)
Access: Open to research
Acquisition: Purchase: Harold Nestler (vendor), Allendale, N.J., November 1994
Processed By: Susan Malbin, Intern, University of Albany, Graduate School of Information and Science, February 1995

View catalog record

Biographical Note

The Lent family came from Beacon, Dutchess County, New York. Four brothers and a sister –  John, George, William, Davis (called Dave), and Lillian – figure in this collection. William and Dave stayed in Beacon; John moved to Glasco, Ulster County, New York, and George moved out west.

George Lent became an engineer and settled in Seattle, Washington, in the late-nineteenth century. He went into navigation and shipping and ended his career as chairman of the board of the Puget Sound Navigation Company. He helped support his siblings by paying their bills. Starting in 1931, he sent monthly remittance checks to brothers William and Dave, both of whom had trouble finding work in the Great Depression and, on occasion, took in boarders. In 1938, their recently widowed sister, Lillian Lent Amouroux, moved back to Beacon to board with William’s family.

Helen Lent, William’s daughter, worked as a secretary for the Dutchess Tool Company in Beacon, New York. Never marrying, she lived at home and handled the family finances. She seems to have written parodies and puns.

Scope and Content Note

The Lent family papers reflect Depression-era economic hardships and concerns. This family correspondence focuses on the costs of goods and services, the lack of employment, layoffs, household economics and amusements. The letters are from either George Lent to brother William and niece Helen or from Lillian Lent Amouroux to niece Helen, including a few carbons of Helen’s replies. The Seattle letters also give some insight into the problems of the Puget Sound Navigation Company, especially while George was chairman of the board in the 1930s and 1940s.

Non-family correspondence to Helen includes letters from suitors and from fellow Dutchess Tool Company employees and friends. There are also folders of legal materials and taxes for Dutchess County family property; assorted invitations; cards; and receipts. The bills and receipts show the family’s need to resort to time payments or installment plans for domestic purchases starting in the Depression.

Box and Folder List

Box

Folder

Contents

 

 

Lent Family Correspondence

1

1

1910-1933

1

2

1934-1935

1

3

1937

1

4

1938 January-February

1

5

1938 March-May (no June or July)

1

6

1938 August-September

1

7

1938 October-November

1

8

1938 December

1

9

1939 January-March

1

10

1939 April-May

1

11

1939 June-August

2

1

1940-1942

2

2

December 1944-February 1945; February-November 1947

 

 

Letters sent to Helen Lent from friends and acquaintances

2

3

1925-1927; 1937

2

4

1937-1942

2

5

1936-1938 (Dutchess Tool Company employees)

2

6

1953 (sympathy cards)

2

7

1954-1962

2

8

1962 (get-well letters to Melissa Lent)

3

1

Wedding Invitations and Announcements

3

2

Birth and Graduation Announcements

3

3

Birthday and Greeting Cards

3

4

Legal Papers and Tax Receipts

3

5

Bills and Receipts

3

6

Marriage Service of Lillian Lent Amouroux 1904

3

7

Copies of parodies/poems/puns

 

Last Updated: September 6, 2019