Joanna Eckstein papers and oral history interview, 1878-1983  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Eckstein, Joanna, 1903-1983
Title
Joanna Eckstein papers and oral history interview
Dates
1878-1983 (inclusive)
Quantity
2.79 cubic feet (7 boxes) plus 5 sound cassettes, 2 transcripts, and 1 vertical file
Collection Number
2460
Summary
Oral histories, genealogical material, correspondence, writings, ephemera, and other materials related to arts organizations leader and traveler Joanna Eckstein
Repository
University of Washington Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections
University of Washington Libraries
Box 352900
Seattle, WA
98195-2900
Telephone: 206-543-1929
Fax: 206-543-1931
speccoll@uw.edu
Access Restrictions

Open to all users.

Languages
English


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Patron of the arts, arts organizations leader, world traveler, and friend and confidant of many of the Pacific Northwest's leading artists, Joanna Eckstein was a lifetime resident of Seattle. Born July 28, 1903, she was the daughter of Seattle civic leader and school board member Nathan Eckstein, and Mina Schwabacher Eckstein, whose family owned the Schwabacher Brothers and Company wholesale grocery business.

Although she worked briefly as a social worker for the Social Welfare League, and served as president of both the Seattle Children's Home and the Seattle Visiting Nurse Association, Eckstein was most notable for her longtime involvement with the Seattle arts community. She served on the boards of Allied Arts and the Seattle Opera Association, and succeeded her father as a Seattle Art Museum board member upon his death in 1945. In addition, she was an active patron of the arts and had close, personal relationships with many artists, including painter Mark Tobey and composer Elizabeth Poston. She was also known for her worldwide travels. Beginning with a four-month long trip to China and Japan in 1936, Eckstein eventually traveled to every continent.

She later worked as a travel agent, arranging, among others, tours sponsored by the Seattle Art Museum. During many of her travels in the 1950s and 1960s, she wrote travel articles for The Seattle Times, including her around-the-world trip in 1956. In 1955 she served as the curator of a United States Information Service traveling exhibit in Europe of four Seattle painters, including Mark Tobey, and four New York sculptors.

Eckstein's nephew, Stephen Joseph, has been credited with fostering the revival of traditional jazz in the Puget Sound area. Eckstein died September 30, 1983.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

Tape recorded interviews in which Joanna Eckstein discusses her family history, the Seattle Jewish community, her education, her interest in art and the art climate in Seattle, as well as her experiences with anti-Semitism. Also included are genealogical records for the Eckstein, Schwabacher, and Haas families, as well as correspondence, writings, scrapbooks, ephemera, and other materials.

Other Descriptive InformationReturn to Top

This collection forms part of the Washington State Jewish Archives

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

 

Accession No. 2460-001: Joanna Eckstein oral history interview, 1975Return to Top

2 sound cassettes (90 min.); transcript

Scope and Content: Tape recorded interview, 1850-1950, conducted by Meta Kaplan on 25 July 1975; transcript.

There is significant sound distortion throughout side B of the sound cassette

Eckstein discusses her grandfather's (Abraham Schwabacher) immigration to San Francisco from Germany in the 1850s, his business with Bailey Gatzert in Walla Walla, Washington, and then the expansion of his grocery and hardware business to Seattle in 1868. She discusses Gatzert's political and social activities in Seattle (he served as mayor in 1875) and his wife Babette's founding of the Ladies' Relief Society, now known as the Seattle Children's home. She also recounts her father's (Nathan Eckstein) immigration from Reckendorf, Germany to work for Schwabacher and his religious and civic activities in Seattle.

She describes the Seattle Jewish community in the late nineteenth-century, the attempt to build a synagogue for a reform congregation, and the eventual construction of Temple de Hirsch. She recounts her early childhood growing up in the Seattle Jewish community, her founding of the sorority Sigma Theta Pi at University of Washington, and its selection process. She discusses at length the cultural norms of education for Jewish boys and girls and the differences between them. She also discusses anti-Semitism she encountered from various Seattle organizations as well as her work as a travel agent.

Digital Content/Other Formats:Listen to the audio recording and view the transcript of this interview on the Libraries Digital Collections site.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use: Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Some restrictions exist on copying, quotation or publication. Contact Repository for details.

Acquisition Info: Donated by Joanna Eckstein, 7/25/1975.

Description
Joanna Eckstein oral history interview

Accession No. 2460-003: Joanna Eckstein oral history interview, 1977Return to Top

1 sound cassette; transcript: 19 pp.

Scope and Content: Tape recorded interview conducted by Sue Ragen on November 19, 1977; transcript.

Eckstein discusses how her interest in art developed and Seattle's art climate in the 1930s and 1940s plus early collecting and her philosophy of collecting. She also discusses her relationships with such artists as Richard Fuller, Mark Tobey, Doris Chase, Kenneth Callahan, and Claire Falkenstein.

Digital Content/Other Formats:View the transcript of this interview on the Libraries Digital Collections site.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use: Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Acquisition Info: Donated by Joanna Eckstein, 11/19/1975.

Description
Joanna Eckstein oral history interview

Accession No. 2460-005: Joanna Eckstein oral history interview, 1981Return to Top

2 sound cassettes

Scope and Content: Tape recorded interview conducted by Meta Buttnick in May 1981.

Eckstein discusses her parents, Nathan and Mina Eckstein, and the Schwabacher family. She speaks of prejudice and discrimination and of contention among various groups of Jews. She tells of her work in the Jewish community and in the community at large. She taught Sabbath School in the Settlement House.

Digital Content/Other Formats:Listen to the audio recording of this interview on the Libraries Digital Collections site.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use: Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Acquisition Info: Donated by Meta Buttnick, 11/1/1983.

Description
Joanna Eckstein oral history interview

Accession No. 2460-008: Joanna Eckstein papers, 1878-1983 (bulk 1935-1983)Return to Top

2.58 cubic feet (including 4 boxes and 2 oversize boxes) plus 1 sound cassette

Scope and Content: Correspondence, writings, photographs, ephemera, scrapbooks, memorabilia, interview tape and transcript, and clippings.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use: Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Acquisition Info: Donated by Joanna Eckstein, 6/1/1976.

Description
Joanna Eckstein papers

Accession No. 2460-009: Joanna Eckstein papers, circa 1968-1971Return to Top

.21 cubic foot (1 box of 42 items)

Scope and Content: Colored drawings on note cards from Helmi Juvonen. All but a few of the notes contain correspondence from Juvonen to Eckstein.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Acquisition Info: Donated by Estate of Stephen Joseph, 11/2/1998.

Description
Joanna Eckstein papers

Accession No. 2460-010: Joanna Eckstein papers, 1952-1975Return to Top

1 vertical file

Scope and Content: The materials include Joanna Eckstein's correspondence and family records pertaining to geneaology of the Eckstein and Schwabacher families, and related families such as the Haas family.

Restrictions on Access: Open to all users.

Restrictions on Use: Creator's literary rights transferred to the University of Washington Libraries.

Acquisition Info: Stephen Joseph, 1999-06-10

Description
Joanna Eckstein papers

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Art patronage--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Artists--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Art--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Jewish women--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Jews--Washington (State)--Seattle
  • Personal Names :
  • Eckstein, Joanna, 1903-1983--Archives
  • Eckstein, Joanna, 1903-1983--Genealogy
  • Eckstein, Joanna, 1903-1983--Interviews
  • Jacobs, Orange, 1827-1914--Correspondence
  • Corporate Names :
  • Cornish School of Allied Arts (Seattle, Wash.)--Archives
  • Jewish Welfare Society (Seattle, Wash.)--Archives
  • Settlement House (Seattle, Wash.)--Archives
  • Temple de Hirsch (Seattle, Wash.)--Archives
  • Family Names :
  • Schwabacher family--Archives
  • Schwabacher family--Genealogy
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Ephemera
  • Oral histories
  • Personal correspondence
  • Other Creators :
    • Personal Names :
    • Boettinger, Anna Roosevelt (associated name)
    • Eckstein, Mina Schwabacher, -1942 (associated name)
    • Eckstein, Nathan, 1873-1945 (associated name)
    • Falkenstein, Claire, 1908-1997 (associated name)
    • Gatzert, Bailey, 1829-1893 (associated name)
    • Juvonen, Helmi, 1903-1985 (associated name)
    • Kizer, Benjamin H. (Benjamin Hamilton), 1878-1978 (associated name)
    • Koenig, John Franklin, 1924-2008 (associated name)
    • Poston, Elizabeth (associated name)
    • Ray, Dixy Lee (associated name)
    • Ross, Nancy Wilson, 1901-1986 (associated name)
    • Schwabacher, Abraham, 1838-1909 (associated name)
    • Tobey, Mark (associated name)
    • Toklas, Alice B (associated name)
    • Win, U (associated name)
    • Corporate Names :
    • Schwabacher Bros. & Company (Seattle, Wash.)
    • Washington State Jewish Archives (University of Washington)
    • Washington State Jewish Archives (University of Washington), (host institution)

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Personal Papers/Corporate Records (University of Washington)
  • Other Creators :
    • Corporate Names :
    • Washington State Jewish Archives (University of Washington)