Selma Jacob Papers, 1987-1996

Accession: 1999-015
Extent: 1 linear foot
Restrictions: None
Copyright: Copyright has not been transferred to the University of Louisville

Biographical Note

Selma Jacob, author, businesswoman, and arts promoter was born in Louisville, Kentucky, April 8, 1905, and died there on October 3, 1996. She married Hyman Jacob and they co-owned Chilton Jewelers on Fourth Street for many years, and then managed a jewelry concession at 14th and Jefferson streets. She operated the business on her own from the time her husband died in 1980 until she retired in 1984.

Jacob had a life-long interest in the arts, but it was only after she retired that she made a name for herself as a writer, motivational speaker, and founder and director of several writing and acting groups. She served as a catalyst and nurturer of other writers and actors. She founded the Cherokee Roundtable in 1986 and wrote "The Cherokee Roundtable Bulletin," the group's monthly newsletter as well as other newsletters for other arts groups. She was a long-time Actors Theatre Associate and volunteer as well as supporter of many small civic theater groups in the area.

Jacob wrote and produced several plays locally. In 1995 her first book, Once You're Over the Hill, You Begin to Pick Up Speed!, appeared. She was working on a second book when she died.

Brief Description of the Collection

The Selma Jacob Papers consist largely of the literary material from her later retirement years concentrated in the 1987 to 1996 years. Some of the items may predate 1987, but Jacob commonly did not date her writing, even the newsletters she produced. There is very little biographical material included in these papers, which were acquired from her personal attorney, Robert Kohn, in 1999. Some of the collection is personal information, legal documents, printed material or memorabilia. The rest is her literary production both published and unpublished.

List of Folders in this Collection

Box 1

  • Selma Jacob, obituary, articles about, book reviews, color photographs, 1995-1996
  • Selma Jacob, memorial tributes, 1996
  • Selma Jacob, clippings about, 1992-1996
  • Correspondence, 1984-1995
  • Publisher correspondence, 1996
  • Publishing agreement, 1992
  • Book, Once You're Over the Hill You Begin to Pick Up Speed! 1993
  • Handwritten manuscript, Once You're Over the Hill . . . , n.d.
  • Typescript, Once You're Over the Hill . . . , 1991
  • Acknowledgement, Once You're Over the Hill . . . , n.d.
  • Once You're Over the Hill. . . .
  • Once You're Over the Hill. . . .
  • Poem, [1937]
  • Articles by Selma Jacob, circa 1996
  • Play, "The Beginning," n.d.
  • Play, "What Happened to Jim Thompson?" 1987
  • Scrapbook of writing, "The 15 Cent Soda Chocolate Kid, Growing Up in Louisville," 1990
  • Unpublished manuscripts, typed: "Derby Day," "Ballet," "The Beginning," "Bon Appétit," "Quartet II," "Rabbits Are an Endangered Species," "I Hate Men - I Hate Women," "Things Change - But Not Much," and "R.S.V.P." n.d.
  • Unpublished manuscripts, handwritten and typed: "You Never Asked,"
  • "Generation Gap," "Mrs. Parker of the Vicar's Circle," " Di Giovanni's," "The Vicuna Coat," "The Trouble with Women - They Leave the Toilet Seat Down," " Faith, Hope & Disparity," and "Mr. Otis' Ups & Downs," n.d.
  • Unpublished manuscripts, handwritten, untitled, reflective writing, n.d.
  • Selma Jacob's notebook titled "Epigrams, Human Advice, Goals," n.d.
  • Unpublished manuscript, handwritten, "Ballet," n.d.
  • Newsletter (bulletin), "Cherokee Roundtable News," 1995-1996
  • Newsletter (bulletin), "Talk of the Town," 21 different issues, most undated, circa 1994
  • Newsletter (bulletin), "Writers and Readers' and "Drama Study Group," circa 1990-1993
  • Newsletter, handwritten material, n.d.
  • Arts Club publications, 1988-1989
  • Other Writing, Toast, Speech, n.d.
  • Book promotions and order forms, [1995]
  • Delta Gamma Society yearbook, membership booklet, 1994-1996
  • "Personal Natal Interpretation" prepared for Selma Jacob, 1988
  • Book cover sign, audio tape "Live at the Alley Theater," 1996

Box 2

  • Arts Club Awards
  • Other People's Writing - Selma's Collection
  • Architecture
  • Newsletter, "Tall Stories 1400 Willow," 1994
  • 1400 Willow
  • Selma's Friends
  • Humor
  • The Rud
  • Party invitations, guest lists, n.d.
  • Selma Party Invites, a Letter to the Cast
  • Publicity
  • Cards and Stationery
  • The Cockayne Fund
  • "Books Sent To:"
  • Health Press
  • Kentucky Author Dinner
  • Writing
  • Travel - Plans and Receipts
  • Personal Calendars
  • Religion
  • Theatre - Season Previews, Subscriber Newsletters (Louisville Area)
  • Playbill Magazine, 1990-1992
  • Programs from Local Theatres including but not limited to: Music Theatre Louisville, Derby Dinner Playhouse, Horse Cave Theatre, The Roundtable Theatre, PNC Broadway Series, Clarksville Little Theatre, Belknap Theatre, Bunbury Theatre, Actors Theatre Louisville, Kentucky Contemporary Theatre, and the Louisville Ballet