Creator: Irving L. Morris
Dates: 1917-1923
Quantity: 0.5 linear feet (1 document box)
Acquisition:  Accession #: 2002.54 ; Donated by: Elizabeth Morris Sampson.
Identification: A20 ; Archive Collection #20
Citation:  [Document Title]. The Irving L. Morris Papers, [Box #, Folder #, Item #], Cape Ann Museum Library & Archives, Gloucester, MA.
Copyright: Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be addressed to the Librarian/Archivist.
Language: English
Finding Aid: Peter Brown ,2003; supervisor, Ellen Nelson, archivist. Reprocessed: Stephanie Buck, CAM Archivist, 2016.

View the collection here.


Irving L. Morris was born in Gloucester, December 31, 1893, the son of Antone and Annie (Bates) Morris. He married Mary MacLean in 1926 and they had a son, Irving Jr. and a daughter Elizabeth. He worked for forty years at the First National Stores, retiring in 1959. His diary and letters describe the time he served with Company G, 104th Infantry Regiment of the famed Yankee (26th) Division. Morris participated in the battles of Bellau Woods, Chateau Thiery, St. Mihiel and the Meuse-Argonne. Mr. Morris was a charter member of the Lester S. Wass Post No. 3, American Legion, and remained active in veteran affairs, becoming the oldest of the “old timers” of the Gloucester branch. He was also a member of Gloucester Lodge No. 892 B.P.O. Elks and communicant at St. Ann Church. He died January 24, 1985.

A reminiscence by Peter Anastas 3/27/2016:

Before Irv and his family moved to Perkins Road, where he had the store, they lived on the Hill and he walked back and forth to work. One night--I think I was in first or second grade--we woke up to the news that someone had mugged him on the way home in the dark and stolen the day's intake from him. He had quite a head wound as I recall. That's when he decided to moved to Perkins Road. A wonderful guy who used to save the Kellogg Pep coupons for me so I could get these pins we used to stick onto our beanies. He had a cat in the store called Kybo, which was also the name of the brand of coffee he sold. The cat slept on the groceries. Nobody cared. They bought them anyway.


This collection contains the personal diary, letters, commendations, and other papers of World War I soldier Irving L. Morris. The majority of letters were sent from Morris to his family. His daughter Elizabeth Morris Sampson donated items to the Cape Ann Historical Association. Included is a typed transcript of the diary done by his son-in-law, Robert Sampson.


Box 1

Folder 1: Typed manuscript of diary. Photostats of letters sent home from France. Photograph.

Folder 2: Written copy of diary.

Original diary Sept. 26, 1917 – Sept. 25, 1918

Although the diary is printed Jan – Dec 1918 Mr. Hanscomb crossed out the day and year beginning Thursday Sept. 26, 1918 changing it to Weds Sept. 26, 1917. He continued to alter the day and year undil Dec. 30. Then began at the beginning of the diary with Jan 1, 1918

Folder 3: Original letters - Undated & 1917

Letter card with prints of Southampton, England, nd

To Irving from Gramma, nd

Father from Somewhere in France, nd

Father from Somewhere in England, nd (1918?)

Father from Somewhere in France, nd (incomplete)

Father from Somewhere in France, Jan. 7, 1917

Pa from Westfield, Sept. 17, 1917

Pa from YMCA Westfield, Sept. 23, 1917

Mother from YMCA France, Nov. 2, 1917

Father from Somewhere in France, Nov. 7, 1917

Father from Somewhere in France, Nov. 30, 1917

Girls & Boys from Camp Kelly, Dec. 23, 1917

Father from Somewhere in France, 1917 (bottom third missing)

Father from Somewhere in France Dec. 17, 1917 (incomplete)

Folder 4: Original letters 1918 - 1919

Father from Somewhere in France, Jan 22, 1918 (torn)

Father from Somewhere in France, Feb. 1, 1918 Pa from YMCA France, Feb. 24, 1918

Father, Mar. 29, 1918 Father from YMCA Apr. 30, 1918

Mother from Somewhere in France, May 12, 1918

Father from France, May 22, 1918

Postcard: Father from Somewhere in France, June 5, 1918

Father from YMCA, July 3, 1918

Mother from Somewhere in France, July 9, 1918

Father from YMCA, Aug. 18, 1918

Father from Somewhere in France, Sept. 19, 1918

Father from Somewhere in France, Oct. 17, 1918

Father from Somewhere in France, Nov. 4, 1918

Father from YMCA Nov. 23, 1918 (incomplete)

Father from YMCA, Nov. 23, 1918 (typewritten)

Father from Dammartin, France, Dec. 26, 1918

Father from Dammartin, France, Jan 8, 1919 (incomplete)

Father from Demmartin, France, Jan 14, 1919

Friend from Dammartin, France, Jan. 15, 1919

Father from Le Grand-Luce, Feb. 4, 1919

Father from Le Mans, France, Mar. 1, 1919

Father from Le Grand-Luce, 1919

Undated & incomplete pages of letters

Empty envelopes

Folder 5: 


Honoring the service of Irving L. Morris May 16, 1919

Xerox copy of same.


Card of Miss Trixie E. Boot, Southampton, UK

Special Orders – Permission to travel, Feb. 14, 1919

Leave slip Feb. 16, 1919

Hotel registration card, Bordeaux, France, 2/17-2/28/1919

2 cards YMCA Hotel des Americains, Feb. 17 & 27, 1919

Theatre Pass 2/28/1919

Permission to be absent for 3 days, Apr. 16, 1919

Sheet of Bread Vouchers Historical Data concerning the 26th Division American E.F.

Newspaper clipping Sept. 14, 1918 – Letter from Morris to his mother Program – Concert in Honor of the Veterans of the World War

WU Telegram, 3/19 Will arrive Boston Friday

USA Insurance Certificate, 1917

YMCA pamphlet

Small booklet (partial) containing: list of letters written & received; misc notes inc. Names & addresses

Citizen Seaman’s Identification Card, issued Dec. 9, 1919 (photo ID)

2 newspaper clippings about Mr. Morris

Mr. Morris’ obit

Booklet Apremont Day, 104th US Infnatry Reunion Dinner, Cambridge, 1923


5 small photos of 103rd in France 918

Irving Morris (?) with goat, July 25, 1917