Marie Halun Bloch papers

Marie Halun Bloch is best known for her Ukrainian-themed children's books, but also was a writer and translator on a variety of subjects. She did considerable research into her family history and the history of her ancestral villages. She travelled extensively to Ukraine and Eastern Europe beginning in the 1960s through the 1990s, and wrote extensively about her experiences. This collection contains her published and unpublished writings on her genealogy, the history of her ancestral villages, travel accounts, research notes, correspondence, and photographs.

Summary Information

Creator Bloch, Marie Halun
Title Marie Halun Bloch papers
ID g.31
Dates 1941-1998
Dates (bulk) 1960-1996
Quantity 4.3 Linear Feet, 6 boxes, 6 bound volumes, 1 oversize folder
Languages Multiple languages
Languages All writings are in English, but correspondence, source materials, clippings, and ephemera include substantial materials in Ukrainian. Some source material is also in Polish.
Repository Ukrainian History and Education Center Archives

Biographical / Historical

Marie Halun Bloch is best known for her Ukrainian-themed children's books, but also was a writer and translator on a variety of subjects. She also did considerable research into her family history and the history of her ancestral villages. She travelled extensively to Ukraine and Eastern Europe beginning in the 1960s through the 1990s, and wrote extensively about her experiences.

She was born in 1909 in Komarno, Ukraine, daughter of Rudolf Halun and Sofia Pelensky Halun, and emigrated to the United States with her family as a young child. She received her primary and secondary school education in the Evanston, Ill. public school system and received a Bachelor of Philosophy degree in economics from the University of Chicago. She worked as an economist for the U.S. Department of Labor in the 1930s.

She was the author of 18 fiction and non-fiction books for children and two books for adults. Her most popular works included "Aunt America", an American Library Association Notable Book, and "Ukrainian Folk Tales", which was illustrated by Jacques Hnizdovsky. She was a longtime member of the Authors' League of America, the Authors' Guild, the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, from which she received several awards, the Colorado Authors' League, and the Denver Women's Press Club. A resident of Denver, Colorado for 50 years, she lived in Cambridge, Massachusetts from 1993 until her death in 1998. She was a member of the parishes of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in both Denver and Boston.

Note that for much of her life she believed that she was born in 1910, not 1909, therefore her LOC name authority record has her years as 1910-1998.

Зміст фонду

Цей фонд містить включає в собі праці Марії Ганлун Блох на теми генеалогічних дослідів, історію та звичаїв Комарна, Гусакова, та Щиртця, нотатки та щоденники від подорожів на Україну та східню Европу, неопубліковані короткі роботи по Україну, і проекти невиданої книги по історію ріки Дніпро. Фонд також включає значні дослідницькі замітки, джерела, і листування пов'язані з історією Комарна, а також фотографії Комарна з часів перед Другої світової війни до 1995 р. Її поїздки в Україну задокументовано у понад 500 фотографіях з 1960-х до 1990-х років. Фонд також містить деякі особисті записи і копії своїх опублікованих робіт, деякі з яких мають власноруні написи та анотації автора.

Scope and Contents

The collection contains extensive writings by Marie Halun Bloch on her genealogy; the history and customs of her ancestral villages of Komarno, Husakiv, and Shchyrets'; travel diaries and travelogues; unpublished short works on Ukraine; and drafts of an unpublished book on the history of the Dnipro River. The collection also includes considerable research notes, source material, and correspondence related to the history of Komarno, as well as photographs of Komarno from before World War II through 1995. Her travels to Ukraine are documented by over 500 photographs from the 1960s to the 1990s. The collection also contains some personal records and copies of her published works, some of which have been inscribed or annotated by the author.

Arrangement

Arranged in five series as follows

  1. Family and genealogy
  2. History of Komarno, Husakiv, and Shchyrets'
  3. Travels
  4. Other writings
  5. Personal and third-party materials

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Published citations should take the following form:
Identification of item, date (if known); Marie Halun Bloch papers; box number; folder number; Ukrainian History and Education Center Archives, Somerset, New Jersey.

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for researcher use. Please contact the archivist (archives@ukrhec.org) for more information and to make arrangements. Audio or moving image materials may require on-demand digitization for access.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright restrictions may apply.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Hilary Hopkins, daughter of Marie Halun Bloch.

Processing Information

The donor Hilary Hopkins provided a detailed inventory at the time of the donation (copy included in Series 5), and her original inventory numbers are indicated in Processing Information notes at the series and file level. File titles in quotation marks are taken directly from the folder or item labels, while those without quotation marks are devised titles.

Controlled Access Headings

Subjects

  • Manners and customs
  • Travel writing
  • Genealogy

Places

  • Europe--Dnieper River
  • Ukraine--Lʹvivsʹka oblastʹ

Genres

  • Family histories
  • Photographs

Related Archival Materials

The University of Minnesota Libraries Children's Literature Research Collections holds the papers of Marie Halun Bloch that relate to the writing and publication of her children's books (http://special.lib.umn.edu/findaid/xml/CLRC-796.xml).

Container List

Series 1.  Family and genealogy, 1966-1994.
"The Halun and Pelensky Families of Ukraine and the United States: Containing Reminiscences of Sophia Pelenska Halun And Material From Other Sources.", 1981.

Processing Information

Inventory #19. Inserted materials have been rehoused in a separate folder.

Scope and Contents

Privately published 489 page book (number 15 of an edition of 20) compiled and edited by MHB. It is the culmination of her research on her family history. It contains facsimiles of source documents, correspondence, photographs, maps, and diagrams of houses, home furnishings, and utensils. It also contains correspondence and genealogical charts with letter/number codes that uniquely identify each individual. These codes were used by MHB in her other family history and travel writings.

  • volume 1
  • box 1 folder 1
"Pelensky - Descendants of Mykhailo Y41", 1991-1996.

Processing Information

Inventory #11

Scope and Contents

Letters, death notices, and obituaries related to individuals who were descendants of Mykhailo Pelensky (Y41).

  • box 1 folder 2
"Writings by and about Ivan Dzyuba (Y386 in Pelensky Family Chart)", 1966-1994.

Processing Information

Inventory #10.

Scope and Contents

Contains materials on the Ukrainian literary critic, social activist, dissident, and Minister of Culture of Ukraine (1992—1994) Ivan Dzyuba (Dziuba), who has a family relationship to MHB. Consists primarily of newspaper clippings and other published material, but also has some correspondence and two audio cassettes of Dzyuba speaking in Toronto in 1989.

  • box 1 folder 3-5
Yaroslav Zapotochny visit to United States, 1990.

Processing Information

Inventory #13, 14, and 15

Scope and Contents

Materials related to the visit of Yaroslav Zapotochny to MHB and HBH, including letters, notes and article by HBH describing the event.

  • box 1 folder 6
"Pelenskies of Unspecified Origin", 1990-1991.

Processing Information

Inventory #12

Scope and Contents

Contains newspaper clippings.

  • box 1 folder 7
Series 2.  History of Komarno, Husakiv, and Shchyrets', 1964-1991.

Scope and Contents

Contains writings by MHB about her family's ancestral villages, as well as extensive files of clippings. correspondence, and research notes. Some of these materials were also used in the book "The Halun and Pelensky Families" in Series 1.

"Komarno, Schyrets, Husakiw", 1984-1990 (bulk 1984).

Scope and Contents

Contains two typescript copies of the 256 page manuscript of "Komarno, Schyrets, Husakiw, Halychyna Province Ukraine. A collection of Articles and Other Materials Assembled from Various Sources by Marie Halun Bloch. Denver, Colorado 1984", some with pencil corrections. It also includes a translation of an article from "Svoboda" (December, 1990).

Processing Information

Inventory #2 and 4

  • box 1 folder 8-9
"Ukraine and Komarno", 1982.

Processing Information

Inventory #5

Scope and Contents

Two copies of a 109 page typescript entitled "Komarno", with corrections.

  • box 1 folder 10
"Documents and Other Materials on Hussakiw, Komarno, and Schyrets, Ukraine", 1964-1987.

Processing Information

Inventory #7

Scope and Contents

Contains correspondence, copies of source materials, maps, drawings, musical notation, and ephemera related to the history of Komarno and Husakiv.

Maps
  • box 2 folder 1
"Source Materials Pertaining to Hussakiw", 1975-1987.
  • box 2 folder 2
"Articles re Komarno by Natives"
  • box 2 folder 3
"Source Materials pertaining to Komarno and Shchyrets", 1964-1980.
  • box 2 folder 4
"Komarno Meeting 1965", 1964-1965.

Scope and Contents

Contains announcements, correspondence, and ephemera related to the Komarno reunions at the Ukrainian Workingmen's Association Resort Center in Glen Spey, N.Y.

  • box 2 folder 5
"Komarno People/Komarno Artifacts", 1968-1982.

Scope and Contents

Correspondence, obituaries, newspaper clippings, and original drawings that were included in "The Halun and Pelensky Families" book of Series 1.

  • box 2 folder 6
Holos Kombatanta

Scope and Contents

Three issues of the journal "Голос Комбатанта" (Autumn-Winter 1959, Spring 1960, Autumn 1960).

  • box 2 folder 7
Sources, correspondence, drafts, and research notes, 1964-1991.
Correspondence, drafts, and research notes, 1965-1991.

Processing Information

Inventory #3

  • oversize 1
  • box 2 folder 8-10
"Correspondence re Book on Komarno", 1964-1987 (bulk 1980-1987).

Processing Information

Part of inventory #6

Scope and Contents

Correspondence related to Komarno from various individuals, particularly Anna and Mykola Radowych.

  • box 2 folder 11
"Meeting of Komarno People in Glen Spey, N.Y. 1965", 1965, 1980-1981.

Processing Information

Part of inventory #6

Scope and Contents

Announcements and meeting minutes of organization of former Komarno residents.

  • box 3 folder 1
"Komarno (+ Husakiw) Residuum old notes, etc."

Processing Information

Part of inventory #6

Scope and Contents

Research notes, copies of sources, and ephemera.

  • box 3 folder 2
"Original pictures of Komarno (+ Husakiw)"

Processing Information

Inventory #8

Scope and Contents

67 corner mounted photographs of Komarno and Husakiv, primarily from the 1960s and 1970s, but also some pre-World War II photographs, as well as photocopies of older historical photographs. Also includes photographs from reunions of former Komarno natives in the United States, and a hand-drawn map. All photographs are captioned by MHB in English.

  • box 3 folder 3
Series 3.  Travels, 1960-1995.
"Diaries of Travel to Ukraine, Eastern Europe, and Germany", 1960-1970.

Processing Information

Inventory #1

Scope and Contents

Material documenting MHB's travels which were contained in a document file box labeled "Diaries of Travel to Ukraine, Eastern Europe, and Germany/by Marie Halun Bloch/Contain much genealogical material on the Pelensky and the Halun Families, as well as material on Komarno and Hussakiw, and should therefore be kept as supplements to the volumes of materials on these families."

"13 Lvivska Street", 1960.

Scope and Contents

Typescript journal of MHB's trip to Ukraine (including Komarno), 199 pages. Includes three original photographs.

  • box 3 folder 4
"Three Generations", 1963.

Scope and Contents

Typescript of travelogue (118 pages) with photographs from Ukraine and Denver, Colorado. Also includes original travel notes and itinerary.

  • box 3 folder 5
"Travels in East Europe", 1965.

Scope and Contents

Typescript travel diary of trip to Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Germany (59 pages).

  • box 3 folder 6
"Diary of Marie Halun Bloch on Visit to Stepan Pelensky of Prague", 1970.

Scope and Contents

Typescript travel diary (22 pages), as well as drawings and other associated material.

  • box 3 folder 7
Photographs of Kyiv, undated, likely 1960s.
  • box 3 folder 8
Notes and newspaper clipping
  • box 3 folder 9
"Trip Journals by MHB", 1977-1995.

Processing Information

Inventory #31. Material related to 1991 English language teaching trip have been moved to the file corresponding to that subject below.

"The Web: Journey to Ukraine, July 4 to 25, 1977", 1977.

Scope and Contents

Typescript travelogue (89 pages).

  • box 3 folder 10
Other travel writings, 1977-1995.

Scope and Contents

Various travel writings, including multiple drafts of the essay "Castles in Ukraine".

  • box 3 folder 11
Slides from 1977 trip to Ukraine, 1977.

Processing Information

Inventory #9

Scope and Contents

Contents of three 35mm slide carousels, as well as travel notes and identifying information. These slides were taken by John and Hilary Hopkins on their trip to Ukraine with their daughters, Susannah and Alyson, and Marie Halun Bloch, Hilary's mother.

  • box 3 folder 12-14
  • box 6
Teaching English in Ukraine, 1992.

Processing Information

Inventory #20, 32, and material separated from 31.

Scope and Contents

Material related to MHB's trip to Ukraine as a volunteer teacher of English. Includes a 53 page typescript diary, 15 color photographs taken by Zenia Kunasz while in Ivano-Frankivs'k, newspaper clippings, notebook, and travel documents.

  • box 3 folder 15-16
  • box 4 folder 1
Photographs, 1995.

Scope and Contents

Approximately 180 color photographs taken by MHB and her granddaughter Susannah Hopkins Leisher in L'viv, Odessa, Komarno, and other locations in Ukraine. Some have annotations (MHB in pen, SHL on yellow notes).

  • box 4 folder 2
Series 4.  Other writings, 1941-1998.
Unpublished book manuscript on the Dnipro River, 1985-1998.

Scope and Contents

Contains a number of draft manuscripts of MHB's book on the Dnipro River, which she was working on at the time of her death and which remains unpublished. It is variously entitled "The Dnipro River of Ukraine: Its Life; Its Times", "The Ninth River" (referring to its world rank in terms of length), or "Fabulous River: Story of the Dnieper". It includes an early 1985 holograph draft, two typescript drafts of approximately 300 pages from the 1990s, floppy discs, a manually assembled panorama photograph, and bibliographic material.

Processing Information

Inventory #26, 27, 28, 29, and 30.

  • box 4 folder 3-6
  • box 5 folder 1-3
"Short pieces re Ukraine", 1991-1992 and undated.

Scope and Contents

Published and unpublished short works on the topic of Ukraine, including pieces on the Peace Corps in Ukraine, Ukrainian Christmas customs, post-Independence Ukraine, and others.

  • box 5 folder 4
Published works and translations, 1941-1983.

Processing Information

Inventory #18, 22, 23, 24, 25

The Post Impressionist, 1941-1942.

Scope and Contents

Photocopies of MHB's "The Post Impressionist" newspaper column which she wrote for the Washington Post.

Processing Information

Inventory #22

  • box 5 folder 5
The Ukrainian Quarterly articles, 1961-1964.

Processing Information

Inventory #24 and 25

Scope and Contents

Two issues of the Ukrainian Quarterly (vol. XVII, No. 2. Summer, 1961, and vol. XX, No. 3. Autumn, 1964) containing articles by MHB under the pseudonym "Lesya Svobodna".

  • box 5 folder 6
Marya of Clark Avenue, 1957.

Scope and Contents

Inscribed by MHB to her mother.

  • box 5 folder 7
Aunt America, 1963.

Processing Information

Inserted material has been rehoused in separate folder.

  • box 5 folder 8-9
Ukrainian Folk Tales, 1964.

Scope and Contents

Inscribed by MHB to her mother.

  • volume 2
The Two Worlds of Damyan, 1966.

Scope and Contents

Inscribed by MHB to her daughter Hilary Hopkins.

  • volume 3
Ivanko and the Dragon: An Old Ukrainian Folk Tale, 1969.

Processing Information

Inserted materials have been rehoused in a separate folder.

Scope and Contents

Contains inscription by MHB critiquing the illustrations. Inserted materials include a note from illustrator Yaroslava Surmach Mills, a photograph of a 3rd grade float based on the book, and newspaper clippings.

  • box 5 folder 10-11
Bern, Son of Mikula, 1972.

Scope and Contents

Contains comments and corrections by MHB. Inserted materials include publisher footnote, notes, a dedication (though apparently not to this book), and newspaper clippings.

Processing Information

Inserted materials have been rehoused in a separate folder.

  • box 5 folder 12
  • volume 4
Displaced Person, 1978.
  • volume 5
Pilgrims of the Prairie, 1983.

Scope and Contents

By Andrew Dubovy, translation by MHB. Contains pencil corrections.

  • volume 6
Series 5.  Personal and third-party materials
Hnizdovsky bookplate design, 1972.

Scope and Contents

Correspondence with Jacques Hnizdovsky regarding the design of a bookplate (ex libris) for MHB, as well as proofs and printing plate.

Processing Information

Inventory #17. Originally housed in kraft paper envelope with the notation "My ex libris by Hnizdovsky. Contains his alternate one. Have this one printed!"

  • box 5 folder 13
  • oversize 2
Portrait photograph, 1968.

Processing Information

Inventory #21

Scope and Contents

Portrait of Marie Halun Bloch, taken May 1968 in Denver, Colorado.

  • oversize 2
Book donation to the Ukrainian Cultural Institute, 1998.

Scope and Contents

Contains a complete listing of the materials donated by Hilary Bloch Hopkins to The Ukrainian Cultural Institute, Dickinson, North Dakota, at the time of the death of Marie Halun Bloch in 1998. These materials now comprise The Marie Halun Bloch Library at UCI, and have been subsequently added to by other donors.

Processing Information

Inventory #16

  • box 5 folder 14
Donor inventory, 2016.
  • box 5 folder 15