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James Agee Photographs

 Collection
Identifier: MS-3200

This collection consists of two black and white portrait photographs of James Agee taken by Florence Homolka.

Dates

  • undated

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.

Extent

0.1 Linear Feet (1 folder)

Abstract

This collection consists of two black and white portrait photographs of James Agee taken by Florence Homolka.

Biographical/Historical Note

James Rufus Agee was born in Knoxville, Tennessee on November 27, 1909 to Hugh James Agee and Laura Whitman Tyler. He had one sister, Emma. Hugh Agee was killed in an automobile accident in 1916. In 1918, Laura relocated the family to Sewanee, Tennessee. James attended the St. Andrew’s School where he met Father James Harold Flye who would become his lifelong close friend and mentor. The Agees returned to Knoxville in 1924, and James attended Knoxville High School for a year, before transferring to Phillips Exeter Academy in New Hampshire. He was accepted into Harvard University’s class of 1932.

Upon graduation, Agee wrote for Fortune magazine from 1932-1937, and published his only volume of poetry, Permit Me Voyage, in 1934. In 1941, Agee turned material for a scrapped Fortune article into his first book, Let Us Now Praise Famous Men. Agee is also credited as a screenwriter on both The African Queen and The Night of the Hunter, both released in 1955. Published posthumously in 1957, A Death in the Family is Agee’s autobiographical novel set in Knoxville, Tennessee.

Agee led a somewhat tumultuous personal life. He was married to Via Saunders from 1933-1938. Later in 1938 he married Alma Mailman, and had a son with her, Joel, before their divorce in 1941. He then married Mia Fritsch in 1946, and they two daughters, Julia and Andrea, and a son, John. Agee died of a heart attack on May 16, 1955. In 1999, the street where Agee was born was renamed to James Agee Street in the Fort Sanders neighborhood of Knoxville.

Florence Meyer Homolka was an American photographer whose work focused mainly on portraits of artists, musicians, actors, and other celebrities. She was born January 22, 1911 to Eugene and Agnes Ernst Meyer. She married actor Oskar Homolka in 1939 and together they had two sons, Vincent and Laurence. Homolka died November 27, 1962 in Los Angeles, California.

Arrangement

Collection consists of a single folder.

Acquisition Note

This collection is property of the University of Tennessee Libraries, Knoxville, Special Collections..

Related Archival Materials

Interested researchers may wish to consult these additional collections: MS.1500 MS.1904 MS.1998 MS.2296 MS.2474 MS.2625 MS.2730 MS.2832 MS.3045 MS.3142 MS.3229 MS.3277 MS.3450 MS.3702 MS.3824 MS.3839

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

Contact:
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA
865-974-4480