E. J. Masterson Family Correspondence (S2677)


Biographical Sketch

Florence Dalton was born in Kenosha, Wisconsin on January 16, 1869. She married Edward J. Masterson, an Internal Revenue Service agent, in Pomeroy, Iowa on May 31, 1893. They had three sons – twins Kenneth and Maurice, who were born on August 8, 1895, and Lawrence. The Masterson family moved to Barnesville, Minnesota in 1905. There all of the sons excelled in school, especially Maurice. In 1917 the three Masterson brothers dropped out of college to join the Army when the United States entered the First World War. They all served with distinction in the American Expeditionary Force in France. Maurice was killed in an artillery barrage on November 1, 1918. In 1928 E.J. Masterson retired from the Internal Revenue Service and moved with his wife to Moorhead, Minnesota. He died there in 1935. Florence Masterson died in Moorhead in 1960 at the age of 91. Kenneth Masterson, after a career as an insurance adjuster in California and Oregon, died in a Veteran’s hospital in Vancouver, Washington in 1964.

Collection Description

This collection contains the correspondence carried out by the various members and friends of the Masterson family between 1895 and 1965. The bulk of these letters consists of the correspondence Kenneth and Maurice Masterson had with their parents while the twin brothers were in France with the AEF. Also included are the letters sent to Florence Masterson by Maurice’s fiancé Eleanor Maclaughlin, his friend James Thompson, Florence’s sisters Alice and Lill Dalton, her brother John Dalton, and other, miscellaneous letters. The second box of this collection contains several diplomas, pictures, and honors that belonged to Maurice Masterson.


Box 1

  • Barnesville Record Review. 1910-19
  • Correspondence
    • E.J. Masterson. 1917-18
    • Emmet O’Boyle to Florence Masterson. 1917-18
    • Florence Masterson. 1896-1945
    • Kenneth Masterson
      • E.J. Masterson. 1917-19
      • Florence Masterson. 1917-19
      • Grandmother Dalton. 1917
    • Lawrence Masterson to Kenneth and Maurice Masterson. 1917-18
    • Maurice Masterson
      • E.J. Masterson. 1917-18
      • Florence Masterson. 1916-18
      • Grandmother Dalton. 1917-18
    • Miscellaneous. 1895-1965
    • Sympathy Letters on Maurice Masterson’s Death. 1918-19; 1921

Box 2

  • Maurice Masterson
    • Death Notification Sent to his Parents
    • High School Diploma
    • Minnesota Death Certificate
    • United States Army Death Certificate
  • Miscellaneous Material
    • Featured poems from "Just Among Ourselves" by John F. Dalton. 1989-1920
    • The Scene, brief story about Florence Masterson. May 7, 1953
    • "A Soldier from Barnesville" from The Story of Minnesota's Past by Rhonda R. Gilman. 1991
  • Photograph of E.J. Masterson