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Avary and Stephens family papers

Collection number: ahc.MSS1028

Scope and Content

The papers consist of articles, advertisements, books, datebooks, legal documents, professional records, and personal correspondence of the Avary and Stephens families. There are articles from the Atlanta Journal Constitution and various magazines throughout the 1920's covering topics such as movie costumes, filet crochet, floor plans, and women's sports. Advertisements include a circular for Thomas Edison's phonograph acquired from the 1904 Louisiana Purchase Exposition, a 1950 campus map of Emory University, and a 1966 map of metropolitan Atlanta. The two books in the collection include one hymnal book published in 1884 and a photocopy of a book documenting Confederate flags from the Civil War. Personal correspondence consists of greeting cards, postcards, invitations, and letters written between family, friends, unknown persons. One letter contains a crochet pattern for a bedspread. The majority of the legal documents are that of Alexander W. Stephens' work as a judge. The financial records are Alexander's and Janie's bank ledgers, bills, and receipts. The datebooks and stenography notebook are unidentified.


  • 1884-1966, undated


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright. All requests to publish, quote, or reproduce must be submitted through the Kenan Research Center.

Administrative/Biographical History

Robert Lee Avary (1863-1939) was born in Dekalb County, Georgia. He graduated from Emory University (1886) and the University of Georgia (1890). He was admitted to the Georgia Bar Association (1890), practiced law in Atlanta, and was a teacher at Atlanta Medical College and Southern Medical College (both later Emory University). He married Janie Stephens (1868-1937), a grandniece of Alexander Hamilton Stephens (1812-1883), the vice president of the Confederacy. Robert and Janie had three children: Janie Carr Avary (1901-1903), Robert Lee Avary Jr. (1903-1989), and Stephens Archer Avary (1907-1969). Robert, Jr. served in the United States Army during World War II, practiced law in Atlanta, and married Jeanne Gerne (1926-2003). Stephens was a draftsman and married Mary Pierce (1912-2004). Both sons and their wives are buried in Decatur, Georgia. Janie S. Avary, was the sister of Alexander William Stephens (1874-1943) and Dr. Robert G. Stephens (1881-1974). Alexander never married and served as Superior Court Judge in Atlanta from 1918 to his death. Robert married Lucy Evans (1881-1962) in 1907 and had one son, Robert G. Stephens Jr. (1913-2003). Robert served as the United States representative from Georgia's Tenth Congressional district. Additional biographical information about the Stephens family has not been determined.


1.67 linear ft. (four document cases)



System of Arrangement

Alphabetical according to titles supplied by staff.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift, 1995

Description Control

This collection was processed in 2012.

Avary and Stephens family papers
Laura Starratt
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared According To Dacs
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Kenan Research Center at Atlanta History Center Repository

130 West Paces Ferry Road
Atlanta GA 30305