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Live Oak Society Records

Collection 56

Live Oak Society. Records, 1929–2001, n.d.

5 inches

The Live Oak Society was founded in 1935 by Dr. Edwin Lewis Stephens, Louisiana scholar, educator, and president of Southwestern Louisiana Institute. The society was intended to promote the culture, distribution and appreciation of the live oak tree. Membership in the Society was limited to individual live oaks known or suspected to be more than one hundred years old. Live oaks under one hundred years old were eligible for membership in the Junior League. Each member had an “attorney”, usually its owner, and the “attorney” paid the annual dues—twenty-five acorns. The president of the Society was the largest member. Initially this was the Locke Breaux Oak near Hahnville, LA. It was estimated to be over 500 years old. The society stopped functioning in 1938 after the death of Dr. Stephens. Meigs O. Frost publicized the Society’s revival in a Times-Picayune Sunday magazine article on 21 January 1945. Stanley C. Arthur, director of the Louisiana State Museum, took over leadership of the Society. He recorded 119 oak trees with their names, location, measurements and sponsors as members. Membership is currently maintained by the Louisiana Garden Society.

This collection contains clippings, letters, photographs, notes, artifacts, registration book, bulletins, maps and organizational records.

The bulk of the collection was donated by Miss Willie Wynn White, daughter of the late H. H. White of Alexandria, Louisiana.

See also:Collection 297- Margaret Stephens Jochem Papers for more Live Oak Society materials


A. Correspondence 1-01 through 1-19
B. Records 1-20 through 1-24
C. Publicity  
  1. Publications 1-25
  2. Articles 1-26 through 1-27
  3. News clippings 1-28 through 1-29
D. Photographs 1-30
E. Miscellaneous  
  1. Artifacts 1-31
  2. Program 1-32
OVERSIZE: Map Case 25-01


A. Correspondence
1-01 Correspondence: 1935-1936
1-02 Correspondence: 1937, January - March
1-03 Correspondence: 1937, April - June
1-04 Correspondence: 1937, July - September
1-05 Correspondence: 1937, October - December
1-06 Correspondence: 1938
1-07 Correspondence: 1944
1-08 Correspondence: 1945
1-09 Correspondence: 1947-1955
1-10 Correspondence: 1960
1-11 Correspondence: 1961
1-12 Correspondence: 1962
1-13 Correspondence: 1963
1-14 Correspondence: 1964
1-15 Correspondence: 1965
1-16 Correspondence: 1966
1-17 Correspondence: 1967
1-18 Correspondence: 1968
1-19 Correspondence: 2000
B. Records
1-20 Records: Live Oak Society - membership certificates, 2001
    Owners: University of Louisiana at Lafayette
1-21 Records: Registration book, 1934-1995
    Live Oak Society Registration, 1999; 2000; 2001
1-22 Live Oak Society Bulletins, 1945-1965, n.d.
1-23 Records: Miscellaneous, 1935-1945
    Includes Attorney General Ruling (1935), Live Oak Society Registration forms, Why a Live Oak Society should formed, etc., 1935-1945, n.d.; list of members 1 April 1945
1-24 Louisiana Garden Club Federation, Inc.
    “History of the Live Oak Society,” revised, 1977
Certificate of Membership [for Locke Breaux Oak], n.d.
Application for membership [blank], n.d.
C. Publicity
  1. Publications
1-25 Publicity: Publications, Arbor and Bird Days, compiled by L. L. Blair, State Department of Education, Circular No. 232, 1929
  2. Articles
1-26 Publicity: Articles in Louisiana Conservation Review (reprints, typescripts)
    Stephens, Edwin Lewis. “I Saw in Louisiana a Live Oak Growing,” v. 4, no.2, (April 1934). (typescript and reprint)
Stephens, Edwin Lewis. “The Live Oak Society,” v. 4, # 6 (April, 1935) [2 copies, reprint]
Stephens, Edwin Lewis. “Annals of the Live Oak Society,” v. 2, # 2 (April, 1936)
“The Live Oak Society, v.123, p.103, (March 1937) American Magazine"
Sonderegge, V.H. “What The Department of Conservation is Doing for Louisiana Forests,” Autumn, 1939: p. 19.
Mitchiner, Nantelle. “Great Oaks!,” Autumn, 1939: p. 27.
Stephens, Edwin Lewis. “How Old Are the Live Oaks?” n.d. (reprint)
1-27 Publicity: Article, Stephens, Edwin Lewis. “More Annals of the Live Oak Society,” 13 May 1937, (typescript)
1-28 Publicity: News clippings (typescript)
    “Live Oak Society Begins Tour of Southern Area,” The Shreveport Times 15 July 1937.
“Attorneys of Society Without Human Members Planning Trek.” Times Picayune, about 8 May 1937
“State’s Live Oak Society Reborn,” Times-Picayune, 27 January 1945
Frost, Meigs O. “Most Peaceful Club Revived in Bloodiest War,”Times Picayune Magazine, 21 January 1945
  3. News Clippings
1-29 Publicity: news clippings, miscellaneous dates
D. Photographs
1-30 Photographs: Live Oak Trees (some identified); leaves
    Also: Stephens, Edwin L., n.d.
E. Miscellaneous
  1. Artifacts
1-31 Miscellaneous: Artifacts - leaves, test tube
  2. Program
1-32 The Live Oak Society Tree Dedication, Mandeville, Louisiana - Hosts: Mr. and Mrs. Tom L. Doby, Jr.
Map Case
25-01 Map of Breaux Bridge, Louisiana - Voorhies Addition